John Alan Travis Low    (Travis)
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2242 Cartwright Place, Reston VA 20191  |  703-476-5312 (h)  |  703-517-2096 (c)  |

Summary: Independent consultant for over two years. Founded Dawnstar, a web development company. Four years experience as technical team leader. Complete software life cycle experience, from business analysis, to development, testing, and deployment. Fluent in ASP, PHP, Java, C, Perl, and other languages. Thorough understanding of web-related technologies such as networking, databases, server-side scripting, application servers, and browser technologies. Experienced with web security issues such as firewalls, encryption, and authentication. Proficient system administrator and network engineer with great troubleshooting abilities. Excellent communication skills.

Professional Experience   (or jump to buzzwords)
President, Dawnstar, LLC, Reston VA 3/2003 - present

Created extensive PHP application framework that includes user management, a robust and easy-to-use security system, content management, database API, and more. Produced quality ecommerce web applications for a variety of clients, including Little Hands Kindermusik, Northern Virginia Massage Center, and others. Designed and developed the popular freeware Willow Job Tracker application, which has been well-reviewed at Developed other applications, including a PDF-generating article management system, a sophisticated online testing system for use by educators, and a software distribution management system.

Independent Consultant,   (Client: Society for Human Resource Management, Alexandria VA) 12/2001 - 3/2003

Directed a team of three in restructuring existing ASP-based web application and moving website in-house onto new servers. Greatly reduced bugs and increased performance by redesigning and rewriting substantial portions of the application. Assisted with importing website into Stellent Content Management System by writing Perl scripts to convert 20,000 pages of code. Implemented best-practice procedures such as revision control (using CVS), issue-tracking, and documentation. Wrote VBScript applications to import data into website from existing Oracle and SQL Server databases. Wrote various well-received applications for customer service personnel to more easily find member information in the TIMSS database. Assisted IT department with various network engineering and systems administration issues.

Technical Lead, IIT, Inc., Fairfax VA 5/2001 - 11/2001

Directed all development, including Java, ASP, and PHP applications. Mentored developers and testers through all phases of the software life cycle. Created processes to ensure adherence to best development practices. Designed and directed implementation of XML-based web application generator. Authored proposals, specifications, project plans, and technical FAQs as needed. Directed all system administration and network engineering. Engineered and configured heterogeneous in-house network, including firewall, DMZ for web, mail, and DNS hosting. Provided ongoing technical support to customers.

Project Lead, IIT, Inc., Fairfax, VA   (Client: Choice Hotels, Silver Spring MD) 9/2000 - 5/2001

Directed development of Java-based B2B ecommerce application running on ATG Dynamo. Brought site uptime to over 99% with greatly improved server performance, resulting in substantial sales increases. Created testing and release processes to ensure consistent product quality. Conducted customer interviews to obtain detailed requirements for new releases. Directed and participated in development, testing, and deployment for each release cycle. Added security features such as encryption and improved authentication. Wrote security policy. Provided system administration and network engineering support.

Technical Lead, IIT, Inc., Fairfax, VA   (Client: StayConnect, Silver Spring MD) 6/2000 - 9/2000

Designed and coded Java-based web application framework for distributed management of site survey operations aimed at sales and installation of high-speed internet connections in hotel rooms around the US. Directed engineers and designers during initial implementation phase.

Technical Lead, IIT, Inc., Fairfax, VA   (Client: Freddie Mac, McLean VA) 2/2000 - 6/2000

Directed development of Java-based secondary mortgage pricing web application. Aided client in analyzing their business processes and producing clear and complete application requirements. Designed and developed application middleware components. Assisted engineers with other areas of design and development. Created JavaScript API for emulating spreadsheet function in a cross-browser fashion.

QA Analyst,, Reston VA 10/1998 - 2/2000

Managed small group of engineers in testing flagship web-based learning management system. Wrote and executed test plans for internal and external software products and tools. Directed team members and instructed them in new technologies and test strategies. Redesigned and extended Java servlet-based web application used for issue tracking.

QA Engineer, MindQ Publishing, Reston VA 7/1998 - 10/1998

Designed and executed tests for flagship learning management application. Performed field studies at beta sites in order to gather user feedback and product usability data. Analyzed results and generated marketing requirements for future product releases. Increased product quality by expanding test scope to include user interaction, usability, and stylistic issues. Configured and administered test network.

Java Technologist, MindQ Publishing, Reston VA 4/1997 - 7/1998

Generated technical content for multimedia Java language courses, including JDBC and Networking tutorials. Researched Java and Java-related technology and wrote production quality code to illustrate the concepts presented in the tutorials. Developed web-based, multi-tier Java applications for teaching purposes.

Lead Unix Administrator, Netrix Corporation, Herndon VA 6/1996 - 4/1997

Managed 70+ users of 60 Solaris and 30 Apollo machines. Developed and documented more effective administrative procedures. Helped integrate Unix and PC management. Improved backup scheme. Wrote disaster recovery plans. Directed junior administrators. Prepared budgets. Wrote CGI application to publish administrative information across different platforms within the IS department. Planned and executed after-hours maintenance and upgrades as needed.

Software Engineer, Netrix Corporation, Herndon VA 9/1992 - 6/1996

Designed and developed frame relay protocol handler and its associated management GUI. Increased overall quality of code base for X.25, SNA SDLC, and asynchronous protocols. Oversaw wholesale source code port from Apollos to Suns, automating where possible and desirable. Designed a system for collecting and propagating call records, statistics, and remote debugging information. Designed and implemented company-wide software release tools and processes to help ensure consistent product quality.

ancient history...

Technical and Related Skills  (buzzwords)
  • Markup: XML, HTML, dHTML, CSS, some CFML.
  • Scripting: ASP, VBScript, JavaScript, PHP, perl (+CGI), Velocity, WebMacro, FreeMarker, TCL.
  • Programming: Java, C, LISP, SQL, Pascal, plus various proprietary languages.
  • Java: J2EE, Servlets, JSP, JDBC, EJB, Swing, Applets, RMI, and much more.
  • Databases: Oracle, MySQL, mSQL, Access.
  • Protocols: TCP/IP, SMTP, Frame Relay, X.25, SNA/SDLC, async.
  • Systems: Windows 95/98/NT/2000, MS-DOS, Solaris, Linux, and other Unix variants.
  • Servers: ATG Dynamo, Apache, Tomcat, JServ, IIS, Postfix, Sendmail, BIND (DNS).
  • File Sharing: NFS and Samba (for heterogeneous networks).
  • Revision Control: ClearCase (client and server), CVS (client and server).
  • Unix Shells: sh, bash, csh, ksh. Skilled with find, perl, sed, awk, and shell scripting.
  • Usability: ADA guidelines, cross-browser compatibility, assistive technology issues.
  • Art/Graphics: GUIs, graphic layout/design, calligraphy, printmaking.
  • Languages: English, German, ASL, some Spanish.
  • Communication: Good writer, speaker, and whiteboard artist.

  • B.S. in Computer Science and Applied Mathematics, from University of Rochester.
    Graduated cum laude 1991. Elected to Phi Beta Kappa.
  • Sun Microsystems system, network, and NIS+ administration courses.
  • User Interface Engineering product usability seminars.
  • Atria ClearCase administration courses.
  • Specs, manuals, whitepapers, etc., as needed on an ongoing basis.
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