Taking a Short Break

After an exciting summer of coding, the student software company is closing down for a while. Suzanne says thanks and farewell to a fantastic team.

After an exciting and productive few months of software engineering, the Student Software Company is closing down for a while. The summer vacation has come to an end, and our employees are returning to study or setting off on new adventures in their internships or graduate jobs.

Student software company employees wave goodbye on Zoom

We’ve had some nail-biting moments:

  • When the Supergen team ran out of build minutes while I was on holiday with no phone signal – thanks to Miranda for thinking outside the box to solve that one!
  • When the Smooth Sailing team needed a continuous integration and delivery platform that we could actually afford, and Albert discovered hidden negotiation skills worthy of a hostage situation.
  • When the Great Science Share team’s VM went down, just before their final client demo. The whole team rallied round and swapped screen shares to make sure the full functionality could be shown off to good effect. Thanks everyone!

And that’s to say nothing of all the tricky technical problems the team has solved over the summer. I think we’ve all learned more than we ever expected to about the joys of designing for super-thin folding phones, of making maps that zoom just right, and negotiating University processes.

The COVID-19 lockdown reduced our options for an end-of-summer get-together. We compromised with a whole company retrospective, followed by some surprisingly competitive

Whole company retrospective board 2020

And that would normally have been that for the Student Software Company, until next spring, when the time comes to get ready for our new round of summer projects. But this year is going to be a little different. We are getting lots of interest from clients, and making everyone wait for months until we can work with them isn’t exactly a recipe for good client relations. So, we’re experimenting with a couple of different project models, that will run during term time as well as during the vacations. Watch this space for news about those initiatives, as they come online.

But for now, I want to say a HUGE THANK YOU to the whole team, including Gareth and Stewart, my fellow academic leads. It was great to work with such talented and enthusiastic people. I look forward to meeting you all in person, with food, in a less socially distant future. All the best until then.