adam-howard - Websites, apps, and digital services built with a focus on product


I’m a skilled developer who prototypes and builds web/app products for startups, media organisations, and major banks. I’m familiar with good practices, methodologies, and techniques; but I also know when to move fast and take shortcuts. I can take my time methodically tackling a technical challenge (ITV, Tinie Tempah), and I can equally knock up a prototype to put in front of customers and stakeholders (RWE, a bank under NDA).

Here’s the thing; I’m a good developer, but that’s not enough. You can’t make informed technical decisions without overlapping with design, user insight, and business strategy. Making the right thing is as important as making the thing right.

I know how to conduct research and how to find the right problem to solve. I know how to test assumptions, designs, and prototypes with real customers. I work closely with designers and I know how to interface with the wider business.

I believe in cross-disciplinary teams, close collaboration, and rapid iteration. I’m driven by happy clients and customers, but also by leaving a team in a better position to build and innovate once I’ve gone. I can lead a project myself or join an existing team. Either way, get in touch.

case studies

Coming soon: The bank under NDA

Coming soon: ITV during the general election

I led development on Skype in the Classroom in a phase focused on discovery and search. I continued in this role as Skype partnered with, working with a subcontractor in fast, iterative sprints. The project made teachers happy, boosted Skype’s brand, and won some awards (iXDA and two Webbys).

I’m as comfortable with backend problems as I am user facing ones. I cleared some serious technical debt on the Skype project’s test suite, I audited and refactored an early version of the Ghost blogging engine, and I improved’s scheduled publishing system in a (hairy, but well documented) 71 file PR.

I built an app with custom Shazam-like technology for Tinie Tempah (Warner Music Group). When the app detects one of Tinie’s songs, it drops you into a video of his lips rapping along in perfect time. Fans can hold it to their mouth and “rap like Tinie”. The app was a success; repeated antics from celebrities like Nick Grimshaw (Radio 1) pushed download numbers, and extended functionality for album owners drove new sales.


Technology: Ruby, Javascript, Node, iOS; Rails, React, Meteor; Heroku, AWS; MySQL, Elasticsearch, MongoDB, Redis; GitHub flow, TDD.

Design: User interviews, insight gathering, and synthesis; Customer-centric design; Sketch-based ideation; Paper prototyping, clickable prototypes.

Other: Lean, agile processes; International teams, remote working.


I wrote a bot that automatically scanned and optimised open source projects, spawning a debate in the community and an article in WIRED. I was awarded a first at uni for inventing a passwordless web login method (now replicated by WhatsApp, Google, etc). I’ve made the shortlist for “Young Developer of the Year” and “Next Big Thing” for awards run by Microsoft and net magazine. I sometimes work with artists, one project caught the attention of Ai Wei Wei. My team won the 2014 “Hacker Olympics”. I used to run community hack days; now I help people learn to code at codebar. I made a game in just 1021 bytes of Javascript. I once took an old telegraph key to the Facebook offices and hacked it to post Facebook statuses. I donated two goldfish to Mozilla’s London office after using them to generate music (no animals were harmed!). Oh and I actually once spoke at a tech event in Havana!


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