Interview: Daniel Bogan, Flickr developer

Posted by Jayel Aheram in Interviews


We tried to find out from Daniel Bogan, the Australian Flickr developer who goes by “waferbaby”, just what was built to drive The Commons for its launch a year ago. Here’s what we learned:

Tell us a little bit about yourself? What is Waferbaby?

I’ve been a bit of a web geek for over a decade now, accidentally falling into the industry. I do web development work — the back end stuff, the bits of a site you never really see. Though I do dabble in front end work now and then, badly.

I mostly write PHP (for work) and Ruby (for fun) code.

And “waferbaby” was originally going to be a comic label, and ended up becoming my online “persona”. Go figure.

What’s your involvement with The Commons?

I came on board The Commons a little after it kicked off, when it started gaining some momentum and needed a bunch of work done. I built the underbelly of Commons pages and a bunch of admin tools for both us and for the institutions, and I’m maintaining them and adding new bits and pieces as we go forward.

It’s definitely the best project I can remember working on, or at least the most rewarding.

When I go to The Commons photostreams or photo pages, they look to me like any other page. What sort of underbelly and tools were needed that the rest of us don’t need or have?

Actually, there’s surprisingly little that’s had to change — the only real difference is that the ‘license’ links to an individual institution’s particular agreement regarding The Commons. Apart from that, photo pages are basically the same as for everyone.

Otherwise, we’ve built a set of tools for us to administer things, and one for the institutions to control their staff, get an idea of what’s going on with their photos, things like that . . . but can’t talk about that :)

I’ll just have to make it up! No really, I won’t, but some time we’ll get you to talk about things you can talk about!


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6 Responses to “Interview: Daniel Bogan, Flickr developer”

  1. Trapac Says:

    Hey! Good to hear a little bit about the ‘taken for granted’ and often unseen stuff that helps keep these kind of things moving forward. Looking forward to hearing more in due course.

    ….and Waferbaby is a great name too!

  2. zyrcster Says:

    It’s so awesome to hear from a staff developer! Great interview — so good to get to know the waferbaby behind the scenes. But, ahhhh, I want to hear more!

  3. Paul Hagon Says:

    Great interview (although that photo always freaks me out). Nice to hear about the “behind the scenes” people. Keep up the great work Dan.

  4. striatic Says:

    it’s interesting to hear about how much of the work ends up occurring in an invisible way, at least to flickr members.

    even things like needing a system where multiple people can log in, without just “giving everyone the password”. when you think about it, that’s very necessary for a multi-person account, and yet it isn’t the kind of thing that leaps to mind immediately when you think about how The Commons operates.

    flickr is really geared around individuals holding accounts, so building tools for groups to manage an account would definitely be an important feature.

  5. Ian McFarlan Says:

    Been following Dan for many years now. He does some amazing work and I’m looking forward to seeing what he brings to Flickr in the future.

    You ROCK, Dan!

  6. moxie Says:

    bogan’s a jerk. he once drop kicked a llama into a river.

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