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Mar 20 2020

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COVID-19 Doesn't Stop Gearbox Founder

by Michael Layne |

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The Background

On March 13, 2020, our founder and leader, Marty Thomasson was supposed to board a flight destined for Auckland New Zealand on his way to Papua New Guinea. As some of you may recall, Marty has spent some time with the doctors and volunteers of YWAM serving on a medical ship beginning in 2015. The story was showcased at the annual Developer Conference in Las Vegas in 2016.

Marty has dedicated countless hours to the development and deployment of a mobile solution that has literally changed the way this organization serves the needs of remote communities throughout Papua New Guinea.

By now you can guess Marty and his wife (a doctor who was going to serve on the ship in an even greater capacity) did not head to the airport that Friday afternoon. For reasons that certainly don't need to be explained during these pandemic times, Marty is at home in Atlanta. Certainly disappointed (and I would guess slightly depressed) about missing the opportunity to see the team and dedicate most of his time to enhancing and improving our lovely YWAM mobile app - complete with advanced syncing and utilizing servers both on the ship and in the cloud.

So Now What?

Marty did not turn away from his goals for the trip. He got busy designing and developing what he had intended on doing half way around the globe.

I don't know where he will land in terms of what he is able to accomplish with all the daily changes and challenges we all face in the days ahead. He has a business, a wife, and four children (five if you count their adopted Spanish son who was an exchange student 6 years ago and is now a Georgia Tech graduate and still a regular fixture at the family dinner table from time to time).

Carrying On

In just the last week, Marty has implemented significant improvements to the system. The Claris FileMaker platform is alive and well delivering the rapid deployment we have come to know.

He is now using Otto, the amazing DevOps tool from Geist Interactive to deploy updates in ten minutes rather than 3 hours.

MirrorSync 6 from our friend Jesse Barnum and the fine folks of 360Works is syncing devices 24/7 and now at least 3x faster thanks for major performance improvements using FileMaker's REST API.

Grateful WFH Veterans

We're experts at working remotely and virtually. We live in Slack. When we have to login to a server in Sydney, Australia, it's no different from logging into a server in Atlanta, GA. We have our Slack line-ups every morning. We support each other with tips, support, memes... whatever it takes. We love our geeky dev community.

When we do need some actual face time or host client meetings, we rely on the best co-working space in Atlanta. This is what I tell people about our membership at Roam

It's everything we need, and nothing we don't.

Comfortable and diverse co-working space, well equipped meeting rooms for all sizes, a cafe, and their most important asset... their people. Want a great greeting? Walk into a Roam. They've got 6 locations throughout metro Atlanta.

If there is anything we can do for you, don't hesitate to ask.

Michael Layne