Blogger Interview: 5 Questions with David Walsh

Introduction: David Walsh
David Walsh

Folks who read web developing tips online, even if it’s just a bit, should knew David Walsh well. David is the go-to source when you need help in jQuery, PHP, HTML/CSS, and Mootools – His personal blog is one of the most popular coding/web development blogs in the world.

Like many others I spoke to recently, David is a Media Temple customer. In this interview, we are going to dig into his working life at Mozilla and his experience with Media Temple. Let’s get started!

Q1: Hey David, I am glad to have you onboard today. For start, can you tell us more about yourself?

I’m a Web Developer at Mozilla, working primarily on the Mozilla Developer Network (MDN). In my free time, I tinker with every front end technology I find, and write about those experiences on my blog: http://davidwalsh.name. I love the open web and look forward to contributing to open source projects for the rest of my career.

Q2: What is your workflow on a regular work day at Mozilla?

It varies quite a bit but a usual timeline would be hitting my home office around 9am. I’ll work four hours and then take lunch break to clear my mind. I’ll either take my infant for a walk, play video games (a great change of pace from my work mindset), or catch some TV with my family. I’ll then return to my office for another four to six hours to finish the day. My days have a few video meetings but I’m mostly left alone to code. The flexibility in work day that Mozilla offers allows for growth as a person as well as a developer. If I find some more time in my day, I’ll try to push out a blog post.

Q3: DavidWalsh.name is one of the most popular blogs online. How much are you spending on hosting and others related services?

DavidWalsj.name

I’m fortunate enough to have sponsors backing my blog.

Media Temple provides awesome hosting support, Name.com has my domain under lock and key, and MaxCDN has provided CDN services. I even have Mobify chipping in with optimizing my site for mobile. I’m very luck to have such an awesome team backing me!

Q4: We see that DavidWalsh.name is hosted on Media Temple. Are you happy with their service?

Absolutely. Media Temple has been there when I needed them.

For example, a WordPress plugin used by my blog was exploited and caused problems on my virtual server. I was in Brazil at the time, so I was unable to call them. I tweeted them and they had a new machine ready for me in no time. They were a major lifesaver and they’ve always jumped to help any time I needed it.

Q5: Your experience and expertise as a web developer are like gold to many. What would be your advice for those who are shopping for a web host for the first time?

I’ve dealt with hundreds of hosting provides in my time, and 90% of them were terrible. Look for hosting providers that place their phone number in a prominent place on their website; many hosting providers hide their phone number because they don’t want to deal with you. Also be sure that the hosting provider doesn’t outsource support — you want to talk to someone who speaks your language; a language barrier is the last thing you need when you support. Lastly, choose someone that you have a good feeling about. That’s hard to quantify but you’ll have a feel for the right host.

In my experience, Media Temple and Dreamhost are class web hosts.

That’s all for my questions. Is there anything you would like to add before we say good bye?

Don’t opt for web hosts that service millions of sites, and don’t opt for hosts that only service hundreds. Find a middle ground because the extremes will let you down on both sides. Lastly, do your own backups as often as possible, as you can never really trust another source with your data.

Thanks again for your time!

Follow David’s tweets @DavidWalshBlog and +David Walsh.