CodeХ’s Founder on Apps for the Next Generation of Media

CodeX is a club for young programmers and web designers. It is not a student class for solving abstract tasks — here future experts work on solutions that will be implemented into the industry. Read the interview with Pert Savchenko, ITMO’s graduate and head of CodeX.

What inspired you to organize the club?

CodeX started out at the beginning of 2015. However the prototype of CodeX appeared five years ago when I was a third year student. Back then in cooperation with the Department of Engineering and Computer Graphics I initiated a web design studio where students made projects related to graphic and web design as well as web development. It became very popular because there was no other center for gifted and enthusiastic IT specialists.

CodeX ran for about two and a half years. When it was closed students continued to ask me about other places where they can meet soulmates and work on projects. To tell the truth, I also thought about restoring this center. So we took into account our mistakes and changed the brand.

What makes CodeX unique?

We support our projects without any assistance: we create an idea, develop, implement into the market, promote and also monitor the results ourselves. Every time we try to work effectively — we use projects by Telegram, GitHub, ProductHunt, Google and Facebook as examples.

Apart from developing, our team also makes experiments and conducts research. We test different ideas and analyze approaches and technologies. Some of us share their experience in their reviews and articles as well as initiate workshops, presentations and contests.

How to join the club?

Desire is the only thing you need! First of all, we tell newcomers about our principles. Then we give tasks to test them. Being experienced is necessary. It means that an applicant has spent much time to learn basics of development or design.

We organized our activities to give members an opportunity to work remotely. Most tasks don’t need team work. You just have to have a laptop and Internet access.

Please talk about projects made by CodeX.

All our solutions are "packaged" - each program is independent and open. The products made by CodeX have already been implemented into the market.

For instance, CodeX.Editor, a vision editor based on a new concept — unlike other editing solutions that generate HTML codes, it offers a text, picture or title without specific symbols. This data can be uploaded on web sites, mobile apps and reader services as well as Facebook, Instant Articles and so forth. It is very relevant for media portals. A user can navigate it by keyboard shortcut without using their mouse. The editor has a functional core, all tools are represented by plugins using API cores. It means that a developer can code his own tools for the editor. Nowadays this service is accessed regularly and several large media services are ready to use it.

One of the most enthusiastic members of our team is CodeX.Bot. It is a cloud platform for integration of services into Telegram. The Bot informs us about code changes and calculates how many users visit our web site per day. Thanks to non-trivial technical solutions it can be used as a cloud, as any company may add @codex_bot into their work chat to use it.

We also pay attention to people with special needs. We have developed CodeX.Special script — single click is enough to add a web page for people with visual disturbances on a site. The result meets all requirements, moreover, the page is easy to be navigated and looks good. Often when using "CTRL+" one has problems with design because of disproportion.

The most complicated project is called "Project Orion." We made a system for analyzing the most popular news in the Internet. It is very interesting technical challenge to understand how to predict popularity of an article in several minutes after its publishing. It would be very useful for owners of media portals to receive push notifications about the most relevant events. Just imagine that a system can advise what articles should be put on the main page and then promoted via social networks.

You have already headed several large projects. What do you get out of it when you work with students?

Thanks to CodeX Club I have learned lots of things like technical ideas and team building skills. I met here many gifted people and learnt what multitasking is.

Do you have a strategy to promote the Club?

We don’t promote our club in the conventional sense of this word. We organize various events and contests that can be interesting for our potential members. In December we are going to initiate a competition for ITMO developers. Another idea is to invite famous IT experts to head our workshops.

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