We spoke with Metova iOS Developer and Tech Lead, Han Kim, about how life and work has been since COVID-19, his visit to Metova’s Guadalajara office, being a Nashville native, his past work with Sugargliders, serving as a Twitch moderator and more.
It’s been quite a year for the world. What are some changes to your life and expectations around what’s normal have you faced in the past 6 months?
It has definitely been a crazy year for the world. Thankfully I was already working primarily remote before COVID, so it didn’t change my work routine much. The main differences early on with quarantine was just ordering groceries using Instacart and not having to fill up gas for months. I’ve noticed I spend more time with online communities now for socializing since I’m not around people as much.
What does your work from home setup look like?
That’s my pride and joy. I have a standing desk, standing mat, 32” 4k Samsung monitor, and a few mechanical keyboards I like to switch back and forth. Debating if I need a kitten or puppy to chill on my desk with me!
What are (or were before COVID-19) some of your favorite things to do or places to eat in Nashville?
I eat Mexican food weekly at least once or twice a week, so my taco skills have gotten better since I haven’t gone to Mexican restaurants as much. My family lives pretty close, but I didn’t see them as much early on. I now visit them weekly or bi-weekly. Nothing like some homemade Korean food. I like going to the gym, but that’s not a great place to go to during COVID times.
Who are some of your favorite Nashville musicians?
I mainly just listen to lofi hip hop playlists and what Spotify defines as ‘metalcore.’ Memphis May Fire is a band I’ve listened to for years and their lead singer lives in Nashville, so I guess that counts as one.
For outsiders, Nashville is seen as a place to listen to country music – what’s something about Nashville that you, being a native, think people should understand?
It’s fine if you don’t wear a cowboy hat and boots. It’s actually how we know you’re not from here in most cases.
You recently visited Metova’s Guadalajara office. How was that experience?
It was great! I talk with the Guadalajara team regularly and wanted to visit them. I’m thankful Metova helped make that possible! Authentic Mexican food is on another level. Everyone at the Guadalajara office were very welcoming. They took me to plenty of restaurants, played Super Smash Bros, got to see some tourist areas, and took me to a Lucha Libre which I highly recommend.
Were there any unique foods in Guadalajara that you would recommend someone try?
Hmm I think the more “unique” foods were ones that our local Metovians didn’t care much for so I didn’t give it a try. I think I had a chance to try lengua tacos, cow tongue tacos, but I passed on that this time.
What types of development projects are you working on?
I’ve been working in FinTech for the majority of my time with Metova. My work has been primarily on white-label apps. It’s been a fun project to work with and that requires a lot of communication, so it’s helped grow both my soft and technical skills.
You are a moderator on Twitch for iOS developer Mayuko – can you tell us a little about what that entails?
Yes! That’s pretty much the only kind of cool thing I do ha! Mayuko’s professional career has been iOS development at companies like Netflix, Patreon and Quickbooks. I found her first through YouTube about 2 years ago. She’s amassed 317k subscribers on YouTube as of today. She streams co-working/co-study streams primarily but also streams an app she’s building using SwiftUI.
I randomly joined her stream one day when she posted a story on her Instagram about it and at some point I regularly joined and joined her Discord community. She asked me to be a mod a few months ago which has been fun. We’re also mentoring two people off-stream who want to get into iOS development.
How do you see technology as helping people to connect in a world where in-person visits have suddenly been put to a halt?
I think how learning languages breaks down borders between people, technology does the same. With access to technology and the internet there aren’t many barriers you have to face to learn about any topic or communicate with someone – regardless of your physical location.
What is a sugar glider – and how did you work with them in the past?
“It’s a marsupial, kind of like a Kangaroo or Koala Bear” That’s one of the beginning sentences out of the 17 pages I memorized to sell sugar gliders. I had a mentor a year or two after high school and one of his companies was about breeding and selling sugar gliders. We’d go to trade shows and malls and sell them at our booth.
Mac or PC?
Mac because that’s what I’m used to and it doesn’t auto-update at the worst times.
Android or iPhone?
Both are great but I’m an iPhone man now and forever as long as I’m an iOS dev. I used to switch back and forth regularly between Android and iPhone.
What technology are you excited about becoming mainstream in the next 10 years?
Self-driving cars and artificial intelligence. I’m interested in seeing how technology advances and to see how what we perceive as our “norm” changes over time due to technology.