While at ZendCon I stole some time from the schedule of Lise Driggers, one of the female attendees I met there, to ask her a bit about herself and how she got to where she is today. Lise works for Timptech in Vancouver, migrating their existing i-series applications (also known as AS400 or “green screen”) to flex, using PHP to communicate between PHP and the database.
How did you get started with PHP?
My background is in midrange programming in RPG. I took a class at a community college and got a couple of books on PHP, this enabled me to work on the migration project when it came up at work. Originally I was studying computer science, but when I ran out of money I took a programming job – and here I am.
What was the path you took between running out of money as a student and the job you hold today?
I worked on the midrange machines, and then I had two long career breaks to stay home with my children when they were young. The first break was 8 years, and the next was 5 years – I returned two years ago, and I’m 48 now.How did you find returning to work after a break?
Technology and tools move on! I found I needed to refresh my skills, remember what I knew and also find out what had changed. I was very lucky to have a mentor to see me through updating my skills. My mentor was someone I already knew from a previous job, and this helped me find the confidence to return to work in the first place – especially as I had previously been told I should not return as I would not understand the work.Do you interact with the PHP Community much?
I’ve been to the PDX PHP Group, the first time I went they thought I was lost! But now I bake cupcakes and cookies to take when I go.
Do you have time for other hobbies too?
Yes, I’m a crafter! I enjoy lace making and knitting.In fact I spotted Lise knitting in a keynote, here’s a photo of her
knitting and my crochet project (and the elephpant).