Meet Team Iggy: Ben de Jesus

This is a part of a series of posts introducing team Iggy. Meet Ben de Jesus, web designer and front end engineer!

Talk to me about your background – how did you get here?

I started with a design degree from SF State, doing graphic and web design for a small agency, doing a bit of print work as well as creating different kinds of collateral marketing and conferences. Early on, I got to work on a lot of different types of projects, but was really drawn to designing and building functional things like dashboards and webapps. I eventually found myself in engineering teams as a frontend engineer, designing and building UIs and other user-facing interfaces. I like building things that are usable and accessible. 

Why Iggy?

When I met Lindsay, through a mutual colleague, I was intrigued by the prospect of making geospatial data easier to work with. I got to work on some geospatial data at a previous company, and Iggy seemed like a great opportunity to continue to learn more and expand my knowledge and experience.


Without using complete sentences, can you describe what’s going on in your life at the moment?

House-hunting in the Bay Area. Looking forward to the NBA playoffs. Planning a trip to Norway.

If you could choose a career besides the one you have now, what would it be?

A video game streaming celebrity.

Where’s your favorite place in San Francisco?

I really like this bakery called B Patisserie. It's about a 15 minute walk from where I live, so it's close enough to walk to. They make really good kouign amanns and croissants, and it never gets overly crowded. 

Another one of my favorite places in the Bay Area is this hike in the Headlands called the Matt Davis loop. It’s really cool because you start off along the coast with a view of the Pacific Ocean, and then you go down into Redwoods along a river and then eventually through hillsides before looping back towards the beach. 

What quality do you most admire in someone else?

I admire how some people can be really outgoing and be able to strike up a conversation with random people. 

If you could eat only three dishes/meals for the rest of your life, what would they be?

I think I’d have to go with Pilipino food. There's this dish called Kare Kare – it's basically oxtail in peanut sauce stew. After that would be Pho and Japanese Tonkatsu Curry-Rice.

What’s your favorite clothing item you own? 

I really liked the Iggy hoodie that we got to pick for ourselves. It’s from this brand called Nau from Portland. I like the styles of the clothing that they make and all the materials that they use are 100% recycled. And then once you're done with that piece of clothing, like if you want to throw it away, you could just send them back and they'll take care of reusing and recycling it.

What’s the first app or website you open when you wake up, and the last one you close before you go to sleep?

In the morning, I usually catch up on the news through SFGate, which is a local news outlet, and npr.org. My partner and I have been watching a lot of anime lately so we would binge some shows on CrunchyRoll before going to bed in the evenings.

In one or two lines, how would you want to be remembered? 

I guess I want to be remembered through the photos that I've taken over my life. I’m not sure if I would have words to describe my life, but I like the idea of being remembered for my art.

What’s your worst habit at home?

Probably leaving dirty dishes in the sink for too long until they pile up, and then someone has to do them.

What was a formative turning point in your life?

Immigrating to the US was a big one. That was when I was 11 years old.

What is a current podcast that you’re listening to/book you’re reading that you are enjoying or ones that you connected with recently?

I really like the 99% Invisible podcast. It really speaks to my love for design and the little details that we don’t think about on a day-to-day basis.


Singing or dancing?

Dancing.

Beach or mountains?

Mountains.

Tattoos or piercings?

Tattoos.

Movies or Theater?

Movies.

Weightlifting or cardio?

Cardio.

Hot tub or hot spring?

Neither.

Sunrise or sunset?

Sunrise.

Fiction or nonfiction?

Nonfiction.

Horror or comedy?

Comedy.

Mos Def or A Tribe Called Quest?

Mos Def.

Related posts

Launching Iggy Self Serve APIs

Our mission at Iggy is to make information about the world accessible. We’ve taken our first steps toward this over the last few months. Starting today you can query more than 175 geographic datasets using the Iggy API.

Developers deserve better

My version of better is founded on usability as a first principle. This means building a company from the ground up that is devoted to making geospatial data actually usable to the folks who are building the products and experiences that are shaping our lives: developers.

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