Today I found out that I will be taking over the majority of the work on two of our most critical services: the payments service which ensures that we get paid and rewards our users with the appropriate product and the user service which authenticates all users and allows access to accounts based on the device that is being used to connect with.
I must say that it does feel pretty good to be given this level of responsibility as a co-op student. My team lead has said time and time again that they don’t see me as a co-op student but rather just as another member of the team and by letting me tackle these two services they are certainly proving that statement. Being on an 8 month co-op term is great because it means you have the time to ramp up and become familiar with the company and also work on much more meaningful projects. I’m certain that these sorts of opportunities would not have been possible if I had been only doing 4 months at Uken.
Luckily, I am not going in blind on handling either of these projects. For the past little while I have been working closely with and doing a lot of pairing with the lead developer of these services. By doing this pairing, I got to see a lot of the problems that arise first hand and have witnessed how to go about solving those problems.
On the Services team, we try to plan work in short one or two week iterations. This allows us to stay focused and deploy frequently which tends to work better in these types of mission critical systems. Since I am taking over work on these projects for now, I have been put in charge of planning which tasks will be a part of the fifth release of the payments service. This seems like it will be extremely good experience for the future. It’s one thing to be assigned a task and to complete it. It’s another thing completely to develop the task, perform the iteration planning and see it through to completion.