Hello!  My name is Anson and I’m a music and technology geek based out of Toronto.  I work professionally as a web developer and not so professionally as a music producer. I like tech startups.

For a more detailed glance at who I am, here’s a mind map.  Below, the visual emphasis of each word conveys how much that word makes me tick!

Anson Kao's mind map

Music + Music Production

The most consistent and longstanding source of inspiration in my life has got to be music.  My obsession with it has guided me through classical music, to hip hop, to modern film scoring, and all the way to electronic dance music.  When I moved out for college and couldn’t bring a real piano with me, I was forced to buy a digital one!  This opened my world up to the paradise that was digital audio workstations and music production.

My interest in music has always been a little more analytical and technical than your average music lover.  If a song is a fruit, then I want more than just to eat it – I want to feel the texture of the skin, chew on the seeds, and learn to grow my own.  I know my passion for music is real; read more of my thoughts on it here.

Technology, Design & Web Development

My other greatest affair has been with technology and design.  Ever since I can remember, I’ve always had a strong intuition for problem solving and good design, which has served me well in my path from studying Mechatronics Engineering at University of Waterloo to a career in web development.

Today, I specialize in User Experience and do my best work on the front-end, despite being full-stack web developer.  When I have time I’ll write a blog post on my evolution as a technical individual and where my obsession with good design came from.  In the meantime, here are some of the things I’ve done.

StudyMonkey logo
StudyMonkey.ca
In 2010, straight out of college, I did a startup called StudyMonkey for which I was the technical cofounder. While my partner and I were able to recruit the help of a small team, most of the design and development was done by myself.  The site is still live and fully functional so you can see my work.  Working on StudyMonkey was what gave me my first entrepreneurial battle scars and taught me the importance of aligning motivations in business.  When I have a chance I’ll link some blog posts with more details on what came out of the experience!
TeamBuy logo
TeamBuy.ca
After StudyMonkey, I joined TeamBuy and quickly became one of the lead developers there. This was where it quickly became clear to me that I was different from other developers in that I had a talent with the visual and interactive aspects of things.  You can see the result of my work and leadership on many areas of the live site (details to follow in subsequent posts).

 

In my spare time, I’m hacking through some music production related software prototypes, and I love meeting other people with similar interests.  Can’t wait to share with you some awesome stuff!