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Web Applications Developer (Ruby on Rails)

Blindside Networks ( is an Ottawa-based company that provides hosting and support for any organization using BigBlueButton (, an open-source web conferencing system for online learning.

The goal of the BigBlueButton project to provide remote students a high-quality online learning experience.

BigBlueButton began at a Canadian University in 2008 and, since then, has grown to a world-wide project with over 3400 forks on github. Blindside Networks is at the heart of the open-source project in community and software development. We coordinate each release of BigBlueButton. The Ottawa Business Journal recently wrote a nice article about company.

BigBlueButton is used by hundreds of universities, colleges, and commercial companies world-wide (it is localized into over 25 languages). Blindside Networks provides commercial hosting for many of these deployments. Surprisingly (or not surprisingly depending on how you look at it), the largest user of BigBlueButton is the US Department of Defense. BigBlueButton saves the US DoD over $12 M/year.

The BigBlueButton project is growing and so is Blindside Networks.

Position: Web Applications Developer (Ruby on Rails)

We are looking for a software developer to join the infrastructure team to add new features to our hosting environment for BigBlueButton.

The Infrastructure team manages manages dozens of BigBlueButton servers installed around the world in data centers located in North America, Europe, and Australia. In each of these data centers there is a full deployment of the Blindside Networks hosting environment for BigBlueButton.

Of course, we don’t manage these servers directly. We make heavy use of ansible, zabbix, and nagios to provision and monitor the servers and our hosting infrastructure. We’re also using Amazon RDS, HAProxy, SQS, S3, and a healthy use of spot instances to process recordings overnight.

There is an opportunity to learn how a company has scaled an open-source project to support millions of users world-wide, while at the same time helping to accelerate its growth.

Responsibilities include:

  • Extend the infrastructure with new features based on requirements from product management
  • Develop new tools for increasing the automation for provisioning, monitoring, and scaling of our servers and infrastructure
  • Work with other members of the development team to integrate their features into our hosting environment

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Bachelor degree in Computer Science or equivalent industry experience
  • 2+ years experience in creating web-based applications using Ruby on Rails
  • Highly proficient at the Linux command line (bash, server maintenance, etc.) and using git for source code management.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience in doing code reviews and software testing
  • Prior experience working in on SaaS infrastructure stack on AWS
  • Experience with deployment software: we use Ansible, but experience with Puppet or Chef is helpful, too.
  • Experience with automated testing frameworks
  • Visible contributions to other open-source projects (let us know if you have a GitHub account!)
  • Good at ping-pong (we have a ping-pong table)

What sets you apart?

All the job posts you’ve read so far probably talk about the need for good communication skills, team player, internally motivated, reliability, and so on. Any software company would expect these skills from its developers.

We’ve found that the main skillset that sets an exceptional developer apart from the rest is your problem solving skills. In other words, when the answer is not on Stack Overflow, how deep is your toolbox for solving problems?

If you have strong development experience with exceptionally strong problem solving skills and you want to work with developers of a similar ilk, let us know. We’re interested to talk with you.

E-mail your resume to