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I’m a technologist and systems thinker that can envision the potential, build the reality, and gain traction in the community. I engage with developers and C-Level executives equally well. Senior Technologist, marketer, technical & Developer evangelist with deep experience with IoT and enterprise computing. I translate between marketing, engineering and field sales to ensure alignment and deliver customer focused solutions. 20 years experience in software development, hi-tech sales, technical marketing, technology & Developer evangelism and executive communications.

  • Internet of Things (IoT) pioneer
  • Executive level presentation skills
  • Expertise in new technology architectures
  • Open source and developer community development and support expert
  • Application architecture and proof-of-concept design for business solutions.
  • New and emerging technology management.
  • Demo application development, presentation, packaging, and distribution.
  • Industry reviews/ management of key technologies.
  • Press and Analyst presentations (Media-trained official company spokesperson).
  • Technical presentations to CEO, CIO and technical staff.
  • On-stage demo and technical presentations to audiences of all levels, from 10 to 20,000 members.
  • Web site development in HTML, Javascript and PHP, including design, installation and maintenance of LAMP software stack.
  • Java application development and application porting to Java.
  • Experience with MQTT, Bluetooth LE, Mobile Application Development for IoT
  • Development Languages
    • C
    • Java
    • Python
    • PHP
    • Swift/Objective C
    • Javascript/Node.js
  • TCP/IP socket-based applications development
  • Driver development and porting
  • UNIX shell script programming

Senior Developer Evangelist • InfluxData, San Francisco, CA — August 2017-Present

Hired to lead the Developer Relations/Evangelism efforts at InfluxData as well as be the SME on all things IoT.

  • Regular technical contributions to the company blog (https://influxdata.com/blog).
  • Development of complex demos to highlight the use of InfluxData technology as applicable to IoT.
  • Regular international public speaking engagements at Meetups, conferences and company events.
  • Recruiting and training of other developer relations staff.
  • Contributions to company’s open source products through GitHub Pull Requests.
  • Lead efforts for collaboration and inclusion in external Open Source initiatives like EclipseIoT, etc.
  • Technology leadership on IoT throughout the company in product development and direction.

Founder and Chief Technology Officer • Dragonfly IoT, Holly Springs, NC — November 2015-Present

I founded Dragonfly IoT to provide technical consulting and contract development services to companies in IoT based on my extensive experience in the field.

  • Scoped, proposed and built IoT demo applications including hardware acquisition, provisioning and programming, development of middleware and gateway devices and presentation-layer data analysis.
  • Contributed to open-source IoT projects.
  • Authored white papers, blog posts and user documentation for demos, projects and open-source software efforts.

Chief Technology Evangelist • PsiKick, Charlottesville, VA — March 2015-October 2015

Led the definition and development of a user and developer platform for a new IoT system-on-chip being developed including defining developer APIs and points of engagement with customers.

  • Defined developer platform architecture for engaging developers on new IoT SoC.
  • Tested experimental IoT hardware and developed Demos to showcase capabilities in C, Python and Swift.
  • Built custom iOS Bluetooth applications for demos.
  • Built custom (C-based) developer interface for in-house developed hardware
  • Ported Linux/Windows drivers to Mac OS X.
  • Brought in both Fortune 50 and emerging-company partners and customers through direct industry contacts and evangelism efforts.
  • Engaged new hardware development partner to lower board-level development costs by over 50%.

Technical Evangelist • Riverbed Technologies, Inc., San Francisco, CA — 2012-2015

Responsible for the development and delivery of user groups, technical sessions and webinars to enable the field sales organization to maximize sales opportunities.

  • Worldwide technical evangelism for the Entire Riverbed platform of products including WAN Optimization, Storage Optimization, Network and Application Performance Management, and Cloud Storage solutions.
  • Developed and delivered demos for video, web, and major on-stage product launches.
  • Delivered hundreds of User Group presentations to more thousands of potential and current Riverbed customers enabling the Field Sales organization to close over $90M in sales per year.
  • Organized and developed the technical session content for the Riverbed FORCE user conference including 60 Technical Sessions, 20 Hands on Labs, and continuous Certification Testing for over 1,000 attendees.
  • Delivered customer presentations, marketing presentations, end-user and developer workshops.
  • Developed and delivered webinars to over 2,000 participants annually.
  • Regular contributor to the Riverbed Corporate blog.

Staff Engineer • Sun Labs (now Oracle Labs), Menlo Park, CA — 2003-2012

Contributed to the development and overall success of the Sun SPOT IoT Developer Platform project. Led the development of the on-line developer community.

  • Research and development for embedded wireless sensor network platform.
  • Developed and grew the user and developer community from zero to over 3,000 participants in 3 years.
  • Developed the installation and maintenance software for entire Sun SPOT Platform including hardware and SDK deployment and maintenance.
  • Delivered customer, marketing, end-user and developer presentations and workshops to thousands of developers.
  • Developed and delivered Technical Hands On Labs at Java One — the premier Java developer conference — for 3 consecutive years.
  • Developed the Demonstration Application Suite for Sun SPOT Platform
  • Maintained a regular high-traffic technical blog (top 50 blogs on blogs.sun.com).

Field SE, Java Field Technologist, Senior Technology Manager, Executive Demos Manager, Market Solutions Engineer • Sun Microsystems, Inc., Menlo Park, CA — 1985-2001

Demonstrated increasing responsibility for overall product technical support from a Field Systems Engineer to the Senior Technology Manager for some of Sun’s largest Desktop computing initiatives. I also served as the on-stage demo presenter for Sun’s CxO executives.

  • Responsible for all aspects of on-stage keynote demos for Sun Microsystems Executive Committee Members (Scott McNealy, CEO, Greg Papadopolous, CTO, Bill Joy, Chief Scientist).
  • Identified appropriate emerging technologies within Sun and with partners to align with executive messaging and developed appropriate demos to align with keynotes and messaging on extremely short timelines.
  • Provided technical evaluations of emerging technologies for productization.
  • Delivered customer-centric recommendations of new features and functionality for existing products.
  • Developed and managed successful early access/beta program technical support infrastructures to support the launch of major new product initiatives.
  • Responsible for development and production of Companion Applications for Products.
  • Developed executive, press, industry analyst, and field sales product demonstrations, including third-party application integration, packaging, testing, delivery and distribution.
  • Successfully managed engineering/marketing relationship for emerging products.
  • Developed field sales technical collateral and presentations for new products including developing and delivering field specialist training programs.
  • Recruited and trained and supervised field technical specialists across the world.
  • Collected and managed technical and marketing data to/from world-wide field sales organization.
  • Managed extremely successful industry press reviews of new and emerging products (responsible for “Editor’s Choice Award” review of Sun Ray 1 by PC Magazine (April, 2000)).
  • Trusted Technical Advisor to business unit executives on press/analyst tours.
  • Served as national subject matter expert for Java at customer presentations
  • University of New Mexico, Computer Science Masters Program — (incomplete)
  • Columbia University, New York City, Bachelor of Arts
  • Innovation @ Sun (Formerly Chairman’s Award) for Sun SPOTs 2008
  • Sun Microsystems, Inc. Java ‘ACE’ of the Year Award, 1997

Videos of Talks

If you’re interested in recommendations, etc, please see my profile on LinkedIn but here are a few excerpts:

James Gosling, Sun Microsystems (The ‘Father’ of Java)
“He can carry an evangelical torch through the darkest of days with a steadfast vision. He believed in IoT long before it “was a thing”. He does beautiful work.”

Greg Papadopoulos, CTO/EVP R&D, Sun Microsystems
“David has this rare and hugely valuable ability to both connect with customers (and truly understand what that means in the field engineering sense), as well as do really great advanced development. I always enjoyed listening to his latest thinking and hearing about his projects — loved the perspective and creativity.”

Roger Meike, Senior Research Director, Director of Operations, Sun Labs
“I had the pleasure of working with David for several years both locally and remotely and I can say without hesitation that it has been a pleasure. He has a rare combination of engineering ability with marketing sensibility that made him an incredible asset in our desire to build a community of developers for the Sun SPOT project. He was able inspire developers with his innovative projects, work with them on a technical level and then be an advocate for the customers to the rest of the team. He did this while simultaneously contributing to the technical progress of the project by developing the tools that made the entire project possible. David is a true jack of all trades, one moment digging into code and the next minute setting up a trade show demo or giving a talk. As a remote employee, he worked independently and pushed the project forward on new fronts while always staying connected and available to the team despite time zone differences. He can thrive in any environment where he can combine his technical and social skills for the good of the product or company.”

Brenda Laurel, Distinguished Engineer, Sun Labs
“David Simmons is a man who knows few, if any, limits. He works tirelessly and effectively – and that’s on a BAD day. Seriously, David possesses both superior engineering talents and a unique ability to communicate, engage and persuade others – a combination too rarely seen in the high-tech industry. Working with him was often educational, usually inspirational, and always delightful. He is well qualified for senior positions in engineering, management or marketing, and he has my highest recommendation.”

Randall Smith, Sr. Staff Engineer, Sun Microsystems Research Labs
“David is a highly productive and very bright programmer. Over the past few years working with David on the Sun SPOT project, I have been impressed with his ability to work within a loosely defined mandate to design and rapidly implement numerous tools … most of these tools he conceived on his own as mechanism that solve everyday user problems. He sticks with his projects, working to extend and improve his software over time. His contributions are now absolutely central to the Sun SPOT project: thousands use his systems on a daily basis. In addition, David is an excellent communicator, and has a quick mind with a blisteringly hysterical sense of humor. He has been a real joy to have on the team.”

Mary Smaragdis, Director, New and Social Media, Sun News Network, Sun Microsystems
“David is a technologist of great talent and expertise. He goes beyond just pushing the envelope on innovation in his work, however. He’s also very skilled at creating community around the technical initiatives he’s driving. He’s very well versed in using emerging social ecosystems to drive awareness and engagement in the technical initiatives he’s chartered with. He creates global communities of supporters, contributors and boosters in his work, and I count myself in those.”

Please contact me for more references, or see my LinkedIn Profile.