Anvil Community Forum

Hi folks, I'm Anvil's new developer advocate

Hi everyone,

I recently joined Anvil as a Developer Advocate - I thought I should introduce myself properly. We may already have met if you’ve been to PyCon UK recently (if so, it’s nice to meet you again here!) I’ve given talks there on Legacy Code and a workshop on interactive fiction.

I have quite a bit of experience working on large, unwieldy legacy codebases, which I rather enjoy (I know, I’m a bit odd!) So if you have any questions about adding Anvil functionality to an existing codebase, I’m all ears. The more annoying the problem the better (only seems to work on one dedicated laptop in the lab? I’m already intrigued)

My background is in Manufacturing Engineering so I should particularly be able to help out members of the community working on industrial and healthcare related projects. I’ve worked on all sorts in the past, from 3D printing chocolate to wrangling surgical robots. I can advise on things like CE marking requirements and getting the perfect nozzle size for your desktop 3D printer. I would love to admire your Anvil robotics projects!

In my spare time I write a dev blog all about the things I wish I’d known starting out in software. I can’t wait to write for Anvil folks!

I’ll be joining the team on the Forum, writing blog posts, and at conferences (when those start up again). Looking forward to getting to know you all better!


Hi @hannah. Congrats on the job and welcome to the forum.

It’s just a pity we won’t see any of you in Cardiff this year but fingers crossed for 2021.

Welcome and congratulations!

Hello Hannah, and a big welcome!

Welcome Hannah and congratulations!

Hello Hannah and welcome!

Thanks for the warm welcome, everyone! :relaxed:

Hi Hannah
Congratulations on the job. Anvil looks like a great place to work, although I’m guessing it’s mostly remote at the moment.

Really interested in your background in Manufacturing Engineering. I work at a research centre just outside Sheffield focusing on Manufacturing, and am a wannabe developer. It’s sort of a hobby that I try to bring into my day job. There’s plenty of opportunity, and it seems that manufacturing is still behind the times when it comes to IT, etc. I’ve got an upcoming project where I can see Anvil being at least a proof of concept, if not a final solution, probably with a local Anvil server running, as data off-site still seems to be frowned upon in the manufacturing world.

Were you developing software in manufacturing? I’d be interested to hear what sort of things you worked on.

Oh neat, nice to meet you @guitarmanjon! Yes, we’re remote right now although every so often we’re able to get together the Cambridge folks for a socially distanced picnic, which is lovely.

Are you based at the AMRC by any chance? I got the opportunity to visit there a while back when doing my masters and it’s such an awesome place - I hear it’s grown even more since then! There’s definitely a lot of potential for better software in manufacturing, the whole Industry 4.0 (or 5.0? Not quite sure where we’re up to now :wink: ) thing. There’s definitely some creaking IT stuff behind the scenes still, for a lot of factories.

I developed quite a bit of PLC code when working on manufacturing projects - ladder logic and Rockwell’s C-equivalent language. That was good fun, quite different than what I do now! I’ve also written Python platforms to control hacked glue dispense robots (to dispense chocolate instead - long story!) and could really have done with something like Anvil to help me make a nice GUI control screen that I could run from a phone - it was a bit of a nightmare getting my code to work anywhere except the one laptop we were using in the lab.

Good luck with your project, I hope it goes well! Needless to say if you have any questions about getting things running with Anvil I’m all ears :smile:

Yes, AMRC, that’s the one. There aren’t many manufacturing research centres up this way! I’ve been here about 7 years and it’s grown a lot in that time.

You’re absolutely right, there are so many opportunities for software (and more). Industry 4.0 has been a thing for a couple of years now, but it’s still a long way from being a reality in most manufacturing environments - this is down to costs in some cases, but also a bit of scepticism in the benefits.

The chocolate dispenser / 3D printing with chocolate sounds interesting and fun. And perhaps a little sticky.

I’ll be in touch if we need any assistance, drawing on your experience in Manufacturing might really help.

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