At SkyWatch, we believe that everyone on the planet should benefit from the thousands of satellites that orbit the earth. We are building a platform to put the world’s Earth observation data in once place — a simple API any app developer can use. Our team of extraordinarily talented people has built a cutting-edge microservices platform on a serverless stack, and we’re growing fast.
Let’s face it, the best jobs boil down to a handful of things — getting the chance to work with amazing people in a great culture with a leader who has your back, while pursuing a vision that you can get passionate about.
Our team consists of NASA award-winning developers, Earth observation scientists, big data and unicorn startup veterans from places like Facebook, IBM, and Berkeley and who come from five of the seven continents. Our leadership team includes the Chair of Canada’s first Space Accelerator for startups, an Earth observation veteran who has led multiple companies through IPOs, a planetary robotics graduate from the International Space University, and a petabyte-scale data leader with patents in location AI and contextual analytics. We are Techstars ‘16 NYC and Google for Entrepreneurs alumni. We have a unique blend of space/satellite authorities and consumer application veterans. And we are just getting started.
Culture is the personality of a company. At SkyWatch, our culture is incredibly important to us, and we practice it every day. As a company, we value innovation, dependability, and accessibility. In our product, we value simplicity, affordability, and informability.
In engineering, we specifically value our team’s happiness over unrealistic product planning (People First), flexibility over rigorous top down process (Freedom & Autonomy), and improving our overall system over dwelling on unintended mistakes or bugs (Just Culture).
Our mission and values are on the walls of our office. We don’t just talk the talk, we walk the walk.
Every day, hundreds of trillions of pixels of our planet are captured from space. With new applications for this data such as precision farming, construction planning, disaster relief operations, and retail revenue prediction (to name a few), the demand for satellite imagery is growing. However, the current process for obtaining satellite imagery is very time-consuming and tedious.
While the number of sensors observing our planet is growing exponentially, we are seeing each of these instruments creating their own unique dataset. Getting access to many of these catalogues is expensive and time-consuming. And once access is achieved, is it difficult to integrate data from multiple sources into one system. And we all know the most impactful analytics happen when large volumes of data are normalized and can be easily incorporated into powerful models.
Using our team's experience in building NASA-award winning software, we are building the the SkyWatch API, a simple way to discover and access the world’s remote sensing data. We are making it easy for organizations and app developers to monitor the progress of crops, predict the markets, track ships and airplanes, measure global warming, or create other game-changing applications. We do the data work behind the scenes so developers are free to build the apps that change the world.
Sound exciting? You’re right — it is.
ABOUT THE Role
Where do you fit? Great question.
You have the ability to solve problems, not just complete tasks. You are an artist and a craftsperson, not an assembly line worker. You empathize with those who use what you’ve built. You want to solve their problems.
You have strong technical chops, but can also describe technical things to non-technical people. You can tell a ten-year-old how an API works and not have them glaze over with boredom. Or a CEO. Or your significant other. OK, maybe not your significant other.
You have a diverse background. Volunteer as a Big Sister? Founded a Meetup? Love to paint? Play a sport? We love diversity and value how much it adds to our team.
You have a thirst for learning. We learn something every day. We find it intoxicating. If you’d rather master one thing and do that every day, this probably isn’t the role for you.
You have thoughtful opinions that you feel comfortable sharing. We have a culture that makes sharing opinions safe. If everyone in a meeting always thinks the same way, we have too many people in that meeting.
You have the ability to give more than you take. We have an incredible team. We want you to make it even incredibler.
Your Technical Arsenal
You have experience with a broad range of geospatial and remote sensing image processing technologies including GDAL or SNAP, and know how to create a normalized difference vegetation index (at a minimum).
You love math, and can articulate the difference between supervised and unsupervised machine learning in your own words.
You’ve built software of some kind to solve a problem in your life outside of work.
You can identify awesome and horrible API designs and articulate the difference.
You could build a script in Python in an hour or less that parses www.skywatch.co and returns a list of our available data sources.
You have tried the free tier on AWS, and have created a “Hello World” serverless API.
You’ve used git at the command line and have felt the pain of merge conflicts.
You’ve secured an application and can articulate the value of differing security levels.
You can explain the difference between SQL and noSQL databases, and can describe the best way to ensure referential integrity in noSQL.
Your Typical Day
9:00 am — you roll in, catch up on Slack, email, system status, and important metrics.
10:00 am — you participate in our daily stand up, sharing what you did yesterday, what you plan on doing today, and if there are any roadblocks.
10:15 am — you dig into building our newest microservice, validating the problem it will solve and designing inputs and outputs.
12:00 pm — you hit an awesome take out place in Uptown Waterloo and chow with the team.
1:00 pm — you put on the headphones and get dialed in to build that microservice.
3:30 pm — happy with the code, you deploy to dev and if tests pass, staging.
4:00 pm — you attend a design session for a new feature, contributing thoughts, opinions, and experience to the discussion.
5:00 pm — you wrap up unit tests, prep for deploy tomorrow, and pack up for the day.
A Few More Things to Know
We offer a solid compensation package including a competitive base salary, stock options and a comprehensive benefits plan for you, and your family.
We have flexible work hours and flexible remote working options.
Our HQ is in Uptown Waterloo, at the Communitech Data Hub. We are surrounded by other awesome startups focused on data, AI, machine learning, and IOT, as well in the middle of tons of events and visits from somewhat important people.
We have weekly lunches, “Ride or Pie” Fridays, and snacks to keep everyone fueled.
We “Hack the Sky” every month, teaming up with our peers for 24 hours to build something awesome that doesn’t pertain to our normal day to day work.
Leave your ego at the door. If you are smart but mean or arrogant, this isn’t the place for you
If you think you would fit this role then send your resume to [email protected].