Cromatic Geek of The Week: Alin Untea // Programming

Hey there! If you’re here, you know the drill. This is our official blog where we promote our projects, talk openly and, like that girl group from the 90s, spice up your life.
This section of our blog will be dedicated to promoting our team, in any way they want to. We’re going to question them about themselves, their life, their hobbies and obviously provide some juicy details too.

Time to meet one more member of our team. Alin is among the most creative people in the office, but we’re not talking about design. We’re talking about finding solutions. Programming can be very tough when it comes to translating the fantasies of a designer into code and then into actual images you can #experience. Somehow, with that combo of patience&passion he manages to do that. But let’s get deeper into his mind in his own words.

CS: Hey there, we heard you’re a working dad. How does that WORK? And what is it you do here, at Cromatic Studios?
A: Hello here! Yes, I have a 1 year young boy 😀 and for me that changes things up quite a bit with regards to personal time and responsibilities. Ultimately, I believe it is more about priorities and less about the lack of time or other resources. Hence, I try to see this situation as a bigger incentive to do things right, be more organised and be a better person in order to set a good example for my son. Also, I guess that one could turn responsibility into focus. What I am trying to say is that having a child should and will make me a better worker and a better person in general.

At Cromatic Studios I mostly code sites / applications for the team. Sometimes I try to meddle in my colleagues’ business in order to have a better understanding of how they like to do things or what they think about certain topics. I find these kinds of things interesting. Also dad jokes / construction site jokes. 

CS: Big on the gaming scene, right? What’s your take on Netflix’s Witcher then? Is the game better than the series?
A: Sure… The dad time tends to shorten the gaming time (more or less to zero)  so I honestly have no idea about the Witcher series. Actually, I haven’t really seen a movie or a series in a year now and that feels fine, oddly enough.

CS: If we’re talking about games, what’s your favorite game to play and, moreover, what’s your weapon? Xbox or Playstation?
A:I am more of a PC person but I do prefer Playstatio
n over Xbox (slightly). Also, Heroes of the storm is the last game I have been playing. Not so much lately though.

CS:What’s the longest time you’ve played a game for?
In one sitting probably around a day or maybe around 16 hours. A couple of times I was surprised by the sunrise. Eh, the good old days! As for commitment over longer periods of time, I guess for 5 years or maybe more it was World of Warcraft. For the last 3 years I have been playing Heroes of the Storm even though I am on a hiatus at the moment  but fingers crossed. As it turns out I am a commitment type of “gamer “.

CS: Let’s get right down to business. Care to share about how you started working here?
A: I remember my first interaction with Daniel. It was a very trivial one: he replaced the door handle at the office I worked in, which was in this building that he was actually the administrator of it and and also had his office there. I was prepared to pay for it but he casually declined and he said “these things break and there is nothing to worry about.” I was surprised by his reaction and more so by his kindness and attitude. It’s quite a rare thing to find people this kind when interacting for the first time. This is one of those moments I will always remember. 

Several years ago, when Cromatic Studios was only a team of 3 (Daniel, Coz and Cristian) and just starting to deliver awesomeness, they stumbled upon an interesting project for which they needed some extra help. It was a website that had some very creative features for that time. That was the first time Ionut (soon to be seen in this #cromaticgeekoftheweek series) and I had our first professional interaction with Cromatic Studios.

We started as project based collaborators and we had more than a few occasions to interact with Daniel and Cristian and we were pleasantly surprised by their work ethic and their vision about business management and growth in general. They were always looking to improve themselves and the team and we share the same mentality to this day. I believe their determination to step out of their comfort zone in order to grow is one of the main things that made Cromatic Studios what it is today.

CS: What’s the most rewarding and the most frustrating aspect about your job?
A: I find it rewarding when a project has an interesting feature that is also difficult to implement but we manage to do it or even improve it. Don’t know about frustration though. I suppose it is less pleasant when something that is supposed to be easy (codewise) takes up way too much time or is hindered by some limitations  (technical or client related). Also, sometimes I have the feeling that some clients are less passionate about their project than we are.

CS: Who is Alin? We know you’re sweet, kinda quiet and fun at parties. But what’s underneath all of that? What’s the story?
This is a tough one to answer. I would like to say that I am the consciousness that observes my thoughts. But I won’t say that since I am not there yet. I think I’m at that stage where I am trying to get better and improve myself one step at a time. I am well aware that one’s experiences and the way one looks at these experiences is entirely up to them. There is no point in blaming the weather or anybody else especially if there is more that I could have done. And if there was nothing more I could have done that means it was out of my control so why not accept it as it is. Basically I am a regular person who has doubts, fears and all that but I am trying to live in pace with myself, without useless blaming and overthinking. 

CS: What do you like to do in your spare time? Do you have any weird hobbies, like collecting gum from 20 years ago, or anything similar?
When I am not working or spending time with my family, I like consuming media about self improvement (mostly when driving) . Sometimes I enjoy just sitting and thinking about stuff. Up until recently I used to go to the cinema every single  week so I guess that counts as a hobby. In general I am a fan of coop activities such as sports and / or games (computer / table top).

CS: We know you have a family. Here at Cromatic Studios we’re kind of a second family. Tell us a little about both of these families that you’re a significant part of.
Well, being a husband, a dad and a selfless lover is really nice. I consider myself very lucky since my family makes me feel grateful when going to bed and genuinely happy when waking up.

Generally, I find that having a family is both a reason to get better and a way to test your betterment. 

Now for my second family. Working here has always been a pleasure. I have never felt I “had to” go to work nor have I ever dreaded Monday after a fun weekend and I assume this goes without saying, since the vibe at Cromatic Studios is always a good and relaxed one. I could go so far as to say that sometimes, when I feel down, I recharge just by hanging around the office or playing air ping-pong above my colleagues’ heads. Fine, maybe also some beer from time to time – if you are going to twist my arm.

CS: We heard you’re into Game of Thrones (from your phone ringtone). Did you watch the series and read the books?
Yes! I did enjoy the series quite a lot especially the first episodes.That is when I got hooked. What made me like it more than the narrative was the quality of the show in its entirety and its power to make even non fiction fans watch it – pretty cool. I tried to read the books but stopped really fast since most people I know that read the books stopped watching the series. I did not want that. I always said I will read the books after the show ends. Sadly the show ended with a controversial season (to say the least) which made me lose my drive. In that time interval I did buy quite a few packs of Game of Thrones – TCG and a Game of Thrones – board game. So, yeah, I was a fanboy for sure. The ringtone is something I got around season 3 or 4 but since my phone is mostly on silent / vibrate I very rarely change the ringtone. I bet you didn’t think laziness is what my ringtone says about me.

CS: So you teach Programming. Tell us about that. 
To be super clear I am a trainer not an actual teacher in school / college. I do teach some beginner to intermediate courses on web development (html / css / javascript / seo). I have been doing that for 10 years +/- and what I have learned is that teaching is a lot about responsibility. Some students might love or hate the entire subject you are teaching based on your way of teaching and on your passion or lack of it. Basically, teaching sometimes means a lot of patience and uphill battles but also something very rewarding when you manage to positively influence / inspire someone. It has taught me a lot of things over the years and I would like to do it more. Teaching is definitely one of the tools that can literally change the world for the better or for the worse, depending on how you use it.

CS: You always seem cheerful and positive. What’s your secret? What keeps you in these good spirits? Don’t tell us it’s the alcohol.
Oh, thank you! I wasn’t really aware that this is the way I am perceived so I would say the people that surround me do matter. Maybe it is just the way I’ve always been (shrug) but as of late I do make an effort to act as if I am the best version of myself and I am definitely more grateful than I used to be. Also, I sort of get excited about the bad times because I want to see how I manage myself and the situation. I think it is awesome to be more positive in the worst situations rather than in regular ones.
Ok, it’s alcohol 😀

CS: What about tennis and football at the office. What’s your take on that?
I am a huge fan of physical activities and even more so if the activity requires teamwork. Breaks from sitting down and sometimes from a thinking rut in order to get the blood pumping while having fun sounds like the key to going hard without burnout. Not to mention the benefit of this kind of reset to your creativity. It is obvious that not everybody enjoys sports but in my opinion some kind of break schedule should be mandatory in any office environment. 

CS: We all see the world differently. How do you see it? Is it in 1s and 0s?
Not really 1s and 0s although I do have some issues I see in certain colours but that is rare. Generally, I do try to just look at the world without judgment even though that is very very hard sometimes *cough* traffic *cough*. I usually give people the benefit of the doubt and I sort of have a 2 strikes policy per se. I try not to jump to conclusions after the first encounter / experience. It really bugs me when people are only thinking about themselves without taking into consideration the repercussions of their actions or how other people might be affected by them. I believe we should all be more responsible and aware of our influence on the world. But then again maybe a lot of times I am just imagining that other people don’t care or do crappy things on purpose so, obviously, I have a lot more work to do on myself.

CS: Finally, say something that will cheer up anyone reading this.
When the student is ready, the teacher will appear. So no worries 🙂


Cromatic Geek of the Week: Julie Tech
Cromatic Geek of the Week: Julie Tech

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