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Python developer
November 1, 2012

Alexandre Conrad is a Python developer for SurveyMonkey. Jay Woodruff interviewed him in September.

Have you ever been slapped in a bar after sharing your job title?

I wish!

What’s the weirdest reaction you’ve gotten?

I think from myself. When I moved from Paris to the Bay Area and realized that being a Python developer was no longer rare.

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How does France compare with the Bay Area in terms of the technology scene?

When it comes to technology, I think France is still better at making cheese. Seriously, France has a lot of smart people but the high-tech industry is nowhere close to Silicon Valley. France’s economy makes it difficult to become an entrepreneur.

And the wine?

I will stick with French wine, thank you.

Give us your Tweetable definition of a Python developer.

A nerd who turns beautiful lines of code into software.

How’d you get into this racket?

I am not sure. I did spend long hours on the Internet as a kid in the early ’90s, thinking this thing was better than Minitel. My parents confiscated my computer for months due to my bad grades at school. At 16, I worked in a video-game store, and then was a graphic designer for yogurt packages. I ended up as a software engineer when I wrote my prior company’s back-office software 10 years ago.

What do you tell relatives you do for a living?

That I am a Python programmer and that they should try it out, too! My wife is a lawyer, but she just started taking some Java classes “for fun.” Maybe to understand me better.

So, seriously: How exactly do you keep the snakes from eating the monkeys?

We put up signs in the office.

Jay Woodruff is a former editor at Esquire, Entertainment Weekly and, and is the co-founder of Affinity Resource Group, a Montclair-based recruiting firm focused on digital media and technology