Orthogone’s team has a variety of backgrounds and specialties. Richard Brunelle has been working at Orthogone for six years. He completed his studies in Montreal, at L’ÉTS, and is living since four years in Quebec City. He has 25 years of experience in software development, notably in the automotive, telecommunication and television broadcasting fields.
“What I love about Orthogone is that when we complete a project, we hand over what we’ve accomplished to the client to take back and maintain on their end. This allows us to work quickly on new projects and constantly take on new challenges.“
In this Q&A session, Richard shares his day-to-day life and the challenges he has faced in his career as a developer.
Senior Embedded Software Developer,
A: I loved working on an X-ray sensor detector. I was one of the first to work on it at the software level. The new aspect, a multicore microcontroller that can run several different software programs at the same time, was very appealing to me! The mechanisms they were putting in place were very interesting to explore. Getting the board up and running was quite a challenge. The documentation was very preliminary which caused a lot of research to be done. We then extracted the X-ray images onto a computer… In short, seeing a project from scratch to implementation gave us a sense of accomplishment.
There is also the aspect of having a direct impact on people’s lives, to think that indirectly, we are helping to save lives! In this case, the program was used, among other things, to improve the quality of the mammogram image by considerably reducing the time required (and the discomfort!) for women who use it every day. It was a very rewarding experience.
A: At the moment, a co-worker from Montreal and I are working for a client in Texas who does business with several other external firms around the world. We are in contact with offices in India, Germany, Romania and even Vietnam! It’s a very interesting project and it’s very rewarding to be able to exchange with people who have totally different experiences than mine, but still work towards the same goal.
A: At Orthogone, not only do I have the chance to work on new projects and to discover different environments and fields, but I can also count on the technological aspect. Indeed, Orthogone uses the latest technology. Sometimes, we use chips that are not even available on the market yet for the general public! We are practically like children in a toy store. This makes our day-to-day work even more exciting, because we are the first to discover the full potential of these new technologies.
In my daily life, I also like to learn about new topics, I am curious by nature. For example, I recently became interested in photography, among other things. I’ve done a lot of research on the subject. I believe that this search for innovation is common to engineers in general.
A: I haven’t really had to experience a big challenge in particular, but I bring up an interesting point here: because the technologies we use are so advanced, sometimes when we reach an impasse, we can’t rely on Google answers… because they don’t exist! This is where our ability to transfer our knowledge from previous projects and try new techniques comes into play. For example, in a project for the automotive world, we relied on user manuals, but they were preliminary and incomplete versions that were hardly updated. We worked in teams or through experimentation, discovering the potential on our own. So that’s an advantage and a challenge and that’s where the biggest opportunities lie.