Dave Mello

Chief Technology Officer

As a 17 year veteran of Newfangled, I’ve helped build, maintain, and curate the systems, both internal and external, that have helped our clients succeed.

Today, this means orchestrating a wide array of technologies and tools to provide the most effective marketing solutions for our clients and agency partners, the requirements for which are constantly evolving. From building customized Salesforce applications, systems to bridge diverse marketing services, custom WordPress marketing website frameworks and plugins, to the core development frameworks and practices that power all of our projects, Newfangled’s technological backbone is more robust and diverse than ever.

My role is to steer these initiatives in ways that provide the *right* tools for our clients, and the *right* time. I lead the development team, ensuring a common vision for the growth and expertise. I also help ensuring a stable and scalable infrastructure to power both our internal systems, and hundreds of client websites and tools.

By complementing and elevating the deep knowledge of our firm, the challenge of harnessing this constantly shifting landscape is what makes my role at Newfangled so rewarding.

When I’m not working with glowing rectangles, I’m usually off traveling or pretending to be a photographer. I have a BFA in Typography, to which I credit an inherent philosophy of producing precise and elegant solutions, and a deep dislike of sloppy kerning.

Recent Articles
Article
Content Strategy

Experimenting with Backbone/Marionette Template Organization vs. Performance

We recently completed a large project that leveraged backbone.js. One area in particular that I was interested in understanding was how best to organize the application throughout the project, specifically the view/template files. I was hesitant to rely too much on other "pre-built" pattern libraries, since I didn’t know what trade-offs I would have been committing to. One of the reasons backbone/marionette initially appealed to me for this project was the fact that it didn’t seem to demand any particular philosophy to the structuring of the core application architecture.

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Article
CRM

The Internal Project, or, How to Be Your Own Best Client

The differences between internal vs external projects represent a very real distinction. We recently had a great opportunity to experience this first hand. In rebuilding our internal project management/internal communication/site administration system, we learned very clearly that a complex project with no one but yourselves as the client can lead to a very different set of challenges to overcome.

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Article

It’s Just a Link

Years ago, we had a running joke at Newfangled that some bit of functionality was just a link. The punchline was that something which was assumed to be simple, perhaps linking off-site, was in fact indicative of some unforeseen and complex area of functionality that needed to be built. This morning, on my way to work, I was reminded of that old joke — and the danger of not thinking through the implications of even the seemingly insignificant decisions when planning a website.  

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Article

Fixing Bugs and the “Five Whys” of the Toyota Production System

Tracking down and fixing bugs is hard. A non-developer might assume the opposite — if there’s an issue that the client/end user sees, the developer just needs to “go in and fix it.” The reality, though, is that the process of isolating the actual issue that needs correcting can often be rather winding — full of dead ends and false starts.

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Article
Prospect Experience Design

Parallax Websites, the Right(ish) Way

Building a parallax-based website to be SEO-friendly and reasonably fast requires some unique work-arounds. We'll take a look at some of them, and look at why, in most cases, they're probably not worth it. 

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Article

Advice for young developers

I recently passed my 15-year (!) anniversary here at Newfangled. At 17, right out of high school, I was remarkably lucky to land an internship where I could learn this, um, newfangled web technology. 

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Article
Content Strategy

Delivering a mobile experience

About a week ago Chris Butler and I were invited to speak about the mobile web at UNC's Wilson Library. Chris shared some thoughts about the state (both current and future) of mobile technology. I followed up with some technical considerations. The first topic I discussed, which I'll cover in this post, was how to deliver the alternate experience. I examined two approaches.

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Article
Content Strategy

Our Mobile Architecture Explained

When we recently rolled out our Mobile Suite offering, we saw the culmination of months of work building a solid and customizable set of tools. The trickiest, in some ways, was the addition of a mobile framework to our existing CMS. We had some clear goals and requirements defined from the onset, and the end result provides us with an elegant mix of new and existing development practices. Here's an overview of what we did...

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