VoltSafe Blog Team – April 13, 2023

Get To Know: Mani Jafari, Mobile App Developer, Furbaby Dad & UFC Contender

Mani Jafari, Mobile App Developer at VoltSafe, has always been interested in software development. In fact, at university, he took programming courses and excelled at them. Programming requires proactive practice. While this may seem like a chore for some it wasn’t for Mani. That’s how much he enjoys it. It was around that time that he became intrigued by mobile apps. Mani joined the company in 2021 after seeing the job posting and applying for the role. Being a self-proclaimed big IoT nerd, it seemed like the job was meant for him. He was also impressed by the tech after viewing VoltSafe Winter on the company’s website. He also found that it wasn’t easy to find a mobile app related to an IoT product so this was the most ideal of both worlds for him.

Mani has spent a lot of time with the VoltSafe Winter app. It was a basic app when he first arrived. Of all the features of the VoltSafe Winter app that Mani has programmed, the ON/OFF button is his favourite feature. For most of our customers, it is the multiple scheduling options or the slick circle slider. You see, the app did not have an ON/OFF button when Mani started at the company but it was one of the most requested features. So what is it about the ON/OFF button that Mani likes so much? He enjoys watching it communicate with the winter device itself. Mani explains, “I would say turning it on and off is at its core, an IoT thing.”

Mani naturally spends a lot of time with apps and downloads interesting apps. His favourite app right now is a sleep tracking app. He loves the UI. He looks for apps with favourable reviews and that pique his interest. After downloading them, he looks at how the UI works and how the app itself functions. He tries to see if he can replicate those functionalities himself.

The most challenging thing about app development is software development, especially on the web, because the framework keeps changing. The frameworks that he uses, like React Native along with the libraries are constantly changing, which he sees as a good thing. But if you’ve installed an earlier version, upgrading, it might be difficult and a pain. That’s the challenging  part of software development. But it can also be very exciting when new version of libraries are released to find out how it works and if it works well at all. Or if you have to use an earlier version.

Mani considers mobile app development a craft. So you start off with a code and it ends up on the phone almost like magic. You can see the fruits of your labour immediately.

For those who are thinking about becoming a mobile app developer, Mani’s advice is that while you can and should take online or self paced courses, it would be beneficial to enrol in a compressed bootcamp like course, to get familiar with industry standards and get up to speed in the shortest and fastest amount of time. Self taught people procrastinate. You need to quickly gain knowledge and start working on a project to quickly build your portfolio.

As far as keeping his mind sharp for the job, Mani practices kickboxing and has been doing so for 8 years. He was always intrigued by martial arts. He was invited by a friend to tag along to a kickboxing class and Mani hasn’t stopped practicing since. What he likes about it is the sense of community among the practitioners. Once you get into it, it becomes a lifestyle. Mani believes it is a great total body workout. He wakes up at 5 am to go to the kickboxing gym, then heads for a sauna. When he returns home, he walks Ola his Bernese then heads to work. Even though he does an intense workout at 6 am, he finds it better than working out on his own. He is well aware that if  he did decide to work out on his own, he would keep hitting the snooze button.

Another way Mani keeps his mind sharp is fasting. We’re talking cycles ranging from 36 up to 60 hours. During that time he only consumed water, coffee, tea, kombucha and electrolytes. The most significant being electrolytes. He learned about fasting benefits from his brother, who is also a doctor. His brother is an advocate for fasting benefits and shared with Mani the studies that show how it helps achieve a clear state of mind while on a fast. It allows him to become more focused and perform better mentally.

Staying sharp also allows Mani to keep up with his Bernese, Ola, regular office pup and Mobile App Developaw at VoltSafe. Mani enjoys the benefits of having Ola by his side and pestering him for a few belly scritches once in a while.

We also decided it was necessary to conduct a short Q & A session with Ola to learn more about him.  The gloves (for his paws) really came off in our uncensored discussion.

Q: When did you start working for your dad as a mobile app developer?
A: Woof, arf, wuh, woof, woof
Translation: Ever since Dad and Mom started leaving me alone at home, I knew my time would be best spent sleeping in the office beside Dad. I would also help him develop apps from time to time when he gets stuck on a really difficult software developaw problem.

Q: What are the qualifications?
A:Woof, Woof
Translation: Not much, just being able to sleep really well and not bother co-workers by snoring all the time

Q: What does your workday consist of?
A: Wurf, arf, arf
It’s a heavy work day every day. I wake up when my Dad leaves for his workout, then I head to the living room couch and sleep until he returns. Once he’s at home, my mind is at ease so I fall back to sleep until he wakes me up for my walk in the morning. I’ll drink some fresh cold water dad prepared for me before we leave for a walk. When we return, I’ll have kibbles with fresh parmesan from Costco and then go onto the couch for a quick nap. I will head out for a walk as soon as Mom returns from work and then I will go back to the couch for another snooze. Mom and Dad take me for one final walk before bedtime. That’s when the real work begins, after my pawrents retire to bed. I moonlight as a night watch guard inside their apartment. I roam the apartment making sure they are safe from potential threats. I think I am a very good night watch, and I am sure my pawrents agree. They have been safe and healthy all the time I have kept watch. It speaks to my ability to be a good night’s watch guard.

Q: What is your most memorable work moment?
A: Woof, Woof!
Translation: The Hot Wings Challenge Day the aroma in the office was amazing. I just don’t get why dad wouldn’t let his coworkers share those wings with me.

Q: We hear you follow a strict diet? What do you eat to stay healthy?
A: Woof, Woof, arf
Translation: My dad is really strict about not feeding me human food but he gives me steak from time to time and that is my favorite. I would do anything to get more steak…. I hate vegetables and fruits. Absolutely deplore them.


Q: How do you like sharing office space with Chief Barking Officer Derby Breker?
A:  Arf, urf
Translation:  I appreciate her energy….from a distance. I’m….um what you would call a “mature gentleman”.  So whenever it gets overwhelming, I meditate on my towel.


Q: Any advice for other office pups?
A: Arf, arf, woof
Translation:  Be cute. Don’t steal anyone’s lunch. But if you look longingly at it, they will share it with you.


Q: You’re featured in many of our social media posts. Seems like you share a modeling background with our CEO Trevor Burgess. What is your favourite shoot so far?
A: Woof, Urf
Translation:  Probably the Saint Patrick’s Day post. They put a St Patrick’s Day hat on me. I enjoyed that. I may be of Swiss heritage but I am Irish at heart.


Q: You’re quite fashionable. What are your favourite fashion accessories?
A: Arf!
Translation:  My engineering glasses


Q: What about your walking boots?
A: Grrrr….
Translation: They are an abomination.


Q: What are your special skills?
A: Woof, Woof, Woof
Translation:  I possess a sixth sense. I can sense someone at the door before the doorbell rings. Which comes in handy when I am on night watch.

Ola definitely shares his Dad’s focus. If you would like to work with Mani and his hardworking pup Ola, check out our careers page.