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#MeetIronGalaxy - Alicia Cano, Programmer

03/31/2021   •   Written By Tom Carbone

At Iron Galaxy, we take enormous pride in the talented people that help us make games. This recurring series of interviews is a chance for us to introduce them to you and let them tell their story. Pull up a chair and get acquainted.

Today, we’re talking to Alicia Cano, an Orlando-based Programmer.

IRON GALAXY: Who are you and what would you say you do here at Iron Galaxy?

ALICIA CANO: My name is Alicia Cano and I am a programmer.

IG: Give us a better sense of your work. What is the most challenging aspect of your job?

AC: The best part about being a programmer is that your job is to solve problems. Solving them can be both challenging and rewarding.

IG: What is the one skill you learned growing up that you use the most in your role?

AC: Being able to communicate clearly. It's important to be able to explain ideas and concepts. A programmer also needs to able to think through all edge cases of a problem, otherwise your solutions will be fragile and break easily.

IG: What education did you earn that led to your role in this industry?

AC: I have a BS in Computer Engineering from the University of Florida and a Master’s from the Florida Interactive Entertainment Academy at the University of Central Florida.

IG: What has been your proudest moment as a member of the Iron Galaxy team?

AC: Winning the Orlando Fantasy Football league, twice.

IG: No fair using an algorithm to predict the future! What career advice would you give to someone who wanted to follow in your footsteps?

AC: Do it! Game dev and programming are both so rewarding. I’ve worked in a couple of different businesses and this has been the most fun by far. It isn’t easy but I love it.

IG: What is the best thing about making games for a living?

AC: There are really so many things. I love working with artists. Seeing their art is very inspiring for me. Getting to help create something new is exciting. AI is pretty fun to work on. I feel a bit like a puppet master. I also really like getting to play with all the new consoles, mobile devices, and peripherals that are coming out. There is always something new to learn or a new topic I could dive into. It never gets boring. Lastly, and most important, I work with some of the smartest most passionate people I’ve ever met in my life and it is awesome.

IG: What is your favorite perk associated with your job?

AC: No dress code.

IG: Let's talk a little bit more about where it all began for you. What is your hometown?

AC: Palm Harbor, Florida but I’ve lived in a couple of places.

IG: Since home has been our office for more than a year now, what is your favorite pro-tip for working from home?

AC: By now, hopefully everyone has invested in a good chair. For me, investing in good headphones was a close second.

IG: Aside from playing video games, what is a favorite hobby of yours?

AC: Mosaic glass art. I love working with colored glass to create different pictures. I’m still pretty novice but it is a fun art form.

IG: If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would you choose?

AC: Pasta. I’d be overweight but I’d be happy.

IG: What is your favorite travel destination that you have visited?

AC: Probably a boring answer, but it has to either be Florence or Rome. Both had just so much art and history to go through. I loved it. Florence was also in just such a beautiful area in Tuscany.

IG: No one ever accused Italy of being boring! What is your favorite book or series?

AC: The Dresden Files. I love the characters and the fantasy.

IG: What is the one song most likely to earn you a speeding ticket?

AC: The first thing that comes to mind is when I was in high school blaring Destiny’s Child – Survivor going way too fast.

IG: What game have you spent the most time playing?

AC: World of Warcraft. I started playing in college when it released in 2004 and was in a raiding guild for a couple of years. I played more casually after I graduated until probably 2011. My main was a Gnome Mage named Wintergale and I had several alts including a Dwarf Priest named Bashir.

IG: Name a scene from a movie that makes you cry every time…

AC: Coco! At the end, when the grandma starts singing with him and then tells him the story of her papa and then later they are putting her picture on the ofrenda.

IG: What movie have you seen the most times?

AC: As an adult, probably Moana. My daughter was a bit obsessed with it for a bit. Luckily, it is a great movie.

IG: What is the one superpower that you would like to have?

AC: Teleportation. I love going to new places, but I don’t love flying.

IG: You get one wish. You can’t wish for more wishes. What do you wish for?

AC: A time turner! A few more hours every day would be amazing.

IG: What fictional universe would you choose over our own? What if there was no coming back?

AC: Star Trek: TNG. They had teleporters so I could go to different places and spaceships seem pretty rad.

If doing work like this, with people like Alicia, in a place like ours sounds cool, we're looking to hire more Programmers right now, along with other people from other disciplines. Check out our job listings to see if you can imagine yourself on our team, making amazing things with awesome people. Make it so!