By Justin Farris

Inside Phosphorus: Meet Dmitry, Software Engineer!

Hey Dmitry, tell us a little bit about yourself!

Hello world! My name is Dmitry Gimzelberg, and I was born in Ukraine, back when it was still a part of the U.S.S.R. My family left in 1989 to move to the Bronx in New York, where I lived for 7 years. We lived in New Jersey for all of my middle school and high school years before I started at Brandeis University in Massachusetts. I eventually continued on to Columbia University for their engineering program and have worked in a variety of software developer roles in industries that include advertising, finance, and news media.

What is your title at Phosphorus? What do you do for the company?

I’m a Software Engineer. I work on building, improving, and maintaining the systems that keep our company running, including the Phosphorus management portal.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Besides improving and optimizing our software, I enjoy learning and understanding all the ways in which genomic data is managed and stored at our company, as well the science behind our products. I work with a diverse crowd of diligent people who are really interested in what they do, and I love getting to work together on big problems that we wouldn’t encounter elsewhere.

What have you learned from working at Phosphorus?

I’ve discovered a lot about genetics. Along with learning a whole new set of terminology, I’ve attended several talks on the field of genomics that have taught me why basic research continues to be necessary.
I’ve also discovered that no matter what you know, there’s always something more to learn. I have to question my assumptions frequently, because science can evolve as our products move forward, making quick changes very necessary. We have to re-code and re-design things often. I try not to assume anything and always ask questions.

What has been your favorite project so far?

I’ve enjoyed working on the reporting project because it’s the first that I could take ownership of. Not only am I responsible for its success, I genuinely enjoy learning about reporting. I’m learning to let go when things don’t go right, but I’m pretty invested in the project and would love perfection.

What is your typical workday like?

I arrive in the morning and have breakfast at the office. Then we usually have our daily stand-up before we break to work on our projects. Some days, we have sprint planning, which is where we decide what we will work on for a period of 1 to 2 weeks. Other days we estimate how long our projects will take.

Do you have a personal mantra?

I don’t have a specific mantra. I guess “don’t be mean to people,” though I sometimes unintentionally break that rule. Otherwise, I value honesty and working to get to the bottom of any issue.

Tell us something about you most people don’t know.

My most recent genetic test tells me that people genetically similar to me tend to consume 9 mg more caffeine per day than average.

What is one thing you are looking forward to in your free time this next year?

I’m looking forward to visiting my sister in Irvine, California in August. We’ll probably explore L.A. and San Diego a bit, go to the beach, see some friends, and have a fun time.

Do you have any hobbies?

I like skiing, bicycling, and playing the acoustic guitar on occasion. Lately, I’ve been practicing “Blackbird” by The Beatles and some other simple songs.

Which ice cream flavor best describes you?

Something like Chunky Monkey or Cherry Garcia because the flavors change as you eat it, though I also love many other ice cream flavors and will occasionally go for gelato.

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