Hello, my name is Pedro Duque Vieira. “Duque” translated to English is “Duke”, hence the nickname I’ve adopted “Pixel Duke” and the domain of this site. “Duke” coincidentally is also the name of the Java mascot.
I’m a Software Engineer and Software Designer and I’ll start by telling you a little bit about myself…
I’ve been creating user interfaces, professionally, since 2006. Nowadays, I usually work directly with clients but have also worked as a sub-contrator.
I work as a JavaFX Freelancer and Consultant, but more generally can be described as a Freelancer and Consultant that creates applications with a focus on user interfaces. I also have experience in User Interface Design and User Experience and on other technologies besides JavaFX (Swing, Web, etc).
My biggest purpose as an application developer is to make applications and user interfaces that make people feel happy to use and at the same time significantly boost their productivity.
I have a Masters degree in Computer Science. As a Computer Engineer, I know all aspects of software (and hardware) development, including Front End and Back End development. I have also helped companies with key insights in the Back End development of their products but my greatest passion is graphics and the design and implementation of User Interfaces.
I’ve started to take great interest in User Interfaces during my final project of my Master’s degree in Computer Science. Back then the iPhone wasn’t yet released and Design was still an afterthought for much of the software developers, product managers and company leaders.
Actually, I realized even years before, the importance of Design. One day, a product manager told me that they released a new version of their software, and that the users kept telling him the product was working much better. Then he proceeded to tell me that all they made was change their UI library, which only improved the aesthetics.
Design is not just how it looks, and how it looks is just a fraction of good Design, still just improving upon this aspect, contributed significantly towards a more positive perception of the qualities of the product.
Based on this story and my own personal experience I realized back then, how important the Design of an application can be and how often overlooked it was.
After finishing my degree I’ve always opted to do software development in the area of Interface Design and development. I have worked professionally, building applications with user interfaces in various technologies and basically on all platforms: web, desktop, cross-platform toolkits, native mobile, etc, since 2006. During that time, I have also been learning Design, by taking User Interface Design and User Experience courses and also through self-learning.
There is a reason why, big companies, leaders in the User Interface area like Google, Microsoft and Apple hire software engineers who also have deep knowledge in Design. Design is a fundamental aspect of great products, but unfortunately it is still sometimes disregarded.
Since I started my own business, working as a Consultant, I’ve worked for several companies worldwide, innovators and industry leaders. Like, for example, the most publicly known and award winner Gluon, who are now the stewards of JavaFX and have made it possible to run a Java application, re-using the same code, on desktop and mobile by leveraging the JavaFX framework. I’ve worked with them for 1 year and a half, helping build their cross-platform framework, developing Scene Builder (the GUI tool that’s used to create User Interfaces), building applications, etc.
On my spare time, I’ve developed various open source projects. Some of them are used in the highest profile JavaFX applications. Like JMetro that is used in a couple of NASA applications (e.g. NASA’s applications: DSTE and Trajectory Optimization Data Viewer) and other high profile JavaFX applications.
I’ve made contributions to JFxtras – JXScene for JavaFX 1.2 and JavaFX 1.3 which allowed one to embed a JavaFX app in a Swing based app. This control wasn’t provided by Oracle at the time (it is now in the JavaFX SDK and goes by the name of JFXPanel). Back then my JXScene control was the only way to embed JavaFX in a Swing app, it was the only route if you wanted to progressively migrate an application from old Swing to the new JavaFX. Modellus, a free application used worldwide that I’ve worked on my spare time (although I haven’t had time to), became (at least publicly) the first application to use both Swing and JavaFX platforms together in a single application running side by side at the same time.
Reach me with work proposals, whether you want an experienced expert to take care of developing the whole application or user interface, including its design. Or you want a developer that’s better acquainted with Design, knows how to best implement your design specifications and what’s important when doing it. There is usually a problem in software companies because Designers and Developers that need to work together don’t speak the same language. This ends up hurting the end product. Developers miss out on important concepts while implementing design specs and Designers are not aware of technical limitations that prevent the success of some design aspects of their mock-ups.
Feel free to contact me.