A day in the life of…a development intern

Written by Infomentum,   Jul 28, 2017

Kicking off our new blog series, ‘A Day in the Life of…’ our summer interns, computer science students Pratik Jadhav and Hasan Rafiq, reveal a behind-the-scenes glimpse of an intern’s typical day.

I chose to study computer science because…

Pratik: My dad is in the IT business so it’s something I’ve been interested in from a young age. I love technology and I wanted to understand how everything works, and how to develop everything.

Hasan: Other members of my family are in IT so I always knew about it. At first, I was going to go into dentistry, but I tried it out and I couldn’t see myself looking into other people’s mouths for the rest of my life! So I knew then that I wanted to go into computer science.

The thing that most interests me in computer science is…

Pratik: Information security. It’s up and coming, and data protection is a massive issue in the market currently. I was really interested to learn more about Infomentum’s ISO certification, and to understand the policies they have to follow. I’ve heard about this at uni so it was interesting to see first-hand.

Hasan: Security as well! I also really like software development, like we’re doing during our internship here. I enjoy the creative elements of development, to come up with an idea and then conceptualise it. I’m really interested in working in development for a start-up in the future.

I decided to do an internship because…

Pratik: I wanted to understand what it feels like to work within a proper organisation in the technology business. I did an internship whilst I was at school, but it was for a food company working in their IT department. I was really looking for an internship at a company who has technology at the core.

Hasan: I’m in my first year at uni, and normally you wouldn’t do an internship until the second year. But I really wanted to check the industry and be sure development was the right area I want to go into. I like to test the waters before I go into something – dentistry being an example of that!

The project I’m working on is…

A day in the life of a development intern

Hasan: Pratik and I are working on a chatbot that provides information to anyone who is curious via Facebook Messenger. Basic information – not necessarily specific but generic information like address, links to a blog post etc. I’m working more on the blog subscription stuff, and Pratik is working on FAQs. With the blog subscriptions, people can specify when and what time of day they’d like to get alerts about a new blog post. If a new blog post comes out and the user hasn’t specified a time, they’ll get an alert from the bot the next time they log into Facebook.

Pratik: Exactly. It’s more to do with website information – so rather than the user having to search a website or search Google, the bot can respond with links to case studies, things like that. It’ll give the user all of the relevant information in one place rather than having to search for it. Using AI means that a member of staff doesn’t need to sit answering questions – the bot does it for them.

On a typical day…

Pratik: Usually we arrive and Amr (Gawish) takes us to the sprint board. Amr is our Project Manager for the chatbot, and has given us two week sprints. We have certain tasks to finish by the end of each sprint so that we can demo the product to the client for feedback and the next round of functionality. So, each day we talk about what we accomplished yesterday and any problems we had, and what we want to achieve today. He gives us advice on what he thinks we should work on next, and answers any questions we have.

Hasan: We plan our whole day at the sprint board, and then start working on the tasks allocated to us.

Pratik: We normally have an overall task which is split into smaller subtasks, so we’ll focus on those subtasks throughout the day. For instance, we had to get AI working with the Facebook chatbot and giving it small tasks – so instead of a person responding, the AI should. We had to get that integration working properly first. We’ll complete these subtasks and then expand them and add our own functionality.

Some surprising things I’ve learnt are…

Hasan: I knew nothing about agile before. I’d heard words like scrum, sprint etc, but I didn’t know anything about them. Lots of team members have sat with us to explain their role, so it’s been interesting to go around the business and understand what everyone does. I was also really surprised about the atmosphere in the Infomentum office – I wasn’t expecting it to be so open and friendly. It’s a different working environment than I thought it would be, in a good way!

Pratik: I’d heard of agile, but I’d never seen it in action. It’s good to see agile delivery first hand and see how it works in an organisation. I also enjoyed getting an insight on different roles in Infomentum and what they do day-to-day. We’ve heard about everything from pen testing, to marketing, to ISO.

If I wasn’t studying computer science, I’d study…

Hasan: I have no idea! Definitely not dentistry. I’d always liked computer science so I never thought about anything else.

Pratik: Medicine or economics. At school, I was very interested in becoming a doctor. But when I reached the last year of studying biology before uni, I realised I wasn’t very interested anymore, so I switched to economics. Then it was between economics and computer science, but since technology is always expanding, I was more interested in that.

My proudest achievement is…

Pratik: Not computer science related, but probably getting grade 7 on the piano! I still play the piano now.

When I leave the office…

Hasan: I play football quite a bit, and I also like video games. And sleep! I’m still adjusting to longer days than uni.

Pratik: I usually play cricket with some friends. I also help my younger brother with his work – he’s doing the 11+ at the moment. I have quite a long commute now, but I’d like to live in London in the future.

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