Ty Brooks Knows a Good Story – as Both English Major & Senior Software Engineer
Ty Brooks has an English degree. And he now works in tech.
It takes natural senses of wonder, curiosity, and a love of learning to use one degree in an entirely new way. That’s Brooks for ya.
His charmingly real LinkedIn summary reads like a short story and explains his circuitous route to get where he is today.
Originally from Panama City, Florida, Brooks attended the University of Florida where he earned his English degree in 2007. Like many of us at that point in life, he wasn’t entirely sure what he wanted to do after graduation; he joined friends in California who were living in a co-op in Oakland. It was there on the West Coast that he started working in technology. For all intents and purposes, he taught himself tech. A natural reader, he started digging into technical books and online courses; he spent extra time working on projects outside his comfort zone.
The hard work paid off. He’s now a Senior Software Engineer with VigLink, a mid-stage, mid-size startup based in SF. Founded in 2009, VigLink is responsible for managing a publisher network that includes over two million sites and apps, as well as an advertiser network of over 70,000 brands and merchants.
Brooks describes it well: “We help people make a living off the things they love.” In layperson-speak, that’s affiliate marketing – which means, hypothetically, if you’re a blogger who includes a link in her blog for for a reader to click, VigLink will help you get paid for that reader’s click on that link. Fashion is a popular vertical for affiliate marketing as is consumer electronics.
Brooks manages general engineering work for VigLink on both the front end and the back end; it’s not necessarily the shiny, sexy work in tech – but it IS the work that keeps everything moving. Without prompting, he notes that his non-tech background helps to inform that work.
“There’s definitely a parallel between how we structure code and how we write [or speak] in that they are both language-based,” he says. “As with the written word, the most important process is writing [code] in a way that’s both legible and easy to analyze.”