December 29, 2016
2016 was the inaugural year of our new top contributor program: Magento Masters. Many have asked what it takes to be a Magento Master, so we figured it would be great to spotlight our 2016 Magento Masters and let you get to know them and why they decided to get involved and contribute within the Magento Community.
Let’s get to know James Lee, President at Aspiration Hosting:
Hi everyone, I'm James and I'm the President of Aspiration Hosting. I'm also a moderator of the Magento forums and 2016 Magento Master. I travel around. I've lived in Malaysia and Australia. We are a US based company. I do coding as well.
How and when did you first get involved with Magento?
I stumbled upon Magento in 2008. It was pretty new. I stumbled on the community. Actually, the first thing I noticed was the forum. It was pretty active so I decided to just join in and have a look because the software had high potential at the time. That's when I decided to join in.
What made you decide to contribute to the Magento Community?
After joining in, I realized that there are not many people with expertise when it comes to servers and hosting and things like that. A lot of developers and users, but not many from a hosting provider point of view. That's why I decided to contribute and help those people. Initially, there were a lot of problems with basic things like file permissions and things like that. That's why I started. I find the community there pretty good. Some of the communities online are very toxic, but Magento is a very helpful community where everyone is trying to help each other and they actually appreciate your help. I find that it's a very healthy community, so that's why I got really involved in it. From there I went on to be a language moderator. From a language moderator, I forgot what happened, and one day I became a full moderator.
How has the Magento Community impacted you?
I learned a lot from the Magento community in terms of eCommerce. Previously, I dealt with a lot of software as a hosting provider, but not a lot of eCommerce—mostly forum software, CMS, and all that. After getting involved in Magento, I learned a lot about the eCommerce world. From there, I actually shifted my company's direction towards eCommerce as well. It gives us a very positive impact.
What is your most memorable career experience?
My hosting experience helps a lot with what I do today, dealing with Magento and all the server environments behind it. On top of that, I used to be involved in electronics, so I'm pretty involved in IT and stuff like that.
What is one piece of advice you would give other developers?
My advice to developers is to please get your server environment right—security and everything. There's one thing that a lot of developers may not be aware of, and that's that security is very important. Unless you want to manage the server yourself, which takes a lot of hours, it's better for you to have a security expert to really help you manage it so you can let them worry about that, and you can just worry about your code.
What's might the community not know about you?
I'm getting married this October and it will be on top of the Sydney Harbor Bridge, as in on top of it, where you have to climb on top with a safety suit and everything. Let’s hope the ring doesn't drop from there.
(It didn't drop, and James Lee is now happily married!)
President, Aspiration Hosting Inc
James Lee is the President of Aspiration Hosting Inc, a high-performance Magento Hosting provider. He has been involved with the Magento community since 2008. He also volunteers as a Moderator in the Magento Forums. When he isn't glued to a computer screen, he spends time jogging in the park, hunting for good food, catching the latest movies in the cinema and traveling around the world.