Synapse Studios featured on Fox 10 (Local Phoenix) News

Synapse Studios was called upon by Dan Spindle with Fox 10 News to discuss the “app economy” around the Phoenix and Tempe, Arizona area. As one of the few custom software and application development firms left in the Phoenix metropolitan area, we had a great time explaining our perception of the explosion in people’s desire to create applications, and our current hiring needs:

Posted in: Cool Stuff

Senior PHP Developer Position in Tempe, Arizona


Our company Synapse Studios is hiring a senior PHP developer right now. Specifically, we’re looking for someone who can help lead our talented team and establish methodologies that scale and make for a more powerful team. More information on the position is available here, but you’d be working in our offices in downtown Tempe, Arizona, right on Mill Avenue. It’s a great space with fun people and exciting work, so if you’re interested, view the job post on our site and follow our instructions over there.

Senior PHP Developer Job Posting | Synapse Studios

Posted in: Announcements gets a new look

As you have probably noticed, we recently unveiled the new and independent look for  We wanted to establish an identity separate from our web development company so I took it upon myself to get the ball rolling last weekend and decided on a layout that I felt would work well for what we are trying to do here.  We found a great free theme over at TopWPThemes and used that as a starting point. Since then, we’ve been enhancing it bit by bit.  We hope you like it and we’re interested in hearing your feedback about likes and dislikes of the new design.  You may notice the site altering slightly over the next week or so as battles continue to rage within the office on some points of contention surrounding a few design aspects. (No more “slashdot green” for instance.)

Additionally, we look forward to releasing a couple new blogs into our blog network over the course of the next month.  We have some really exciting ideas (not to mention domain names as sexy as HTMList to deliver them on).  More on that soon, so keep your eyes to the site (or feed) for further updates.

Posted in: Announcements

Synapse Studios awarded Arizona State Board for Charter Schools Database Project

Synapse Studios is proud to announce that our proposal was selected for an enterprise accountability database project for Arizona State Board for Charter Schools. The project was awarded through Arizona’s SPIRIT e-Procurement system and Synapse Studios’ proposal was selected over six other web development companies who submitted proposals.

Our proposal received a 938 out of a possible 1000 points on their evaluation criteria, with the following comments for our Method of Approach:

Excellent five-phase method of approach; communication and progress reporting; timeline. Excellent case studies. Communication doesn’t appear to be a problem since it’s a local company and they are willing to communicate in person and by phone. Best Method of Approach proposed, meets and exceeds all Scope requirements.

The application will handle accountability and compliance tracking and management for the State Board. Synapse Studios is proud to add the State Board for Charter Schools to their roster of government clients. The project is slated to be completed by the end of 2008.

Posted in: Announcements

Highlighted Links and Improving Web Readability: People are lazy

Sometimes, people ask us about our decision to highlight our non-link text. You’ll notice that whenever there’s bold text on the site, it’s accompanied by a light green background. The reason for this is simple: People are exceptionally lazy.

The Problem: The eye is intimidated, to put it simply, by large, unwavering blocks of text. This can present a bit of a problem when you have a lot of information you want to convey to someone while trying to limit their tendency to skim.

Skimming is the enemy of basic reading comprehension. When a user is presented with a large block of text, it presents a few challenges: It’s incredibly difficult to keep your place once a block of text extends past, say, four lines of text. So people skim. They read the first sentence, they read the last sentence and they try to determine if the content within warrants a closer look.

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Posted in: Design

Meet Brandon Ching: Developer

Hello everyone. My name is Brandon Ching and I am the newest developer here at Synapse Studios. I recently relocated to Arizona from San Diego, CA to attend ASU. I am very happy to be apart of this company and hope that my contributions, both professionally and personally, will enable Synapse Studios to reach the next level of their business goals.

I can most easily be described as a life long student. I have a B.S. in Criminal Justice Administration, a Master of Public Administration degree and was recently accepted to the ASU Doctoral program in Public Administration where I will be researching the government’s use of Internet surveillance technologies as a means of control and coercion in the citizenry.

My technical background is a varied one. My specialty is anything and everything open-source; primarily Linux. I hold certifications in UNIX system administration and have been to a number of technical training conferences from organizations such as USENIX, LISA, and SANS and have been trained in areas such as: system administration, linux OS security, networking, computer and network forensics, and web application security. I am also a GIAC Certified Computer Forensic Analyst and enjoy computer forensics as a study and practice.

I have been developing under the LAMP stack for about 4-5 years now and have experience in everything from AJAX, object oriented PHP, and MySQL database design to the Google Maps API, Drupal, CodeIgniter, and more recently, Magento.

In my free time, I enjoy archery, shooting, competitive badminton, hiking, and photography. My wife and I are also expecting our first child in early November; we are very excited about that.

Posted in: People

Meet Edgar Hassler: Lead Developer & Office Miser

I’m Edgar Hassler, and I resent having to write an about me blog post. I’m miserly, misanthropic, and am to blame for a good deal of development at the Studios. After an unfortunate misunderstanding with Bob’s sister, the guys gave me the nickname “The Bear”. We don’t really know how long I’ve been here, but it’s been more than thirteen Linux is Ready for the Desktop Slashdot cycles, or roughly three earth years. In addition to being a developer I’m also a student in statistics and I am the captain of the Synapse Studios Step Team, “The Steppers”.

If I show up on the blog it will be either liquor fueled angry polemics that will undoubtedly be deleted by Chris once he finds them, or something about ECMA-262-3, or maybe tributes to John Singleton—I read about him a lot in GoF, Alur and Fowler.

I might also write about dive day, where we travel up main street looking for shady restaurants to have lunch in a form of adventure dining that almost never ends up with someone sick or us becoming unwitting accomplices to a “jacking”.

Finally, I’m also a fan of beards, including Doug Crockford’s beard, but especially the maestro—Ben Bernanke—and his beard.

Posted in: People

Synapse Summer Internship

We’ve brought on an intern for the summer and we’re excited by our pick: Jeremy Lindblom has been coding and working on the web for a few years and is looking to really dive in to high-end web application development and is ready to get his feet wet with some of the very advanced concepts we work with.

At Synapse Studios, we like to hire people who have existing side projects or personal web sites going. It represents a certain drive and passion for the technology and personifies the obsessive zeal we’re looking for in our team. Jeremy recently started Finding Restaurants, a kind of restaurant directory-directory. In talking yesterday, I suggested he consider making it a bit of a restaurant review site aggregator, ala MetaCritic. I’ll talk a bit more about our discussion that followed in another post. In the meantime, look for a proper introduction by Jeremy to come real soon.

Posted in: People