Andrew Lester

Andrew Lester

Hi! I’m Andrew, a junior at The University of Illinois studying computer science. I’m interested in writing software to solve problems in my community. My technical experience involves fullstack web development, distributed systems, and IoT.

Previously, I was an intern on the big data platform team at , and I’m currently a tech lead at UIUC’s chapter of . I also write short posts about web programming on .

Projects

Recent

January - June 2023

Open Climate Fix is a UK based nonprofit focused on bridging the gap between the energy industry and researchers working on climate change. They've developed a product called Nowcasting which currently enables the UK National Grid to reduce the use of fossil fuels through accurate solar output forecasts. With Hack4Impact, I worked to create a web application for homeowners to access these forecasts to better optimize their home energy use.

Kotahi dashboard

2022

August - December 2022

Coko is a San Francisco based nonprofit that builds open-source tools for the publishing community. With Hack4Impact, I worked on their project Kotahi, an easy to use scholarly publishing platform. Kotahi helps manage the entire publishing workflow for both journals and authors. We added support for custom digital-object identifier suffixes and reworked several key user flows.

Kotahi dashboard

June - August 2022

Joust is an online, realtime multiplayer game that turns stressful decision making into a fun activity. The web app features a bracket style matchup mechanism to improve decision quality, and it also bring about a whimsical design and play style to encourage participation. The project was a team effort by interns, with my work comprising the frontend implementation.

Joust

January - May 2022

Unstructured Studio is a Canada-based nonprofit that helps foster a tinkering mindset among children from under-resourced communities. I worked with Hack4Impact to improve and add features to their product ZubHub, a social network for kids to share their personal projects with others. ZubHub also acts as a place to explore ideas for future projects through partnerships with other Unstructured Studio programs.

ZubHub homepage

February 25-28th 2022

TypeMatch is yet another type speed training website with a unique twist. Unlike many other type speed sites, TypeMatch shows your typed input and the correct text at the same time. In this way, your eyes help catch typos before you notice a color switch. I created TypeMatch as my submission for , a hackathon run by UIUC.

TypeMatch homepage

2021

September - December 2021

South Side Weekly is a weekly newspaper based in the south side of Chicago. I worked with Hack4Impact to create a contributor hub web application for their full time staff. The goal of the app was to make onboarding new contributors more efficient and help incoporate their work in published issues.

South Side Weekly onboarding page

January - September 2021

Update Scheduler is a web application for Schoology users to schedule their update posts anytime they want. With a rich text editor, unlimited update storage, and the ability to send a single update to multiple realms, Update Scheduler is a great Schoology addition for both teachers and students. With a user base of ~100, it’s a hit among educators.

I created Update Scheduler so I could organize club meetings during my senior year of high school.

June - August 2021

The Mustang Mug is a tiny cafe inside my old high school. In the summer after my senior year of high school, I worked with other students to create a website for the store that supported online ordering, a live menu, and admin moderation. This project was truly a team effort, relying on a swath of students to implement the necessary features and accessibility requirements.

Mustang Mug homepage

February - May 2021

The Senior Map is a website displaying the future destinations of my high school's graduates. I made several updates to the underlying map including multi-year support, statistics processing, and moving images to cloud storage.

Senior Map homepage

See what I’m working on right now on my