Antonio Casamassa was raised in the West Midlands in the UK and has been a huge computer enthusiast ever since he was a child. As soon has he turned 18, he went to study computer science at the University of Central England.
Now in his early 30s, he believes that his success in the industry comes from being both perfectionist and a social butterfly.
“I’m always looking to learn new things and improve the way I work. I take a lot of pleasure socializing in person or over with the internet with fellow IT professionals. This helps me immensely as we are able to share our experiences. I’m extremely disciplined and will often work over weekends and public holidays. I guess it’s all about commitment and belief in what you’re doing."
When asked to give struggling software developers advice on how to find work, Antonio acknowledges the difficulties of finding jobs in the sector but also recommends business-oriented social networking sites like LinkedIn.
"I’d say the most frustrating aspect of looking for work is a lack of appreciation some hiring managers possess in regards to programming work. I find myself having to educate some hiring managers with regards to the complications and technical nature of programming."
As is the case with most industries, he also believes it’s not just about what you know but who you know.
"I’ve met a lot of IT professionals over the years and have hundreds of connections within LinkedIn. Most of my contract work is provided via direct recommendations from my previous clients.”
Outside of work, Antonio has enjoyed participating in charity work for children and animals for several years.
After losing several family members and friends to cancer, he recently decided to combine his passions by launching a new mobile game called Fly snatch, with half of the revenue going towards to children’s cancer research. The mobile game will soon be available free of charge on Apple and Android devices.
“I think it’s my moral obligation as human to give back and set an example. By creating this game and launching this campaign I want to raise funds and awareness of children’s cancer research," he says.
"This is only the beginning and the reactions I have received so far have been extremely positive. I hope we can expect more mobile games being constructed for the same charitable reason in future," he adds.
Even though life as a freelancing software developer can be challenging and demanding at times, Antonio says he wouldn’t change his situation, describing the freedom that comes from being self-employed as "priceless".
"I love my job, it allows me to be creative and I get to dictate my own hours and use my time creating these incredible games while also making the most of my strong moral compass and working on projects that help others," he says.