Name: Jennifer Konikowski
Designation: Agent 0071
Double Agent Role: Senior Software Consultant
Aliases: jmkoni
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Favorite Emoji: 🦄

Probably taking an application that was primarily procedural PHP and putting them on the path to a more object-oriented approach, and through that helping them bump their test coverage from effectively 0% to 20% over the course of just three months.

Not being in a pandemic. And being able to meet my coworkers at some point.

Probably all of the other double agents. It’s nice to have a group of people to back me up who are able to help if I’m running into a problem that I might think is a little silly.

Probably that I feel like we’ve really managed to hire a group of truly empathetic individuals.

Right now, whether Rails can be separated from Basecamp and become fully community run instead of the benevolent dictator for life model (BDFL).

I think Python’s moved more toward this type of model since Guido van Rossum retired as BDFL. But even when he was the BDFL, it was still extremely community-driven, and there wasn’t really a company behind it. The Python Software Foundation does have corporate sponsors, but it’s not tied to any particular company. I think being tied to a particular company can become problematic. When you look at React, if you’re choosing React you’re sort of in some ways dependent on the whims of Facebook. I know that’s one reason why it made it hard for me to want to choose React for any project I’m working on for myself.

Due to the pandemic, I ran my first virtual marathon. I guess running a marathon all by yourself (plus a virtual 50K) is definitely an experience I am not likely to forget soon. I already had to repeat it once, and I would like to not repeat it again. With a regular race like there are usually a lot of other people around you and you have to finish the course because that’s the only way back. With a virtual race, it’s entirely self-motivated because it’s so much easier to just stop and go back home. The only thing keeping me going was me wanting to finish. The upside is I could do loops and stop by my house if I needed anything, which was definitely convenient because you don’t have aid tables. Overall, it was definitely more of a mental game, which is definitely good training as I get into longer races. But it’s not as fun and marathons aren’t really fun to begin with, so it’s not something I would prefer to continue doing.

Probably similar—the same 50K I signed up for last year and did virtually, I signed up for the in-person race in 2021. It’s going to be my first in person race in over a year now. I haven’t done any races since February 2020 and finally got one next weekend (May 15), which I’m pretty excited about. It’s an in-person trail race in the middle of nowhere in Ohio. I’m also signed up for my first 50-miler in September, so I’m terrified and excited about that.

I swear to you I do read a lot of quality books, but I also really love watching trash TV. Probably what has used the most of my mental energy is the whole 90 Day Fiancé franchise, because I watch all of it and it’s all terrible. Not only do I watch the show, but I also listen to a podcast about it when I run. I find it a little wild that, while it seems like the immigration process in the US is impossible, people meet someone for a few hours and they are somehow able to get them a visa to come here and marry them. It’s fascinating; I love it so much.

Probably being able to go to a bar again and just hang out. I love going to The Independent here in Pittsburgh, in Squirrel Hill. It’s a great place. Good cocktails, good beer, great bartenders.

Negroni. When everything was shutdown last spring, I started a Negroni blog called trashnegroni.com. I had a surplus of various liquors and liqueurs, so I got creative and came up with about 30 different variations. I am still drinking Negronis, but I slowed down on my Negroni creation.

I play the oboe (poorly).

This interview is based on a recorded conversation with Jennifer Konikowski and Cathy Colliver. It may or may not self-destruct.

Jennifer Konikowski

Hash An icon of a hash sign Code Name
Agent 0071
Location An icon of a map marker Location
Pittsburgh, PA

Cathy Colliver

Hash An icon of a hash sign Code Name
Agent 0080
Location An icon of a map marker Location
Louisville, KY