This site is still a work in progress - please be patient!


I'm Jenny Zhang, a front-end web developer and writer. I'm a big fan of semantic code, responsive design, and open source software. I'm also a fierce advocate for expanding access to technology and overcoming diversity gaps in STEM.

When I'm not wrangling code, I'm reading and writing about a wide variety of social issues in the tech world, building towers and defending them, or working my way through a massive stack of SF/F novels.


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front-end development
content management systems
version control
server administration
design and animation
natural languages
et cetera


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front-end developer, Common Sense Media
Jan 2014 - present Toronto, ON & San Francisco, CA
mentor, Ladies Learning Code
Jan 2012 - present Toronto, ON
director of IT services, Eye Integrated
April 2013 - Dec 2014 Greenville, NC
freelance writer, self employed
Sept 2009 - Dec 2014 various locations
freelance web developer, self employed
Sept 2007 - Dec 2014 various locations
staff accountant, Ernst & Young
May 2010 - Aug 2010, Sept 2011 - Mar 2012 Toronto, ON
graduate diploma in accounting, Queen's University
May 2011 - Aug 2011 Kingston, ON
bachelor of arts (sociology), Queen's University
Sept 2008 - May 2011 Kingston, ON
bachelor of commerce (honours), Queen's University
Sept 2007 - May 2011 Kingston, ON

code samples

coming soon


writing samples
Writing is my first love, and everything else in my life, including my passion for programming, steams from my desire to communicate with other people. Here are some pieces that I think represent my best nonfiction work.
conference experience
I love tech conferences. It's not just because I first realized at #WCTO2012 that I actually had what it took to be a developer, but conferences are also an excellent way of falling in love all over again with something you already adored. The enthusiasm and varied perspectives of fellow attendees is the best antidote to fatigue and jadedness. I highly recommend it.
  • WordCamp Toronto, 2012
  • WordCamp Raleigh, 2012
  • AdaCamp San Francisco, 2013
  • PyCon Canada, 2013
  • DrupalCon Austin, 2014
  • BADCamp (SF), 2014
fun fact

On most places on the internet, you'll find me under some variant of the username "phirephoenix". It's a handle I picked long before I was old enough to realize that names have staying power, and that maybe a future version of me that wasn't eleven-years-old wouldn't want to be known as a mythical animal with an alliterative phoneme.

By the time I got around to worrying about having a professional online presence, I'd been using the name for about a decade, and it was entrenched in all my online activity. I figured I might as well own, now I get to think of all manner of awful puns.

It's gotten to the point where I will instinctively answer to "Phire", except if you're trying to get my attention in a crowded bar.


If you would like to argue for the superiority of ${YOUR_PROGRAMMING_THING} over ${MY_PROGRAMMING_THING}, discuss strategies for dismantling the kyriarchy, gush over the latest bit of lifechanging dystopian speculative fiction you read, tell me how much you adore my cat or writing or art, or pay me to make things on the internet for you, please get in touch! I'd love to hear from you.

The quickest way to reach me would be either by email or Twitter, but I'll also happily accept postcards, smoke signals, or some combination of the following: