Gianotto Alison

Alison Gianotto

Chief Technology Officer

Name:Gianotto Alison
Date of birth:
Address:San Diego, CA
Phone:(909) 2-SNIPE-1
I am passionate about creating order from chaos, developing systems and workflow to make the right thing the easy thing, and advocating risk management as a valuable tool for innovation. I frequently speak at conferences about technology and security/privacy issues. My personal heroes are Carl Sagan, Neil deGrasse Tyson, & Jane Goodall.

I created Downworthy in my free time, a fun little Chrome extension that changes hyperbolic viral news site headlines into something funnier. It's been written up in AdAge, Daily Dot, BoingBoing, Jezebel, Washington Post and more. Check out more of my personal projects on GitHub.

Speaking Engagements


1. dotScale 2014 (Paris)


2. LoneStar PHP Conference

Keynote Speaker on Application Security

3. Macworld/MacIT 2014

Essential Security & Risk Fundamentals

4. American Humane Association Conference

Animal Abuse Statistics and Crime Prevention

5. Virginia Animal Control Association Conference

Instructor: Bad Guys on the Internet

6. Animal Law Conference

Humane Education, Animal Abuse Statistics

7. Vermont Code Camp

Facebook API Essentials, OSS Software

8. Foo Camp

Failing Well/Risk Management (Ignite Talk)

9. Macworld/MacIT 2012

Getting Users to Care About Security, Application Security Essentials

10. Animal Care Expo

Animal Abuse Statistics and Crime Prevention

Awards & Honors


1. Judge for #hack4good 0.5


2. Facebook Studio Award

Winner - Silver

3. The One Show


4. UAN Animals’ Choice Award


5. NACA Diane Lane Memorial Award


6. Animal Planet Hero of the Year Award


7. Facebook Blue Ribbon Award


Books & Publications


1. MySQL Transactions and Replication Handbook

Author - Wrox Press

2. Professional PHP4 Web Development Solutions

Author - Wrox Press



2. 7 Net Neutrality Questions You Were Too...


3. Will the Comcast-Time Warner Cable Merger Hurt...


4. The Anti-Upworthy: Downworthy Browser Plug-In...

Ad Age

6. Five Developers You Should Follow on Twitter

Venture Beat

10. 15 Developer/Hacker Women to Follow on Twitter


11. Critter Crusader

People Magazine



1. Mass Mosaic

Chief Technology Officer

2. Pet-Abuse.Com

Crimefighter / Founder / CEO

As the founder, CEO, and only developer on this project, I did it all. PHP/MySQL development, systems administration, product development, and marketing.

  • PHP/MySQL front-end and custom case management system back-end, both using Twitter Bootstrap
  • Integration of geolocation and Google Maps API
  • Phonetic name search
  • Optional alerting system for when “watched” content is updated
  • Action alert campaigns utilizing email-to-fax API technology
  • Data normalization and standards
  • Execution of responsive design
  • Beta API

3. Vitruvian Arts

Founder / CEO

4. Noble Systems

Web Developer/Graphic Designer

5. Computer Graphics Training Center


6. Cybergrrl, Inc.

Senior Producer

7. Inter@ctivate

Technical Director

8. San Diego Blood Bank

Web Developer

As a web developer at the San Diego Blood bank, I was responsible for writing PHP/MySQL and front-end HTML/CSS/Javascript code to power the main organization website, as well as standalone promotional applications for fundraising events.

  • PHP/MySQL programming on IIS
  • Design and creation of targeted promotional event emails
  • Integration with multiple proprietary healthcare application and donor CRM APIs
  • IIS systems administration

9. Village Voice

Web Development Manager

While at the Village Voice, I worked on the core technology powering the website for the country’s largest alt weekly. As a full-stack developer, I developed highly scalable PHP/MySQL standalone applications, as well as development on the front and back end of the main publication website.

  • Rewrote promotional applications such as the Pazz and Jop program, which required extensive programmatic data normalization from thousands of sources to reach a finalist list
  • Improved and extended the main PHP/MySQL publishing platform, from which the website and print versions were published
  • Extensive front-end development in CSS and Javascript to enhance site functionality
  • Managed the web development team to quickly turn-around high-profile feature requests
  • Spearheaded the initiative to move all Voice podcasts onto iTunes for additional exposure
  • Contributed to product vision in an effort to continuously improve the site
  • UX planning and information architecture
  • Coordinated the migration of 40 years of articles from the existing publishing platform into Gyrobase

10. noise

Chief Technology Officer / Corporate Security Officer

As the CTO at noise, I was responsible for managing the IT, Devops and QA departments. As an IT generalist, my day frequently consisted of configuring and patching servers, IT infrastructure planning, application architecture and database tuning, and technical strategy for noise and our clients. In my role as Corporate Security Officer, I was responsible for our security policies, corporate audits, application security and company-wide security awareness training.

I successfully transitioned noise from a company that wasn’t using version control when I started to a company that uses automated deployment and continuous integration technologies such as Chef and Jenkins, with emphasis on transparency, accountability and reporting.

  • Mentored younger developers
  • Developed best-practices coding standards and web application security standards adopted by the entire development team
  • Managed risk management for all internal and client web applications
  • Managed, monitored and performance-tuned upwards of 50 LAMP servers across Rackspace and AWS for high-performance, high-profile client projects for Chase Bank, GE and others
  • Wrote deployment scripts to establish a development workflow using GitHub, DeployHQ and AWS auto-scalers which allowed one-click deployment with full change history
  • Developed a hybrid physical and cloud server solution utilizing aggressive caching using RackConnect at Rackspace for a client application that received over half a million visits a day.
  • Architected and built high-performance PHP/MySQL applications leveraging Facebook, Youtube and Twitter APIs.
  • MySQL performance tuning using the Percona toolset.

Additional accomplishments included:

  • Playing a key role in technical and social strategy for clients such as Sunkist, GE, Intel, Chase, JP Morgan, Panasonic, CBS, University of California, EA, Unilever, Sears, Coca-Cola, Amazon and vitaminwater
  • Leading the noise social media strategy, managing our social networking accounts and spearheading a company blog
  • Implementing a formal helpdesk system
  • Creating an PHP/MySQL open source asset/license management system for IT asset/inventory tracking
  • Continuing to work towards automating deployment and configuration management for our essential systems

I also sat on the Culture Board at noise, which focuses on personal development, mentoring and retention programs (and fun!) for employees.