Ludwig Wendzich

What’s Next?

In February 2013, I accepted a job as a Front-end Developer for Apple’s Marketing Department1. I was to start when my H1-B visa kicked in, in the first week of October that year. I spent those 7 months questioning whether I had made the right decision. What made me think I could work at Apple? What made them think I was good enough? Had I fooled them with the crash course in JavaScript Performance that had taken place between myself, and my Kindle, in my hotel room the weekend prior to my interview.

A couple of months into working at Apple it dawned on me that the big question wasn’t whether I could make it at Apple, the big question was “What’s next?”

While at the company I led teams of front-end developers to deliver multiple micro-sites to coincide with product announcements that would be seen by millions of people. I worked on the 30 Years of Mac campaign which launched’s first ever responsive website and went on to influence the responsive-web strategy for the company. I helped introduce Sass to the company’s workflow, lead the development of our Sass framework and helped embed the aforementioned responsive strategy not only in our tools, but in our design processes. We developed that framework into a pattern library and integrated that into our workflow. We shared these tools with the rest of the company and soon I became the developer directly responsible for these tools that were fundamental to almost every website that shipped on

It’s been just over two years that I’ve been at the company. I love my job. I am proud of everything we’ve2 been able to accomplish, and yet, I have just left.

I am returning home, to New Zealand. To a community that I love. To friends and family who I dearly miss. To the love of my life, who has been extremely patient with my adventures overseas. I am going home to answer that simple question.

I have no plans, and I’m scared as hell.

So, “What’s next?”

Up Next: I know “What’s Next”

After I left Apple, I kept getting the same question. Over and over again. “So, what are you going to do now?” Now I know. Find out what I’m doing next »

  1. I’d be completely remiss to forget to thank the people who helped me get this job: Shaun Lee and Baruch ter Wal, my previous employers who didn’t question whether to recommend me for the position when Andrew Hedges knocked on their door. They then kept me on staff for 7 months while I waited for my H1B to come into effect. Andrew, of course, for taking a risk on the kid from New Zealand. Natasha Lampard and the rest of my Webstock family who supported my interviews landing in the middle of our big week (sorry 2.0!). Not to mention all the opportunities that team Webstock have put at my feet. Sacha Judd and Lance Wiggs for their counsel around the decision to take the job with Apple. Rochelle Ivanson for stepping up to look after Gather Conference, and Su Yin Khoo for holding down the fort across all Gather enterprises while I’ve been away. My family for their support and finally, my girlfriend, Natalie for not throwing in the towel and deciding to give it a go, long-distance. 

  2. I did not accomplish these things alone. I was supported by, worked alongside and learnt from tremendous people. I can’t name them, but want to recognize them somehow in this footnote.