Jennie LeesSoftware Engineer


Another country.

It’s 1992.

I’m a fanatical subscriber to Your Sinclair magazine.

Every month, I spend my hard-earned pocket money at the corner shop, pop the demo tape into my ZX Spectrum and type in the PEEKs and POKEs. I transcribe printed lines of BASIC and get tripped up by typos.

Someone writes in. They’re stuck in a game I’ve recently finished, Slightly Magic – in fact, stuck at a part that stumped me for the longest time. I submit a tip to the magazine and mostly forget about it.

And there it is. In the April issue. Right after my tenth birthday, my name in glorious print:


Andrew Malcolm, Alex Schmitz, Ian Hewett and Jennie Lees are literally four of the people who dashed off an answer to Alex Marsh’s plea, “How do you get into the yellow grass?”

I wonder what Andrew, Alex and Ian are up to now.


Status update.

My name is Jennie.

I just turned thirty-four. I live in Los Angeles, on the west side, you know, the bit that’s basically Santa Monica but not quite, so I can’t take my dog to any of the Santa Monica dog parks but my rent is supposedly cheaper in return. (It isn’t. But I just moved from San Francisco, so anything here is cheap in my book.)

I’m a software engineer and I work at Riot Games, but not on games directly, on the stuff behind the scenes that means people can actually play online. It’s fun, challenging, interesting, all that jazz. I write a lot of Go, which I’m really enjoying. I’m a top lane main.

I play a lot of games. It’s kinda cool to work with people who don’t think that’s a bad thing. Nuff said there.

If it’s early in the morning you might find me at my Crossfit gym, on my neverending quest to not be unhealthy. Pretty hard when there are unlimited gummy bears in the office kitchen.

Maybe I should figure out how many burpees I need to do to burn off a gummy bear.

I bet it’s too many. One burpee is too many.

I hate burpees.


What's next?

Coming soon.

No, really. I love the future. I love the ways our industry – excuse me, industries – change from moment to moment. How big sweeps come out of nowhere when really they were there all along.

But one thing I’ve never claimed to be is omniscient. I enjoy living in darkness. Making each day one more step through a fog of war. Charting my own map.

Life is agile, see.

So instead of predicting the future, I’ll share the principles I hope will guide the next few years of my life and career.


  • Level up those around me
  • Give kindness
  • Tackle the hard stuff
  • Say yes more

What’re yours?