The Next Big Thing!
Born and raised in Carndonagh, Dermot Doherty attended Saint Patrick Boys National School and Carndonagh Community School before moving to undertake a degree in Business and Legal studies at University College Dublin. Following this Dermot then attended the University of Ulster Magee where he completed a Masters in Computing and Information Systems, graduating with a distinction. After graduation, Dermot was recruited to Silicon Valley, California where he worked as a software engineer for multiple enterprise-grade business and consumer platforms including Milo, Inc., Digital Mandate, Voxeo, and EuroXchanger. He also worked at the University of California Berkeley, teaching classes in advanced web applications. Dermot then moved to work in Panama, building and developing software for major legal firms in New York.
In 2002 Dermot moved back to Donegal and in a new venture began to make wine, hoping to turn it into a business. This venture was however, to lead him in a different direction. When attempting to produce Irish name labels for the wine, Dermot discovered that there was no online resource which could translate the names of the wine. That night he registered the Irish Dictionary Online and worked on developing the site for another two years. It is now the number one resource for Irish translations, used globally by school and university students. As co-founder and CTO of the company iSpaces, Dermot now lives in Mexico where he builds software operating systems.
Ironically however, despite living in Mexico, Dermot claims that one the things he misses most about Donegal are the ‘amazingly beautiful’ beaches that he walked along most days while growing up. Most of his summers, like many from the area, were also spent footing turf in the hill with his father and attending Irish language courses at the Gaeltacht, something that he loved. Dermot also loves to keep up to date with the GAA championship, watching The Sunday Game online. He argues that it’s nice, when away, to be able to check in and keep up to date with events like the championship as it helps sustain your connection to home. A keen sportsman himself, Dermot played six years of professional soccer in the Irish League and continues to play away from home, having won league titles with teams in California, Panama and Mexico.
While he has travelled all over the world with work, and argues that the definition of ‘home’ becomes more complex the longer you stay away, Dermot still considers Donegal ‘home’ and wishes he wasn’t so busy building “the next big thing” so he could travel back home more often to visit family and friends.