Science and Engineering


01 August 2017

Joel Pobar speaks a language many people will never understand but it is one that has helped land him jobs at Microsoft and Facebook. He speaks computer.

In recognition of his expertise in computing and technology, Mr Pobar was named winner of the QUT Innovation and Entrepreneurship Award at a ceremony in Brisbane today.

The annual QUT Outstanding Alumni Awards announced in Brisbane today recognise outstanding graduates of the university (and predecessor institutions), who have displayed exceptional professional, academic or research achievements and contributions to the community.

Joel Pobar with QUT Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Coaldrake.
Joel Pobar's selfie with QUT Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Coaldrake.

While studying at QUT, Mr Pobar took a computer compilers course with the Dean of IT Professor John Gough, and it was this course that led to his decision to specialise as a compiler and in program language development.

He graduated in 2002 with a QUT Bachelor of Information Technology (Hons) majoring in computer science.

He has since gone on to enjoy an international career, first working with Microsoft in Seattle before being head-hunted by Facebook in 2011 to develop a brand new programming language and runtime system called HHVM, the Hip Hop Virtual Machine which is a virtual machine for PHP (coding type).

As engineering director at Facebook, Mr Pobar has helped transform the company and facilitate its global dominance.

He manages 100 people, across a number of software teams who are located in San Francisco, Seattle, New York and London.

While working at Facebook, Mr Pobar has helped drive mobile platforms and enhanced connectivity and this project has assisted Facebook in unlocking new advertising opportunities.

Media contact:
Sandra Hutchinson, QUT Media (Tue, Wed), 07 3138 9449 or
After hours, Rose Trapnell, 0407 585 901


Joel Pobar wins QUT Innovation and Entrepreneurship Awards.


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