From napkin plan to mega-zillion product. About technology, usability, entrepreneurship and start-ups.

Archive for the ‘Software Development’ Category

1 May 2012

Lately I’ve been hearing the word “hacker” more and more, spoken with pure admiration. People seem to romanticize the notion of a start-up entrepenuer hacking away at his product day and night. I entirely agree that an entrepenuer needs a hacker or pirate mentality. She/he needs to be able to learn, adapt, move fast, and react quickly. But when it comes to software development… well, hackers are not such a great fit.

I’ve been working in software development and leadership for more than 20 years and I can tell you that good sofware requires good engineers. I’ve probably reviewed thousands of code files and worked with more than a hundred software developers over the years and if I have choice I always try to avoid hiring cowboys, hackers or “mad scientist” personalities. I prefer excellent, creative, dedicated engineers.

Software is not art, products are art, software is good craftmenship and engineering.

25 Jan 2011

Over the past few years, I’ve been working on the development of several Facebook applications/games, working with several Facebook focused companies. Back in October 2010 Facebook launched an initiative entitled “Operation Developer Love”. They planned to improve their responsiveness to newly reported bugs as well as deal with the huge pile of outstanding bug reports. When they launched the program they had 4,514 open bugs in the repository. This week, 3 months later, they have 4,524.
Facebook developer love bugs over time graph

21 Jan 2011

I am generally considered a perfectionist. Unfortunately that’s not always a good thing.
Trying to get everything perfect, fixing all minor bugs that a user is not likely to encounter in 100 years or adding all newly requested features to the work scope, would most certainly lead your project to go over time and over budget. And more importantly it will considerably decrease the project’s chances of completion and success.