Business-focused custom software

  • Top 5 Programmers to Avoid

    If you’ve ever worked with a programmer, you know that some programmers are smart, funny, and can make your project successful. Other programmers can ruin a project, making everyone's life miserable in the process. Here’s my list of the top 5 programmers to avoid like they have contracted a scary disease.

    Know-it-all Nancy

    Nancy has no interest in your input. In fact, Nancy will roll her eyes at you when you offer an opinion. Nancy thinks all her programs would work perfectly if it weren’t for the users.

    Jumpin’ Jack

    Jack jumps in and makes changes without considering the implications. ...

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  • Why You Need a Support Plan

    Just the other day I sent a proposal to one of my customers for ongoing support. I prefer to establish a flat-rate monthly support plan for my customers, which can be used for questions, troubleshooting, bug fixes, and emergencies. The flat rate arrangement is good for my customers, because they can budget for it appropriately. It is also nice for them, because they don't have to make an investment decision each time they call. ("Is this question worth getting charged?") I always prioritize my customers who have this kind of arrangement.

    This post by Lynette Chandler at Small Business Branding covers why you need a plan ...

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  • What everyone should know about bugs

    If you have never worked on a software development project before, you may be completely shocked during the first testing session. I guarantee that you will find a bug in the system within the first hour. In fact, you are likely to find something you didn't expect in the first 10 minutes.

    This may trigger a panic attack in you. I know exactly what you are thinking: What happened? Didn't the programmer test at all? Did we hire the wrong person? We are doomed!

    Calm down. Take a deep breath.

    Let me give you some information about software bugs that will help you ...

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  • How to tell if an estimate sucks

    Even if you aren't paying for custom software on an hourly basis, you probably still care about how long it will take for the programmer to complete the work. After all, you hire a programmer because you think custom software will add to your bottom line, either by saving you money or increasing your marketshare. So every day without your new software is costing you cash.

    Programmers are notorious for missing deadlines and taking longer than they promised. So if programmer says they will be done with your project by X date, how can you tell if they are just blowing smoke ...

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  • The Secret to Building a Crappy User Interface

    If you are like me, you have seen your share of really bad web applications. You have probably wondered "How could anyone design something this crappy?"

    I am going to tell you.

    The secret to designing a really awful user interface is to think like a geek and not like an end-user.

    That's it.

    I'll give you an example you will see on many e-commerce sites. Many of these sites don't let you enter a credit card number with dashes or spaces. Believe me when I tell you that there is no good reason why sites do this, and it makes it ...

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What the critics are saying...

Avonelle is a talented expert in her field. She has blended well with our team and built applications that we are proud to deploy to our associates. Her talents helped us execute a vision expediently and with quality. If we could do it all over again, we wouldn’t change a thing.

Peter Edstrom @ Renewal by Andersen