January 28, 2009
When I started working with the development team abroad, they suggested we use Basecamp to stay in synch. I had heard of the company 37 Signals but had never used any of their products so I was really blown away once we got the project up an running. The service includes a message board, shared task calendar, To Do List, a writeboard, and file sharing service and an easily to manage contacts list.
The team put all of our milestones into the system so now I can go to Basecamp, review the list of upcoming milestones and leave files and comments that I think are useful for the team. Once you upload or insert a new comment you have the option of notifying specific group members which is great because it avoids spamming those people who are not relevant to the update.
I think this software is really a brilliant way to manage a geographically separated group of people where transparency can obviously be difficult and it is hard to get clarity around what each person is doing. I seriously recommend Basecamp for anyone collaborating on not just software development, but anything that could require getting a group of people on to the same page.
January 21, 2009
I started by posting a local (Philadelphia) advertisement to Craigslist and also by going to oDesk and posting an advertisement looking for an iPhone developer. My ad on Craigslist was straightforward and I offered both a salary while in development but also a portion of the returns. I got some good feedback and received inquiries from individuals, local iPhone development companies but also many international development firms. Initially I was interested in finding something more like a partner with technical skills to work with and share the return. This quickly proved to not be an option.
I still don’t think it is a bad deal to offer a developer: 1) an application idea, 2) a salary, 3) a flexible schedule, and 4) a portion of the returns. I wasn’t able to find anyone experienced, however, with enough interest to really dive in to the project. While I am sure this is a symptom of the high demand for iPhone developers and my lack of being able to find / convince anyone locally (I only posted on Craigslist so wasn’t exactly scouring the city), it was still surprising how few serious inquiries I received. Let me just add, as someone who is learning the iPhone SDK, I was amazed at how little most developers who reached out to me knew about developing with the iPhone SDK.
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January 20, 2009
When I decided to create my application idea by going with international development it took me quite some time to figure out the best way to do it. I’m pretty resourceful at finding what I need on the web so when I couldn’t find any advice on the topic I decided to document my process for others thinking about outsourced development.
Being new to programming and having just started to learn the iPhone SDK I felt time pressure to get my app idea out to market before someone else beat me to the punch. I thought about the trade off between time, money and certainty of getting a launchable product and decided that I should invest the money necessary to get a working version into the App Store as quickly as possible. That way I could also put more time on designing the game as well as the marketing.
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