I’ve always been a tripolar guy: on one hand, being a developer, making a living writing code for various companies. On the other hand, writing: either full books like The Web Startup Success Guide, posts like the one you’re reading or content for various startups. On the third hand, doing what I call Microconsults: I work with the founders of a self-funded startup to identify eight to ten specific things that would help their startup, get…

When you think about it, building a startup is the process of taking a blank canvass and filling it with your app, with a market that wants your app, and the character and culture of your company. Along the way, you’re going to need to deal with all sorts of information: What people think of your idea, of your app at as it grows, and all sorts of interactions as your company grows from you…

It’s easy to get so wrapped up in our startups that’s impossible to see them as a stranger does. A stranger visiting your site knows literally next to nothing about you. They probably got there via Google when they were searching for a solution to a particular problem, be it invoicing for freelance work, teaching their children Italian or dealing with contaminated medical waste. Your startup is just another link to them, another tab out…

While I’ve already started writing “VS Code Mac”, I kind of look at this time of year as the prep time for that new shiny year to come. So here’s my thinking on how to write a book-length project as of now. Please let me know if you’ve got any better alternatives! Building and Maintaining the Book Outline Hands down choice: Workflowy. A non-fiction book needs an outline. Without an outline it’s way too easy…

A funny thing happened two years ago this weekend: Microsoft released software for developers that did not suck. It wasn’t Microsoft’s way or the highway – it was honest-to-God open source software in the form of a screaming fast code editor, integrated with Git out of the box, and now with a huge community of extensions. And it ran on Mac OS, Linux, and oh yeah, that other platform. I knew then what I know…

It’s one thing to read about something truly awful coming at you. It’s another to see that thing even if what you see is – for now – fiction. Watch this YouTube video created by a Stuart Russell, a well-respected CS professor  at the UC Berkeley and Autonomousweapons.org Then ask yourself if there’s a single bit about it that will be fiction not fact in a few years time.

One thing you learn pretty quickly with WordPress is that unless you’re a fulltime WP developer you’re going to need someone who is. There are simply too many things that can break – themes that auto-update but auto-fail; plugins that start doing strange things for no apparent reason; hosting issues that keep your clients from even getting to your site. You don’t need the hassle. You don’t need taking time away from your latest cool…

This week I happened to listen to two episodes back to back to Wes Bos’ new podcast Syntax – confirming a) It’s not just me that has gone back over to the Dark Side with Microsoft’s Visual Studio Code and b) this guy has lots of good content for developers. The two episodes – The Command Line for Web Developers and Why is everyone switching to VS Code (I switched about 3 months ago and…

The one question founders have asked me in my {volunteer} role successfully sponsoring 350+ startups into Microsoft BizSpark is why Microsoft declined their startup. Sometimes the applicant will wait weeks only to get declined; sometimes it takes mere minutes. Nearly always the founder/applicants are shocked, hurt, frustrated: Can’t Microsoft see what a great startup we are? Don’t they care? Well, they do and they don’t. Let me explain. Let’s assume you meet BizSpark’s qualifications. And, let’s assume…