Sam says you should read this
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I will give you 25 hours of free work

You read that right. I will give you 25 hours of me working on your project, for free. That's $2000 worth of work, for free.

I'm a Freelance software engineer who specializes in web software (PHP and python, mainly). I love my job, and I love building things that excite, amaze, and inspire. I also love building things that are simple to use, are elegant, and last.

Obviously, I'm not in the business of giving out free work to just anybody though, so you're going to have to bring something to the table too. That something is a project which excites me, challenges me, and makes me want to build so…

So you wanna be a freelancer?

So you're ready to leave the office job and be your own boss? That's great! Let's go over some of the things that you need to know.

Before you start
There are a number of things to organise before you actually start trading. A few of the most important things are as follows:

  • A time-tracking system
  • An invoicing/accounting system
  • A registered business name or number (such as an ABN in Australia)
  • A business email address (the address may have been cool in high school, but no client will want to send emails to that)
  • Business bank accounts (even if they are "personal"…


I'd like to do a little thought experiment. This is intended to explain to people just how complex human problems really are, and why writing good software is difficult.

Let's imagine that you have been hired by a company to write software for their new site. They are going to be tackling Yelp, and Google reviews to make a single, all-encompassing source for reviews on anything. There's one major flaw that they see in every system on the market currently; trust.

You see, this company is born from a group of people who are very cautious about, well, everything. They want to be able to read rele…

On voting machines and tin-foil hats

Americans are having an election today. You may have heard. I'm not American, but I've still heard about it (for months). The last few elections have been rife with accusations of vote-fixing, cheating, and "hanging chads". This year appears to be no different.

A video showed up today on YouTube showing a voter using an electronic voting machine, selecting Obama and getting Romney. Apparently this type of thing has happened before, prompting The Simpsons to parody pretty much this same problem. Breitbart has also (although without any more than anecdotal evidence) claimed that the same thing h…

The client is never wrong (You are)

If your client has the wrong idea about what they want, what you're delivering, or what is possible, then you're failing to do your job. There, I've said it. Their job isn't to know the technology; that's why they hired you. If they do know a bit, then it generally helps, and I'm a firm believer that if a client commissions work then they should try to understand it (at least on some level). The point is, though, that they have other things to do that don't involve knowing every line of code, the limitations of various browsers, or how much data you can (and should) push through a pipe.

Now I'…