Questions about running a software development business.

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27
votes
12answers
4k views

Dealing with bad/incomplete/unclear specifications? [duplicate]

I'm working on a project where our dev team gets the specifications from the business part of the company. Both the business management and the IT management require estimates and deadline ...
142
votes
29answers
10k views

Offshoring: does it ever work?

I know there has been a fair amount of discussion on here about outsourcing/offshoring, and the general opinion seems to be that at best it is difficult, and at worst it fails. I have direct ...
28
votes
10answers
7k views

How important is Domain knowledge vs. Technical knowledge?

I am working on a Trading and Risk Management application and although from a C# background, I have been asked to work on SSIS packages. Now I can live with that. The pain point is that there is too ...
14
votes
5answers
3k views

How Do You Determine Your Hourly Rate? [closed]

In pricing a service or product it is general practice to not merely charge for the effort spent and the costs involved + margin but from the value delivered down. As an independent consultant, how do ...
13
votes
3answers
354 views

How to educate business managers on the complexity of adding new features? [duplicate]

We maintain a web application for a client who demands that new features be added at a breakneck pace. We've done our best to keep up with their demands, and as a result the code base has grown ...
18
votes
1answer
1k views

Freelancers: How Do You Go About Gathering Requirements?

As a freelance programmer: What is your process for gathering requirements from a client? How much time does the requirement gathering process take you? I know this is not fixed, and there are ...
18
votes
9answers
1k views

How can I sell a legacy program rewrite to the business? [duplicate]

We have a legacy classic ASP application that's been around since 2001. It badly needs to be re-written, but it's working fine from an end user perspective. The reason I feel like a rewrite is ...
9
votes
9answers
653 views

What do programmers have to know about business/management? [closed]

As I've implied through my other posts, I'm still fairly new to the workforce. During team meetings, I tend to be able to keep up with technical discussion, but when my project manager starts talking ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

Any hard evidence on how much smart phone app developers have actually earned? [closed]

I am considering making a smart phone app. Before I start, I want to see whether it is worthwhile at all. Unfortunatelly, I find it very hard to find any hard evidence on how much the developers of ...
34
votes
14answers
4k views

What to do if you find a vulnerability in a competitor's site?

While working on a project for my company, I needed to build functionality that allows users to import/export data to/from our competitor's site. While doing this, I discovered a very serious security ...
6
votes
12answers
1k views

What factors should be evaluated when determining a desktop software price?

What factors should be evaluated when determining a desktop software price?
9
votes
5answers
621 views

Is it a must to focus on one specific IT subject to be succesful?

Lately I'm deeply disturbed by the thought that I'm still not devoted to one specific IT subject after so many years of doing it as a hobby. I've been in so many different IT related hobbies since I ...
6
votes
11answers
1k views

How much should Developers interact with Clients? [closed]

A philosophical discussion has come up in my department that I'd like p.se's opinion on. We're a 6 person development department inside a 60 person IT shop. All other departments are growing FAST, and ...
5
votes
2answers
218 views

Do you apply a code of conduct on accepting jobs, projects or requirements?

When writing software for yourself, your company or third parties, do you always consider certain principles, values, standards, or rules of behavior that guide the decisions, procedures and systems ...
14
votes
5answers
1k views

What is a realistic way to handle customer-specific software patches?

I'm trying to gather effective ways that others have solved the following problem. At work we've been forced to release a software patch (to be installed on end-user systems) that we only want ...
6
votes
5answers
429 views

Web Development Law/Ownership of Website

I'm a budding web developer, and I wondered if it was illegal to edit a website for a client to include a link that says 'encourage the owner of this site to pay their web developer' and follows up ...
5
votes
4answers
554 views

Can a lone programmer become a mid or senior level programmer without a mentor? [duplicate]

Question: Can a mere entry level programmer become a mid or senior level programmer working in a company as the only programmer without a mentor? Background: I was hired as an entry level programmer ...
7
votes
6answers
566 views

Should I be looking for developers with specific skill sets or generalists that need to learn?

Thanks to the great help of this site and SO, I've been able to make a prototype of a software I want to sell but unfortunately although the prototype works I think my code quality is very low. I ...
3
votes
3answers
232 views

What is an efficient way to retrieve product counts at multiple levels of a hierarchy?

I'm working on an e-business website to sell books and also want to display the number of available books in the category list. The category list contains the genre and the format (pocket, ebook, ...
2
votes
4answers
377 views

Is it more important to focus on a business domain or a programming stack/technology for career growth? [closed]

i just basically realized that it's almost impossible to truly learn and master each programming language/technology before a new version is released. so my initial thought was to focus on the .net ...