Podcast Nuggets #2

logo for blog series This is the second in my series of Podcast Nuggets (mental note: should I use the word nugget?) where I talk about some of the things I have learnt from recently listening to podcasts.

Let’s begin with someone I have already heard but whom has a lot of great information about recruitment in tech.

SOFTWARE ENGINEERING RADIO

Randy Shoup – Hiring in the Tech Industry – Episode 208

One of the things that Randy said that matched a comment by Andy Lester (see Podcast Nuggets #1) was that many of the positions that are filled come via referrals, adding more weight to the idea that normal routes of advertising for jobs aren’t as effective as you might have thought.

He also talked about what he did when he applied to Google and that was, aside from reading about other’s experiences (see Yegge’s blog entries), also spending a few weeks studying a recommended algorithms book. There are a lot of possible positions at Google but a deep understanding of algorithms and data structures is a core requirement.

Google apparently are happy (accept?) situations in which they have false-negatives but won’t accept false-positives, with respect to recruiting. In other words, they don’t mind not hiring somebody that is a perfect fit, unintentionally, but definitely do not want to hire people who they think will be good, but turn out not to be.

At his current company, KIXEYE, one method they use to select people is to give candidates programming tasks to take home, which they then use as a topic of discussion in subsequent interviews.

Overall, this podcast complements his other one that I wrote about in the first of this series, and is worth a listen.

HERDING CODE

PAUL JENKINS, BRENDAN FORSTER AND ANDREW TOBIN – Code52 – Episode 136

This was an eye opener because the group explained that they planned to create a new open source project each week. Yes. EACH WEEK!

Based mainly out of Australia, they set up a GitHub page to track all their projects, used a voting mechanism to decide what to work on each time, and then hammered away.

Some of the projects took on a life of their own, too, so they didn’t need to keep maintaining them.

I’ve had a look round their GitHub page and also Jabber chat channel and it does seem a little quiet unfortunately.

HERDING CODE

Roy Osherove  – Notes to a Software Leader – Episode 139

This short episode is with Roy talking about a book he was writing (which is now available).

He explains that it is the book he wished he had had when he started out as a team leader and discusses how managers need to be flexible in they ways in which they manage.

I didn’t realise that LeanPub was a new kind of publishing concept where you get a book in dribs and drabs, as it is written. There is also a flexible price between minimum and suggested, for the books, which is novel.

Reviews were a bit mixed on Amazon.

HERDING CODE

Tim Clem, Paul Betts & Phil Haack – GITHUB For Windows – Episode 144

This podcast is a couple of years old (as of Jan 2015) so anything I write is out of date, but it was interesting to learn more about how they developed the application. Having used the command line and windows app, I can definitely say the latter is easier to use!

Here are some of the things that I learnt, though:

  • As of 2012, there were 3.5 million (yes MILLION) repositories on GitHub!
  • The Windows application uses WPF and they noted, there weren’t a lot of those around.
  • At the time, it wasn’t fully featured.

HERDING CODE

Aaron Stannard – MARKEDUP, FOUNDING A STARTUP, AND WINDOWS 8 DEVELOPMENT – Episode 154

This podcast got really interesting for me near the end when Aaron talks more about beginning a start-up, drawing on his own families experiences and his time at Microsoft as a start-up evangelist. He made some interesting points which were:

  • Start networking, meeting other people both that have start-ups and those that invest in them. This is especially important with the latter group so you can build a relationship slowly rather than look like you’re going cup in hand all the time.
  • Don’t give up your day job! Do things step by step, proving to yourself that this idea has legs.
  • Get your legal structure sorted with a lawyer. At this point, some people might drop out, but that is to be expected.
  • It is a roller-coaster where some of your best days and worst will happen, sometimes at the same time!
  • Failures aren’t all bad and help make you a better founder, overall.

I often listen to podcasts that take my fancy so the dates and times when they were released don’t match the current date. Sadly, I just saw on his website that the start-up ended in November 2014.

That’s all for this nugget!

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Written by Stephen Moon
email: stephen at logicalmoon.com
www: https://www.logicalmoon.com


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