hacker news with inline top comments    .. more ..    9 Dec 2016 Ask
home   ask   best   3 years ago   
Ask HN: What is your height, your keyboard/mouse surface height? And any pain?
4 points by talktime  2 hours ago   4 comments top 3
NumberCruncher 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I highly recommend using a standing desk. Considering the long time negative effects of sitting all the day at the desk has investing in a standing desk a high ROI.
cauterized 36 minutes ago 0 replies      
One size fits all desks are so non-ergonomic it's not funny. The trouble is that user height is a poor proxy for what desk height should be because how much of your height is in your legs vs torso also affects it.

Anyway, here's another data point:

I'm 5'4". I keep my desk at 24" when sitting, 41" when standing. I use an external keyboard plus a riser for my laptop to avoid having to look downwards at it. The riser is adjustable but currently set at ~14", IIRC.

The next ergonomic adjustment I want to make is to swap out my crappy desk chair for one with adjustable arms so I can sit closer to the desk and type with my elbows at a right angle instead of arms outstretched.

I get shoulder tension these days, but am pretty sure that's just good old fashioned stress. No keyboard/mouse related RSI since I switched to mousing lefty 10 years ago. Though my back and neck are less happy after a full day of meetings, which mean sitting with the laptop at a much taller conference table with no riser.

I do get wrist and neck pain these days related to looking down at my phone and contorting my fingers to hold it securely while attempting to use it one-handed, because despite being the smallest on the market it's too large for my small-person hands.

What I said about mousing lefty? I switched because of RSI that I'm pretty sure was related to a much too tall desk. At almost 36", my options were to sit with toes dangling above the ground, type with fingers at chin height, or perch on the very edge of my chair all day with no lumbar support. All sorts of bad things were happening to my body. Switching the mouse saved my wrists for a few months. Leaving the job, getting a desk at a more sane height, a keyboard tray (one without a 6 inch deep wrist rest), and a keyboard with lighter resistance saved my career.

Ergonomics matter. Even a desk job can cause permanent physical injury. And our phones aren't helping either.

Adjust your chair height before you adjust your desk height. When your feet rest comfortably on the floor with your knees at a right angle while sitting back and upright in your chair, hold your elbows at your side at a right angle. Your desk height should be about an inch below the bottom surface of your lower arm. Or if you use a keyboard tray, the surface of the tray should be at that height.

Then raise your monitor until you're looking at it straight ahead, not up or down. This applies whether you're sitting or standing. Most people these days are bending their necks forward to see their laptops. Those trendy silver Mac laptop risers are about a foot too short for most people. You probably need 12-24" of height added. Any external monitors may need raising too. And of course, plan to use an external keyboard and mouse.

TurboHaskal 53 minutes ago 1 reply      
No amount of gadgets will fix your problem.

You need to start stretching and lifting, placing an emphasis in pulling exercises.

Ask HN: How are you doing performance appraisal at your startup?
71 points by tmlee  22 hours ago   45 comments top 10
ryandrake 20 hours ago 8 replies      
I've seen a bunch of performance assessment systems, most of them being pretty bad.

The worst ones tend to boil down to: "As your manager, here is my subjective view of your performance over the last N months." which essentially rewards high visibility and self promotion rather than actual performance.

Second worst is: "As your manager, here is my subjective view of your performance plus 360 input from peers" which rewards your ability to join cliques and alliances.

Sadly in almost all jobs I've ever had, it was one of the above.

Sometimes the company would throw in a "self assessment," purpose unknown to me, which is likely not even read.

The ideal (in my view) performance assessment would be: "Here are the numeric metrics we agreed N months ago to measure your performance by. The data (collected neutrally and transparently throughout those months) show you met metric 1, 2, and 4, exceeded 3 and 5. Based on the transparent and mutually agreed upon formula, your raise and bonus this year are X and Y". Measurable and objective: Clear goal posts for you to aim for throughout the year. I've never seen this anywhere. I understand some sales roles get something like this.

VCs and shareholders don't come to shareholder meetings and say things like "CEO, I subjectively feel in my heart you are not doing a good job!" No, they look at the company's measurable, numeric results and judge by that. Why should it be any different with employees?

Obviously the hard part is coming up with those metrics so you're rewarding the right behavior and performance, but I'd much rather see companies put effort into coming up with those metrics rather than crafting the world's best self-assessment question or wasting everyone's time on 360s.

gentleteblor 17 hours ago 0 replies      
I've been on both ends of the performance appraisal spectrum; from ultra formal annual appraisals to nada.

Each and every time, the biggest predictor of a successful outcome was how well I was prepared. If i could articulate in a concrete, detailed way how much value I'd added.

It's not easy to do this. It takes time and effort to prepare. I used to search old emails, IMs, run user metrics, check old Microsoft Project charts, ask coworkers, reread all appraisals. [Shameless plug incoming] That's one of the reasons i built JobRudder [1] to help me keep track of all that stuff.

One other constant among the decades worth of performance appraisals. They're very messy. Feelings, first impressions, unconscious biases, stereotypes, cliques, politics etc etc etc. It's not particularly data driven or even objective. Be prepared.

[1] https://jobrudder.com

rwieruch 20 hours ago 1 reply      
TL;DR: If you decide you need a process, keep it very simple. If your company is small, trust that you likely already have a pretty good idea of how any one person is contributing. The faster and larger you grow the less likely this is. Either way, it can often help to make these thoughts and conversations accessible somewhere, especially when you want to recognize someone for their achievements.

In a 20 person company we focus only on 360 Feedback as needed throughout the year and set quarterly Objectives, while having regular 1:1 meetings.

Through our own personal experience, we've learned to keep it as simple as possible. Using only three questions during 360's (What did you do well? What could you improve on? and Is there anything else you would like to mention?) - we show the author of the feedback, but many also keep the author anonymous. It's personal preference, there are pros and cons to both.

Objectives make it easier to align with others and observe your team's progress over time. Regularly updating these saves a lot of energy when providing feedback to others if/when they're asked to provide more formal feedback.If feedback is actionable it's more likely to be useful and the smaller the company the more informal you should make the process. Small teams often already know what needs to improve intuitively, but it can help to record this somewhere so you remain aware of what you're working towards.

Most important though is recognizing and celebrating the successes of your team. It feels good to be appreciated for the work you do and encourages you to do more.

Disclaimer: I'm a developer for Small Improvements, a feedback tool. We work specifically with startups and medium-size businesses.

erichurkman 21 hours ago 1 reply      
On timing, I like our approach: initially 9 months after joining, then yearly after. A year after joining for your first salary review is too long.

Our strongest tool for performance "reviews" are 1:1s. Weekly/bi-weekly with your direct manager, typically monthly (or more) with your business unit's engineering lead, and about bi-monthly with the head of engineering, though newer engineers have 1:1s with me more often at first [0].

Some of this is covered in our manager's faq [1], specifically about performance reviews, score cards, ranking, etc, and why we think it's utlimately harmful, as it benefits the insitution more than the unique employee.

[0] This is tough to do as engineering groups scale, but critically important.

[1] https://blog.esharesinc.com/a-managers-faq-35858a229f84#.tqb...

notjustanymike 21 hours ago 1 reply      
* 360 Peer Reviews in winter and summer

* 1-1 with manager and peer twice a month

* 15five once a week as a mental health check for the employee

It's not a perfect system, and it's ever evolving, but it the best I've experienced so far.

The 360 system is great for highlighting projects and contributions a top-down review might miss, and also gives the coworkers a chance to call out areas for improvement. Employees can game the system by exchanging positive reviews, but that is easy to spot. An honest review with proper critical feedback is valuable to an employee's progression.

The 1-1's work for general sanity checks, but require preparation from the manager to have an impact. Too many managers show up with without preparing and expect the employee to do all the talking. I use 1-1's to discuss career progression, establish SMART goals, and ensure that my report is happy with the work they're doing.

15five is still a relatively new process for us, but the perceived anonymity of a form allows employee's to more direct with their feedback. A report is a great indicator for what to discuss in a 1-1.

waseems 22 hours ago 1 reply      
We just did a round, very simple: both of the founders sit down with each and every employee individually and ask a couple of questions:

- what was the thing you did last year you have been most proud of- what is the thing you did last year you have been the least proud off- what did we do as a company that you think was great- what did we do as a company that you think was bad

We got great feedback and engagement on these sessions.

Now obviously this wont work if you have a decently sized head count but in our case it worked just fine over the course of a week or so.

saycheese 21 hours ago 3 replies      
Formal appraisals are a waste of resources in a startup.

Focus on addressing issues as they come up as a team or let them go.

hitekker 20 hours ago 1 reply      
The study below has an adequate analysis and conclusion about politics in performance appraisals:


Politics being "My appraisal is more to achieve an outcome in the self-interest of the person reviewing me, than it is to accurately assess my performance."

philipDS 16 hours ago 0 replies      
We use our own tool internally (https://www.intuo.io/). It works pretty well I'd say. What we do is basically:

* Continuously give each other 360 feedback

* Each manager does a monthly one-on-one with all of their teammembers

* We have quarterly objectives, on a personal, team and company level (using OKRs)

* Apart from that, we do continuous pulse surveys, measuring the happiness and engagement of our people

mcheshier 17 hours ago 0 replies      
I really like the 5-word review described here:


Having been on both sides of the review process, this form of review is not as time-sucking for the manager and can elicit good conversation.

Ask HN: What are some successful products that had a disappointing Show HN?
39 points by the_wheel  1 day ago   16 comments top 9
eps 1 day ago 0 replies      
Not HN, but still epic:

 No wireless. Less apace than a nomad. Lame.

sopooneo 1 day ago 1 reply      
Not on HN, but I remember the initial demo of imgur being torn to bits on reddit. And when Joel Spolsky announced his idea that would eventually turn into StackOverflow, it was derided as useless because the work already had enough question/answer sites.
applecrazy 1 day ago 1 reply      
Dropbox was criticized when it first came up on Show HN. People said that they could create their own and that nobody would adopt installing something.

You can view the original post here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=8863

Edit: it only had 71 comments and 111 points, and if I'm not mistaken, that's not much by today's standards.

Peroni 1 day ago 0 replies      
Sleepio appear to be doing pretty well despite a fairly average Show HN - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=4504639

Pixelapse did reasonably well and ended up being acquired by Dropbox (not necessarily suggesting that's a success) - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3572755

My personal favourite is Mondo (or Monzo as they are now called). Their founder/CEO posted here when they launched and the thread got very little attention. These days they are one of the most respected startups in London and are on the cusp of enormous success - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9638345

ahmetsulek 21 hours ago 0 replies      
Our lovely @usepanda app.


It's a reader offering RSS and bookmarking as well as ability to view in different layouts. Got 1781 upvotes on Product Hunt.

arrmn 1 day ago 0 replies      
Well, maybe if their show HN got low amount/no votes nobody saw it. So it would be impossible to name it.
aaron695 1 day ago 0 replies      
This seems to be a bit of a meme I don't think is true.

Every mentions Dropbox because it is the only one?

breerly 1 day ago 0 replies      
gRPC seemed to have had a pretty rough opening.

Initial announcement - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9114748And for their 1.0 - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12344995

jv22222 1 day ago 1 reply      
Nugget only got 14 points on HN but 350+ points on product hunt... As to final success we're still working on it.
Ask HN: What did you wish you knew before you partnered with a developer?
20 points by beekums  14 hours ago   6 comments top 4
tylercubell 13 hours ago 2 replies      
As someone who's gone through the inverse of this question, i.e. partnering with a non-technical person, I think the answer would be the same for both sides of the coin. The #1 thing I wish I knew back then was how important it is to determine early on if someone is all talk and no action. There are certain toxic people out there who will promise you the world, fail to execute, then bring you down with them. Do your due diligence. Trust but verify.
codegeek 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Making anyone a "partner" is hard. Really hard. Whether it is a co-founder or life partner. I will give you some general advice first before specifically talking about technical cofounders.

Don't just partner with someone you met on the internet right away. Do a project with them. Collaborate on some throw away stuff. Write a to do list together , whatever. The idea is to see if they can even commit to something like that. Build something with them even if not a software project. Go hang out with them, socialize, hit the bars whatever. See how they are.

I really think that a cofounder cannot be magically "found" but more like you worked with someone for a while and realized that they could be a good potential cofounder. You already trust them and know their work. Otherwise, you are taking a huge risk and it almost always ends up bad for both parties.

Yes, I am sure outliers are there but they are outliers. If you really want to find a co-founder, make sure you have enough time with them as non-cofounder before you even think of moving on with that step.

Remember, the real test of a "partner" in anything is not when things are great. It is when things go south and I can assure you they WILL. How your partner/cofounder behaves during the tough times will tell you all about them. You hope to have an idea about that before you even commit to be a cofounder.

WhitneyLand 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Try to determine which skills will be most important for getting your business off the ground,

For example take 10 developers, even if they are all great they will have different strong points. Some devs will have a strong product design/UX intuition, others will be strong at building platforms/performance/scaling.

Also assess non-tech skills. Can they be effective with marketing, writing, speaking, negotiations?

The point is picking the right strengths for your mission, and the right strengths to complement your own skills is a big deal.

source99 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I suggest making equity vest over time. Don't just split the company up. Everyone is entitled to their fair share but only if they put in the time.
Ask HN: How would you develop your next big idea if you were alone?
21 points by bobnarizes  15 hours ago   15 comments top 9
jayajay 12 hours ago 3 replies      
Your idea will get stolen, if it's good. Most likely, it's not good and your idea won't get stolen because no one gives a fuck about you and your problems, which is a good thing.

If you are in the .1%, then you probably don't need to getting regurgitated advice from the rest of the 99.9% (i.e. the retards like me that use this website who have no idea what the fuck they are talking about).

How many people use this site monthly, like 100k? Maybe 10k of those people have been in real startups and maybe 1k of those people have gotten non-trivial funding. Out of those 1k, 950 are retards. Out of the 50 people who can give you great advice, they all have other things they would rather be doing, and might not even login for a few weeks.

Shut the hell up and get to work, dude.

WhitneyLand 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Unless you are famous, no one will steal your idea. The truth is it will be very difficult to get anyone to even care about your idea. Google, E-Bay were rejected many times, no one cared. The positive side to this is you can sharpen your pitch. Once you get strong positive (honest) feedback you know your story is getting stronger.

Do not pay for $1 of development until you have done lots of validation. Have you talked to experts in the industry? How many potential customers said they'd be willing to buy? Have you spec'd out an MVP? Have you had someone who's run a successful startup review your business model?

Once your ready to hire developers, you again need to plan carefully. There are 100 ways to get burned. Also it takes skill to manage their effort and know when things are going wrong.

GFischer 15 hours ago 0 replies      
"Im afraid that my idea get stolen"

You should find someone trustworthy and share it with them. I've had a few ideas which I think can be turned into huge companies - at first I was afraid to share, and after sharing, first with friends and family, and later with my university's startup office, I realized that no, they aren't interested in stealing your idea (the startup office actually advised the largest startup in the country, and they obviously didn't steal the idea, even though it wasn't too hard to duplicate on paper).

Obviously don't divulge it to people who can become competitors (like people here) before having executed at least a bit.

Nobody will be as enthusiastic as you. Heck, you'll have to explain your idea over and over, and shout it to the four corners of the earth once you want to start selling!


I don't know what the startup scene is in Germany, but if you're in a large city, there are hacker spaces, coworking spaces, meetups, etc. Not knowing anyone shouldn't be a problem, it would be ideal if you can enter a hackathon and establish some rapport and work together.

Speaking from experience, you have to be willing to work hard to make it succeed - my own project is languishing because I don't put in the hours (I work 10 hours a day). But put yourself out there, and validate early. Get it in front of customers.

I hired a freelance programmer and it didn't go all that well due to different expectations of his commitment. It would be great if you can build a crude prototype yourself.

stray 15 hours ago 1 reply      
Build a teensy tiny part of it. Then build another. And another.
forgottenacc57 14 hours ago 0 replies      
You have to write it yourself. Stop giving reasons why that can't be done.
Brightwise 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Break it down and let freelancers develop the building blocks which you integrate by yourself into the final solution.
sharemywin 15 hours ago 2 replies      
for me it all starts with marketing. how are you getting the word out about it? if you can't:

1. Build a landing page and collect names of people that are interested then it's going to be hard to market.

2. if it's B2B, generate leads from advertising or SEO trouble.

coldshower 10 hours ago 0 replies      
If your idea isn't worth failing spectacularly for, then it's not worth doing.
ashleypt 14 hours ago 0 replies      
hmm. on my own without much money to bootstrap with I'm just focusing on getting the mvp out. if it fails, I'll just write another app/pivot based on both feedback and empirical testing. I think that's the conventional wisdom for keeping a startup lean and not getting too invested in one big idea.

as for creating the code with less effort, I'd say either a good microframework OR a more monolithic one - both have advantages and disadvantages for a small project. the advantage with a node/express backend vs meteor for example is that you can just write the API and only add the components you need googling as you go. if I only want an android app that uses VERY simple auth and a very simple db that sequelize can map, I can then have more flexibility and not have to learn as much. there is less code to maintain often, not as much autogenerated code. I can also write a native android or react native app instead of being nudged towards a cordova/phone gap solution. the con is that if you're new or especially if you haven't worked a tech job before your code can get disorganized or buggy, especially if you don't know TDD (I still want to learn). also meteor has easy deploy solutions and a lot of magic.

similar dynamic applies to sinatra vs rails, django vs flask, etc.

as for sharing ideas, this doesn't scare me at all if it's just a chat with friends or likeminded people - actually I don't worry much at all. if someone else can make it /better/ and /faster/ than me then I just picked the wrong niche, I'll just need to pick one where I'm the best next time. I think it's better if my app can succeed in a market with perfect information because then I'm specializing to the best of my ability.

I'm still learning but this is the wisdom I've got from reading about how to do this stuff on your own and trying and just doing the work. I'm curious to get feedback on my way of thinking about this as I'm sure I could improve even further

Ask HN: What's your container story?
5 points by shrineOfLies  8 hours ago   2 comments top 2
barrystaes 4 hours ago 0 replies      
No details but some insights;1) We now use 0 containers in production, only in dev/test env.2) One docker per background service, for now.4) docker CLI for now, later some GitLab CI tests5) My Windows workstation.

Thing i want to add on usefulness: To me containers are mostly a way to abstract configuration and document it in code. Lots of server processes go into a cloud, and this can help us iterate faster in the future.

gtirloni 1 hour ago 0 replies      
If you search for "state containers 2016", you'll get more data.
Ask HN: I have 150 USD in savings. How to to get a proper visa to the US?
16 points by newuserHN  18 hours ago   14 comments top 5
contingencies 15 hours ago 4 replies      
I had a management visa linked to opening a company in the US in 2010. It sucked, because the company was so successful we sold it (for a nice profit), then I became aware that the US basically treated me as an illegal immigrant 10 days after my job finished. This is normal there - you have no stability in the US as an immigrant worker unless you go the green card route, which was never something I wanted to do personally (as an AU/DE/NZ citizen).

My first question would be why do you want to go to the US as this is a more important question for figuring out an appropriate strategy.

IMHO, honestly there's not much point in going to the US these days. You can get superior access to capital in China, superior access to far cheaper western education in Australia, New Zealand or Europe, and equivalent earning potential jobs in Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, and the UK.

garethsprice 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Guessing you mean 150k. I came to the US on an E-2. The process is extremely poorly documented and arbitrary - the decision is at the discretion of the immigration clerk who reads your file on that day and the laws don't mention any specific dollar amounts that are required. 150k is likely enough to get you in. However, do your research and ask if that's really what you want to do.

You are supposed to come over, invest your money, then leave the country and wait for a decision (?!). However you can come over on a B-1 (business) visa and change status to an E-2, but then you're landlocked and unable to leave the US without losing your status and having to re-apply.

You have to renew every 3-5 years (again the duration is discretionary) and if you're denied you have a matter of days to sell up and get out.

There is NO route to a green card or citizenship. You are a non-immigrant alien. Every 3-5 years you have to hope you get renewed. You can be here for decades and if your renewal doesn't go through, out you go.

The E-2 is a very poor visa program to come in on if you plan to build a life here. If you don't really, really want to 1) invest everything you have in a business and 2) do it in the US and 3) leave again once you're done, it's not ideal.

Alternative routes I'd recommend looking into as a single individual with tech experience are:

1) Get a job with a US company who will sponsor your visa to come over on an H1-B, or, if you're a published expert in your field, an O-1. You don't have to be as famous/expert as you think - I have friends on O visas who are Senior tech people who have a few conference talks and published articles under their belt who have qualified. Both have a route to green card/permanent residency.

2) Get a job with a multinational company who can transfer you under the above visas. With companies look for larger orgs with in-house counsel who regularly handle immigration matters. Small companies are not well equipped to handle sponsorship and the delays/expenses may cause them to get cold feet at inconvenient times.

3) Fall in love with a nice American and get married.

Feel free to PM me if you have any questions! Happy to share my experience. (Above isn't legal advice and is based on my own experience so may be wrong - talk to a US immigration attorney with E-2 experience if you are serious!)

codegeek 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Is there a typo ? Did you mean 150 USD or 150 K/M USD ? 150 USD won't even buy a regular visa.
manav 17 hours ago 0 replies      
What country are you coming from? You have to be on the treaty list.

I don't think the savings are enough, but it depends on the type of business/where you will be located. If that is the extent of your savings you have to consider living expenses/relocation in addition to the amount you will put into the business as an investment.

I would also look into consulting with a laywer that has experience in this field.

ShaneCurran 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Do you mean $150k USD?
Ask HN: What are the most successful solo-founder businesses still around?
11 points by wkoszek  17 hours ago   6 comments top 6
joeclark77 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Rainymood 6 hours ago 0 replies      
goodJobWalrus 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Walmart & Amazon?
hector_ka 17 hours ago 0 replies      
monster2control 11 hours ago 0 replies      
banne01 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Ask HN: What is the most hacker friendly drone kit available?
8 points by darrelld  15 hours ago   3 comments top 2
colanderman 12 hours ago 1 reply      
The CrazyFlie series runs open-source software and has an exposed expandable circuitboard. Haven't looked at them in a while though.
sharemywin 15 hours ago 0 replies      
neat article on building your own flight controller.


Ask HN: Best current model routers for OpenWRT, DD-WRT, Tomato, etc.?
249 points by zhan_eg  3 days ago   119 comments top 36
TwoNineFive 3 days ago 4 replies      
The first thing you need to know is that the OpenWRT project is basically dead and that 95+% of the developers went over to the LEDE Project. However, LEDE has not yet published a stable release yet. You can get nightly builds that are in pretty good shape though.

I would highly recommend an ipq806x-based system, if you can afford it. Almost always matched with qca9880 radios. These are modern 802.11ac wave2 systems.

ipq806x is a Qualcomm-Atheros SoC. Go to wikidevi for specifications on the chips and all of the devices I mention below.

Check camelcamelcamel for recent pricing info if buying in the USA.

The list would be:

Linksys EA8500

TP-Link Archer C2600 (Not recommended due to TP-Link going anti-OSS. Modern versions require signed firmware and other DRM junk)

Trendnet TEW827DRU (Not yet accepted into LEDE, but could be any day now)

Netgear R7800 (Has a slightly faster CPU, but more expensive)

Netgear R7500v2 (Avoid the V1)

ZyXEL NBG6817 (Has the same slightly faster CPU as the R7800, but it's storage flash is goofy and I'm not 100% sure it's fully working. Ask the lede-dev mailing list first.)

The top issue that all of these devices have is that the 802.11 radio LEDs don't work yet because the driver is missing support for it. However, if you can live without blinking lights, these models are the way to go. This feature will almost certainly get fixed in the future.

I would tell you to go with the Linksys EA8500 if price/value is your concern. Otherwise the Netgear R7800 has a very active dev and probably has the best support. The ZyXEL NBG6817 looks really interesting to me, but I don't have one yet.

If $140-$200 USD is too much for you, look to some older 802.11ac devices. Like I said above, avoid TP-Link as they have started locking down their devices by removing serial ports and requiring signed firmware/DRM etc.

Your list here in comments is pretty good, though I'd avoid the TP-Link unless you can get one that is older (before TP-Link became anti-OSS.)

Good luck

mavrc 2 days ago 4 replies      
I know others have recommended this already, but I would also say that your best bet is to buy some Ubiquiti hardware. An EdgeRouter X + UniFI Pro dual-band AP is on the order of $200 from Amazon and has way, way better functionality than SOHO hardware of same price point, with the principal issue that it is enterprise hardware, and is very much not point-and-click to set up. I think the tradeoff in functionality and build quality is worth it, though.

I recently replaced my PC router running pfSense with an EdgeRouter X - at ~$50 the power savings alone will probably pay for it in less than a year, and the only thing I can't do with it that I could do with pfSense is create a standalone OpenVPN endpoint - so I'm moving that functionality to a server that was running anyway.

mdasen 2 days ago 6 replies      
I have the Asus RT-AC68U/TM-AC1900. I bought it from T-Mobile for $60 and flashed it to stock and then put Asuswrt-Merlin on it (but you can use Tomato or DD-WRT). It does take a little work to flash it to stock (like Telnet'ing into the router), but it wasn't bad and for $60 I ended up with a wonderful router. There are guides online for flashing it back to stock.

If you're looking for information, I suggest SmallNetBuilder. They have very thorough reviews: http://www.smallnetbuilder.com/tools/rankers/router/view. It looks like the RT-AC68U is their #1 pick for AC1900 router now. It used to be their #2 pick under their previous testing methodology (after the R7000 Nighthawk from Netgear). That's slipped to #3 under the new testing and the Asus has taken the top slot.

Asuswrt-Merlin isn't such a radical departure from stock, but it has some nice features and allows me to do things like edit the etc/hosts to block certain things.

The Asus RT-AC68U is probably one of the top 2 AC1900 routers out there and T-Mobile is selling it for a song (even if you're not a T-Mobile customer). It's a little work to re-flash it so read a guide and see if you're comfortable with that. Or you could buy a stock RT-AC68U and get SmallNetBuilders #1 AC1900 router overall, for 2.4GHz avg throughput, 2.4GHz max throughput, 2.4GHz range, 5GHz avg throughput, and 5GHz range.

sashk 2 days ago 4 replies      
I use two devices to handle usual definition of the router:

 1. Mini PC[1] running as a router (pfSense); 2. eero to handle the wifi.
Why? I've tried many times to use dd-wrt, openwrt and tomato firmwares on my routers, but every time I failed miserably: it's either something stops working, or I need to schedule routers reboots and so. So I gave up. Since that time, mini pc [1] is the third system which routes my traffic, acts as VPN gateway, proxy server and so on on my home network and I've never been happier. With eero I've got even better coverage comparing to the previous Airport Express.

[1]: https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Latest-windows-8-mini-pc-min...

darkblackcorner 2 days ago 3 replies      
I think the Turris Omnia (https://omnia.turris.cz/en/) looks fantastic, and plan on getting one when my budget allows.

On further (re)inspection though it seems you'd still be tied to your ISP's router/modem :(

Perhaps there's a good standalone/mPCI modem out there somewhere?

zhan_eg 3 days ago 4 replies      
For now, by my research the best candidates are

- TP-Link Archer C7 (supported by both DD-WRT and OpenWRT, and recommended by the latter)

- Linksys WRT1200AC/1900AC (supported by both DD-WRT and OpenWRT)

- Ubiquiti UAP-AC-LITE/LR/PRO (OpenWRT, diffrent models depending how much speed/range do you need. No routing here, just access points.)

For any models discussed, please keep in mind that depending on the hardware version, the firmware support is different.

djsumdog 2 days ago 0 replies      
I highly recommend just building a Thin-ITX router. I have a post of how I built mine here:


I paid too much for parts. You can easily construct one of these for under $200. I'm sick of ARM and needing a different image per device.

AVOID the ClearFog and BPI-R1:



I cannot recommend either of them (although if I had to, the BPI-R1 is better than the ClearFog. Just don't expect it to be stable)

FussyZeus 3 days ago 4 replies      
I bought the Buffalo N300 not long ago:


I've been extremely happy with this purchase, admittedly I'm a bit of a high-demand user (I host a number of minor services for myself and friends including TeamSpeak, minecraft, as well as operating two Xbox Ones) so I needed something with good port forwarding support and UPNP. Rock solid, straight DD-WRT interface with minor branding, shell access, and monitoring support. This router's been an absolute champ and I'd recommend it to anyone.

feistypharit 2 days ago 1 reply      
I used to run a modified advanced tomato (advancedtomato.com) on a few Asus routers. But the build process is terrible and I got sick of maintaining it. Looked at openwrt and lede, but still a pain to maintain.

I recently decided on the ubiquiti edge router x ($49), ac-lr access point($90), and pihole($50) on a raspberry pi for DNS. The pi also runs DNS crypt. But now everything gets regular updates and the firewall config and stats on the edge router are great.

warcode 3 days ago 0 replies      
If all you need is a wireless network the UniFi AP-AC series is great. I don't have any reason to put OpenWRT on it.
thom_nic 2 days ago 1 reply      
In the past two years, I've bought...

- TP-Link Archer C7. This supports our office of ~30 ppl and has been bullet-proof since day 1.

- TP-Link N600. Cheaper but still 5GHz. Also super stable, I use it as a wifi bridge daily.

- I just bought a Netgear R6300v2 which will go in my home. Have not used it much yet but for the price it's an ARM core with a lot of Flash & RAM so I'm excited.

Caveats: I don't know if in practical terms new-ish TP-Links (later than Q2 '16) are harder to flash due to them supposedly cracking down on third-party firmware. At the time they were super easy, I just downloaded the latest from ftp://ftp.dd-wrt.com/betas/ and followed standard instructions.

Caveat #2: For Broadcom/ARM builds you probably don't want to use builds from ftp.dd-wrt. Intead you want KONG's build, see: http://www.desipro.de/ddwrt-ren/K3-AC-Arm/Readme and search the forums for latest KONG builds.

Finally, reading Amazon reviews for any supported model helps as well, you'll find a few ppl who relate their experience putting ddwrt on it.

EDIT: if your budget is $100+ I've also read good things about the Netgear R6400 and ASUS AC66 and AC68 but don't have any direct experience there.

randombit 2 days ago 1 reply      
This is not quite what you ask for and a little more expensive that some options, but I use a PC Engines APU2 running Alpine as my router+wifi access. Great little machine that is much more functional than typical home router hardware, and it boots using coreboot. A good option if you like setting up everything by hand.

More about APU2 at http://www.pcengines.ch/apu2b4.htm

fnj 3 days ago 2 replies      
A router has nothing to do with providing WiFi. You should have a separate router and WAP.

For the router, any fanless mini-PC with two ethernet ports. Run OpenBSD or pfSense.

jabl 2 days ago 0 replies      
As long as you can do without 802.11ac, make sure you get something supported by the ath9k driver, which IIRC is the only driver that doesn't need a firmware blob. So all the people working on bufferbloat etc. are using that driver for their tests, so you'll get the improvements first.

I have a TP-Link TL-WDR3600 v1 running OpenWRT. It was cheap, and works fine.

Smushman 2 days ago 0 replies      
Direct from real world experience, a few points of architectural guidance.

1. Use WiFi routers for WiFi.

Avoid firewalling, NAT, authentication protocols, the strongest levels of encryption, or other packet changes/control on the WiFi Router.

Resources are always constrained. Mentioned processes consume resources and the load only appears under real world conditions that you did not anticipate or could not replicate in test.

2. Distribute (as much as possible). A little work/cost up front will save you down the line.

A lot of WiFi routers support multiple radios (IE 2 radios). That gives you three points of failure for every router - one for each radio, and one for the router. Take one dual band router down and everyone in the coverage area loses connectivity in both bands.

Separating these will provide improved redundancy, throughput, offloading, and etc.

JonnieCache 2 days ago 0 replies      
What fanless mini PC should I use to run a VPN gateway at line speed? I see a lot of random boxes reccommended on aliexpress, but which one should I buy? Should I just get whatever one, as long as it has the right AES instructions? Or are some of them awful?
Wheaties466 2 days ago 1 reply      
mikrotik routerboard with a ubiquiti wap. I've never been happier.
tbronchain 2 days ago 0 replies      
Very interesting question I've asked myself a year ago.I ended up buying an old Netgear WNDR3800 for $15, and put OpenWRT on it. And it works great!It has enough ROM to install most of the services you would probably need need (ssh, iptables, smb, shadowsocks, dnsmasq, time machine, dyndns, are running altogether perfectly well) and enough RAM as well.OpenWRT itself isn't perfect, and I had to setup an package building environment on my machine to install some packages (typically shadowsocks) on the latest stable build (currently 15.05.1). But it works. And it works great. Speed is good, and I don't see anything I would have to complain about that disturb my needs/usage. I like the modularity and I love having a real Linux I can ssh to as router.

I've been quite interested to read about the fact developers from OpenWRT are moving to LEDE. Maybe it could be worth it to wait - as I said, OpenWRT isn't perfect and I'm sure a lot of improvements can be done. I haven't tried LEDE though.But I think, for a small office/home network, just getting an (reasonably)old/cheap yet powerful, compatible hardware and put OpenWRT on it is quite a good solution at the moment.

jonstokes 2 days ago 0 replies      
I've used OpenWRT in different incarnations over the years, and at this point my suggestion is to forget about OpenWRT and buy some Unifi hardware from Ubiquiti. You get almost the same amount of control from Ubiquiti's pro line, plus the hardware is really solid and it all Just Works.

Now that the enterprise-level Ubiquiti stuff is so insanely cheap, there's basically no reason IMO to fool around with open-source router projects.

crisscrosscrash 2 days ago 0 replies      
Among the open source router options, what's the best for multi-WAN and flexible QoS?

I was looking at switching from ASUS on Merlin to Tomato for better QoS and to try out multi-WAN that was added in shibby about a year ago. I really want the internet to be reliable and fail over to a 2nd connection and then back fairly seamlessly.

Am I better off using pfSense (or something else) vs trying one of these integrated router/wireless firmwares?

Years ago I started looking for multi-WAN and got the very disappointing Linksys / Cisco RV042. It worked, but the interface was crap and it lacked a lot of the features that even consumer routers had. For an office of up to 50 people (and 2x devices) we've been using an ASUS RT-AC66R on Merlin and it's worked pretty well in that it's rock solid stable for many months at a time, has a bit of features - now including nice graphs for per-host bandwidth monitoring, and basic QoS and multi-WAN. The biggest issue is that QoS options are limited and it's hard to know if it's even working properly. The multi-WAN auto failover seems buggy and that seems like an area that Merlin hasn't touched.

MrVitaliy 2 days ago 0 replies      
I recommend buying a simple Access Point (AP) but with enterprisy components, like xclaim xi-3, and treat it as a stupid radio device while running layer 3 services with DHCP, firewall, etc on a separate device (or a vm) with pfSense. This way if you have problems with radio signal, you can just replace or buy a different brand AP without changing anything on your network stack.
gwu78 2 days ago 0 replies      
Pipe dream: take over production of AirPort Extreme from Apple, release the hardware specifications to the public, and make it easy for users to install their own kernels, e.g., NetBSD.

Reality: as someone else said already, PC Engines or Soekris are the best you can do. They make the hardware and let users make the software. These companies appear to have some longevity. Easy to run user-compiled kernels of choice.

Ubiquiti is not an option if you want to compile your own kernels. The drivers are proprietary. They make the hardware and the software. Users assumed to be incapable? Apparently they cannot survive selling hardware alone. Longevity of this company is uncertain. Humble opinion only.

mrbill 2 days ago 0 replies      
I'm currently using a Ubiquiti Edgerouter X (previously an ERLite) for routing/NAT and a UAP-AC-LR for WiFi (along with an OnHub in bridge mode, for AB testing).

Previously, I used a UAP-LR reflashed with "normal" OpenWRT as I hated their controller/config software, but now there's Android and iOS apps for basic AP configuration.

EdgeOS (a Vyatta fork) isn't as user friendly as other "consumer" routers, but every tech friend who owns one has fallen in love with the price/performance and feature set.

NetStrikeForce 2 days ago 0 replies      
I'm using Nexx WT3020 https://wiki.openwrt.org/toh/nexx/wt3020 for my easy VPN project, but I've got the GL-iNet in mind also.

The idea of these is to connect them to your main router and have a "protected Wi-Fi network" that routes all traffic through VPN, while you can always go back to your normal Wi-Fi network to not use VPN.

If anyone's interested in talking about it, hit me up at hello@tscr.io

ce4 2 days ago 1 reply      
It's not exactly what OP asked for but some readers may find it worthwile:

The Raspberry Pi is well supported. If you happen to have one that's collecting dust and want to have a look at OpenWRT. Or to try things without fear of bricking the main router. I use a spare v1 for "traveling". Add a cheap Wifi dongle, an LTE dongle and one of those portable USB batteries and you have something to play with.

ianopolous 3 days ago 0 replies      
I bought a netgear NightHawk R7000 (dual core 1GHz) this year and it is great. Despite it being connected by a wire through my ISP provided router, the wifi bandwidth is about 40% better. DD-WRT installation was easy and is solid.
atmosx 2 days ago 0 replies      
Carambola 1 and 2 from 8devices[1] worked for me.

[1] http://www.8devices.com/products/carambola

awinter-py 2 days ago 0 replies      
Are there any efforts to test the long-term stability of the open router distros on specific hardware? I'd give money to a legit 'OSS router lab'.
RockyMcNuts 2 days ago 0 replies      
It's an answer to a different question but Wirecutter did a nice roundup of all the new (proprietary) mesh WiFi systems


HN discussion https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13102698

If LEDE has a stable release that supports mesh networks it will be nice.

ino 2 days ago 1 reply      
Does anyone want to share their experience / recommendation for a router with 4G / LTE SIM card slot?

I think I'm going to be needing one soon.

sandGorgon 2 days ago 0 replies      
tplink c7. period. you can go and read the detailed reviews on whirlpoolforums. the amount of ram available is 512mb which is huge.

if i were you, i would take an el cheapo j1900 intel box (from aliexpress) with quad lan ports and run pfsense on it. perhaps the best bang for buck configuration known to man!

Zelmor 2 days ago 0 replies      
Taking into consideration the do-it-all directions the linux kernel is heading, I am more in favour of security conscious solutions, such as an APU board with BSD on it. For myself, this is still a concept. I've decided to learn more about bsd, security and networking before jumping into implementation and purchase of hardware.

Next year though! Next year!

yegortimoshenko 2 days ago 0 replies      
PC Engines APU2 (or Soekris net6501) + OpenBSD is the best router you can get.
goalieca 2 days ago 1 reply      
What do you guys think about raspberry Pi configured as a wap? Are we there yet??
bitJericho 2 days ago 1 reply      
I recommend a custom built PC and pfsense.
Finnucane 2 days ago 2 replies      
Ask HN: Are you more likely to apply for a job that discloses salary upfront?
153 points by finspin  2 days ago   135 comments top 74
pjungwir 2 days ago 3 replies      

Especially right now, you need to attract candidates who are "passively looking": people who have a job, but would move given a good offer. I do freelance development and consulting, and I'm basically happy with that. I wouldn't turn down a great opportunity, but I'm not going to start the application process unless I know you can beat what I'm already earning.

jawns 2 days ago 3 replies      
I doubt you'll get anyone who says that salary range disclosed in a job advertisement is not a good thing, from the perspective of the job seeker.

The question you may want to ask instead is: "Does the benefit to the job seeker of having a salary range specified outweigh the loss of potential advertisers who do not want to disclose a salary range?"

If you're just doing this as a side project, with no expectation of making a business out of it, then you may want to lean more toward what benefits the user.

If you're trying to run a business and pay the bills, you might need to think more about how it decreases your potential revenue, assuming the job advertisers are the ones who are paying for your service.

One other thing: Salary range is inherently a fuzzy concept. It's possible to set limits (e.g. the range must not span more than $20K, or the range must not constitute more than 20% of the lower-end number) but then you have to take into account that an advertised salary range is not necessarily the same as what they're ultimately willing to offer you. And then you have to factor in benefits, etc., which can make salary ranges misleading.

Edit: One possible way to make salary range disclosures more palatable to advertisers is to borrow a strategy from matchmaking systems: The advertiser discloses a salary range, and the job seeker discloses a minimum required salary, to the website, which does not make any of that information public. When the job seeker submits an application for a job, they receive a notice if the advertiser's specified salary range does not meet their minimum requirements. This keeps the actual salary range out of public view and at least slightly difficult to estimate, but it prevents the job applicant from wasting their time.

shados 2 days ago 2 replies      
A range helps to know if it's even worth applying. If I see a range, from X to Y, and my prefered salary is Y + 20k, It's probably worth talking to you because there's a chance I can make the needle move.

If I'd have to make the needle move by 100k, then I'm not going to bother.

If the range is not shown at all, I'll still apply, but I'll usually start with "While I negotiate salaries later in the process, my range is usually around X-Y, depending on the role".

Too many times I went through a phone screen, and when talk of salaries came up, it was just way off. And sure, phone screens are quick, but at that point I already had to deal with the silly pointless puzzles for 30-60+ minutes.

deedubaya 2 days ago 1 reply      
Lacking a salary range in a job posting tells me that "competitive salary" really means "below market rate" in most cases.

I've found the best postings list their minimum ($70k+ or whatever). Maximum is irrelevant, as you can assume it's around 20% of that minimum. It shows what salaries and skill expertise they're after.

JamesBarney 2 days ago 2 replies      
Too many employers think on one hand that they need hours of interviews to verify that I'm a top candidate, and on the other think that 70k is a competitive offer for me to waste my time applying to jobs without salaries.
themckman 2 days ago 1 reply      
As a current job seeker, its certainly helpful to see the range I can expect when the process gets that far. I might suggest that you offer two modes for input: exact and range. In the case of range, maybe, warn them if their range is crazy big. I've seen jobs recently in the market I'm searching in on StackOverflow advertising a range with the low end being 50% of the high end. That doesn't actually help me when deciding on whether to contact.

If you really wanted to go crazy, make a publicly advertised email field mandatory, also. If I find a job posting and can't send an email to apply for it. I, most of the time, skip applying for that job. I might fill out a form that asks for just, like, my name, email and has a file field for my resume, but, it still rubs me the wrong way to fill that out. Give me an email address and let me write a small personalized note with a link to my resume. When you present me with a form to apply it makes me feel like I'm just a new datapoint in your recruitment database rather than, like, a human being just trying to start a conversation about how we can help each other.

marktangotango 2 days ago 0 replies      
More than once I've gotten to the negotiation phase of the job offer only to find the employer won't meet my salary requirement. It's very frustrating and a huge waste of time for everyone.
bbarn 2 days ago 3 replies      
There's a big problem with salary ranges:

Everyone wants the highest number listed. This prevents employers from being honest, because that max range should be the MOST They want to spend, but to the applicant, it's the least they think they should accept.

It's frustrating as an applicant, and having been on both sides of this fence, I've stopped listing it because it's a very easy question to ask on a first contact: "Just so we're in the same ballpark, what kind of salary range are you looking for? I'm not going to hold you to whatever number you throw out because we've still got a lot to learn about each other, but I don't want to waste anyone's time"

junto 2 days ago 0 replies      
Absolutely. Job hunting is an intensive task. Knowing the salary range before you apply for a job, is extremely important . Cutting out jobs that aren't applicable from the salary perspective saves you time and effort.
jpulec 2 days ago 0 replies      
Having a clear salary expectation up front just saves both parties time and effort. One of the big reasons salary ranges aren't always public, is because it benefits the company, by maintaining information asymmetry. By but doing that, you're at least in a small way, telling me that you don't want to play that game and are more likely to be transparent with me about other parts of the process.
lojack 2 days ago 0 replies      
Absolutely. If I currently have a job (probably the people you want), the most companies I actively interview for at any given time is ~4, give or take. Any more takes way too much time and is difficult to prep for. I simply can't waste my time with companies that may take a significant chunk of my time and end up not being able to offer an acceptable salary. There's a big enough pool of jobs I know for a fact are within my salary requirements, so I don't need to have doubt. Some of these usually come from job postings including salaries, and some of them come from a recruiter (a good recruiter is a valuable asset for me) who know my requirements.
segmondy 2 days ago 0 replies      
Of course, one of my terrible experiences was interviewing after a company pinged and showed strong interest. Only to be offered half of what I was making and been begged to take it because they are about to go big and shares.

I wish to know the salary upfront. I'll never take another interview without discussing the salary range beforehand.

tixocloud 2 days ago 0 replies      
For the most part, yes.

Given that job titles aren't able to help me discover whether an opportunity is right for my next career move, salary ranges help me to gauge whether I'd be moving up a ladder and save me time from having to schedule something only to find out that they were really looking for juniors.

MrTortoise 2 days ago 0 replies      

It's a colossal waste of half a day or so plus all the conversations.

No salary range usually implies generic ad from some half assed agency trying to get people on their books

ap22213 2 days ago 1 reply      
Total compensation is the first and only thing that I ask before even learning about an opportunity.

I make $240k / year. And, that's a jaw-dropping figure for companies that only seek warm bodies to fill seats. It's better to get that out of the way immediately.

jaclaz 2 days ago 1 reply      
I see the issue as information symmetry, the more the employer asks, the more he should quote the salary and detail other "advantages" (if any).

To add some humour, from:


"This is how most job ads sound nowadays:

Were looking for a person with more than 100 years of experience in software development, coding everything from BIOSes to cloud applications, knowledge of all past, present and future operating systems and setting up secure networks. The applicant must also be able to juggle up to twenty balls and read hieroglyphs, be fluent in Swahili and dance like Michael Jackson (especially moonwalking nice to have at corporate Christmas parties)."

So, this is what is expected from you, it is only polite to list (including fringe benefits, in detail) what you can expect from the employer.

aml183 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm a tech recruiter and job boards are one of the worst sources of candidates both for agency recruiters and companies. The best candidates aren't looking for jobs and hence will rarely visit job boards.

Companies like Hired & AngelCo are taking a marketplace approach to the hiring process. Arguably, the biggest issues with these processes is that you can't attract passive candidates.

If you can figure out a process that attracts passive candidates, you will win the recruiting industry. I think companies like HackerRank are in the right direction by being a platform for recruiting, but not in an overt way.

A lot of developers use HackerNews, but not for the recruitment aspect, but YC companies have an advantage because they can post to the job board.

As a developer, why would your job board be a massive difference to recruiters/companies? Chicken and Egg problem, but with subtle differences.

cwp 2 days ago 0 replies      

There's no point in wasting either side's time applying to a company that can't afford me.

On the flip side, if they're got very nitpicky requirements and are offering a huge salary, that's a good signal that they really are requirements and not just a description of the pie-in-the-sky ideal candidate.

rudyrigot 1 day ago 0 replies      
Absolutely, even if the salary doesn't imply any commitment from the employer, and that it's not one salary, but an interval (like, $150k-170k). When I was looking for a job recently, I exclusively focused on Hired.com and AngelList, exactly because their postings have salaries.

Why does it matter? To me, it's actually not about the money, but about ensuring that what I understand of the job title is what the employer understands of the job title too. Job titles are currently very loose in the industry, and if I see a posting for a "Lead Full-Stack Software Engineer" for $80k, I will immediately understand that this title does not mean to me what it means to the employer, and will save everyone a lot of time.

josephhardin 1 day ago 0 replies      
I think it may depend a lot upon the candidate. I personally feel like I make a pretty good salary, and with many jobs I would otherwise consider applying to, I don't feel like it's worth the time to go through the interview process just to find out their max salary they can offer is a pay cut for me. Similarly if there is a job that looks interesting to me, but advertises it's range and it's in the ballpark of what I want, I would be MUCH more likely to apply.

It also provides a lot of information about what the job will be expected to do. With what I do, people are not going to be willing to give me the salary I want, while also wasting my time on remedial work when they could get someone much cheaper that could do those tasks. So by keeping my interest in higher salary jobs, I can try to limit it to jobs which hold more interest for me personally.

derekp7 2 days ago 1 reply      
Here's the problem though -- often times, someone may have an open position or two, for a range of skill levels. So they interview, and determine what skill bucket the candidate falls into, and makes an offer based on that.

So the only way to solve that in a job listing, is to either give a wide salary range (50k - 150k, for example), which then becomes useless. Or to have one posting that lists a number of positions (systems admin level 1, programmer/analyst level 3, etc) with a set of skills required for each bucket.

swalsh 2 days ago 2 replies      
Having enough salary is important, but it shouldn't drive your decision (as the employee). Not having enough money definitely matters, but at some point there are diminishing returns on how important salary is to your motivation, and future success in a role.

You know what I wish I had in a job search? Let me post a profile, not a resume, but give me a survey. Let employers search for me based on what I'm good at... where my strengths are. Focus the hunt not on "who has the best skills" but rather "who's going to round out my team". The idea that specific technical skills can be acquired easier than personality traits.

So here's the traits I'd look for. Every engineer has a mix of motivations, some care more about tech problems, others care more about business problems. Then honestly some are just more concerned about growing their career. All 3 personalities have equally important traits that are essential to a team. A good team should have a tech guy to make sure what it builds is maintainable, it should also have a guy who is always making sure what the team is building is valuable, and then frankly if you have both of these guys they're going to constantly disagree with each other... so you need another guy who will take both viewpoints into account and determine what's better for the company.

hiven 2 days ago 0 replies      
I tend not to consider roles with no pay / range disclosed. Applying to roles is time consuming and why waste time on it to be told the salary is far lower than expected.
logfromblammo 2 days ago 0 replies      
Absolutely. I am sick of having my time wasted by companies that pretend to want above-median employees, but whose pay scales max out at below-median dollar amounts.

When I say I want $120k to move to your city, because you asked me to give you a number, and you say "Uhhhhh... we can't even negotiate from that as a starting point," you had better start putting your maximum number on your call for applicants. Because I just found out you were lying when you said you pay competitive market salary for the job requirements you chose to publish.

I am also very unlikely to budge for less than the annual salary than I earn now times the change-in-cost-of-living multiplier for the best school district in your metro area.

It saves time on both sides for the employer to disclose up front.

slavoingilizov 2 days ago 0 replies      
Even though the wording of the question is great, I think most people will take it as "Do you think disclosing a salary is a good thing?" Everyone would definitely be more likely to apply if the salary is good, but less likely if it's bad. The answer depends on the amount disclosed, not on the fact it's disclosed. It automatically makes you imagine the "happy case" and say that YES, it's awesome if I see a big salary and I would definitely apply more. But reality is different.

I think it's an interesting point, but any results or replies are destined to lead to wrong conclusions. It's like doing UX research by asking people what they want instead of observing their behavior (i.e. prone to bias). So I wouldn't take any of the answers here as relevant.

jackfrodo 2 days ago 2 replies      
All things being equal, if I had to choose between applying to two jobs, and one of them explicitly offered the salary that I believe I'm worth, then yeah, I would apply to that one.

On another note, one thing I've been thinking of doing, (and I'd be delighted if you did it!) is a job board that only shows positions with take home interviews instead of in-person coding exercises. I think this is a growing trend as people realize that they're missing out on good developers who suck at coding under pressure with someone looking over their shoulder. I've come across several threads on HN with people saying the same thing.

jachee 2 days ago 0 replies      
Unequivocally yes.

I need to know that I'm not wasting my time pursuing what may become a low-ball offer, and I'm wholly unwilling to take a pay-cut, regardless of promises from the prospective employer.

Once bitten, twice shy, as they say.

ChuckMcM 2 days ago 0 replies      
Hired.com does a good job of this, you look at candidates on the board (as a potential employer) and you put in what you think you would pay that candidate. They can decide if they want to interview for the job or not. As an employer nice bit is that you already know that they would already consider working for you at that salary. For the candidate they can see multiple 'bids' from different companies and get a sense of the market and also see if their own expectations are under valued or over valued.
madebysquares 2 days ago 0 replies      
Knowing the range is definite incentive to apply for a job or submit an application. Too many times a company will not list it and then the range is well below what I would be looking for. I will say glassdoor has helped a bit, because usually that is my first stop when an interesting company has an opening, that gives me at least some degree of what to expect.

I'm not looking for 200k but if you're budget is about 70k then I don't want to waste their engineers, managers, whoever or my own time.

Franksey 2 days ago 0 replies      
I definitely prefer knowing up front what the salary for a role would be. I go to work to get paid, so it's pretty a significant factor that should be communicated early on.
RickS 2 days ago 0 replies      
Not just more likely, I flat out won't cold apply anywhere that doesn't have a range listed. I consider any company that isn't upfront about compensation as having something to hide.

Note: if you do this, mandatory salary field should be only numbers and dashes, because everyone will just do what craigslist does: "DOE", "Competitive" etc. See angellist for a good example of how to do this right.

lukaszkups 2 days ago 0 replies      
Add EXACT salary for the job - very often final salary is equal to min. wage mentioned in range.

Also, used technologies at company - because another job offer for front-end developer that uses Angular1, Angular2, React, Redux, Preact, Ember, Backbone, Node.js, MongoDB, Photoshop, Gimp and has 10+ years of experience is just dumb. Let the companies write about their flow, exact tech stacks etc.

misterhtmlcss 2 days ago 2 replies      
I think addressing the salary too directly e.g this is how much money give or take $5k makes the hunt overly focused on financial benefits, which as has been commented has substantial downsides.

I think that a standardized band should be selected. Substantial sized bands, to dissuade purely financially driven people. You want them, but also as has been pointed out you don't only want them. You need a range. Bands give security that we are having the same conversation. I have also been interviewed for roles where the salary being offered is substantially below market value. What a waste of time tbh.

Also some way of getting at the intangibles would be great. For employees knowing whether this manager fires regularly, his feedback in the industry, etc would be helpful when selecting a role.

Cultural questions with answers are also good.

There is a great deal not be done to help the two seekers find the right connection and it's quite shocking really how prosaic the tools are for recruiting when you consider the money involved.

simonhamp 2 days ago 0 replies      
Absolutely yes. Interestingly, just today I contacted a possible employee through StackOverflow who didn't provide salary upfront specifically asking them to give some indication of their budget.

My reasoning (which got me their expected salary range) was that without this, it could well be a pointless exercise for all parties involved

arielweisberg 2 days ago 0 replies      
I don't consider most jobs and companies because I don't think they can pay the same or more than I already make. A good problem to have.

That said I think most companies are genuinely looking for more inexpensive candidates. Or maybe not? I don't know. I can never really tell what people are willing to pay.

hiram112 2 days ago 1 reply      
Yes, but only if the salary is in my range.

I get so many recruiter spams, LinkedIn junk mail, contacts from former associates, etc. - most of which have absolutely no salary range - those that do and are high enough tend to stand-out in my mind, while a lot of the other ones are simply mass deleted every few days.

sailfast 2 days ago 0 replies      
A range is helpful but if the company is unwilling to put their actual max dollar value up for highly qualified candidates (read: the range is not the real range) it might result in fewer high quality applications.

If a range is not listed but the job is something of interest to me, I would not hesitate to apply and then ask the recruiter / HR contact about the range and whether expectations line up. It's one call and might help make a connection or refer you to a different gig.

As an aside, anything that indicates "we're an awesome bunch of rock star ninja people with competitive pay and benefits packages" typically results in a tab close.

probinso 2 days ago 0 replies      
If the company's Target is noticeably low, then I really want them to put up the salary. I do however want them to be very honest about there range. This allows for me to be much more particular about what my other needs are from the company.

If they are paying market rates for their employees, then I don't particularly care. I'm comfortable with negotiating at the higher levels.

It looks like a company's range is dishonest, then I'm comfortable with having wasted their time when I am searching for work.

drawkbox 2 days ago 0 replies      
Indeed, otherwise there is a cost time and sometimes money based on that time to the job seeker to find out what the salary is.

For the employer this may suck because existing employees will see rates/market and if they don't have an open salary policy it could cause issues.

For the job seeker, you might also want higher and not go to a place that may decide to pay you higher based on experience and skills.

A range is probably the best but a number puts job seeker and employer closer to the deal just by seeing the numbers.

arenaninja 2 days ago 0 replies      
Most of the times, yes.

Sometimes good benefits (NOT equity and soda, but 401k, healthcare, etc.) are so much better than the norm that I may overlook the salary being omitted and treat the interview as a discovery process.

pmontra 2 days ago 0 replies      
If I see a job that I like with a salary that I like, I could apply.

If I like the job and don't see a salary, I could apply only if the job description hints to a salary that I like.

In other cases, I don't.

That means that if the salary is hidden and there is a mismatch between my expectation and the salary, I'll apply and everybody will waste time.

If there are many people like me the number of applicants could be higher but the effectiveness of the hiring process will be lower. I support the mandatory salary field.

ars 2 days ago 0 replies      
I would only apply for a job that doesn't have salary information if it was a large established company, where I could feel reasonably comfortable that they have a clue about what salaries should be, and a budget to actually pay it.

If it was a small business, especially if the position is the only one of its type at that company I would not bother making any contact at all without salary info - it's a total waste of time.

allfou 2 days ago 0 replies      
Nope. I'd most likely apply for something I believe will be enjoyable 8-10 hours a day, Monday to Friday from January to December. It's called employee retention and you should evaluate that metric yourself. If you let your employer handle that part it'll be about knowing how much will be your next salary increase. Which falls back to your question. Short term versus long term.
seattle_spring 2 days ago 0 replies      
No, because I've literally never seen a posted range that is at or above what I expect to be paid, and what I've been making for 5+ years.
runjake 2 days ago 0 replies      
I have to feel super passionate about applying for a job opening that doesn't list a salary range.

And maybe that's a good thing for both sides.

deanWombourne 1 day ago 0 replies      
I often don't even bother to click through if there isn't at least an idea of salary. (Using words like 'competitive', or 'DOE' don't count, and earn the posting minus points)
rajacombinator 2 days ago 0 replies      
No ... but I would only apply to a job that didn't list salary if I had a ballpark range in mind for what it would pay.

I'm MUCH more likely to spend time browsing job postings (and hence applying) that give a salary range though.

kenjackson 2 days ago 0 replies      
It depends -- if the salary is less than my minimum then it reduces the chances. If it is far more than what I expect, that also reduces the chance. The ideal range covers 10-20% more than I'm currently making -- that will increase my likelihood of applying.

The good thing about disclosing upfront is that it will save both me and the employer time down the road.

dccoolgai 1 day ago 1 reply      
The problem is everyone always throws up like "30-180k depending on experience". Standardize that by making like 3 "sample" levels and nake them say what they would give for each.
derekp7 2 days ago 0 replies      
This is the one nice thing about going through a recruiter (that you trust). You can give them the range that you are looking for (a lower number plus other benefits, or a higher number if it is a higher stress place), and they can filter the positions ahead of time.
grigjd3 1 day ago 0 replies      
The vast majority of innovations using the Internet here have been to service employers. I think adding more information for employees is a great benefit.
webmaven 1 day ago 0 replies      

Put another way: A job posting that doesn't disclose at least a salary range has to be much more interesting for me to apply.

baron816 1 day ago 0 replies      
You should also require job posts to state what the steps in their interview process are and an estimate for how long the whole process should take.
SmellyGeekBoy 2 days ago 0 replies      
Why on earth would someone apply for a job if they don't know the salary up front? When I recruit people I always disclose the salary, it signals the level of applicant I expect for the job and saves wasting anyone's time.
dickbasedregex 2 days ago 0 replies      
When I was younger I'd apply regardless. Now, I won't even bother without a minimum being listed.

I'm far enough in my career that I won't allow my time to be wasted. And if you're hiding your pay scale, you're wasting my time.

pbreit 2 days ago 0 replies      
AngelList shows salary (and equity) ranges. They are pretty wide but still preferable.
nickbauman 2 days ago 0 replies      
Location matters. Jobs being offered on the west coast almost always beat my salary here in the midwest. But when you take into account the cost of living, it usually ends up being a significant paycut.
nwisnia 2 days ago 0 replies      
100% believe that Salary should be a mandatory field on your job board. It means the hiring team needs to have a budget for a role; plus has at least thought about the market rate and what they can pay.
gwbas1c 2 days ago 0 replies      
I'm okay with no posted salary range as long as it's discussed with either the recruiter or HR early on.

That being said, I apply for jobs based on what looks interesting, not based on the pay.

smashface 2 days ago 0 replies      
It seems logical that more people would apply to jobs that include a salary in the post. I'd be far more interested to know what % of employers are satisfied with their hire if they included the salary or not. Additionally I'd want to know how many people they found were outright unqualified if they included the expected salary. My suspicion is that lots of [un|under]qualified people see a great salary and apply just hoping to luckily land the position. That's not say well-qualified people shun seeing the salary in a job post (as is obvious from the comments here) but how much signal:noise do companies get.
zodPod 2 days ago 0 replies      
A range YES absolutely. I will ignore most that don't because if they're going to not even get near my currently salary it's not even worth my time.
marmshallow 2 days ago 0 replies      
Question to job seekers: Do you disclose your current salary to employers or recruiters during the job search process?
newintown 2 days ago 0 replies      
a good salary is definitely appealing, but if I like the job (and I am searching) I am going to apply no matter if they disclose the salary upfront or not
jerven 1 day ago 0 replies      
Yes, especially for those who already have a comfortable salary and a nice job.
mydpy 2 days ago 0 replies      
Traditional salary negotiation, which generally hurts the applicant, heavily favors a salary black-box. So, a job board like this would help people who are not interested in negotiating their salary but want to stay competitive.
spikefromspace 1 day ago 0 replies      
miguelrochefort 2 days ago 0 replies      

However, you should not go forward with this silly job board project.

sambeau 2 days ago 0 replies      
sjg007 2 days ago 0 replies      
pmiller2 2 days ago 0 replies      
mf2hd 2 days ago 0 replies      
apstyx 2 days ago 0 replies      
osi 2 days ago 0 replies      
ubernostrum 2 days ago 1 reply      
Ask HN: What did you build during a bootcamp?
8 points by eastindex  17 hours ago   1 comment top
WhiskeyTang 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I attended MakerSquare (now Hack Reactor) and made several projects but my two final projects were: http://roadtrip-advisor.herokuapp.com/ (source: https://github.com/spacemanatee/spacemanatee)and Unearth, a mobile app made with Angular-Ionic that uses GPS to uncover "fog-of-war" on a real world map overlay as you walk around and explore the real world. (source: https://github.com/unearth)
Ask HN: How much traffic does your tech blog get?
8 points by anondon  21 hours ago   5 comments top 5
tmaly 38 minutes ago 0 replies      
I see about 80-100 visits a week. But I have to deduct some from that number for the referral spam for social buttons.
fiftyacorn 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Im about 5000 for the year on my blog - glenware.wordpress.com

But my main reason for having the blog is to record my own technical notes, and if they are of use to others then great

Ive considered writing posts that will attract more traffic - but it always feels like I'm writing clickbait, so keep it as it is

frantzmiccoli 21 hours ago 0 replies      
Here is my experience, https://twitter.com/FrantzMiccoli/status/476242261102329856 "After 15h on HN front page: 14k views from 4k visitors on my GitHub and 3k visitors to the linked article"

You can see similar figures when traffic comes from some important Reddit subchannels.

I don't have any answers for the rest of your questions.

eble 19 hours ago 0 replies      
jetti 17 hours ago 0 replies      
In the 3 years I've had my blog I have gotten about 52K visitors. I didn't get any traction on sites like HN or Reddit but I did have a bunch of referrals from Stackoverflow and Microsoft forums. Unfortunately my site went down about 6 months ago and I haven't been bothered to put it back up. That means no new content in over a year
Ask HN: Contracts for doing software consulting?
30 points by mads  1 day ago   13 comments top 7
seanwilson 14 hours ago 0 replies      
> I might potentially be hired to do some contracting (both development and administration) on a software system. Knowing my client very well, I am a bit worried that I might end up without any clear goals for when my job is finished.

If the requirements are vague then don't agree to a fixed price and charge by the day or hour instead. Ask for a small task that needs to be done, provide an estimate, perform the work while keeping the client up to date if the estimate is still accurate so they can decide what to do next and go from there for each task. Hopefully trust will build up both ways as you work through tasks.

You could both burn a lot of time writing up contracts for every small task instead of just getting on with it.

WhitneyLand 1 day ago 1 reply      
The keyword to search on is statement of work, or SOW.

Here's a nice start:http://programmers.blogoverflow.com/2012/08/fix-price-vs-tim...

facorreia 1 day ago 0 replies      
If the scope is not clear enough for putting together a statement of work of acceptance criteria as described in other comments, one thing that you could do is to start with a time-boxed contract, ranging from a couple weeks to a couple months, depending on the complexity of the project, to do requirements analysis. The deliverable of this contract would be a list of functional and non-functional requirements, at a reasonable level of detail.

The issue is that, for bigger projects, you start running into the problems related to a "waterfall" approach. As an alternative, you could look into how "agile" organizations approach their contracts -- basically by selling the ability to work on "stories" for as long as the customer wants them to -- and the deliverables for each story are very fine-grained.

Either way, without active involvement of the customer to either elicit requirements up front or validate your stories as you go, you'll be in for a rough time. It's probably better to have an honest discussion with them about this, because it's in their best interest after all.

spotman 1 day ago 0 replies      
Yes, you will need an SOW, (statement of work) that articulates very clearly what you aim to accomplish. Near the latter part you should have another section ( there is more than one way to accomplish this however ) that clearly states what the "acceptance criteria" is for meeting the goals - ie - spells out usually in bullet points reachable goals for the project that when met everyone agrees your end of the deal is met.

Along with this it should also cover your rates, payment schedule, terms, and what things cost if they fall out of scope.

Finally I find it useful to add a "prerequisites", and "disclaimers" section that say that work can't begin until you have things like write access to their git repo or access to their aws account ( or whatever ) and that the current SOW doesn't cover getting it into the App Store or bugs that come after the acceptance criteria are met.

Put places on this document for your company or self, and the other party and make sure you properly distribute and record the signed docs.

IANAL but have one, and the more you get into consulting and bigger contracts it's good to run things by a lawyer if it's something that's high value, with a lot of effort, or even remotely puts you at risk.

Be even more careful signing documents clients give you;)

Have fun

EduardoBautista 1 day ago 0 replies      
Bonsai seems to be a good choice for you. They provide a decent contract template.


xeniak 1 day ago 2 replies      
The Contract Killer by Andy Clarke gets some good feedback:


notacissp 1 day ago 1 reply      
I can recommend grabbing a copy of this book:https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/14617573-a-guide-to-it-c...
Ask HN: What will happen to make VR finally explode, if anything?
8 points by Fission  15 hours ago   25 comments top 9
EJTH 11 minutes ago 0 replies      
Price of entry has to be lower. A vive + a gaming rig that can actually handle VR decently is quite expensive for the avarage consumer.
taylodl 14 hours ago 3 replies      
VR - virtual reality, isn't really all that interesting outside of gaming/simulation and training. AR - augmented reality, is where the real money-making opportunities lie. Lots of companies have field services/technicians who would benefit greatly from AR. It's not hard to see the transportation and distribution sectors also benefitting. Even healthcare. The upshot of it all being AR is where the action is, not VR.
mikestew 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Answering the open questions would be a good start. I'm a geek and a man of means. Maybe I'll go get one of those HTC Vibes. Seems popular, Steam supports it. Look, all I want to know is how much is it going to cost me to walk into a store and walk out with everything I need. If I get home and find out I need to place an emergency order to NewEgg to get it working, it's getting boxed up and returned. If I have to go digging through video card specs, no deal. Do I even need a computer to hook it to? If so, what OS? Will my 2012 Macbook Pro do?

Not a single one of those questions is answered by the HTC Vibe web site, at least not that I could find. So me, a tech worker with loads of disposable income and a willingness to take a bit of a chance on new tech, won't be dropping $800 on your new device. How in the hell does one expect the proverbial Joe Sixpack to jump on board?

afarrell 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Cheap high-powered graphics cards are one prerequisite.

If industrial history in general is any indication, than some sort of heavy use by militaries, probably for training.

axvk 14 hours ago 0 replies      
When someone figures out how to move around inside VR. Right now you're stuck in a tiny room, but how awesome would it be to play FPS games where you run around and duck behind objects. Most htc vive games i've played have mastered shooting but I'm always stuck on a tiny platform or standing in one place.
dudul 14 hours ago 1 reply      

I'm serious. The Porn industry has been leading technical changes and innovations more often than not.

dontJudge 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Plug into your brain, so it looks more like reality.
GFischer 14 hours ago 0 replies      
My own belief is that retail will benefit from the VR revolution the most, but mostly for using the VR headsets to access an in-store experience using live 360 video / AR .

(edited because mentioning my Y Combinator application didn't come across well)

LordWinstanley 15 hours ago 1 reply      
Using Samsung batteries might do it.

(I'll get me coat!)

Ask HN: As a single bootstrapper, how do you deal with the pressure?
117 points by throw9322  2 days ago   96 comments top 57
NumberCruncher 56 minutes ago 0 replies      
No one owes you anything. [1]

Your friend and familiy do not have to understand your motivation. They do not have to understand your decision building a product instead of working for a "prestigious company". They do not have to be your friend.

On the orher hand, you do not have to give a fuck about their opinion. The said truth is that there are 7 billion people on earth and you can not make all of them happy with your way of life. But you can make happy yourself.

I read once an articel where someone was asked "And what do you do when the people say you have crazy ideas?". His answer was "I talk to other people!" Do not worry, there are other people out there who understand you. You only have to find them and listen to them instead of the naysayers.

[1] http://www.harrybrowne.org/articles/GiftDaughter.htm

ThomPete 2 days ago 5 replies      
When I was practicing scales to become a guitarist in my youth, my mom always came in and said "can't you play something we we know". My guitar teacher on the other hand said great and gave me another to practice.

You are making the mistake of "playing scales" in front of an audience who expect a performance of a final composition rather than a teacher who can provide feedback on your work in progress.

Change the audience.

codegeek 2 days ago 1 reply      
It is simple. Stop defending yourself.

Don't talk to people about what you do unless you really think that there is a need or you know for a fact that they are the right audience. Family and friends are usually not the right audience for this. Tell them something vague like "Trying to do a few things of my own" and keep it to that.

Overall, don't sweat it. 99% of people don't get this whole bootstrapper thing. They are happy to be miserable slaves in their fancy brand name 9-5 job with zero job security (there is no such thing as a job security). Ok I should not go there. Some people actually like their jobs so I should not judge :)

You just smile, move on and keep doing what YOU want to do. You are not the one to do the usual 9-5 job working for someone else.

Join bootstrapped forums [0]. You will meet plenty of people like you who will not only listen but give you the advice, support and even mentorship that you may want.

[0] http://discuss.bootstrapped.fm

GFischer 2 days ago 0 replies      
It sounds more like a problem with your family and THEIR expectations than with yourself.

If you're able to make a product, you'll be ahead of 99% of people.

Don't be afraid to put yourself and your product out there. If you wait until you're not embarrassed, you've waited too much :) .

If you're solving people's problems, they won't mind if your product is not polished. Really.

Also, you'll learn A LOT from building your product, and especially from working with customers and feedback.

If it fails, you have learned some VERY valuable skills. I use what I learned building my side project a lot more than what I "learned" at my former day job.

To be fair, my own project is languishing (because I have a day job). I'd say go for it :) .

Look for support groups, I used to go to a coworking space which was very cheap and it was great because it had an amazing support between coworkers. Universities also have such spaces, and sometimes governments too.

dongslol 2 days ago 1 reply      
I always found the "coder monkey" idea amusing. Programmers are the ones who have the ideas. Your intuition has to be fed data, and the best source of data about what programming can accomplish is having programmed. When I meet people who suggest that programmers are monkeys for hire, I always wonder, am I to understand that being a programmer is somehow a setback in having ideas about what kinds of things programming can accomplish?

Anyway, you're building something through your own initiative, and every day you wake up and think to yourself, "what do I build next?" Perhaps you continue thinking hard about this as you pour yourself a coffee or whatever. Then you go and build it, and if you picked the wrong thing, your customers will as a direct consequence get mad at you. I personally think that kind of responsibility is much more exciting than being managed.

There's a pretty good chance all this will fail, simply because most things fail. That doesn't mean it was a waste of time. It just means your time wasn't here yet, and in the meantime you face life with a bit more data than you had before. Maybe next time around.

As for the people who tell you your project could've been built in a couple weeks, ask them if they routinely say the same thing to students doing problem sets, or anyone who's just starting to learn something. I mean, it's just nonsensical.

Also, mean-spirited negativity is really bad. You basically just have to cut people who radiate it out of your life, or at least be disciplined about what you talk about with them.

I don't know, that's my $0.02.

kohanz 2 days ago 1 reply      
That doesn't sound like pressure as much as it sounds like unsupportive friends and family. If they don't bring other things to the table (other than negativity), i would reevaluate some relationships. That said, honest feedback is important. You should have a small group of trusted advisors/mentors that you can trust to tell you how you are really doing, but in a constructive way.
brilliantcode 2 days ago 1 reply      
I was you only a few years ago. I spent a year building a really complex SaaS in my bedroom. Then I tried to sell it the next year and a half with dismal results.

1) Validate first by talking with potential customers before building.

2) If the MVP takes longer than 3 month to build, you are barking up the wrong tree.

 a) problem/product fit is too high for a lone developer. b) your lack of experience & skill may be a bottleneck.
3) If people are going around saying it can be done in a couple of weeks, ignore them, unless they have done a similar project before in which I'd listen very carefully why it shouldn't take long.

4) If people are telling you've been at it for too long, it's time to reevaluate your self, skills & business.

5) Don't go at it alone. Partner up with a coder. Share the pain.

milge 2 days ago 3 replies      
None of my projects went anywhere, and eventually, I gave up. I used to have the rosy view that with enough work you'll get there. That's largely untrue. You also need to know the right people (connections) and be very lucky. I hate to be a downer, but you don't often hear this side of the opinion.
kayman 2 days ago 0 replies      
1. Ignore the critics. Unless they have something useful to say, don't listen to them. We live in an age of critiquing. Only listen to critics who are also producers themselves. Consumers - either they consume your product or not. Just measure it and try to get better at the metric each time.

2. Focus on creating things. Be a maker. Find joy in it. Regardless of how it comes out, if you enjoy the process, you'll repeat and get better at it.

3. Get in the habit of sharing. Accept that 90% of your work will be average and that's okay.

Finally, what you're feeling is normal. It's all part of the journey. Both professionals and amateurs face this fear in their own way.

adocracy 2 days ago 0 replies      
Intellectually, you're on the entrepreneurial path, with a purpose. How you emotionally defend yourself is also part of the entrepreneurial path - we work more hours for less money (on average) because we "control our own destiny" which implies of sense of ownership over one's life that you can't get elsewhere working towards someone else's bottom line. That's probably a myth, but it's an important one for maintaining our psychological health while under the stress of under-delivering. Don't be confused here - as an entrepreneur, you will ALWAYS feel like you're under-delivering, whether on time, or on traction, or on product, or on revenues, or on team, or on awareness... That's an unfortunate part of the path. But it's also an important part of the drive to improve the product, improve the team, etc. Entrepreneurs unfortunately also have a high rate of depression - I'm not adequately versed in those personality types to make any assessments as to why. But as an entrepreneur, I can tell you that, personally, I face that stress every day and yet carry on because I feel like my work is important. I'm not building follow-on products - I'm trying to build first-to-market products, also with a purpose. So either that purpose has to carry you through these tough defensive discussions and resulting stress, or that purpose isn't sufficient, and you'll drop the product and/or the title entrepreneur. If you're going to own your own path, you either do it wholly, or you don't. Trying to figure out a middle path will kill the average person. Don't be average.
brianmurphy 2 days ago 0 replies      
It sounds like you have two issues, your social group and your product.

I can't help you with your social group. It's up to you to associate with the dream killers or not.

The product market is very interesting and counter-intuitive. There are countless cases of where the best product is not the most successful. Spend some time studying sales and you'll find product quality is secondary to how you position it.

This may not make you feel good about it, but that's the cold truth behind success. The way I personally deal with the quality vs sales issue is to focus only on product quality and have my partners focus on what's needed on the sales side. Finding a partner with good salesmanship might be your way over the slump that you're in.

ollerac 2 days ago 0 replies      
Take a long walk and put things in perspective. You are on your own with this and that means you have to stop caring what other people think. Not because they won't give you good feedback, but because that kind of feedback cannot matter to you in the same way any more. You don't have that luxury.

As a product developer, you owe it to your product to do your best with it. That means that your allegiance is not to your family when it comes to your product. When they give you feedback, bad or good, you need to take a step back and weigh it evenly with everyone else's feedback, scientifically, objectively. If you can do this, you can make a good product, or at least get most of the way there, while avoiding distractions along the way.

The whole thing about making a product is... it's a long, hard road. The reason for this is not because of the ups and downs or how much you have left to learn. It's just actually a long road... for anyone. If you start paying attention to feedback early on, positive or negative, and let it sway you, you are doing yourself a huge disservice. It's early on, your product should suck. You need to realize this, pack your sentimental feelings away, and get to work.

Do you know when you've made it? When you've finally hit the nail on the head and won the game? It's not when your parents or your friends or your sister is proud of you. It's not when you get your first positive customer review. It's not when you turn a profit. It's when you allow yourself to be proud of yourself, knowing that this journey you're on is tough as nails and you're doing it anyways. When you do that, you won't need anyone else to praise on you.

plainOldText 2 days ago 0 replies      
Unfortunatey, we are highly unpredictable and emotional machines. You're going to have to deal with ups and downs, moments of euphoria as well as depression, no matter what.

The key is to stay disciplined, and if you believe strongly that what you're working on solves a real problem no one else is solving appropriately, then keep working on it, very hard.

While at it, keep looking for people to join you on your adventure and hopefully success will come along the way.

Also, a good read: http://www.wisdomination.com/screw-motivation-what-you-need-...

idlewords 2 days ago 1 reply      
Managing stress and anxiety is a big part of working solo. If you're not doing so already, may I suggest you carve time out for yourself that is inviolate (for example, on Sundays you close the computer).

Remember that your first job is to keep yourself from burning out, or else all the other stuff you do will not matter. And try to notice patterns in your anxiety, and anything that is effective at keeping it down. Tend to yourself!

xpose2000 2 days ago 0 replies      
> According to my family, programmers are just "coder monkeys".

You don't have to prove yourself to anyone. I stopped trying a long long time ago. Anyone who thinks programmers are just "coder monkeys" aren't really worth even having a conversation with.

No one will understand what you are doing. You should read up on articles about what it is like to be a boostrapped company and the type of nonsense you will face. Perhaps others linked to a few helpful and motivational articles to get you started.

You need to have thick skin and confidence that you are on the right path. Enjoy the climb, even though it will be insanely difficult.

I started my boostrapped company barely making any money and now I make more than most people I know. Use that as motivation and realize that being on your own means you can exceed anyone's salary because you play by different rules.

aswerty 2 days ago 0 replies      
Personally I have a lot of anxiety when discussing something when the original idea was mine. Where as if I discuss something that I made but the original idea was somebody else's I don't get anxious. I guess that just how I work.

Deep down I know most people don't even make it as far as creating something bad. So even if my idea is bad I keep going knowing I'm well ahead of the curve in terms of trying to create something in this world.

I guess my only advice is; learn to live with embarrassment. It just takes some courage - which from the sound of it, you already have.

As to the "Anybody could have done that in a couple of weeks". They probably don't know what they're talking about. Because if they did, they wouldn't be saying that.

atlih 2 days ago 0 replies      
I understand what you are going through, went through it myself when I was younger. The mistake I made regarding this was being defensive, don't lump all your family and friends into one pot and bark defensively at it. Never be defensive about this. Be proud of your product, ask them if they see any obvious errors with it, you might learn something because they are invested in helping you. They mostly care about you and don't know anything about putting a product to market. But anyway something might come out of it. And then for those in the bunch who are trying to make themselves look good on your account, just ask them if they plan to waste their entire life as their bosses bitch.
koliber 2 days ago 0 replies      
I found that when listening to advice, feedback, and praise, what is said is just as important as who says it.

A lot of people say things, both positive and negative. You don't have to accept it all at face value. It's hard at first, but with time, it's possible to tune into this. Accept what people are saying with a smile and a nod, and only take it to heart if it is coming from someone who is qualified to make that sort of statement.

When someone says "That's it? Anybody could have done that in a couple weeks!" and they have never built a thing in their life, just ignore them. As harsh as it sounds, their words are worthless. They may still be good and loving people, but in this case it does not make sense to listen to them.

I'm going through this, but as an experienced developer learning the ropes of SaaS marketing a fledgeling product. It sucks! I know what I am doing right now is sub-par. But these are stepping stones. Some of the feedback I get is harsh, but is easy to dismiss as it is coming from people who do not understand the present situation or don't have the experience to offer the kind of feedback they are trying to offer. On the other hand, a critique coming from an experienced source is worth its weight in gold, even if it stings at first.

Keep at it! It sucks now, and it's possible that what you have built right now is sub-par when compared to everything else out there. But this is just a start. You've come a long way to get here, and if you have a long road ahead. Just keep going and little by little you will get to a point you want to be at.

bdavisx 2 days ago 0 replies      
>According to my family, programmers are just "coder monkeys," people you hire to make your grand idea and that's how it's done.

Yes, tell that to the coder monkeys who started Google, Facebook, etc.

I don't know the statistics (and I'm not sure where to find them), but I'm guessing that the majority of successful tech companies had a "coder monkey" as one or more of the founders. I used to work for a private company that was started by 3 COBOL coder monkeys (yes COBOL - not that I'm a fan) that went on to be a $100+ million dollar a year operation (lrs.com). All bootstrapped, NEVER took a loan that I'm aware of.

Don't listen to them.

senorjazz 2 days ago 0 replies      
>How do you deal with people saying, "That's it? Anybody could have done that in a couple weeks!"

lol (or at least smile to yourself) and ignore it. You will always get this. Later on, if the product is a success it will change slightly to "can you just make it do this, I don't think it will take long, just a couple of hours I could do it myself if I knew how". When the truth is it is at least 4 days of solid work (as in 32+ hours)

As for friends and family, be vague, don't tell them. If they are not technical, just baffle them with big words, throw in lots of buzz words so they don't want to see :)

Good luck

campusman 1 day ago 0 replies      
This has helped me greatly over the years in a world full of haters. May it help you too.


emmanvazz 2 days ago 0 replies      
Watch some Gary Vaynerchuk videos, seems like you need some motivation. There is one where someone asked him about expectations from others. His advice is basically give them the middle finger and stop making them an excuses for YOUR hustle. Also once you start selling your product you will soon see the market make your current doubter seem soft. In the sense you are trying to convince people to look at you in a positive light versus conviencing people that you provide value and they should pay you for it.

I am also a bootstraper, however went to college to be technical. However I can tell a majority of the top tier programmers don't have an once of hustle in them. They just want to play it safe. You learning how to be technical proves just how much you hustle you have in you, just keep at it.

At the end of the day clients don't give a fuck about how much technical experience you have or anything else other than your product. If the product is good and provides value for them, their wallets open. There is also vast evidence that having the best technically sound product doesn't mean a victory, people can be better at sales and marketing with a subpar product.

Look for hustlers in your life. If they aren't there, surround yourself with the content hustles post online.

Good luck man, go out there and kill it then just watch people change their opinion of you without saying anything.

ohstopitu 2 days ago 0 replies      
I totally understand your pain. I'm currently working on my startup and I'm almost in the same position as you.

While I'm working at a company (because I have bills to pay and I'm just out of uni), my startup is bootstrapped by myself - and while it's tempting to get VC money, I feel like before I even consider doing that, I want to get something that can stand on itself if I don't get that funding.

My family & friends are pretty dismissive of my startup (you need more experience, you've failed before, you can't do this, you are wasting your time/money etc.).

So take it from me....

1. ignore the nay sayers (unless they are your target market in which case take their opinions on the product and ignore the rest). you know what you want to do. you have a vision and you know what you want in life - most don't have that, and you have absolutely no one to answer but yourself.

2. you are learning and you are improving - that is awesome (because that means you know where you are lacking and where you can improve).

3.Finally, let's say you do fail (hey, a lot of startups fail), you have learned valuable skills which would be awesome for you to apply to either your next venture or at "the next big corp here" - eitherway, it's a win - win.

4. Finally, you choose being bootstrapped because you a sustainable business, you want to own your own business and in a way an adventure. So enjoy every momement of it. While this might feel terrible now, once your business does succeed, you'll have a lot more riding on you :) - So full steam ahead!

finally if you wanna get in touch, I'm available sk AT skdev.xyz

sean_patel 2 days ago 2 replies      
> programmers are just "coder monkeys"

Wow, how condescending ( the family, not OP). Is this notion isolated or widespread?

My family thinks I am a Tech Ninja, and almost all my Gym friends, many of who are in blue collar jobs, really look up to me.

rcavezza 2 days ago 0 replies      
"That's it? Anybody could have done that in a couple weeks!" is awesome to hear. You need to be sure you ask that person what is missing and what you should build next instead of defending yourself.

All feedback is good feedback- just don't take it personally. The feedback isn't about you or your ideas, the feedback is about what someone sees in front of them.

Your ideas will change as time goes forward. People's reactions to what you build will change. You'll make dumb product mistakes. You'll build the wrong things. The only way to learn when you do that is to get people to look at what you're building and let them tell you why it's not good.

You're on the right track and we all go through this. Just calm down a bit and don't take things personally.

amorphid 2 days ago 0 replies      
Let's break it down:

>> A few years ago, I wanted to make a product, but I wasn't very technical. So I decided to change that--I got technical.

You are a bad ass. I went from techinical recruiting to software engineering. In between I built a recruiting business powered by a Rails app that demanded more than I was prepared to give. That shit was damn hard, and only someone who has been through the business guy to coder guy transition appreciates how much of a bad ass you actually are.

>> According to my family, programmers are just "coder monkeys,"

They're being assholes and/or you are taking it too personally. I'm guessing you are simply stressed, and they don't know to be excited for you. Everything is taxing when you are exhausted, including putting up with people may simply be breaking your balls.

>> I want to make a tool for small businesses, I want to do it profitably, and I want to be proud of it.

Take care of yourself first. Your first paying customer may love you, rely on you, and wish you the best, but they ain't gonna pay the hospital bill for your self induced heart attack. They care about you, but not in the way you care about them, and you can't afford to be altruistic. Also, the majority of VC backed companies were funded because they had some combination of traction, relationships, expertise, and reputation you have yet to achieve. And if you want stress, take a few million now, hire people, and freak out when you realize you're going to run out of money before your product is worthy of the next round of investment.

>> "That's it? Anybody could have done that in a couple weeks!"

The Gettysburg address was written in a single train ride, and is only 272 words long. But it was written by a man who worked for years to build up the skill to create & deliver that speech to an audience that actually wanted to listen.

>> How do you do it?

Working my ass off, living off money I saved for taxes, and ignoring reality.

Ping me if you wanna vent. My email is in my profile. I'd be happy to listen, and I won't offer any unsolicited advice :)

P.S. I am a bad ass, too, which basically means nothing to anyone, except maybe you. Being the king of your own mountain isn't that impressive until it's tall enough that everyone has to look up to see the top, and even then, they won't understand what you went through to get there. It's good to be king, but it's also lonely at the top.

akulbe 2 days ago 0 replies      
Does the term bootstrapping only apply to a product business? Or does it apply to a service-based business as well?

If it applies to service businesses as well, I know in my case one of the biggest stresses is dealing with the actual operations side of the business. Especially getting new customers.

In my case, one of the most effective things is to learn how to tune out the noise. And by noise, I mean all of its many forms - social media, comments from friends/family, anything that distracts you from the real work of your business.

I'd encourage you to stay independent and go as long as you can without taking funding. Keep complete control for as long as you can.

Have laser like focus on making a good product, and serve your customers well.

It'd be cool to talk with you further, and hear about your work. Good luck.

forgottenacc57 2 days ago 0 replies      
You are the hero. None of your critics are taking action like you. None of them is stepping up like you. None of them are educating themselves like you.

I admire you and I admire that you are taking action.

Programming is HARD. Really hard. It takes years of constant hard work to get good at it. The more code you write, the better you will get.

Business is HARDER THAN PROGRAMMING, without the guaranteed outcome that you get from programming. In business you must simply try and try and keep trying and hope one day the cards fall your way.

And the important thing is that you are trying. Most people don't even try.

tixocloud 2 days ago 0 replies      
What's important is what your users and the market says about it. Take the negative in one ear and let it go on the other side. It's part of the journey - everyone who has a dream will invite doubters. Use it as fuel to propel you to success.
0x1d 2 days ago 0 replies      
Create an MVP or even just a landing page before dedicating too much time into any project. Launch the MVP or landing page on places like HN, Product Hunt, Reddit, etc. to gage traction before before moving forward.
arconis987 2 days ago 0 replies      
I appreciate the quote from Epictetus, a key philosopher of stoicism: "Freedom is the only worthy goal in life. It is won by disregarding things that lie beyond our control."

Since you cannot control the reactions of other people, it's not worth your time to worry about them. If you can succeed at the things you can control ("Am I making consistent progress on the product?"), then you've succeeded, regardless of the reactions of other people.

nitrogen 2 days ago 0 replies      
From my own experience, one of the biggest drains on productivity in a startup is having zero support and confidence from the people closest to you. They are probably wrong to doubt, but it's hard to ignore them and keep pressing forward. I'd suggest trying to do something I never figured out, and surround yourself with people who believe in what you are doing (without being yes-men/women).
rajacombinator 2 days ago 0 replies      
1) Don't associate with negative people.

2) Tell them Google and Facebook could be built in a few weeks too. (Mostly accurate!)

3) Consider that you're extremely unlikely to succeed "you against the world" in these circumstances and how you could get some partners on board.

nartz 2 days ago 1 reply      
Maybe you're selling it wrong, or presenting yourself inappropriately. Namely, if I want to climb everest, and I walked up a local hill - it would seem silly to say "Look everybody at me I'm on my way to climbing everest!" - even though that could be a true statement.

Maybe you need to be more modest about describing it, especially if you can't handle the feedback.

nolite 2 days ago 1 reply      
You're never going to make it as long as you keep giving a f*ck about what other people think...
unclebucknasty 2 days ago 0 replies      
Are you embarrassed by what you make because people keep putting it down or because you objectively know it's subpar?

If it's the former, then you should try to filter for constructive feedback and let the rest go. BTW, the same is true if they claimed to love your product. Don't get too excited either way. It's just a few opinions and the market will ultimately decide.

If it's the latter, then you need to focus your time and energy on fixing the product vs. "defending" yourself. Also, try getting it in front of a wider audience that's representative of your target market ASAP.

At the end of the day, you should work to be as objective as possible. Disentagle your emotions--put them on a shelf--and focus on the product succeeding (not you succeeding, but the product). If you find yourself feeling some self-reflective emotion, then you know you need to course correct your thinking.

All of this self-reflection (especially at the behest of detractors) is poison that amounts to trying to succeed while dragging an anchor. It hurts in two ways: it diverts your precious time and energy from the product, and it makes you less productive, creative, objective, and enthusiastic when you actually are working on the product.

As for the rest of it (thinking "what if it doesn't work, etc"), that's classic anxiety and it's a close cousin of depression. Ask yourself "what if it does work?" and keep moving. Truth is, more often than not what we work on will not meet our expectations. I've "failed" and pivoted multiple times before finding success and even then, not to the scale I'd hoped. BTW, on the final pivot before success, I've had people absolutely demolish the pivot. Had I listened to them, I would never have succeeded.

In sum, when you are thinking about or working on your product, focus relentlessly on making it better and testing it in front of "real people". That should leave little room for the counterproductive thinking.

Last but not least, good luck! We all need a healthy dose of that.

nom 2 days ago 0 replies      
True friends support you, no matter what, especially during a depressive episode. If they don't, they are not your friends. It might help to distance yourself, or to learn to ignore them.
alexmorenodev 2 days ago 0 replies      
You can ignore them or live by their terms. That's absolutely your choice.

If you can't handle the pressure, do what they say. If you can (and I highly suggest you learn how to do it), keep doing whatever you're doing and ignore them. Smile and nod.

cha-cho 2 days ago 0 replies      
The solution to all your problems is to get one customer. One person who says I get what you are trying to do and I will pay you for it.

The longer you put off acquiring a customer the harder your journey becomes.

desdiv 2 days ago 2 replies      
If you have unsupportive friends and family, then you should not have told them about your business.

If they can't say anything nice about it, then it's better that they say nothing at all about it.

20andup 2 days ago 0 replies      
Pressure is given by yourself. As long as your are happy with what you learnt, then it's all fine.

I am in a similar boat, but I have a lot less pressure because I saved enough and even if it fails, I have gained so much that my salary will increase for sure. Although the thought of having to work for other people simply keeps me going no matter what.

Learning is super hard. Appreciate what you have accomplished.

serg_chernata 2 days ago 0 replies      
I'm also flying solo. Email in profile, hit me up and I'll be very happy to help. At the very least, with constructive criticism and friendly advice.
jjoe 2 days ago 0 replies      
Ain't that some great motivation material or what? You've got kerosene fuel to get to success. Is the depression clinical or self perceived?
andrewdubinsky 2 days ago 0 replies      
This - the Topsy Tail.


TLDR; She sold $100 million worth of product. My understanding is the prototype was built using a coat hanger with tape on it.

arikfr 2 days ago 0 replies      
1. The easiest thing is to give commentary from the sidelines. Ignore them.

2. Making the product, simple or complex is the easy part. The hard part is making a business out of it.

I'm in a similar situation to yours (creating a company, bootstrapped, solo founder). It's a hard ride and people who can truly support you mentally is important.

andrewmcwatters 2 days ago 0 replies      
You have to believe in your projects. The market and users will dictate whether or not your ideas and execution work.
SmellyGeekBoy 2 days ago 0 replies      
I deal with it by taking lots of expensive holidays that they can't afford. They soon shut up. ;)
pryelluw 2 days ago 0 replies      
Email me. Ill listen. Fellow entrepreneur here. No strings or BS. pryelluw@gmail.com
saluki 2 days ago 0 replies      
What would your friends and family think if you showed them something that looks like craigslist?

Just because something isn't owned by Fbook or Google or doesn't look polished doesn't mean it isn't or couldn't make money. Or if you're not working for Fbook or Google or working on working there that you're doing it WRONG.

My friends usually gloss over me talking about developing SaaS apps till I mention ones making $30k/mo or $60k/mo . . . that gets their attention. I love when they follow up with "wait, wait that's per month?"

Making a product/SaaS that is successful isn't easy, but it's something most developers can accomplish, it's not s sure thing, but definitely worth the effort if it's something that interests you. It's worth a shot/putting in the effort.

So if you're interested in products/SaaS keep at it. Granted most of us have day jobs or are contractors along the way to pay the bills till we hit "SaaScess" but don't give up on it because of what unsupportive family and friends think.

You do need to find a better support network, maybe fellow entrepreneurs/web developers, connect with other like minded individuals online. (feel free to connect with me via email HNusername at gmail, I'm always up for bouncing ideas around, being supportive, reviewing apps/products offering constructive criticism).

Don't share what you're doing with people who aren't supportive. Just give them a simple answer like I'm consulting, etc.

Making any web application is hard so making any functional application is an accomplishment. Sure you could sub it out to a group of coder monkeys and they could build it in two weeks. But there is more to creating a good web application that people will pay you money for that just the code.

I think being able to create a web application is amazing and enjoy it. I would compare being a developer working on your own SaaS to being in a band. You're creating something, gaining an audience and the sky is the limit. With hard work and a little luck you can reach $83,333k/mo+. That's amazing and if you fall short of that, $10k/mo isn't bad either.

Your family just might be concerned you'll have financial problems, your friends might be jealous or just not understand what you're doing. Hopefully trying to give you good advice, but either way don't let them dissuade you from pursuing your dream.

That said SaaS is a long ramp to decent revenue so you need a day job/consulting/freelancing/supported by parents income till then so plan accordingly.

You'll probably like this:DHH Startup School Talkhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CDXJ6bMkMY

Check outstartupsfortherestofus.com


Good luck in 2017.

adrianmacneil 2 days ago 0 replies      
Read "Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future", and realize that even the best people overcame enormous struggles to bring products to market.
artur_makly 2 days ago 0 replies      
prayer and porn of course. just kidding.

fear of corp cubicle hell is a miraculous motivator.

also operating from a low pressure 2nd world country helps

supernormal 2 days ago 0 replies      
I've felt similar, feel free to email me if you'd like to talk about what we're working on.
dajohnson89 2 days ago 0 replies      
Tell them to suck it.
acedinlowball 1 day ago 0 replies      
edit: haters gonna hate
allfou 2 days ago 2 replies      
Go get a job you're not an entrepreneur. People will constantly tell you - what you do sucks. It's rule number one in the wannabe-entrepreneur world. If you can't handle that part I'd suggest to go get a job. Otherwise, move one to step #2 - focus.
theparanoid 2 days ago 0 replies      
imjustsaying 2 days ago 0 replies      
Those people are miserable and will never change.

The more success you find the more they will resent you for it. Plato's allegory of the cave[1] is spot on.

My method of dealing with such people has been to abstract their voices from my life.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegory_of_the_Cave

Ask HN: Can anyone recommend some fulfillment alternatives to Amazon?
104 points by newyearnewyou  2 days ago   39 comments top 18
jdpedrie 2 days ago 4 replies      
Haven't used the service personally (though I have received a couple things from them), but the Cards Against Humanity people run a fulfillment company: https://www.blackbox.cool/
Zaheer 2 days ago 1 reply      
BTW for anyone that is looking into this space, the term I've seen used around is 3PL (AKA Third Party Logistics). Lots of old-school as well as new-age companies that offer this.
sethd 2 days ago 1 reply      
I've had a positive experience with Whiplash for the past few years: https://www.whiplashmerch.com

Disclaimer: No affiliation with the company other than being a current customer.

freshfey 2 days ago 1 reply      
I'm working with http://www.direct-outbound.com/ to fulfill orders for Action Tea. It works fairly well, although the shipping prices are a bit tough, but that depends on the volume and the type of deal you negotiate.

I'm paying 1.60 USD per fulfilment item + shipping. And the whole operation is in the US, while I'm sitting in Switzerland and shipping worldwide, without touching the product. I'm doing low-ish numbers, but do know a lot of eCommerce experts who are doing the exact same thing.

I hope that helps!

adrr 2 days ago 0 replies      
There's dozens of 3PLs out there. Without any information its impossible to recommend any. What are your requirements?

Are you bringing your own shipping contracts? Some 3PLs won't let you bring your own. Is being cost efficient on returns a big deal? Do you need multiple warehouses for zone skipping or to optimize on delivery times? Do you care how you interface them(eg: flat file, API)? Are you bringing your own packaging?Do want to optimize on cost or prefer more features?

Every 3PL is different and cater to different markets. For example newgistics specializes in returns and handles returns for a lot of the big companies even though they might not be doing the fulfillment. They also have APIs with their custom WMS(warehouse management system). Some companies have lots automation and technology(pick to light, , sorting machines) and some have none. Automation is very helpful if your sending the same stuff over and the shipments are very similar. Sorting will save you lots of money if you own your own shipping contracts and you can presort your daily orders if you have decent volume.

rdschouw 2 days ago 0 replies      
I've used DCL for a couple of years for shipping large numbers of devices. Recommended.


imroot 2 days ago 1 reply      
I've used http://www.shipwire.com/ in the past with a fair amount of happiness. Decent API's, not a horrible cost, and minimal hassles (I had issues with shrink and damage at Amazon warehouses, haven't had the same issues at Shipwire yet).
ckib16 2 days ago 1 reply      
The only logistics / fulfillment experience I've had so far has been Flexport (excellent BTW). They currently don't do 3PL - but may want to keep an eye on them as they expand.

However, my brother is also big into FBA and just expanded into 3PL - I'll get his info and re-post here when I have it.

FYI - I started a newsletter to cover this stuff. Fast-paced niche, so I figured why not curate the best info and share.


adamfeldman 2 days ago 1 reply      
Haven't used them but they're integrated with a lot of different shipping software and have an API https://www.shipwire.com/
fencepost 2 days ago 0 replies      
I don't have experience with either, but I believe both UPS and FedEx have logistics and fulfillment services. I used to see a lot of online orders coming out of UPS facilities based on the shipping labels.
pmvinuelas 2 days ago 2 replies      
EasyPost is doing fulfillment as well and they are a YC graduate. If you want to get a quote you can reach out to their Head of Fulfillment, Paul Vinuelas, at paulv@easypost.com.

So far they have the simplest and straightforward pricing model. All inclusive rate so you don't have to think of all the fees that the other 3PL companies ding you with.

prahv 1 day ago 0 replies      
Shotput is a YC company that was in the S15 batch that does this. Awesome founders and great company.


omegabloom 1 day ago 0 replies      
ive owned and sold a 3pl back in 2007 and now run a global fulfillment platform - http://goodmove.xyz

we have hooks into multiple warehouses all around the world - mostly in California but a couple in Hong Kong which greatly reduces costs (assuming your manufacturing there).

happy to help people out with questions, etc - mike.kirk@goodmove.xyz

Animats 2 days ago 0 replies      
Both FedEx and UPS offer fulfillment services. Both seem to be designed for larger sellers, but ask.
owd_dotcom 2 days ago 0 replies      
We do that! http://owd.com
yisymphony 2 days ago 0 replies      
Our company, SymphonyCommerce.com, provide Amazon-like infrastructure for eCommerece.
rawoke083600 2 days ago 0 replies      
In south africa.. try www.pricecheck.co.za
Ask HN: What billing system do you use?
4 points by jackmodern  17 hours ago   2 comments top 2
gt565k 17 hours ago 0 replies      
I think you are looking for a payment processor.

If so, Stripe is great, and it appears to have mobile libs as well:


nkkollaw 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Most companies use Stripe.
Ask HN: Have any side projects from Show HN gone big?
244 points by farm_code  4 days ago   165 comments top 32
antirez 4 days ago 4 replies      
I did not put "Show HN" in the title when I posted Redis here, but an HN post was the first announcement I did.
gnicholas 3 days ago 4 replies      
I was working as a corporate lawyer, and I posted a Show HN [1] before going to lunch one day. I came back and it was at #1, and it stayed there for over 12 hours. This led to a feature in Fast Company [2] and press in over 20 different languages. After winning a couple startup competitions, I quit my day job and now do BeeLine Reader [3] full-time.

We have 70k users on our first-party tools, plus many more on our licensed products. Our tech is licensed by the CA Public Libraries, CNET, Bookshare, and others. Our funding comes from the Intel Edu Accelerator (ICAP) as well as various awards for education and social-impact entrepreneurship [4].

I really appreciate the feedback from the community, which helped me understand what the market opportunity was and what our customer segments are (didn't realize how big edu would be).

1: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6335784

2: http://www.fastcodesign.com/3018118/can-colored-text-turn-yo...

3: http://www.beelinereader.com

4: see https://stanfordbases.wordpress.com/tag/beeline-reader/ and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2T9g4uy60oc

[updated to add press and award links]

louprado 3 days ago 1 reply      
Somewhat related, it wasn't Show HN but show YC that turned my side-project into a business. YC's Application has the question "what have you hacked that wasn't a computer". That question compelled me to create a hack that converted a cheap ($10 in some cases) bluetooth headset into a garage door opener compatible with any smartphone. It didn't even require an App. I posted a Youtube video and then submitted my eventually rejected YC application. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6cAtso2tzMo

So many people watched that video they started asking me to sell the fully assembled project. Soon a polite C & D -ish letter from Samsung forced me to stop selling until I made my own hardware which I did in November of 2014.

5 years later I still have growth and sales. Next year I hope to make an enterprise version that would allow shipping companies to leave packages in your garage when you aren't home. I'll be sure to post that on Show HN. Regardless I owe YC a lot of gratitude as just the process of applying changed my life.

capnrefsmmat 3 days ago 1 reply      
This isn't exactly a software project, but I posted in a "What are you working on?" thread three years ago about my book, Statistics Done Wrong: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6619796

Someone posted it on the front page soon after: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6675843

Now it's a book published by No Starch, has sold 25,000 copies, and has been translated into German, Korean, and Chinese: https://www.statisticsdonewrong.com/

I doubt I would have finished as soon as I did without that initial attention to spur me on, and wouldn't have been able to wrangle up as much attention without that chance post on HN blowing up and bringing me visitors. (It ended up posted on Boing Boing, Metafilter, and various other places too.)

Now I'm a year or two from finishing a PhD in statistics and wondering if there's another book I need to write, or perhaps a second edition -- doing actual statistical work with real scientists makes the points in my book even more clear to me, and the need even clearer.

bharani_m 4 days ago 0 replies      
I did a Show HN for Resumonk back in 2012: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3934370

I was in college then and found making a well-formatted resume a huge pain when I was applying for internships. I met my Co-Founder also via that particular post and went full time on it after passing out of college.

We are bootstrapped, pay ourselves well and work remotely. Not sure if that qualifies as a 'big' success, but we receive these kind of comments from our users that make us super happy - https://www.resumonk.com/testimonials

Related discussion: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12030863

silverlight 3 days ago 4 replies      
I did a Show HN for Roll20 right after launching: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=4532754

We now have almost 2 million users and a small team working on it full-time. I definitely originally thought it would only be a side project...

moqups 3 days ago 2 replies      
Moqups: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=4222992

We're still bootstrapped and fairly small (< 25 employees including the founders). We've grown organically to about 1 million users since then. The feedback we've got on our submission back then gave us enough courage to go from just a pet side-project to a full time business, so Big Thanks HN! That day was one of the happiest days in the history of our business.

nixy 4 days ago 1 reply      
ThomPete 4 days ago 0 replies      
Not shure about your definition of big but https://www.ghostnoteapp.com is doing pretty well. Living in NY with a family being the sole provider it doesent work, but had we moved somewhere less expensive it probably could and i am growing both rev, userbase and product

Here is the original Show HN.


pcarmichael 3 days ago 4 replies      
I posted an Ask HN to review my side project PCPartPicker about six years ago. Got great feedback and things grew from there. I went full-time, had to hire employees, etc. Not big like Dropbox, but we made it over the hump self-funded and without taking investment.


kevinwang 4 days ago 2 replies      
Not a show hn, but 2048 went pretty big. I don't know if this was the starting point or not; https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=7373566
juanre 3 days ago 0 replies      
http://greaterskies.com, back in 2011 (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3066684), personalized high-resolution maps of the sky as seen from a place and at a time.

Amazing how time passes. It's been more than 10 years since I started, and it is still my side project and not big by HN standards. But it is making now many times over what I make in my day job as an engineer in Cambridge, and it's been featured in The Guardian Christmas gift list this year.

josephwandile 3 days ago 0 replies      
Fairly certain that Segment (https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/segment-io#/entity) debuted on HN. The original business was failing, but they decided to give it a last shot and posted their open-sourced code from v1.

You can hear Peter talk about it with Aaron Harris here: https://soundcloud.com/akharris/startup-school-radio-episode...

sashthebash 3 days ago 0 replies      
In 2011 I did a Show HN for a project called StorageRoom (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2616041) and got some interesting feedback.

Five years, a name change and a complete rewrite later Contentful (https://www.contentful.com) has raised a Series B (total funding close to $20m), got ~100 employees and customers ranging from Jack in the Box, over Nike to Urban Outfitters.

It's been a wild ride, and it doesn't look like it's going to be over anytime soon :)

marknadal 3 days ago 0 replies      
Yes, we immediately got picked up by an SF accelerator, then I was able to raise a seed round from billionaire investors Tim Draper and Marc Benioff of Salesforce. Then hired a team, got an MVP out to developers and gained a ton of traction, and now we're about to launch our stable/production-ready release!

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9076558For our Open Source Firebase: http://gun.js.org/ !

gorkemcetin 3 days ago 0 replies      
Countly started as a hobby like 4 years ago and it was open source (still is, most parts). Now it tracks more than 11K Android apps according to Mobbo.com, which makes Countly #7 the most used mobile analytics platform. Team is still small (<15), bootstrapped and added a lot more features on top till then. Roughly 1900 stars pn Github. Not bad ;)


adnanh 4 days ago 0 replies      
Don't know what your definition of 'big' is, but my open source project webhook got some attention after posting Show HN: https://github.com/adnanh/webhook

Anything >0 is better than 0... :-)

chrischen 3 days ago 0 replies      
Instapainting.com. And I've been showing HN ever since.
Rezo 3 days ago 0 replies      
Cloudcraft: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=10722942

Show HN was the first place I posted about it, almost exactly one year ago. Today it is doing very well, used by companies large and small to visualize their AWS environments.

laksmanv 3 days ago 1 reply      
I launched SideProjectBook.com on HN. It ended up netting ~$15K that month, not sure if that is considered "big."
borski 4 days ago 4 replies      
Don't know if we count as big yet, but we're doing very very well: https://www.tinfoilsecurity.com
nailer 3 days ago 0 replies      
CertSimple was announced with a 'Show HN' post ( https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9210908 ) that led to its first paying customer. We did around 12K GBP in revenue last month and have Travis CI, CrowdCube, and Motley Fool as customers.
john_mac 3 days ago 0 replies      
Virwire: https://virwire.com

Did a Show HN a few months ago, got very little 'comment' attention but still got a ton of new mobile users who have grown into a solid base. This was the only promotion to date.

Small bootstrapped team, Virwire is PoC of crowd curated news for millennials.

leafo 3 days ago 0 replies      
itch.io: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=5445029

I don't know where the big cutoff is, but it's been going strong for the past 3.5 years. There are just under 50k games on it now https://itch.io

shanbhag 3 days ago 0 replies      
Ask HN: How was your experience hiring a white hat hacker?
22 points by jklontz  1 day ago   5 comments top 5
big_youth 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm a white hat hacker!

I think a better question is what are you looking for or what type of organization do you run or work for? A good security firm can provide application reviews to find everything from xss bugs in your web app to remote code execution in kernel components. This is done either black-box or source assisted and staffed with a team reflective of the size and complexity of the application.

Another aspect of security assessments can be network and infrastructure, these generally mean someone running nmap and looking for entry ways further into your network. I am biased but my organization almost never fails to find critical bugs or breach networks.

I'm not a salesman but my firm is NCC Group, we are a global pure security consulting firm, which means we don't make or push products. We also have tons of research https://www.nccgroup.trust/us/our-research/ which you can check out to see a sample of what you be paying security consultants for.

uladzislau 1 day ago 0 replies      
HackerOne worked really well for us, it's a crowdsourced bounty based marketplace for white hat hackers.
elyrly 18 hours ago 0 replies      
Bugcrowd leaderboard provides insight into the top bounty hunters - https://bugcrowd.com/leaderboard
ladytron 1 day ago 0 replies      
My firm was referred to a firm that needed us through the leader of the local Python user group.

The client needed us to review code and act as a witness in a court case on very short notice.

It was interesting work, but a bit frightening once we did some research into the black hat hacker who had been warring with the client.

I would say to make sure you are hiring a WHITE hat hacker, and pay accordingly. Do your research, check recommendations by past clients and the community, and do a background check at minimum.

martenmickos 1 day ago 0 replies      
The safest and most convenient way of hiring a white hat hacker (a.k.a. ethical hacker) is to run a bug bounty program and get the input of many of them.

HackerOne is the leading bug bounty platform.

Ask HN: What has your experience with DreamHost's DreamCompute been?
13 points by sgloutnikov  1 day ago   4 comments top 3
gbraad 21 hours ago 0 replies      
I have had good experience. Support has answered as question in a timely fashion. I moved from Linode to Dreamhost to consolidate and lower my annual costs and so far it has done so.

I am however at the moment bound to one datacenter and this is very limiting when compared to Digital Ocean. Diskspace offered in cheap and plentiful...

I use cloudflare, so the lack of other DC locations is not a big deal (although, would be appreciated).

freestockoption 1 day ago 0 replies      
I used it when they were beta around 1.5-2 years ago. The pricing was great back then. $50/mo for a pool of storage, cpu, and memory you could use to construct VMs of different sizes.

However, there were hiccups in the beta. Namely, the block storage kept flaking out and causing kernel panics. The downtime from that caused me to stop using it after experiencing this issue in the span of a month. Their customer support was good, though.

I hope they resolved their glitches. Because other than the flaky storage, I really liked the feature set. Their networking stack was really nice too.

jazoom 1 day ago 1 reply      
How have I never heard about this? Thanks for mentioning it.
Ask HN: Services vs. Products How to Combine the Two Under One Brand?
27 points by znq  1 day ago   12 comments top 5
roel_v 1 day ago 2 replies      
To make money providing services, you do what the customer asks. To make money providing products, you build what the customer needs.

I realize how tempting it is to lump it all under 'writing software' and calling it a day, but the culture at a services company is very different from a product company, in my experience. Plus it's really hard to give your customers a USP when you're essentially saying 'we do everything!' which you don't, unless you're 5k people big.

"From a company and team perspective I see no problem in doing both: services and products."

Yeah I'm going to have to disagree on this one. Sure it's fine in the beginning, but it's just a major pain once you start having regular release cycles and project deadlines that don't match, conflicts when some employees are more 'service providers' and others more 'product builders' (the two require different personalities, imo), cash flow and compensation differences and many more.

There are many companies who were in this position once, and all that I know made a choice of one or the other (usually product, that's where the money is if the product is good; services is a cost plus business). There were a few talks on this topic on the BoS conference in Dublin earlier this year, it's probably a recurring theme - I'm sure there have been more talks on it over the years.

znq 1 day ago 2 replies      
...Continuation of the above question...

So my question is, does it even make sense to put everything under one brand? Were hesitating to create too many brands, because it means having a lot of duplicated effort for brand-building and marketing. We're also an engineering company at the core and marketing and brand-building is not necessarily what we're good at or enjoy doing.

I currently see the following options:

1) Put both services and products under the name of Mobile Jazz. Products like Bugfender will appear on the website, blog and social streams of Mobile Jazz. The disadvantage is that were targeting completely different audiences and the mixed messages might be very confusing.

2) Leave the services branch continue under the name of Mobile Jazz, but create a new separate brand for each product with its own blog and social streams, e.g. bugfender.com. This way the marketing can be very targeted to each specific niche, however the disadvantage is that every product needs a lot of marketing effort despite the shared audience (developers).

3) Leave services continue under the name of Mobile Jazz, but create a new umbrella brand for products with its own blog and social streams. This way we can address the shared audience (developers) with just one targeted marketing effort. Disadvantage: were marketing developers in general, but maybe not enough the niches that our products are for.

Maybe Im overthinking all this. But I believe someone else must have been in such a situation before. Would be great to get some feedback or maybe just a different perspective.

[1] http://mobilejazz.com/

[2] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9346726

[3] https://mobilejazz.com/blog/working-remotely-from-a-tropical...

[4] https://bugfender.com/

(EDIT: formatting)

codegeek 1 day ago 0 replies      
This is what I will do in this situation:

1. Keep the "Parent Brand" going. In this case, Mobile Jazz. Have the mobile jazz website list all your "children" brands including Product ABC or Service XYZ whatever. Make a portfolio page showing all the children brands on this site (children can be product or service)

2. For each "child" brand (which is a product or service), setup their own website separately and market them as needed. On the footer of the website somewhere, mention the parent brand as "ABC is a sister/child company under Mobile Jazz". Also perhaps on an "About" page of the child brand, mention Mobile Jazz as the parent to establish more trust and reputation.

That way, you establish the individual products/services as their own brand but still link them all with Mobile Jazz.

If a child brand becomes huge, no problem. It still has its own branding anyway.

Fun fact: Did you know that the popular invoice service called "Freshbooks" is actually a child of "2NDSITE Inc". I remember freshbooks used to have this in their footer but now they have it in their terms and conditions.

eb0la 1 day ago 1 reply      
I think that using different brands for products and services makes sense if your organization has a very clear division between the product and service parts and you have no gains joining that parts, like getting cross-selling or upselling.

In that case I would use a single brand for the services and another one for the product divisions. In the end they will be different business units with their own budget, right?

For instance, support will be very different for one kind of business than the other.


DO use different branding -at least a minimal one- for all products just for discoverability. I mean, every product should have its website (like a brochure) and might have a blog, twitter account, facebook page, and so on. Use that accounts for _minimal_ stuff like announcing bugfixes or new releases. If the product goes well, invest in marketing (hire or buy) but it's very important to secure the social assets now.

mindcrash 1 day ago 1 reply      
The worst thing possible is mixed messaging, so what I should do is draw a clear line between Mobile Jazz "the services company" and Bugfender "the product". So each with their own marketing channels etc. However, to get traffic (potential customers) across I would think its a good idea to make some noise on the Mobile Jazz website (since it already is a strong brand) to get people across towards the Bugfender website to help build its own seperate brand. Also make sure that people can see that Bugfender is a product of Mobile Jazz (due to brand building), so I would make sure to include "Bugfender by Mobile Jazz" instead of just "Bugfender" in all my messaging. At least until it can stand on its own two feet.

My two cents. Hope it helps :)

Ask HN: How do you choose a name for your product / service?
24 points by finspin  1 day ago   15 comments top 9
Jemaclus 1 day ago 2 replies      
I don't have any ideas about picking good names, but one rule of thumb about picking names is that it should pass the bar test. The bar test is simple: if you're in a loud bar, and someone asks you the name of your company, and you tell them, they should be able to go home and type it into Google exactly and know what it is.

For example, "Microsoft" is a good one, as are Captain 401K, Uber, and Stripe, because it's made of real words or are easy to spell and remember.

On the other hand, company names like "Shypmate" or "Cymmetria" are poor choices, because they sound close enough to regular words but are spelled differently. Another thing to consider is whether one word sounds like another. For example, a company I used to work for, RentJuice, was often misheard as "RentJews". I used to joke that it was a Jewish escort service...

Anyway, it's not a foolproof way to come up with GOOD names, but it's a simple way to identify names that are weak, especially when it comes to the ability to spread by word of mouth.

codegeek 1 day ago 0 replies      
Don't over think it of course but here are some guidelines:

- Not longer than 7-8 characters

- If you go for something unconventional, it should be easy to pronounce (very important. "Google" was unconventional but easy to pronounce)

- Try not to use a dash or even numbers unless it is relevant like 411.com etc. Because if you do, then I have to think. Is it 1 or one ?

- Don't make me think if I have to type your domain on my browser/phone etc. Spelling should be easy too

- If the name gives me an idea of what you do, really great. But not required. For example, careerbuilder.com gives me an idea but monster doesn't. If I never heard of either, i can easily guess which one is related to careers and jobs potentially.

eble 1 day ago 0 replies      
Having a good name is good thing. But the service you are building must be of high value. First build a great product, then name it whatever you want, rename it whenever you want.
jimsojim 1 day ago 1 reply      
Recently came across this interesting guide on this: https://www.igorinternational.com/process/igor-naming-guide....
bharani_m 1 day ago 0 replies      
I had a lot of trouble coming up with a good name/domain for my side project. I tried a few name suggestion tools [1][2] but wasn't satisfied with the results.

I was browsing through this site called FreshDrop [3] which lists expired/expiring domains and stumbled across a nice name - Metriculator.

Luckily metriculator.com and the social media handles were available. This might not work for everyone but is definitely worth a try.

[1] http://impossibility.org/

[2] http://www.leandomainsearch.com/

[3] https://www.freshdrop.com/

supernormal 1 day ago 0 replies      
I like Ben's approach to naming products/services - http://blog.pieratt.com/post/77293289254/a-3-step-process-fo...

The name does not directly need to coincide with its inherent value, paint the picture with your personal or teams values.

taprun 1 day ago 1 reply      
I used http://leandomainsearch.com and found a six letter domain that was made up of two English words. The name has nothing to do with my offering, but it's short and easy to pronounce / spell without any confusion.

Bonus: Since it was available, it only cost 99 cents for the first year (with coupon).

asteadman 1 day ago 1 reply      
no. name picking is a rabbit hole, proving your product/service is far more important. pick something unique so that people can google it and come up with a meaningful result. If it becomes a problem, you can always change it AFTER you've proven your idea.
Ask HN: Whats the best city/state for self-taught web devs without a degree?
59 points by Onixelen  1 day ago   54 comments top 23
rubicon33 1 day ago 7 replies      
Build something.

This transcends geography. Show competency by building something that demonstrates your technical ability. Better yet, build 2 things.

Be able to demo your projects, and talk at length about the technical challenges in building them.

That said, your best best is always going to be small / medium sized companies. Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc. are mostly going to be looking for solid CS fundamentals in their interview. Unless you've taken a Data Structures & Algorithms class recently, you can forget working there.

santoriv 1 day ago 0 replies      
I don't know how anyone could answer this question accurately unless they've gone through the process of applying for jobs in many different cities when they had no work experience.

In San Francisco I was able to break into the market - it didn't happen quickly - it took a couple of years to move from free websites for friends to part-time work to a full-time salaried position. I have a music performance degree. That was about six years ago.

My sister was able to break into a real job much more quickly. She had a degree from UC Berkeley in Oceanography and then went to Hack Reactor for a couple of months. After a couple of months of applying for jobs, she got a pretty decent salaried position. This was from late 2015 to early 2016.

When you are starting out, it seems like getting a job is a matter of

1) Having a portfolio of work demonstrating that you can code

2) Applying to a ton of jobs

The San Francisco Bay Area has so many jobs that you can apply to positions literally all day long.

Good luck!

wbeckler 1 day ago 0 replies      
If you can code well and get freelance gigs, and if you are completely flexible, you might want to consider becoming a global nomad. I'm sitting in Medellin, Colombia right now with a team of developers from around the world who are here because their money goes three times as far as anywhere else with this level of quality of life.
turc1656 1 day ago 1 reply      
I don't know enough to say whether or not it's the best but...NYC is great for developers of a certain personality type. Specifically in the finance industry. There are a lot of corporate HQ's here that maintain large systems and have public and internal websites and services that require maintenance. Being friendly with Dev/IT staff at my current and previous employer, I can attest to the fact that they all say finding people who can actually code well is very tough. They seem to not think highly of college degrees, purely because the colleges are handing out degrees to people who can't code. That is the major reason they care far less about the degree. Another reason is that the IT guys in finance (and probably most places) care a lot less about "pedigree" or some kind of perceived educational status. Pretty much all of the corporate lawyers and execs where I am are all Ivy League educated. Dev/IT doesn't care about that if you can do the job - and they have easily testable methods to verify you can actually do the job, as we all know. The biggest roadblock is getting the interview in the first place if you don't have the usual background. In that case, you would probably need to know someone who works for the company to help get your resume in front of someone.

Also of note - I have seen a lot of very talented developers leave the financial companies I have worked for because they find the Dev work unexciting and they view their continued learning as stunted or completely nonexistent. They all seem to hate supporting line-of-business applications for whatever reason. That being said, it usually pays pretty well because these are business critical services that support either a large user base or are behind a large amount of money. Case in point - the brother of a friend of mine never went to college but was a self-taught programmer and is extremely talented - he works for a hedge fund running their entire infrastructure and makes more than double what I make.

If the corporate thing isn't your style, there are also a fair amount of startups here in NYC. But I don't have enough knowledge about them to comment on compensation, job stability, work culture, etc.

malisper 1 day ago 0 replies      
I have some experience with this since I went straight from high school to working in San Francisco. I don't know about the best city for someone without degree, but the best city for tech by far is San Francisco. To give you an idea of how dense the tech scene is in SF, the headquarters of Uber, Square, and Twitter, are all within two blocks of each other. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of other tech companies just a few blocks further from there.

As for companies, I have found it much easier to interview at larger companies than smaller ones. When I applied to three larger companies (Uber, Google, Dropbox) all of who were interviewed me and eventually made me an offer. I also applied to six smaller companies, of which four rejected me without interview, and the remaining two wound up making me offers.

Since I was unsure whether I would be able to get a job or not, I deferred from college for a year, so I could always go back if I couldn't find a job. Depending on your situation, this may or may not apply to you.

gigatexal 1 day ago 2 replies      
Portland, Oregon -- if you got skills and can prove it you will get hired.
vvanders 1 day ago 0 replies      
Not web-dev but self-taught(did college for a few years but landed a job in industry so I didn't complete).

Your best bet is to target small companies/startups to build experience. Large corporations tend to filter out candidates without a degree and extensive experience. Prove that you can deliver and the rest will follow.

Also don't stop learning, you will have gaps and the only way to fill them out is to get off the comfortable path and dig into domains that you might not traditionally work on.

cdubzzz 1 day ago 0 replies      
I get the impression that the Washington, D.C. area is probably good for this. There are a massive number of non-profits and other "associations" here with varying budgets and needs. Many of them will turn to larger IT consultant companies, but direct hire and contract work is probably still pretty solid in the area just because there are so very many organizations and they all want websites.
arikr 1 day ago 1 reply      
san francisco hands down. hopefully will change in the future, but hasn't yet
settsu 1 day ago 1 reply      
There's probably a general cultural or sociological alignment to such openness you could identify in an area but the best chances are likely where the demand simply outstrips the supply enough that companies will be more flexible in their hiring.

Personally, I have zero degrees and no formal education in ANYTHING, not to mention a general distaste for traditional classroom training in general, yet starting with a graphic design job that fell in my lap in 1998 (it's who you know...), I've simply developed my skills "organically" (?) and parlayed each position into the next, having worked as a web developer (at loosely-run non-profits and for very traditionally-structured government contractors), UX architect (at a very well-known company/domain name provider), UI developer (financial institution), and now as software engineer building web apps for a very narrow vertical market.

While my first "real" office job was Southern California (in an inland bedroom community 1 hour north of San Diego), the bulk of my career has spanned 2 geographic areas: Phoenix and Denver (mostly the suburbs, at that.) Relocating to both did entail factoring in the availability of relevant jobs but was more about what I wanted for my life at the time the decision was made.

It's highly unlikely I'd ever be a strong candidate for a Silicon Valley-type company or a startup, which is fine wth me since I'm a work-to-live type temperament and have never been the "work hard, play hard" type. But I also have a seemingly natural desire to be a good employee & coworker and like to be proud of the quality of work I do. Some of that might be a result of the "leadership development" that was unofficially required in my first job.

The foundations for my career are only based in teenage dabbling in software (coding BASIC on a TRS-80 in the early 90s, reverse engineering the HTML in webpages to build my own in the mid-90s) and a general technical bent overlaid with creative tendencies. Having a nearly insatiable thirst for knowledge probably helps too...

Roritharr 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm german so can't answer your question directly. But what worked for me to maintain a career after quitting university to pursue my own startup was to work as a subcontractor for larger agencies. You get these types of jobs mostly through your network, have to do some hustling and accepting a low "first project" rate, but if you leave a good enough impression that leaves you as a "safe choice" you'll quickly get projects of ever increasing importance. After a while of this your resume should include big enough projects and brand names that your lack of degree is only a footnote compared to the experience obviously on display.
up_and_up 1 day ago 0 replies      
Self-taught web dev here. Just have a solid portfolio and solid github account. Focus on small and medium sized companies which will care less. Should not matter where you are. Two Lead guys at a former startup I was at, did not have degree. Chops matter.
tdb7893 1 day ago 2 replies      
Best bet would be to just apply for jobs everywhere and move wherever you get the best offer
gdulli 1 day ago 0 replies      
I would imagine any city that's leaning more towards demand than supply is going to make it easy for a self-taught developer to get hired. (Assuming that developer is good. A bad developer with a degree will have an easier time getting hired than a bad developer without a degree.)

And I think most if not all of the larger cities are like this. I have personal experience with Boston, SF, San Diego. In 20 years I've never seen a market that wasn't good for developers.

rifung 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm not really self taught as I did go to college but I didn't finish my degree. I managed to get my first job after a few months in the Silicon Valley (San Jose, not SF).

I don't know how much my not having a degree really mattered after that but my last 4 jobs were in Seattle. I suspect I may have been "leveled" at one of my jobs based on my not having a degree though, but I can't say for sure.

languagehacker 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'll throw Austin out there as the place where I met the most self-taught web developers, even with a pretty good computer science department at UT. The startup culture there is a bit more laid-back and open-minded, in my opinion, and I think this translates into giving anyone who wants to break into the industry more of a chance so long as they can exhibit competency.
fencepost 1 day ago 0 replies      
Don't focus on location. College is a way to shortcut the "I have training/experience and/or am able to learn" requirement, so without that you're going to need to prove that you have the skills, experience or ability to learn.

Mucking about with location is going to turn into a side quest that will just distract you from the important things.

Raphmedia 1 day ago 0 replies      
You can get in pretty good jobs in Montreal but the average pay is waaaayyy lower than in the USA.
desbo 1 day ago 0 replies      
London is good. I'm a self-taught dev who moved from tech support to QA to engineering. There's a lot of work here and quite a bit of competition, but I wouldn't say not having a degree has been a problem.
komali2 1 day ago 0 replies      
I moved to SF from Houston, began self learning, and joined a bootcamp. It was financially stressful and terrifying and I'm still paying off personal debts accrued, but I believe I would have had a much harder time in a different city. I was a recruiter before, and I say, go where the jobs are.

If you hop on linkedin and search "front end" and filter to Bay Area, posted last 24hrs, you should see ~1000 jobs (maybe not this month). Per Day. Every day there are thousands of jobs opened up that are very open to the idea of a self taught or bootcamp educated person. Basically, this city seems much more of a meritocratic system than Houston or Austin, other cities I'm familiar with. Also, the pay is excellent out here.

I second what others are saying about portfolios. I always say, if I asked you to make pong in your given language, you should be able to do so in a couple of hours from scratch and be able to send it to me to run on my computer/phone. That's the level you want to be at and that's the kind of apps that should be on your portfolio.

I have gone into more detail of my experience at my blog: blog.calebjay.com, and the archive section links to my older blog with some other details about my transition. I'm also happy to speak with anybody here or privately through email (see my profile) that's interested in how they can make this happen for themselves.

I moved from a crap job, a crap life (financially, I'm a happy guy otherwise), and really no future to an engineer. I went from having no future to having a guaranteed career, forever, barring catastrophic global economic collapse. I really can't express the feeling of having the weight of future-worry taken off my shoulders, but I know I want as many people that were where I was at a year ago to feel it, and I will go out of my way to help any way I can.

EDIT: Here, this link may take you directly to a search that demonstrates what I mean https://www.linkedin.com/jobs/search?keywords=%28%E2%80%9Cso...

That's the query I used in my job search, it worked quite well. Bay Area also has the highest concentration of startups and smaller companies that are notoriously open to non-traditionally educated developers. Try changing the location to Houston, Denver, Austin, Seattle, the entire state of Wisconsin, DC, etc and notice the difference. Try searching on angel.co in those cities. I think unarguably the Bay Area has the highest concentration of jobs open to self-educated developers, the question is, can you afford to live here for the several months it may take you to get a job?

kapauldo 1 day ago 1 reply      
We are hiring, if you're interested please email me my handle at gmail.
wcummings 1 day ago 0 replies      
Cambridge ain't bad
Chos89 1 day ago 0 replies      
Not Germany.
Ask HN: How do you get started in freelancing?
38 points by tbirrell  2 days ago   13 comments top 8
codegeek 2 days ago 0 replies      
There is no magic answer to this. You are just like 1000s of others who are trying to get a piece of the freelance pie. So you need to differentiate yourself.


You need to know how to sell and market yourself.

Some steps:

1. Build an online presence. Start a blog, a simple website whatever. Write about topics you want to focus on to get clients. For example, lets say you want to find clients in a specific domain say online learning. Write blog posts on that topic, If you cannot do it yourself, try to find someone who can write for you (not ideal but better than nothing)

2. Inbound marketing (related to Step 1 above). It is a lot better if clients can find you than you finding them. Take this free course from hubspot (no affiliation, just a happy student)


3. Share code with public. Get a public github profile and do stuff there (build projects. Anything. small or large)

4. Build an audience. Start a youtube channel. Record screencasts of what you know. Anything. E.g. How to install WordPress on your computer ? Plenty of videos out there but people always like quality stuff

5. Join existing open source projects. Become a contributor. Fix some bugs. Send a pull request.

6. Create an online course and offer for free on udemy. Join freenode and offer help on topics you are good at

There are many more but this is to give you an idea. Rinse and repeat. Unfortunately in 2016, you cannot just get freelance jobs by posting a profile unless you want to compete on the low end sites like upwork etc for $10/Hour.

kayman 2 days ago 0 replies      
What not to do:- Hang a shingle and wait for them to come to you.

What to do:- Approach potential clients- Reach out to people, start getting used to it. Even if it doesn't go anywhere, get in the habit.

- Reach out to old colleagues for no reason than catching up.- End goal: Build relationships. Build Trust.

As far as where to get your first clients, I've had real world success with the following methods:

- Mailing lists A lot of times people ask on mailing lists when they need help with something. Every once in a while, you'll get an email from someone with some work they need done. If you've been part of the mailing list a long time, you can approach them as: Hey, I'm xyz. I've been part of mailing-A for long time. I am (insert why you're suited to help) Ask to move the discussion offline to a phone call.

- Meetups Meeting someone here already shows you care/know the topic at hand. You can see them face to face. Socialize without agenda. Towards the end and beginning, listen for announcements for work/jobs. Approach them after the meeting.

- Recruitment agencies. Yes, I know you said freelancing but these agencies are hubs of work to be done. It's just a matter of how you position your relationship with client and recruitment agency. It's a good way to expand your network circle. Best time to make a sale is when you don't need to make a sale.

 It will be easier to approach potential clients in similar industries with "Hey I work for client-a in your industry. I see you do great at X. I'd like to reach out and pick your brain if possible." This will open the conversation.
I'd approach freelancing with the mindset of: "Hey I'm good at ABC. I can help you with XYZ. Are we a fit? Is it worth us having a conversation to find out?"

My background/experience: I have more work than I can handle at the moment. (that's with only a handful of clients as I'm a 1man band.)Had to figure out the business parts myself through trial and error.

nvahalik 1 day ago 0 replies      
I recently made the switch to being a freelancer. However, I was a bit forced into it as the company I worked for split and we got acquired. I was technically a contractor there but there were some differences and it was not the best place for me. But, I digress.

First off, I had to be convinced. Having people who believed in me was a huge help. Granted, the people who were encouraging me to do this were also looking to work with me, they had some incentive to do this.

Second, I had some great relationships established. People that knew me and wanted to work with me specifically. It took a long time to get into positions to create those relationships and a bit longer for them to turn into something positive, but building (and maintaining relationships) is key.

Third, the thing that sealed the deal for me was going to a local 2-day conference where a lot of people were looking for work. I spent about $300 in travel and expenses for that conference (and I had a session there too). It generated some significant business for me and I'm still working with and talking to people I met there every couple of weeks.

Lastly, I had faith. Yes, I mean in the religious sense. At the end of the day, I believe that God provides for me and my family and that I am ultimately a steward of the people and projects that come to me. Where some might attribute things to "fate" or "happenstance"I've gone from "don't know what I'm doing in 2 weeks" to "booked out for the next 2-3 months" in a matter of days. Plan and consider the future but also realize that you are only in control of what you do and how you treat the projects and clients you have.

sebg 2 days ago 1 reply      
https://doubleyourfreelancing.com/category/start-freelancing... is a good place to start. No affiliation, though have purchased some of his products in the past and they were superb.

Specifically to your question regarding first client -> https://doubleyourfreelancing.com/3-easy-steps-to-finding-yo...

Mz 2 days ago 1 reply      
This will basically be a custom job. Every freelancer does it differently.

It would help to start by putting together a portfolio and then putting the word out that you are available. This can be started with just putting a blurb in your HN profile and on social media, where it seems appropriate.

That will not likely magically solve your problem. But it starts the ball rolling.

You can also participate in HN's monthly "Freelancer? Seeking Freelancer?" post on the first of every month. Keep your eye out for the next one.

amerkhalid 2 days ago 0 replies      
Back in a day when I was freelancing, I joined local Chamber of Commerce. That brought me more business than anything else. It was mostly simple WordPress/informational websites for local businesses.
zerr 2 days ago 1 reply      
You need to be proactive, contact first, offer your services, explain how you can help with their tasks, cold emails, etc...

Do not get into trap of freelancing sites such as oDesk, toptal, .... they are the middle-man, you should eliminate the middle-man. Always contact potential clients directly.

HeyLaughingBoy 2 days ago 0 replies      
Everything I know about business could fit in a thimble, but I do know this: don't wait for anyone to come to you.
Ask HN: Employers of Mid Front end Devs, whats the min you'd want in a portfolio?
8 points by rex-mundi  1 day ago   4 comments top 2
axvk 18 hours ago 0 replies      
It's nice to know that given a large amount of JS, this person won't create a single file and dump everything in there. I want to see code organization and deployment techniques. My concern is how the code will scale.

Most people have tiny code examples. A company looking to hire someone full time will need someone to create entire platforms where things like caching become critical.

You have to prove that you can work well with the existing huge codebase and won't make it horrible for others to read your code.

wwalser 1 day ago 1 reply      
I'm not quite sure what you mean by "Mid Front end Devs". Do you mean not Jr and not Sr? I guess I wouldn't be quite sure how to express that either :|

I've interviewed tons of front end devs, all for product companies whose candidates are fairly different to an agency (agencies candidates with personal portfolios are likely more common). Having a portfolio at all is rare. Most anything that shows that you're active in your craft will be a plus. Github profiles are common but honestly they, on average, show near-zero public activity. Obviously there are outliers who are active in open source but my own experience shows that even very good senior devs at well-funded startups don't have much time for open source except in the rare case where a specific OS tool becomes core to their employment.

Seriously, anything that shows that you used time outside of work to create things is a plus.

Ask HN: What did you learn from the no politics experiment?
6 points by jdp23  18 hours ago   5 comments top 4
anexprogrammer 17 hours ago 0 replies      
My take was it was too broad.

Several things got taken out for "political" that frankly shouldn't have been.

The post of YCs Winter Reading List, as the list contained some political volumes, was the most silly to my mind. Book lists usually spin up excellent recommendations in the comments and are especially topical this time of year. Yet it got flagged off the front page and discussion died.

An international story completely unrelated to US or EU politics, Trump or Brexit etc.

unlikelymordant 9 hours ago 1 reply      
I learned some people get really bent out of shape if you tell them they can't talk about politics for a week. I noticed heaps of people complaining. As far as content goes, I didn't notice a difference.
wingerlang 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I didn't even know it ended. I read the initial post but since then forgot about it and HN seemed like usual business.
codegeek 17 hours ago 0 replies      
I have a feeling that this post will turn political discussing what we learned from the no-politics experiment.
Ask HN: Who is using Kubernetes in Production?
13 points by jwaldrip  1 day ago   8 comments top 6
hijinks 1 day ago 0 replies      
I ran it at $job-1. It was fantastic once setup. We never had any issues with it and it autoscaled wonderfully.

The devs never had any issues of needing ops to add libraries/modules to servers. They just built them in their containers on dev and if it worked there the same Dockerfile was pushed to prod.

late2part 1 day ago 0 replies      
I am thinking about getting started on running it in production. I'd love to hear anecdotal stories with detail. You'd help me out a lot if you'd describe when you deployed it, what platform you used, how long it took, what phases or evolutions you went through, and what the biggest challenges were (people, technical, software, operational procedures, etc) - Thanks!!
eicnix 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm running kube in production with relative small challanges. The most of my problems can from the private openstack installation kubernetes was running on.

Do you have more information on the setup of kubernetes you are thinking of? Maybe you can get some feedback for it.

avitzurel 1 day ago 1 reply      
I am.

Also used Mesosphere (Marathon/mesos/chronos...) before in production.

sanswork 1 day ago 0 replies      
I am. We run a lot of smaller products so it allows me to easily share resources. It also fits really well into my gitlab ci setup for automated deployments.
eggie5 8 hours ago 0 replies      
eggie5.com is on k8s
traceroute bad.horse
29 points by nwatson  1 day ago   13 comments top 9
contingencies 1 day ago 1 reply      
13 bad.horse ( 163.913 ms 163.985 ms 164.169 ms

14 bad.horse ( 166.228 ms 169.604 ms 168.837 ms

15 bad.horse ( 172.249 ms 174.163 ms 172.610 ms

16 bad.horse ( 179.319 ms 179.022 ms 177.816 ms

17 he.rides.across.the.nation ( 185.482 ms 185.484 ms 185.454 ms

18 the.thoroughbred.of.sin ( 191.354 ms 191.344 ms 191.326 ms

19 he.got.the.application ( 197.463 ms 197.449 ms 197.421 ms

20 that.you.just.sent.in ( 203.248 ms 203.233 ms 203.213 ms

21 it.needs.evaluation ( 211.255 ms 211.224 ms 211.161 ms

22 so.let.the.games.begin ( 209.954 ms 207.521 ms 209.956 ms

23 a.heinous.crime ( 215.252 ms 215.207 ms 215.197 ms

24 a.show.of.force ( 221.786 ms 221.764 ms 221.738 ms

25 a.murder.would.be.nice.of.course ( 226.529 ms 226.508 ms 226.482 ms

26 bad.horse ( 232.953 ms 232.928 ms 232.903 ms

27 bad.horse ( 239.622 ms 233.570 ms 233.537 ms

28 bad.horse ( 238.506 ms 238.428 ms 238.412 ms

29 he-s.bad ( 245.090 ms 244.405 ms 244.384 ms

30 the.evil.league.of.evil ( 250.136 ms 250.135 ms 250.126 ms

... incidentally this reminds me of traceroute reply spoofing which I first saw demonstrated by Julian Assange at Seccon in Sydney in 1997.

chatmasta 1 day ago 1 reply      
So this is where all the IPv4 space went!
garaetjjte 1 day ago 0 replies      
What about playing tetris via traceroute?

 traceroute -I -q 1 -m 60 trh.milek7.gq
Each traceroute will print actual board state and move current piece by one line.To control, supply chars to trh subdomain: w-rotate, a-move left, d-move right, s-drop. It is possible to stack commands, eg.: traceroute to waas.trh.milek7.gq rotates current piece, moves two positions left and drops piece.ICMP mode (-I) is strongly recommended, on UDP ttl values somehow gets mangled and duplicated. IPv6 required (it would require HUGE amounts of ip addresses).

samhoggnz 19 hours ago 0 replies      
The cert for https://signed.bad.horse/ is pretty good, too.
Phithagoras 1 day ago 1 reply      
Link seems to bring me to the comments. Cannot find/access the story.
fred256 1 day ago 0 replies      
In somewhat similar vein: telnet towel.blinkenlights.nl
Zekio 1 day ago 1 reply      
Nice little story
odesian 1 day ago 0 replies      
Now I want to watch the movie
midnitewarrior 1 day ago 0 replies      
How poetic.
Ask HN: How much you make at Facebook?
15 points by thrwythrwy  1 day ago   5 comments top
Arcten 1 day ago 1 reply      
How many years of experience do you have? Salary is fairly tightly banded depending on your level E3 - E6+.

You can estimate level based on description here: https://www.quora.com/What-is-the-expectation-out-of-each-so...

       cached 9 December 2016 13:05:02 GMT