justin․searls․co

Interview: Don't sleep on Ruby & Rails

Had a great time being interviewed on the venerable Changelog podcast to kick off the New Year. We mostly discussed why Ruby and Rails were still relevant (if less flashy), but they also asked me to share a bit about Test Double's origin story:

If there's a spectrum, if there are two polar opposites between a staffing firm and a delivery firm that just claims to have figured out software development, like "We've found the silver bullet. Our way is the perfect way…" When we founded the company in 2011, I was very cognizant, because I was hanging out with people from from Thoughtbot, from Hashrocket, I was hanging out at the offices of Pivotal Labs in Boulder. And each of them had a different marketing strategy that basically said, "we've cracked the nut on software. If you're frustrated about software, pay us money and we will be the panacea to all these problems. Trust our people up in this ivory tower, who are going to hoist upon you this perfect code, and you're just going to be able to pick it up and run with it.

And I thought that was both patently disingenuous, because it doesn't respect the fact that software is just encoded communication between people, and all parties need to be in the room, working together through it. It's not like the artifact is what matters, the benefit is in the planning and the conversation and the shaping of that stuff. It's a joint collaborative exercise.

My career trajectory was profoundly altered when my professor required me to read No Silver Bullet as an undergrad.