Podcast #33

by Jeff Atwood

on December 11, 2008

This is the thirty-third episode of the StackOverflow podcast, where Joel and Jeff sit down with special guest Babak Ghahremanpour, the lead developer for FogBugz.

  • I gifted the Fog Creek office with a set of cymbals for the Rock Band 2 drums, to complement the sweet Rock Band setup I bought for them earlier this year. And yes, I already got them a tambourine and cowbell.

  • We're starting to seriously consider buying our own servers and renting rackspace for the Stack Overflow servers. It makes sense to us from both from a financial standpoint and from a performance standpoint. We're also considering some of the cloud services like Amazon EC2 and Windows Azure.

  • We wonder why so much of the software that's bundled with hardware is so terrible. There's nothing scarier to me as a software developer than the DVD labelled "Install me!" provided with some bit of hardware that I just bought. Why is that?

  • I tend to agree that one danger sign for a new programming job is the requirement to be on call. This is a bit more normal for sysadmin positions, but it's unusual (and arguably unhealthy) for programmers.

  • Joel and I note that developing software predisposes you to "debug" real world processes that largely aren't worth the effort. Beware!

  • We've probably mentioned this before, but whatever else you decide to do with your database, it is incredibly important that you get your database under version control.

  • Does it make sense for every software developer to start their own company, which is what Paul Graham seems to advocate? It's certainly one of the few paths to becoming very wealthy, if that's your primary goal.

  • If you just can't get enough Spolsky, Joel was featured on the Startup Success podcast with Bob Walsh and Patrick Foley.

Our favorite Stack Overflow questions this week:

We answered the following listener questions on this podcast:

  1. Peter Bailey: "When you're designing a new application, how much code (triggers and stored procedures) do you put in the database?"

  2. Vincent Tan: "What are your top 3 costs in running a software business, and how do you reduce them?"

If you'd like to submit a question to be answered in our next episode, record an audio file (90 seconds or less) and mail it to podcast@stackoverflow.com. You can record a question using nothing but a telephone and a web browser. We also have a dedicated phone number you can call to leave audio questions at 646-826-3879.

The transcript wiki for this episode is available for public editing.

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