Eating Our Own Careers Dogfood

by Jeff Atwood

on January 6, 2010

In software development circles, eating your own dogfood is shorthand for using your own software.

I was ecstatic the first time I used Stack Overflow to ask a programming question about the code that goes into Stack Overflow. And I was even more thrilled when I performed a programming related search that returned a useful Stack Overflow link in the results. This is "dogfooding" at its best.

Dogfood. There's nothing more delicious. Mmm, mmm good!

Well, I'm proud to announce that we've reached yet another dogfooding milestone -- we're thinking of hiring another programmer to work on Stack Overflow ... through Stack Overflow Careers. Naturally.

Now, this will just be a part-time gig to start. It's difficult to expand the Stack Overflow team because we all have the unusual benefit of extensive prior work history together. Jarrod and Geoff knew what they were getting into when they signed up -- we're like a happy little dysfunctional family. It's highly likely this will turn into a full time thing, but we need some time to get to know each other first.

Some broad guidelines:

  • Everyone on the SO team works remotely from home, and sets their own schedule (mostly). We communicate through Skype and email, so you can be anywhere in the world. Good communication skills and sweet internet connection are of course a must.

  • If you are in any way averse to the utility of an expedient hack, it is unlikely we're the right team for you. We appreciate elegance and continual refactoring as much as the next developer, but we love results even more.

  • We will be looking for people with some kind of track record on the public internet. Doesn't have to be an empire, but we want to see evidence of someone who ... do I really have to say it? ... is Smart and Gets Things Done.

  • While we are platform agnostic, the bulk of our work runs on Windows Server 2008, is written in C# 3.5 / ASP.NET MVC, and talks to SQL Server 2008. If any of that stuff is a turn-off, we're not the team for you.

Anyway, if you'd like to work on Stack Overflow with us, and the above guidelines seem reasonable -- I encourage you to list your CV at Stack Overflow Careers. Along with many other employers, that's where we will be looking. Because as responsible software developers, we gotta eat our own dogfood.