This weekend hundreds of students descended upon Microsoft NERD to learn about the latest web technologies for both development and design as well as what makes startups a great place to work. The first floor conference area was standing room only as students from 57 different New England schools eagerly listened and learned from great web experts like Dharmesh Shah, Angus Davis, John Resig, and Annie Wang. It was a lot of fun to put on the event and I picked up a few things watching the talks. I'd like to share some highlights and lessons learned from the event.
Have you ever wished you could leverage thousands of the smartest people on earth to make your projects more impressive, faster to develop, and easier to maintain? Free and open source software (F/OSS) allows programmers to do this every day. Here are the basics of how you can take advantage of this extraordinary movement and get involved yourself.
Some of the most misused and misunderstood terms in technology today are Web 2.0, the cloud, Agile, NoSQL, and HTML5. Today, I'd like to describe where NoSQL came from and how it applies to internet startups in Boston.
The first thing to know is that there is a bi-weekly NoSQL reading group every other Thursday at the Microsoft NERD Center. The next event is July 29th. We read the academic research papers on different techniques, eat dinner together, and discuss the papers, whiteboarding with a gorgeous view of Boston.## SQL
Developed in the 70s and relying heavily on mathematical theory to work efficiently, SQL is a language for talking to relational databases. SQL databases have worked so well that they've become the de facto standard for storing data, particularly on the web. You've no doubt interacted with thousands of web applications that used a SQL database.
As per the title of this post you might guess that I'm not going to pull any punches and I'm not. I am here to tell you flat out, if you are working on an early stage web startup and you have more business types then engineers on your team that you're doing something wrong. That's it, there is nothing more to it.
[Update]: Jason has told me that three sentences does not warrant a guest blog post and as I promised him a post I have to elaborate on my point a bit. So, let me start by providing you with a little history and some background on this point.
Who can recall the experience of attending a networking event and finding a swarm of bizdev guys all looking for the same thing: developers? Kabir Hemarajani wrote a great pieceon how to find a technically oriented individual. What happens after you find your developers and how many times have you witnessed a startup fail to progress when their development support falls out from under them? When starting up a company, it is essential for business oriented/non-technical people to know how to work with their development team.