Freelancing and side-projects on Rails
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Freelancing and side-projects on Rails

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5 min lightning talk covering some of the tools I use for managing freelance projects on Ruby on Rails

5 min lightning talk covering some of the tools I use for managing freelance projects on Ruby on Rails

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  • How I got started, not necessarily advice for you.\nQuick show of hands:\nHow many people have ever had a side-project, that you got paid for?\n\nHow many still have one that you occasionally help out on?\n\n\n
  • taking pictures at the @bluebox party\n
  • taking a picture of some of the schwag\nincluding a ticket for the scores gentleman’s club\n
  • the guy next to me says \n“throw some money in there, show em how we roll”\nWe laugh, we drink, we talk about PDF generation in Rails\n\nCould I help with a little clean up? just take a look\nwe exchange info, and 3 weeks later I’m committing to his project\nand have worked around 2-5hrs on his project each week since.\n
  • \n
  • \n
  • \n
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  • 1099 let’s me get some tax advantages on things I spend money on anyway\n\nDon’t take this as legal or tax advice. I’ve only been doing this for a year...odds are, I’ll need to make changes to my setup\n\nSince the first project, I’ve been asked to ‘help out’ on 6 different projects\n\n
  • 1099 let’s me get some tax advantages on things I spend money on anyway\n\nDon’t take this as legal or tax advice. I’ve only been doing this for a year...odds are, I’ll need to make changes to my setup\n\nSince the first project, I’ve been asked to ‘help out’ on 6 different projects\n\n
  • 1099 let’s me get some tax advantages on things I spend money on anyway\n\nDon’t take this as legal or tax advice. I’ve only been doing this for a year...odds are, I’ll need to make changes to my setup\n\nSince the first project, I’ve been asked to ‘help out’ on 6 different projects\n\n
  • 1099 let’s me get some tax advantages on things I spend money on anyway\n\nDon’t take this as legal or tax advice. I’ve only been doing this for a year...odds are, I’ll need to make changes to my setup\n\nSince the first project, I’ve been asked to ‘help out’ on 6 different projects\n\n
  • 1099 let’s me get some tax advantages on things I spend money on anyway\n\nDon’t take this as legal or tax advice. I’ve only been doing this for a year...odds are, I’ll need to make changes to my setup\n\nSince the first project, I’ve been asked to ‘help out’ on 6 different projects\n\n
  • why would you possibly want to work another 2-10hrs a week?\n\nfocus on areas of expertise, things that are interesting to me\n\nstuff I would have been doing to stay current anyway\nlike getting paid to write a blog post\n\n
  • \nworking with different versions of ruby, rails, database\nno longer know just one tool\nengineyard, heroku, slicehost, and self-hosted\nunderstand the basic need, and different tools for the job\n\n
  • Now that I’ve seen a direct relationship between my knowledge, speed, and the rate that I can charge, I invest more in my knowledge\n\nI feel that I need to be better and faster than the last guy\n\nI’m not the expert, I just know where to find the info\nkeep an eye on stackoverflow, linkedin, elance, odesk\n
  • Now that I’ve seen a direct relationship between my knowledge, speed, and the rate that I can charge, I invest more in my knowledge\n\nI feel that I need to be better and faster than the last guy\n\nI’m not the expert, I just know where to find the info\nkeep an eye on stackoverflow, linkedin, elance, odesk\n
  • Now that I’ve seen a direct relationship between my knowledge, speed, and the rate that I can charge, I invest more in my knowledge\n\nI feel that I need to be better and faster than the last guy\n\nI’m not the expert, I just know where to find the info\nkeep an eye on stackoverflow, linkedin, elance, odesk\n
  • Now that I’ve seen a direct relationship between my knowledge, speed, and the rate that I can charge, I invest more in my knowledge\n\nI feel that I need to be better and faster than the last guy\n\nI’m not the expert, I just know where to find the info\nkeep an eye on stackoverflow, linkedin, elance, odesk\n
  • Now that I’ve seen a direct relationship between my knowledge, speed, and the rate that I can charge, I invest more in my knowledge\n\nI feel that I need to be better and faster than the last guy\n\nI’m not the expert, I just know where to find the info\nkeep an eye on stackoverflow, linkedin, elance, odesk\n
  • in the process of managing these side projects, I’ve become more efficient in my 9-5, and have brought new ideas in\n
  • raising my rate has allowed me to\n plan a vacation\n buy an enormous swingset for my kids\ngive back to the ruby community\n\n
  • I had told myself that after I got some money through a side project, I could buy a new camera, but I got my kids a swingset instead\n
  • If people are interested, maybe we can do a birds of a feather on freelancing and side projects\n
  • wealthy freelancer book\n

Transcript

  • 1. Freelancing on Rails: a year in review John McCaffrey @j_mccaffrey railsperformance.blogspot.com
  • 2. Railsconf 2010
  • 3. ‘Railsconf, sucka!’
  • 4. Rails is perfect for side-projects
  • 5. Rails is perfect for side-projects• Part of its dna from the beginning
  • 6. Rails is perfect for side-projects• Part of its dna from the beginning• Developers are comfortable coding end-to- end
  • 7. Rails is perfect for side-projects• Part of its dna from the beginning• Developers are comfortable coding end-to- end• Tool stack lends itself to remote work
  • 8. Rails is perfect for side-projects• Part of its dna from the beginning• Developers are comfortable coding end-to- end• Tool stack lends itself to remote work• Agile/iterative, focused on small tasks
  • 9. My setup** figure out your own thing
  • 10. My setup*• 2-10hrs per week * figure out your own thing
  • 11. My setup*• 2-10hrs per week• remote development * figure out your own thing
  • 12. My setup*• 2-10hrs per week• remote development• bill as 1099 * figure out your own thing
  • 13. My setup*• 2-10hrs per week• remote development• bill as 1099• initial rate = (salary / 2080) * 1.5 * figure out your own thing
  • 14. My setup*• 2-10hrs per week• remote development• bill as 1099• initial rate = (salary / 2080) * 1.5• more than one project * figure out your own thing
  • 15. Why work more?
  • 16. Why work more?• Focus on stuff that I like• Reports, PDF generation• Performance tuning• Design/Scope management• 3rd party integration
  • 17. Skillz• Hosting, server, database• Deployment, monitoring• Testing, QA• Sales and business models
  • 18. Staying current
  • 19. Staying current• ruby5, railscasts, learnivore, nettuts
  • 20. Staying current• ruby5, railscasts, learnivore, nettuts• Rails Rumble, ruby-toolbox, rubygems.org
  • 21. Staying current• ruby5, railscasts, learnivore, nettuts• Rails Rumble, ruby-toolbox, rubygems.org• ChicagoRuby, WindyCityRails, RailsConf
  • 22. Staying current• ruby5, railscasts, learnivore, nettuts• Rails Rumble, ruby-toolbox, rubygems.org• ChicagoRuby, WindyCityRails, RailsConf• Rails 3-way, railstutorial.org, railsforzombies
  • 23. Staying current• ruby5, railscasts, learnivore, nettuts• Rails Rumble, ruby-toolbox, rubygems.org• ChicagoRuby, WindyCityRails, RailsConf• Rails 3-way, railstutorial.org, railsforzombies• Network of friends
  • 24. Tools• Freshbooks, paypal, google apps, blogger• Teamviewer, skype, google chat, campfire• github, heroku, engineyard, assembla• Macbook, rvm, screen, Rubymine, vmware
  • 25. Goodyear
  • 26. Goodyear• learned a ton• boosted my confidence• met amazing people• since raised my rate 20%
  • 27. Ruby Mendicant University
  • 28. Thanks!@rayhightower, @chaddow, @avdi,@seacreature, @jasonpearl, @rbates,@windycityrails, @railsconf,@wayneeseguin, @scottmarlowe John McCaffrey @j_mccaffrey railsperformance.blogspot.com Bof talk at 8pm table 4
  • 29. Additional topics• Managing clients• Managing time (being productive)• Tools for the job• Business stuff (marketing, contracts, sales)• Resources and inspiration