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What does an XF Developer Need To Know

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by ibaker, Dec 27, 2014.

  1. ibaker

    ibaker Well-Known Member

    A couple of years ago I woke up in the middle of the night with an idea of a completely new concept of a web site that takes the basic concept of forum interaction to a whole new level, extremely advanced and completely new way providing what forums have basically done for years. The idea has plagued me for several years now so a few months ago I decided to do something about it. I made presentations to various people and have now secured a quarter of a million dollars in venture capital to bring the idea to life.

    The concept requires 3 full time employees to begin with and I interviewed one potential employee the other day but now I need to start interviewing potential developers.

    The forums are just a small component of it however the features of the XF forums are used throughout the site and it also uses 3rd party software packages that need to be integrated with the XF backbone. Just as an example and just for the sake of this discussion, say I wanted to have a photo gallery that uses a html5 version of CoolIris type of feature. The developer would need to ascertain the potential for the XF gallery to be adapted OR source a 3rd party application and integrate it to the XF backbone. This is just an example of what the developer would need to do.

    SO, my question is...What skills would I need to look for in a developer? What experience, knowledge and what technologies would the developer need to have? Obviously HTML, PHP and what other technologies would he/she need to have to work with XF and general technologies that are current or upcoming?

    Thanks for any ideas
  2. thedude

    thedude Well-Known Member

    It would honestly be easier to recruit an existing XF add-on developer than to try to get someone unfamiliar with XF's inner workings up to speed on it.
  3. ibaker

    ibaker Well-Known Member

    You are probably correct but this is a business venture so remote working may be the only way but not the best solution, preference would be that they work in our office here in Melbourne Australia
  4. Brent W

    Brent W Well-Known Member

    How the hell did you get $250,000 in venture funding and have to come on here to ask those questions?
    tafreehm, Lone Wolf, HWS and 2 others like this.
  5. Tracy Perry

    Tracy Perry Well-Known Member

    Maybe having a rich friend? I knew a guy that had a "brilliant idea" and he talked one of his friends into investing a tad over $300,000 into it. Needless to say it flopped as the guy was an air head - not the one that did the investing but the other one. I talked with the investor later and he said he figured it would be a flop, but if it did he could use the loss on his taxes - if it took off he could always use more money. :)
  6. ibaker

    ibaker Well-Known Member

    The question is what others think are the skills a person needs to have so when I do advertise I have more information than what I believe they need to have
  7. Brent W

    Brent W Well-Known Member

    Good luck. If your manners now are anything like my previous dealings with you, someone just got ripped out of a quarter of a million dollars.

    Your question should be, who do I hire that knows these answers and not how to spend money that isn't yours based on feedback on those questions from random forum users. But I digress, its your thread from here on out.
    HWS likes this.
  8. ibaker

    ibaker Well-Known Member

    I have not met the investor(s) personally however a representative is flying to Australia in a couple of weeks for a face to face meeting but this is not the question I am asking and to which I would like people's opinions on. I have already interviewed and are about to appoint the Salesperson and in the coming weeks I will be advertising for a developer and a short term architect so I need to make sure I have not left off the list of required skills those that I already have listed.
  9. ibaker

    ibaker Well-Known Member

    Bama, if I remember correctly you wanted me to put a link on my aviation site where real pilots are to yours and I said no because what you were creating was in a way detrimental to the safety of professional pilots of which you are not one and not in the aviation industry but wanted to create a website for an industry where safety is paramount and therefor should be by pilots, but whereas I am a pilot and in the aviation industry and saw the danger of what you were doing. Aviation is where people die every 2nd day and anything in that industry should only be done by those in that industry. But I digress...
  10. Snog

    Snog Well-Known Member

    $250,000 for a startup company with 3 full time employees? You clearly haven't thought this out completely. You don't have the funds to employ 3 people, pay the office expenses and hire part time help that you'll discover that you need in the future (ie: graphic artists if any graphics are to be included with the product).

    The only way you might have enough cash is if you can find people that are willing to work for a part of the companies future profits, but take next to nothing in salary until then.
    =MGN=RedEagle likes this.
  11. Sadik B

    Sadik B Well-Known Member

    Hi Ian

    Having developed full time for a xenforo based membership site for two years, where we did advertise and hire several times, I can help to answer your question.

    I understand your site will use the XenForo framework to develop whatever it is you have in mind. So for required skill set I would say the following

    - First Preference, Experience of having developed at least two addons for XenForo with no core file edits, no template edits (TMS is fine) and having written both PHP and Javascript code for XenForo.
    (JS is important because XF implements JQuery in very interesting and unique ways)\

    I would ask to see those addons and see if I like both the way the addon works and the way the UI of the addon is presented. I generally look to understand the logic of the developer. Are they doing tasks which XenForo does in a better way? Are they using XenForo standards for presentation (CSS classes, responsiveness etc)

    If, you can't find someone who has these skills, then you can hire a PHP developer with MVC experience and preferably having worked with forum scripts before. VBulletin development experience is a plus, not that VB has any of the same standards but because then they understand what you are trying to accomplish with your forum. Also if they have Zend development experience it is also a plus.

    While hiring it is very very important to understand past work history. Did they leave projects mid way in the past? Is their attitude one of just getting it done so it "looks right" with all sorts of mistakes in the code? We once had an interesting experience hiring a ukranian development company (nothing against ukranians... just what happened) who got the functionality done but when I looked at the code, they had "butchered" XenForo.

    One good strategy when hiring for long term is to provide a smaller project to 2-3 shortlisted devs and reviewing the output and selecting the guy who does it best.

    Best of luck with your project.
    ForestForTrees and ibaker like this.
  12. Syndol

    Syndol Guest

    For a large long term project that is probably your best bet.
    You must get along with the person you hire and they must be communicative and work well with others.
    I'm not sure how you are going to find people who already know how to integrate different software to work seamlessly with XF. Even if you do, they may not be the right person for the rest of the project.
    Keep in mind that hiring someone to attempt to integrate/merge two software/programs is very time consuming and does not guarantee the results you want. In addition, long term maintenance of such code might also be time consuming and thus expensive.
    Also, if the end product is directly relevant to pilots then it would be useful if the coders and designers are also pilots so that they can more easily relate to and share your vision for the project.
    And lastly, don't forget to budget for the rewriting of code when XF 2.0 comes out.

    If any of the positions offer full time employment with a guaranteed descent salary, then I'm available ;)
  13. ibaker

    ibaker Well-Known Member

    This is what really pisses me off about these forums now, snog you have absolutely no idea what the hell you are talking about because you have no facts at all, you have no idea on what i have, what i am doing, how i am structured, what pre sales i have yet you comment on something you know nothing about. These forums in the early days were absolutely fantastic, helpful, understanding and an incredible great community of like minded friendly people...this is why I hate coming here now, what happened to this site? and to think I was about to buy an addon from you

    Sadik and Syndol, thanks so much for your insight, very helpful to get different opinions. With something like this i want to do it properly from the start without having to change mid stream because i didn't do as much research as possible at the beginning. You both have given me food for thought...thanks so much
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2014
    Xon likes this.
  14. Snog

    Snog Well-Known Member

    I commented on the information you provided. If that information was not complete, I can't be expected to comment any differently than I did.

    You may have a great idea, and if there is more information that fills the holes in the original post then I retract my original comments.
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2014
  15. ibaker

    ibaker Well-Known Member

    I have an MBA, are an IT PMO Manager having controlled IT Projects to $120 million and PMP certified so i think i can do a business case. I didn't mention anything about income or cash flows which are completely out of scope to the question asked. I am after comments to the question asked which is what skills in a developer should i be looking for. So let's move on
  16. RobinHood

    RobinHood Well-Known Member

    Look how excited he is Ian! How could you say no to that face?


    Props to him for a giving some good info, if you listen I've got a feeling you'll be cruising down the right flight path in no time.

    Actually you should probably hire him right now, it's that plane and simple.
    HWS and ibaker like this.
  17. ibaker

    ibaker Well-Known Member

    Yeah I know, pity Syndol doesn't live in Melbourne Australia or I would have been having coffee with him today, BUT you never know what the future holds ;)
  18. Da Bookie Mon

    Da Bookie Mon Well-Known Member

    The airplane and smiling face might be a sign.. ;)
    Sadik B, Lone Wolf and ibaker like this.
  19. Syndol

    Syndol Guest

    Hey, I can't help the way I look :)
    Da Bookie Mon likes this.
  20. RobinHood

    RobinHood Well-Known Member

    You missed one :p

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