FounderQuest

The Honeybadger Crew

Three developers building a software business on our own terms.

Start Here
Talking SaaS With Garrett Dimon
Oct 29 2021
Talking SaaS With Garrett Dimon
Show notes:Links:Garrett DimonMinitest HeatHeat Map Reporter for MinitestReviewStarting & SustainingSifter AppAutomated transcript (only about 70% accurate)Ben  Welcome to FounderQuest, this has been Today, I'm interviewing Garrett Diamond Star and josh are taking the day off and I get a chat with Garrett, who's a longtime friend of mine and fantastic entrepreneur and all around great person in the world, so I'm excited to have you here. Gary, Thanks, Garrett  thanks for having me. Ben  It's always fun catching up with you. I think the last time we chatted was business of software a few years ago, wasn't it? Garrett  Yeah, not frequently enough, Ben  so that was, yeah, definitely not frequent enough. One thing I most remember about that business of software was that was when the hurricane was coming through and so I was standing out there in boston with all the wind and the Garrett  right, having grown Ben  up in the south, that was kind of ironic that I was there in the northeast and getting a hurricane. Mhm. So have you been Garrett  three, so just uh probably about the same as everybody else man, you know, just kinda one day at a time and keeping it going um and yeah, I just kind of dabbling and exploring and for once the last year just kind of let myself be undirected and just kind of followed what was interesting and pulled on threads and uh a little unnerving but also kind of nice and refreshing, I don't know, you know, so kind of bouncing around like a ping pong ball. Ben  Well, that's, that sounds pretty cool. Well, let's talk about that in a minute. I want to catch people up so I'm sure most people know you, but just for those who don't. So Garrett again, it's been a long time entrepreneur I think. I think I first bumped into you with doing sifter, your, your, your app from a few years ago, you built that from scratch solo entrepreneur and then you sold that. Then you're, you're at post uh, postmark for awhile for that. Right. Garrett  Well, wild bit at large, but primarily on postmark. Yeah. Ben  Okay. Right. Right. So you're a while, but for a while and then I guess it was a couple of years ago now that you've left wild. Garrett  Yeah, it's been about . years, I guess. No. Okay. Ben  Yeah. And so I guess also during that time you kind of did the starting and sustaining books slash video series slash thing. That was cool. Garrett  Yeah, I've been dabbling in all that, trying to share my battle wounds so that other people can maybe avoid them or less than them. Ben  Yeah, that's awesome. I remember, I remember buying that. It's good, good stuff. So also linked in the show notes. Maybe we'll get a sailor to uh, you spoke, you spoke at Microsoft a few times or at least once that I can remember Garrett  I can't even keep track now. Microsoft spoke once attended a couple of times. Yeah. Ben  And so now you're doing some, some interesting stuff. So I remember, remember when you left a wild bit, you were, you're really interested in getting started on helping amputees have a community and so you started adapted, right? So, we're gonna talk about that for a second, and then we can talk about, you know, how that plan kind of changed for you with the passage? Garrett  Um, I mean, so I'm a left below knee amputee. And when I was trying to make that decision, I couldn't find any information on what life is really like as an amputee, um, let alone specific information about, can I play basketball still, if so, how does that work? Or what other activities can I do? And there's just not a lot of detailed information, and with disability, even just within amputees, the range is incredible, like above me and bologna makes a complete difference in how you function and your body mechanics, and so I just couldn't find this information out there. And so that kind of planted the seed that obviously it's not out there and, you know, it's woefully under informed, which at first was kind of scary, it's like, oh, I guess nobody does any of this stuff Garrett  and for me, the whole, ironically, the whole point of amputating was so that I could get back to doing things because of my ankle fusion was horrible and all that, it's just hurt and was miserable and through the whole thing, I was blogging about it, and what would happen is people would email me because they'd go on google and search for amputation, ankle fusion, that kind of thing, and then they'd ask me like, I'm, because I was the only person that came up and I would get these emails, you know, it kind of varies and go ebbs and flows, you know, to a month, once a week, you know, so frequently enough. Um, and uh, one uh, young woman that reached out to me, she actually amputated and then just won a couple of gold medals in the paralympics and like, Garrett  it just blew my mind is like, how do you find the answers to this stuff? And uh, after being an amputee now about five years and trying stuff and just kind of figuring it out. Uh, my hope was originally, I was like, well, I'm a software developer, I'll build a platform so people can share that information, um, you know, and I figured I was really optimistic about that specifically, because, well I built sifter and rails has gotten way better and I learned a ton from sifters, it'll be way easier this time around, but I didn't really account for was now I've got a family and I'm  years older, uh and so it's been more challenging at the end of the day, I'm just tapped on software because I'm doing that all day and my brain is fried. Garrett  Um, but I've been doing videos kind of explaining this stuff to people about how legs work and the logistics of like how they change your body mechanics and um, how to do things like go to the beach and deal with sand in your foot and that kind of stuff. Uh, and I did that more is like an exploratory whimsical thing because that was the kind of content I hope people would create and put on the platform. So then you could filter and say, here's my disability, here's the activity I want to do. Give me all the information about that specific thing. Um, but I did it and it just kind of left it for a year, but it just kept going and then more people have been contacting me and so now what I'm doing is kind of Garrett  stepping back from the software side of it and I'm just gonna keep recording videos for the next short term, um, and having them produced and that kind of stuff and hopefully increasing the quality and the depth and then doing interviews with other amputees and really kind of getting into more stuff, um, and then eventually circling back to building a platform to help people find the right things that meet their needs and that kind of thing. Um, so, you know, it's, it's, it's been tough. I think the toughest thing is realizing that nonprofit side projects are the hardest thing to make time for, um because it's never going to offset my income or anything. And so like Garrett  now I've kind of been thinking, I guess I need to build a business again. So I've got more ironically more free time um, just because Sassen recurring revenue all that's so great that it would give me the flexibility to do that and to spend more time helping people and building um software and all that. So kind of just juggling things and figuring it out. And that's kind of where a lot of the exploration has come in. I haven't really prescribed where I'm taking things and uh um spending a lot of time dabbling and ruby and getting kind of deeper into it than I ever have previously. And uh exploring video and trying to help people with that stuff. So just kind of playing around and tinkering and trying to make ends meet at the same time and I'll figure it out, I guess Ben  that's cool. There's a whole lot to unpack in there. So let's, let's talk about some of that. So, Some of the, some of the themes, well, at first, I guess I should say I can totally relate to you with the whole, you know,  years later and now, there's. yeah, there's more demands on your time. There's less energy in the body and there's, you know, less energy in the brain probably is more importantly. Um, I've had that, that same thing I recently started picking up some side projects, you know, and like, yeah, they're just, you have fewer hours in the day that you really feel like being really into that kind of mode, you know, that your brain stuff and, Ben  and I've noticed that uh I can tell like when my blood sugar is getting low and now we're like, I've I've used up too many brain cells, I gotta go back and recharge, you Garrett  know? Uh Ben  So it's interesting that dynamics, like, I don't quite have the appetite that I used to have to just dive in and, and, you know, slog away at the keyboard for hours. And then Garrett  for me, it's also been awareness, like, I recognize it more now when I, when I was younger I would push through and be like, oh, grind and hustle and you know, and now I'm like, ok, I need to stop, this isn't, you know, if I don't stop, I'm going to be a complete mess tomorrow and not want to work and not be able to think. And so I catch it earlier and I just stopped and I hate it because I still, like, interested in whatever problem is in my head is still tugging on it and, you know, it's trying to and it's really hard to just turn it off and walk away. Um but I've gotten better at that a little, Ben  One of the things that I've noticed as, as I've gotten older in this tech world. So I guess I've been doing it  years or  years or so, is that, um, uh, so that that energy for doing all the things is not there? Like it used to be, but it seems like the deep thinking is more refined is more home. So like you said, like you're going to be, you know, you're just not going to have the energy, you're not going to be wasted the next day. And I think I've seen that too. And I think it's not just from like the energy of working, it's from the energy of thinking deeply about what's the right solution here, right? Ben  It's not so much like just powering through it. Okay, I'm gonna build this stuff and I'm gonna backtrack and I'm gonna redo and backtrack and redo now. It's like, oh, I'm gonna think about this and I'm going to get it right right? And then you apply that precision cut I guess. Garrett  And for me, the struggle is having the wisdom to recognize they should stop, but I can't turn off the excitement or the interest, right? And so I do still want to work on it. I just know better. And it's hard when those two don't align. Yeah, that's, that's been a struggle. Ben  Yeah, I've seen saying the same thing, but I think my living experience so far has been like the, the eventual outcome is better, even even when I have that, you know, I want to do more, but I don't know, I don't have the energy to more, But having that time to reflect more when I do sit down next time and have that  minutes an hour or whatever, like that time is much better spent coming up with the right solution rather than Garrett  just uh just the other day. I was and I mean, I think we've all had this happen a million times, but this just happened. I don't know, friday, I think banging my head on the desk for an hour and a half on this thing. That just makes no sense. There's a ruby thing like this doesn't make sense. What am I missing here? Like is there some really quirky ruby behavior I don't understand. Um And hour and a half and finally was like, I've got to give up, I've got to stop, this isn't getting anywhere. And it was only like , right? So I still was like, I had time in the day, I was like, I just got to stop The next morning. I sat down with in  minutes, Garrett  like solve cold, right? Like there's no, that was from the time I sat at my desk at the time, I solve the problem and it was just, you've got to step away and clear your head or you know, it just doesn't go well, Ben  yeah, yeah, I've had that same experience so many times and uh I think a lot of times you hear people say yeah just take a break, go for a walk whenever you're like yeah what everyone's gonna power through it but it actually does work Garrett  well for me. Walking doesn't cause then I'll just fix it on it too much and like I need to let go like my brain has to let it go. Um And so for me usually it's more getting a getting a night of sleep um is what kind of resets it for me at least from what I've found. But I've probably every three or four months. It's one of those where like This is going poorly and the next morning less than  minutes it's solved. Uh Ben  Yeah I have that too, like a good night. So definitely goes to reset. The one. The one problem I've had with that though is that then I will wake up at four a.m. I have the solution in my head, I'm like I got to go do it, Garrett  I do that too and for better or worse I don't even fight the sleep anymore, I just get up and go start working. Um And then if I need a nap later or something I just Ben  so be Garrett  it. Uh But like that's so much of that like We're so indoctrinated that like  is when people work. And that's been a really hard thing to let go of two and not feel that way every day and to basically, it's not about like working when you feel like it, but it's not like pushing back when the urge to get something done strikes, like go do it and then circle back, yeah, you know, and get some either for rest or whatever. Um you know, take a long lunch or whatever it is. Uh and that's uh I've found that to be helpful to just to try and not forced to work, but do it when it's fresh in my head and just go, Ben  yeah, yeah, I love having that flexibility as a, as an entrepreneur or business owner and being able to work when it's most effective. So You know, if it's  and then I take a break and maybe come back in a couple hours in the afternoon and then I'm done for the day, that's, it's cool. Right? So I wanted to hit on one other thing from, you're talking about there about with adaptable and you know, I love what you're saying about there's a, there's a software solution here, let me go build that, right? And then over time. Like uh maybe not. And I can totally relate to that because I feel the same way. It's like, oh if there's something missing in the world, there's, there's obviously assad's there that can satisfy that need, but Ben  but in reality like salad, you don't have to go all the way to says, right, you can uh, you can start with, you know, youtube videos or uh, maybe even just a reddit, right? Maybe maybe you're hanging out in the community and on offering back and building up that stuff that you want to see in the world. Garrett  Uh, so there's definitely still an element of that with what I want to do and uh, a lot of it is like, right now I'm focused on videos and more mechanics and uh, you know, here's things to think about if you want to get into mountain biking as an amputee or things to think about with snowboarding or, you know, whatever it is. Um, but there's this whole other facet or many facets really, um, of like limb care and recovery and you know, when you beat your leg up doing something active in a carbon fiber socket all day Garrett  and then you get home and it's destroyed, uh, you know, you got to take care of it. And so there's things like that and there's a financial aspect that like insurance only helped so much with prosthetics and they help with basic, like daily kind of day to day prosthetics, but they don't help if you need more advanced prosthetics, um, for certain activities. And so for that, you're either on your own or you need to find financial assistance and there's a ton of great organizations out there that help with that, but they're all non profits and their websites are less than stellar and less than informative. Um, Garrett  and in a lot of ways it's difficult to find the one that is right for you that will cover the type of equipment you need based on, you know, just your disability fall into the disabilities that they cover. Um, and so there's all these different requirements and details and it's difficult or you forget right, like life happens and some organization has an annual grant cycle and it's in october and then october blows by and you're like, oh crap, I totally forgot to apply for that grant and now you got to wait till next year. And so, you know, my thinking is that it's not just a tool to like educate people and help people find the information. They need something to proactively help reduce friction and remove the barriers that stop people with disabilities from being active. Garrett  Um, and that could be everything from pain to financial stuff to simply, you know, needing somebody to talk to who's done it. Um, and there's just, there's so many solutions and everybody, even within a category of disability is unique, even if they're not unique from the disability perspective, the activity they want to pursue might be more unique. Um, and so it's just really difficult to make it all work and to find answers and you kind of just gotta go try and you know, from experience the first couple of times I try new activity is miserable because I'm just figuring it out and that takes a lot of the fun out of it. And a lot of people like this isn't for me and you know, until you learn Garrett  kind of about that learning curve and how it exists and how it's a lot steeper than it is without a prosthetic or what have you. Um it's tough and it's easy to give up because it hurts and it's inconvenient and you know, there's just you're worried about your prosthetic, right? You've got this $, prosthetic that you need to survive day to day and you're like, oh I'm going to go paddleboarding, so what if it gets wet, can it get wet? I don't know, and there's just so many questions and so many easy reasons to give up or be intimidated and Garrett  you know, it doesn't need to be that way because more more importantly, like once you're in that situation is more important than ever to be active and to stay active and to not let it just lock you down on the couch or something. Um but it's not easy, you know, it's way harder than before and I don't think it needs to be, it doesn't need to be as hard as it is. So yeah, I'm hoping could help people get answers and you know, do their thing, whatever it is that moves them figuratively and literally Ben  yeah, yeah, that sounds like a tagline for the website Garrett  actually. Right. Ben  Right. Garrett  Yeah. Ben  Yeah. I I have uh so we have in our in our family some some experience with a kind of obscure medical issues like uh which is kind of similar to, you know, go into a prosthetic situation, right? Where all of a sudden you're into this community where you have to, you can get the speed really quickly on what does life look like now. And how do I do the things that I want to do and where do I go to find that information? And so often it seems that in our in our experience is that the only people who really know much of anything are the doctors that you're working with or the therapists or the nurses, right? And and they can connect with resources. But like if you just happen to have the wrong, you know, chemistry, Ben  you know, with with someone or you don't just happen to the right person, you can just feel pretty isolated. And uh so I thank you for having having resources for, for that is is so helpful because I've told my wife a number of times like you could write a book on on all the things that you've learned, you know, through this experience. And and then my my my brother's family there was a significant motorcycle accident that left someone with, you know, just a lot of parallelization from the waist down basically and his his, you know, going through all the things that he went through two surgeries and the rehab. And so to get back to a point where he could walk, you know, uh, which was, which was assisted so much by the great people that he had around him. Ben  But fortunately he had them right for those that don't, it's got to be a much, much harder rodeo Garrett  and it's just all over the board. Um, amputations really interesting is what most most frequently right into with people is there surgeon doesn't want them to amputate and is constantly trying to talk them out of it. But after you go through it, I saw my surgeon, I mean, my surgeon, I had to switch surgeons. Um, but he saw me twice after my amputation. He's never seen me with a prosthetic. He has no idea what I'm doing now. And so these people are asking their surgeons about amputation. The truth is the surgeons, unless they're actively helping. Um, you know, in other contexts and volunteering. Uh, they have no clue what life is like after amputation. They might read some stuff, Garrett  right. And you know, there's plenty of paralympians that are amazing. But then you wonder those people edge cases or you know, can anybody run and do that stuff again? Maybe not at that level. Um, and the, your surgeon just doesn't know. And so people are asking the surgeon because that's supposed to be the expert and then the surgeons giving them, I don't want to say bad information but incomplete information. And so it's tough for people because you can't get those answers, you know, and again, every disability so different how it affects people and how your doctor, what their background is in terms of how they understand like being active or you know, doing more than just day to day functioning. All right. Yeah. There's so many layers to it all. Mhm. Ben  So, one thing I wanted to go back to was talking about, you know, the time that you spend on that, obviously it's it's tough when you've got a family, you're the breadwinner. You know, you're trying to build a nonprofit thing. And at some point it sounds like you realize, you know what, I just gotta I gotta do some work. I got to bring the money in the door, right? I can't spend all my time focusing on this this nonprofit platform. So it sounds like you're doing that in your spare time and that you're you're paying the bills of freelancing doing a bunch of bunch of rail stuff. But as you've been doing that, you've actually built some tools that I want to talk about. So it sounds it sounds like Ben  you've been doing this work and this work has prompted you to build the review thing you've been working on. And also the heat map thing for many tests, let's talk about that a little bit. Garrett  Uh Yeah. So the nice thing, the one the only intentional thing I've done the last . years is to try and make sure that whatever I'm doing at all kind of syncs up somehow um and for the most part that was always leading back to ruby and or rails um and you know, so a lot of my client work is helping with legacy apps that are profitable now, but they built the app quickly and there's some, you know, legacy pain that needs to be fixed, re factoring that kind of thing. Um And then there was adaptable where I was starting with a Greenfield fresh modern rails app um and one of them was fun and the other one wasn't and I'll let you guess. Mhm. And so a lot of what I started thinking more about was like how does an app that Garrett  has all this legacy craft get from there to a point where it's not miserable to work on and you know, there's a lot of ways, there's a lot of paths, there's a lot of great books on re factoring um and a lot of that kind of stuff, uh what I started getting more interested in was how we've got all these great letters and static analysis tools for um security for syntax for just cleaning up code, right? And a lot of little auto correct and format stuff for you. Uh and the more I I dabbled with the tools previously but they were always so difficult to use because they're all command line um you know and they all have different syntax, different names for the same flags that do the same thing like Summer Garrett  auto, correct, some are right, some are, you know, and so like you gotta then remember the quirks, they're using the wrong flags with the wrong tools and it just gets tedious, right or like you know, you want to use a dozen tools, but if you run them all at once, like it's going to take  minutes to run through your whole project when really all you want is like just look at the files, I'm about to commit or uh you know look at the files, I just committed and let's do a pass it like with Robocop or whatever, clean them up and then I'll commit a separate one that's just pure clean up, you know, all these kind of things and but it was so tedious, I love these tools but I just wouldn't use them because there was too much friction. Garrett  Uh and so with adaptable and like when I start a Greenfield project, I was like I've got to use these tools from the beginning to make sure that never gets into a bad state because once that ship sails it's too much effort to go back and too much risk to like make those kind of wholesale changes and uh so it started with just that it's like how can I make it easier to use these tools and remove the friction so that they're enjoyable to use and kind of in the back of my mind was because like Guard does a lot of this, right, if you're running guard constantly. Uh But Guard also drove me nuts because it would my fans would spin up and make so much noise and I couldn't concentrate. Um Garrett  and so kind of and I still like guard, but my thinking was what if the tool could be so convenient that you didn't feel like you needed to use guard to watch files as you changed them and that you could do more than just have your automated test front, right? So like what if and I mean there's there's integrations for like Robocop and stuff, but like what if you change five files and you could just run a tool that will automatically run all of the relevant things you have against those files that you updated and potentially auto correct them if you want or um you know, this is all theory and it's it's come together and I'm using it on itself but it's not ready to like use in other projects yet. Um that's kind of the next step. Uh Garrett  But yeah and that's what I just I wanted that I want to be able to take it on a project that's raw and has a ton of craft and then every time I commit basically start cleaning up there and just make sure it doesn't regress, right it only gets better, you know and basically it makes it easier to or hopefully it will make it easier to just make constant steady improvement, right? It's not you run it and then it's like you know the tool just throws up its hands, it's like this code base is a mess, Ben  don't even Garrett  use this tool. Um Instead I want it to be you know what okay make some progress, let's start there and eventually, you know, over the course of a year, two years you're gonna touch so much of the code and eventually it's gonna get cleaner and it's gonna get better right? And it's not just formatting but like you've got things like brake man and things that are for scanning for security issues and all this stuff and there's so much bundler audit right and all these things to make sure that your dependencies and you know there's a lot of great tools out there like code, climate for reporting. But what drives me nuts is when I commit and then it gets to see I Garrett  and then the ci finds the mistake because the tool you don't run it locally like okay well now I've got to fix it and I gotta wait for ci again and like I want all these tools to be so frictionless to use, it never even makes it to see i like CS board because it never has anything to complain about because by the time it gets there it's already perfect. Um So yeah, so that's kind of the that's a reviewer um and it'll hopefully be more like the end of the year. Um And then I've also been obsessed with many tests lately because I used to use ours back and I just it never messed with me. It was too, I don't know, it's Garrett  the way I've always described, feels like it's the only thing in ruby that I feel like is simultaneously very ruby and very un ruby and it's just never worked with my head. Um And all the I'm very dependency averse from years of you know dependency breaks or has a security issue and the chain reaction of things that need to be updated and can't be updated because and so I'm very dependency averse. Um and uh so that's another reason I've gone with many tests because it's just there there's fewer dependencies, it's simpler. Um But many tests output even with all the formatting options out there just always, I felt like I was doing way more work than I should have to to figure out what failed what went wrong and how to fix it Garrett  and so what I've done is really over engineered to test reporter for many tests to uh when a test fails, it kind of catalogs what file was in the stack trace what line number in that file. Um and so what it's doing is in the background, it's kind of building up a heat map of everything that triggered a problem. And it's also differentiating between like failures and exceptions because if your test fails, okay, that's interesting. You want to start with the assertion, what was the assertion that failed? But if there is an exception, then the assertions kind of irrelevant. You want to go dig into the exception. But what if the exception came out of the test, Garrett  then you don't want to waste your time and source code just fix the test. Otherwise you're not. And so it differentiates between failures, a broken test and an exception. And it presents the output differently to kind of guide you in the right direction based on those. And if you've got anything that's failing or broken, it's not going to harass you about skipped tests or slow tests, right? It suppresses those until everything's fixed. And it's like, hey, by the way, you've got four tests here that you've skipped, you need to go right? Those, uh, and actually won't bother you about slow tests until all your skip tests are fixed, Right? Garrett  Uh, and so it kind of lets you focus on what's important at the time without reminding you of the fact that you've got a lot going on that is pending and problematic or whatever it is. Um, you know, so there's a lot of little things like that and like when you make that one change that breaks  things across your whole project, you're renaming a class or whatever it is. Uh And then it's just you will go from like a perfect test suite  failing tests like crap. Okay. Where do I even start? Uh And so the heat map will show you like look all of these problems come back to this one file, you know, whatever it is so you can get to the heart of the matter instead of having to like Garrett  visually scanned through  failures and try to find and recognize a pattern. Uh So it's kind of uh a proactive pattern matching reporter. Um you know with a few other tweaks to just help uh nudge and simplify kind of the output so that you can my hope be, you know, you see a test failure and you know exactly what you need to do to fix it before you even go back to your text editor because you've got enough context. Um And obviously that's not always possible, but more often than not and definitely more often than with just the generic reporter. Uh That's been the case and has been really helpful and saves me a ton of time fishing for what needs to be fixed and what what's worth fixing first and that kind of thing. So I have to think a lot less. Garrett  I just have to go fix it. Ah And so both of those combined are going to kind of I'm hoping work in a way that you know you type R. V. W. And it's just smart and it says here's all your problems. You're like oh my gosh, everything's perfect. But you could stand to improve your documentation here in this file, you're like okay I can do that real quick. Um You know so it kind of nudges you in the right direction without like wearing you out about how horrible your code is. Um Because when you're one of those tools just raw, that's basically what it feels like. It's like oh my gosh I'm horrible. I have no idea, I have no business writing code. Uh Garrett  And that's not a good feeling but if it's like hey you can fix this, here's how okay I can do that. Um You know there's a lot of really interesting ideas. There are like you know you ever run your test suite and it fails and you run it again and it passes. They're like oh crap what was the seed that it used when it failed? And uh so what reviewer does too in the background, it's recording a bunch of history. Um And so it will remember that last failed seed and so you can you be able to type our VW rerun and it would rerun just the failure and let you zero in on that and focus on fixing that. Um So there's a lot of little things like that that Garrett  I just want to make it easier. I mean there's bisect and some great tools out there. Um, but sometimes they're overkill and slow and they take you out of the zone and I want to make it easier to stay in the zone and get things done and get back on track. Ben  That sounds sounds really cool. Yeah, we um, remember having done some a few major rails version upgrades with the honey badger card base, you know, go from  to  or  or whatever it is. And like all of a sudden half your tests, you got thousands of tests and like thousands of them. It's the Garrett  most defeating feeling. You're just like, oh, okay, I quit for today. Ben  Yeah. And then, and then, you know, you dive through all those things like, okay, these all look the same. It's all the same. It's all the same and go and try this thing here and that thing there and oh, I made this one change and now half of those failing tests are now passing okay. Now, you know? So yeah, having the heat map I think is uh, it sounds like a great idea. And then of course, you know, you mentioned, uh, if it's an exception, you know exactly where to go, like it sounds like honey badger, right? You get the context that you need to know what to fix, right, yep. Yeah. Although I must say I'm, I'm an I respect fan Ben  have been for a long time and I've tried, you know, going back to many tests because I'll start your rails app like this, this new side project, I started a few a few months ago, like it's a new rails happen to me, you know, let me try any test again because that's the default and so I'll get in there for a bit. But then like one of the things I've come to realize is that I, what I love about our spec is despite how, you know, I can feel you about the dependency aversion, but at the same time our spec is kind of like a batteries included kind of thing. Like Ben  you've got the mocking right? Not the stubbing, you don't have to worry about what I do. I do, I do many test mock or do I do mocha, you know, like all that's kind of rails itself, right? It's kind of kind of its own duck and it has everything included. So you don't think about, you Garrett  know, and don't get me wrong, I don't dislike our spec, it just doesn't work with my head and like, I just get overwhelmed with how much it has. And so for me with many tests, like you're like, oh, which marked thing to use neither. Like if I feel like I need to mock something, I need to re factor it so it's more easy to test efficiently and directly. Um, because like marks, I mean that has all has its own issues, right? Like uh and so for me uh and and it was very much a mental thing. Like I just fully embraced accepted many tests limitations and now I use that as kind of a nudge to be like, all right, if this is really difficult to do, Garrett  then it's not that I need better testing tools. It's that I need my code to be organized in a way that lets me test this appropriately And efficiently without getting to set up  unrelated models so that it won't fall over. Uh And so that's kind of been more of a philosophical thing for me because previously when I drive many tests, that's exactly how to drive me nuts. I'm like, how the hell do I do any of this? Because my brain what little I did understand of our respect. I had learned to think that way about things. And so then I found myself doing all this like how do you mock in many tests and how do you, And it's like you don't, you know, use mocha or you know what have Ben  you. Garrett  Uh and so kind of accepting that and just saying, you know what, When it, when many test pushes back, I'm going to listen and I'll just re factor. Um and at first was a little painful. But now it actually has been really, really nice. Uh But I will say to a lot of that goes hand in hand with like I've been doing a lot of like deeper deeper reading on ruby and thus kind of understanding patterns, you know being able to see more patterns to re factor like oh this is why this is hard to test really. Just need to re factor using this pattern and take this approach instead or whatever. Um And so that's helped because otherwise I feel like I know I need to change this but I don't even know where to start. Um Garrett  So you know, that's definitely been a philosophical thing I had to accept. Ben  Yeah, that makes sense. So you mentioned code climate and I know, you know in the early days when kokonas started like it was basically a wrapper on top of flay and flaw right and eventually break man and stuff. Right? They assembled all these open source tools and put a nice ui on top of it, which is fine, you know, but you could just run off tools yourself, right? Um But review sounds pretty cool because you're basically giving that code climate kind of experience, but it's on your own right, in your own cli and you could I mean conceivably you could even use it like with left hook or something to do get pre commit kind of thing which might have its own problems but still it's an option. Garrett  It's definitely on the radar, there's a lot of get integration that I'm planning on. So you can do like our VW staged and it'll just look at the staged files or R. V. W untracked, it'll just looked at your file that you haven't staged, That kind of thing. Ben  Super handy. So do you do you see a path where review because there's some sort of commercial component to review or do you think it could always be pure, Garrett  there's, I've got a bunch of ideas that I think could um I mean the core one is just gonna be an open source jim. Um if I do follow any model um you know, it's probably going to be something more like sidekick where there's the core thing that is helpful and useful and free for eternity. Um and then there would be more advanced, either team functionality or kind of sharing of configuration files. Um There's a whole ton of tools that I've thought about building to to um things like if you have an existing app, it kind of auto detect and suggest, hey you might want to use these gems, these tools um obviously it's built in ruby but the idea is that it has to be ruby centric. It's really at the end of the day, it's just a wrapper for command line tools Garrett  that gives you some kind of either pass fail or score output. Um and so like if you've got  tools set up, like one reviewer, I've just gone overboard. Like I'll use everything because I want to kind of test it, you know, and dog food it um And so like if one fails it doesn't bother running the rest of them. And so the idea is if you can figure in the order of priority, like start with bundler audit right? Because if you've got a gym that's out of whack, then you need to fix that because that'll ripple And so it'll just stop there, so you have to wait  minutes for a whole suite to run on a huge project, it just fails immediately, insist fix this and then you fix that and then it runs Garrett  um and then two and this is all theoretical at this point because I haven't played with it, but I've got some, I'm really excited about the idea potentially. Um and I hate to make it ruby three only, but playing with tractors and some some threading and stuff so that you can have Robocop running in parallel with, you know, especially with multi core processors picking up and all this kind of stuff, I feel like there's a lot of potential Like what if you could run  tools in parallel and have the whole thing run in seconds instead of minutes and that could be really cool, There's other challenges there, but um you know that reporting obviously um like code climate, I feel like that's one of code climates really big things, Garrett  but for me the reporting is gonna be more an afterthought, I wanted to be a local thing that you can use friction free and then if people like it, which I hope they will, I mean I'm really excited about, I love using it to build itself, it's been wildly helpful. Um you know, then yeah, I'd start thinking about, you know, what other options are there for, how it could be better um and do even more cool stuff for teams or people who are just really serious about using it or you know, what have you? Ben  Mhm Yeah, I think, I mean I love, I love the sidekick model uh you know, give that great open source core that has great functionality and then build on top of that, you know, things that are useful to people who are going to use it more intensely and I think, I think the psychic definitely has that sweet spot, if it's it's an operations kind of thing where you're gonna be, you're gonna be running this forever in your production environment. So you want to pay that licensing fee, you know, every month, every year or whatever. And then there's also like the ASCII corp model, right? Where they have very, very good open source tools, you know, you can use Packer or Terror Form or whatever, Ben  you know, never paying them a dime but they also have great team collaboration tools if you want to move to their platform, you know, and coordinate your Terror Form running or you know, your console, you know, or your vault or whatever, right? They have a pro or enterprise offering for every one of those that can do additional stuff enhancing it, you know? So yeah, some great options there, Garrett  yeah, you know, I will say to a lot of my Garrett  thinking since selling sifter has been, I don't really want to run a sas app again, uh and I'm sure you can guess all the reasons uh at the end of the day, the simplest thing um and I mean I knew it when I was running sifter but I didn't fully appreciate it was the degree to which I let it change me to notifications and alerts of problems and a never ending fear that as soon as I went camping or hiking out of cell service was the day it was going to fall over in a bad way and uh like it wasn't this like huge thing, but it was just in this like ever present anxiety and after I didn't have that anymore, it was just such a like epiphany Garrett  that was like, I don't really want to go back there and if I build a SAS up, it needs to be something that can be designed in such a way that it's resilient and I know that, you know, if it goes into a certain state and it's like that for six hours or something, nobody's gonna be too upset. Um and I couldn't think of anything and uh so yeah, so then I just started building these gyms and I was like, I'm just gonna build the gyms and see where that takes me. I mean really, I feel like I'm just kind of pulling on a thread right now based on my personal curiosity and then just trying to also keep in mind like let's make sure this would also be useful for other people at some point, wherever that is. Ben  Yeah, I'm of course totally with you on the whole like it's tough to run this as because yeah, it is and yeah, I think about this the other day as this, this side project, I'm working on it, like, well it's it's actually right now just for fun, but of course it's like well how would I how to make money on this if I wanted to? And I could run a sad and this is a sad thing, it integrates with GIT hub. And uh so it's it's definitely a web based kind of stuff you do. Um Ben  but you know, if it went down for a few hours, people wouldn't be screaming like screaming about honey badger going down for a few hours. So like that's like that's okay. And then on the other hand, it's like, well it's it is very tightly integrated to get hub. So I could do a self hosted, here's a doctor image kind of thing, you go run this and it talks to your get up enterprise installation behind your firewall. Right? Ben  So I think, yeah, it's really good for entrepreneurs today who are so low to be thinking about that because there are a lot of options. There's the, you know, there's a psychic model. We just give one some someone some code, right? They license it, they run it and it's it's all them right. Or maybe you build a SAAS app that is also a docker image that they can deploy themselves. Maybe the codes available, you know, as maybe it's an open source thing, even like a matter most right, you can they have a hosted option, they have an open source options, have a self host adoption. Um Yeah, I think really good to be thinking about these things as you're, you know, deciding what you're doing day to day because it does, does affect quality of life. Like Ben  my first thought was, and I was when I think about this says I was like this side project, as I says, I was like, well then I got to have the laptop in the night time because Garrett  I'm like, I think I would much rather have an imac, but like as long as I'm involved in anything that can go offline, I don't think I can survive with just an imac, I've got to have a laptop and like yeah, I don't like that, feel like, I don't know, I mean, I don't think anybody but uh Yeah, Ben  Yeah, well that's, and I sometimes I think about a kind of metal level like oh that's a problem to solve, like how do you help? So the entrepreneurs run saAS operations without having to be, you know, always on like yeah, that's an unsolved problem. If someone solves that, that will be I think worth some. I mean Hiroko has done a pretty good job solving that problem, but it's not % solved yet. Garrett  So Well there's Ben  for me, Garrett  like I built a job board for our community here in the valley um because tourism based economies like the turnover and stuff is high and ah and so like for me I was staying with that and I haven't done this because it's just not critical enough. Um but the only thing I thought it would be like with a job board, if you could have it fall into read only mode where it's basically heavily cached on the front end and that's something that could work. But most apps where you're interacting with them because posting jobs, it's not like you constantly post jobs, you post a job and if you can't post a job right now you can come back in six hours and that's fine. It's not the end of the day, you know, into the world. Garrett  Uh but that's the only thing I've been able to come up with that has felt like it wouldn't be a huge issue as long as you designed and built it, right, so that I could do that. But everything else I'm like, nope, that won't work, That won't work. Like, I think that's why haven't start another business yet is because I've become really picky, like after selling stuff to, I'm like, what do I really want to do and not do again? And so much of the sad stuff while it's great. Um it was just like, it took a toll. Like, it made me not want to do so many things that now I love doing, like camping and hiking and like getting out of cell service. Um, and so I don't want to give that up anymore. Ben  So I guess the moral of the story is do all that kind of stuff when you're in your twenties have plenty of energy, right? You don't hate it yet, right? And then try to come up with something different by the time you're in your s, Garrett  use the experience to uh more wisely choose your battles. Ben  Yeah. Right. Yeah. Yeah. Cool. Well, this has been total fun. Yeah. Yeah. Garrett  Glad, Glad to catch up. Ben  Is there anything that we should have talked about that we didn't? Garrett  Oh, probably a ton of stuff. Uh, no, I mean, I wish this stuff was all in a better state. Many test heat is good to use now, I need to add a little bit more exception handling because now every now and then something goes wrong with many test heat and like you can't see your own test failures because it fell over. Uh so that's kind of my next step is to add some resiliency to that so that if it breaks, it says, hey many test heat fell over on this, but your things fine and have some like simple output. So you at least can see something because every now and then I have to go disable it and switch back to the regular reporter so I can actually see the the failure. Um but uh you know, it's ready to use, I'm using it Garrett  every day on all my projects now. Um and it's been pretty, pretty fine. Today was the first time in like a week that I've seen any kind of issue that didn't work so that people can use it. It definitely needs some tidying up and improvements, but that's forthcoming, then reviewer will hopefully be the end of the year will kind of see how, how things shake out with the holidays and all that, how much work I'm able to get done, but um I'm optimistic because I want it, I want to use it on other projects, like every time I go work on reviewer, I'm like, I really wish I had this for my other projects where I've just got dumb scripts that just run the same commands in order and you know, it's close, but it's not the same. Um Garrett  you know, I'm really excited about how much I know it's going to help my day to day work flow and I'm hopeful anybody else that's using rubio find those same benefits. Um And hopefully other languages too. I don't know. I haven't really tried, I mean in theory, javascript and a lot of that stuff will work like with the rails app. Um and like er be learning and and what night. Um So hopefully, but I haven't tried anything wholly outside of a ruby project to see if it could be useful there, but it should be, it's just a wrapper around command line, right? Strings. So hopefully Ben  and then next step V. S. Code plug in right where it's all just running all the time Garrett  code, right? Ben  Yeah, maybe that's your thing you sell. I don't know. Garrett  Yeah. You know, I haven't thought about that too much because most of them you can plug in on their own. Uh But then that gets overwhelming when you're trying to edit your file and it's like just yelling at you about everything. Like just let me think first, then yell at me after the fact after I've like figured it out. Yeah, I'm excited about it. It's kind of the most fun I've had programming in a long time. Um So we'll see. Ben  I love it. Well, scratching your niche is always fun and if you can make some money while you're at it. Hey, even funny Garrett  right? Well and so like that's the thing, like just kind of circle back and wrap it up, like part of it is in order for me to really pursue adaptable, I've got to have some kind of automatic income and like with sifter that would've been perfect, you know, it's recurring revenues, Great. And uh so a lot of it too is like, I'm really gonna unlock adaptable potential. I need to not be, you know, have an income tied to hourly rates. It's got to be divorced from how much time I'm actually sitting at my computer and uh so that's kind of been a driver too, but again, more just wandering and figuring it out, hoping it all comes together somehow. Ben  That's, we're all in the same boat. Garrett  Right, Ben  well, we will definitely link up uh the heat map and review and uh definitely get some people check it out if you're ruby ist and we'll link up your twitter so people can follow you and keep track of what you're doing. Uh Thanks again, yeah, hanging out with, Garrett  thanks. Great to catch up Ben  and thanks everybody for listening Again, you've been listening to found request from the founders of honey badger. We're excited to continue to bring you exciting episodes on podcast and a fantastic product, honey badger of course. So check us out on the bed, radio and you know, as star always says, review as if you like and don't review us, if you don't like, have a great one.
Talking SaaS With Garrett Dimon
Oct 29 2021
Talking SaaS With Garrett Dimon
Show notes:Links:Garrett DimonMinitest HeatHeat Map Reporter for MinitestReviewStarting & SustainingSifter AppAutomated transcript (only about 70% accurate)Ben  Welcome to FounderQuest, this has been Today, I'm interviewing Garrett Diamond Star and josh are taking the day off and I get a chat with Garrett, who's a longtime friend of mine and fantastic entrepreneur and all around great person in the world, so I'm excited to have you here. Gary, Thanks, Garrett  thanks for having me. Ben  It's always fun catching up with you. I think the last time we chatted was business of software a few years ago, wasn't it? Garrett  Yeah, not frequently enough, Ben  so that was, yeah, definitely not frequent enough. One thing I most remember about that business of software was that was when the hurricane was coming through and so I was standing out there in boston with all the wind and the Garrett  right, having grown Ben  up in the south, that was kind of ironic that I was there in the northeast and getting a hurricane. Mhm. So have you been Garrett  three, so just uh probably about the same as everybody else man, you know, just kinda one day at a time and keeping it going um and yeah, I just kind of dabbling and exploring and for once the last year just kind of let myself be undirected and just kind of followed what was interesting and pulled on threads and uh a little unnerving but also kind of nice and refreshing, I don't know, you know, so kind of bouncing around like a ping pong ball. Ben  Well, that's, that sounds pretty cool. Well, let's talk about that in a minute. I want to catch people up so I'm sure most people know you, but just for those who don't. So Garrett again, it's been a long time entrepreneur I think. I think I first bumped into you with doing sifter, your, your, your app from a few years ago, you built that from scratch solo entrepreneur and then you sold that. Then you're, you're at post uh, postmark for awhile for that. Right. Garrett  Well, wild bit at large, but primarily on postmark. Yeah. Ben  Okay. Right. Right. So you're a while, but for a while and then I guess it was a couple of years ago now that you've left wild. Garrett  Yeah, it's been about . years, I guess. No. Okay. Ben  Yeah. And so I guess also during that time you kind of did the starting and sustaining books slash video series slash thing. That was cool. Garrett  Yeah, I've been dabbling in all that, trying to share my battle wounds so that other people can maybe avoid them or less than them. Ben  Yeah, that's awesome. I remember, I remember buying that. It's good, good stuff. So also linked in the show notes. Maybe we'll get a sailor to uh, you spoke, you spoke at Microsoft a few times or at least once that I can remember Garrett  I can't even keep track now. Microsoft spoke once attended a couple of times. Yeah. Ben  And so now you're doing some, some interesting stuff. So I remember, remember when you left a wild bit, you were, you're really interested in getting started on helping amputees have a community and so you started adapted, right? So, we're gonna talk about that for a second, and then we can talk about, you know, how that plan kind of changed for you with the passage? Garrett  Um, I mean, so I'm a left below knee amputee. And when I was trying to make that decision, I couldn't find any information on what life is really like as an amputee, um, let alone specific information about, can I play basketball still, if so, how does that work? Or what other activities can I do? And there's just not a lot of detailed information, and with disability, even just within amputees, the range is incredible, like above me and bologna makes a complete difference in how you function and your body mechanics, and so I just couldn't find this information out there. And so that kind of planted the seed that obviously it's not out there and, you know, it's woefully under informed, which at first was kind of scary, it's like, oh, I guess nobody does any of this stuff Garrett  and for me, the whole, ironically, the whole point of amputating was so that I could get back to doing things because of my ankle fusion was horrible and all that, it's just hurt and was miserable and through the whole thing, I was blogging about it, and what would happen is people would email me because they'd go on google and search for amputation, ankle fusion, that kind of thing, and then they'd ask me like, I'm, because I was the only person that came up and I would get these emails, you know, it kind of varies and go ebbs and flows, you know, to a month, once a week, you know, so frequently enough. Um, and uh, one uh, young woman that reached out to me, she actually amputated and then just won a couple of gold medals in the paralympics and like, Garrett  it just blew my mind is like, how do you find the answers to this stuff? And uh, after being an amputee now about five years and trying stuff and just kind of figuring it out. Uh, my hope was originally, I was like, well, I'm a software developer, I'll build a platform so people can share that information, um, you know, and I figured I was really optimistic about that specifically, because, well I built sifter and rails has gotten way better and I learned a ton from sifters, it'll be way easier this time around, but I didn't really account for was now I've got a family and I'm  years older, uh and so it's been more challenging at the end of the day, I'm just tapped on software because I'm doing that all day and my brain is fried. Garrett  Um, but I've been doing videos kind of explaining this stuff to people about how legs work and the logistics of like how they change your body mechanics and um, how to do things like go to the beach and deal with sand in your foot and that kind of stuff. Uh, and I did that more is like an exploratory whimsical thing because that was the kind of content I hope people would create and put on the platform. So then you could filter and say, here's my disability, here's the activity I want to do. Give me all the information about that specific thing. Um, but I did it and it just kind of left it for a year, but it just kept going and then more people have been contacting me and so now what I'm doing is kind of Garrett  stepping back from the software side of it and I'm just gonna keep recording videos for the next short term, um, and having them produced and that kind of stuff and hopefully increasing the quality and the depth and then doing interviews with other amputees and really kind of getting into more stuff, um, and then eventually circling back to building a platform to help people find the right things that meet their needs and that kind of thing. Um, so, you know, it's, it's, it's been tough. I think the toughest thing is realizing that nonprofit side projects are the hardest thing to make time for, um because it's never going to offset my income or anything. And so like Garrett  now I've kind of been thinking, I guess I need to build a business again. So I've got more ironically more free time um, just because Sassen recurring revenue all that's so great that it would give me the flexibility to do that and to spend more time helping people and building um software and all that. So kind of just juggling things and figuring it out. And that's kind of where a lot of the exploration has come in. I haven't really prescribed where I'm taking things and uh um spending a lot of time dabbling and ruby and getting kind of deeper into it than I ever have previously. And uh exploring video and trying to help people with that stuff. So just kind of playing around and tinkering and trying to make ends meet at the same time and I'll figure it out, I guess Ben  that's cool. There's a whole lot to unpack in there. So let's, let's talk about some of that. So, Some of the, some of the themes, well, at first, I guess I should say I can totally relate to you with the whole, you know,  years later and now, there's. yeah, there's more demands on your time. There's less energy in the body and there's, you know, less energy in the brain probably is more importantly. Um, I've had that, that same thing I recently started picking up some side projects, you know, and like, yeah, they're just, you have fewer hours in the day that you really feel like being really into that kind of mode, you know, that your brain stuff and, Ben  and I've noticed that uh I can tell like when my blood sugar is getting low and now we're like, I've I've used up too many brain cells, I gotta go back and recharge, you Garrett  know? Uh Ben  So it's interesting that dynamics, like, I don't quite have the appetite that I used to have to just dive in and, and, you know, slog away at the keyboard for hours. And then Garrett  for me, it's also been awareness, like, I recognize it more now when I, when I was younger I would push through and be like, oh, grind and hustle and you know, and now I'm like, ok, I need to stop, this isn't, you know, if I don't stop, I'm going to be a complete mess tomorrow and not want to work and not be able to think. And so I catch it earlier and I just stopped and I hate it because I still, like, interested in whatever problem is in my head is still tugging on it and, you know, it's trying to and it's really hard to just turn it off and walk away. Um but I've gotten better at that a little, Ben  One of the things that I've noticed as, as I've gotten older in this tech world. So I guess I've been doing it  years or  years or so, is that, um, uh, so that that energy for doing all the things is not there? Like it used to be, but it seems like the deep thinking is more refined is more home. So like you said, like you're going to be, you know, you're just not going to have the energy, you're not going to be wasted the next day. And I think I've seen that too. And I think it's not just from like the energy of working, it's from the energy of thinking deeply about what's the right solution here, right? Ben  It's not so much like just powering through it. Okay, I'm gonna build this stuff and I'm gonna backtrack and I'm gonna redo and backtrack and redo now. It's like, oh, I'm gonna think about this and I'm going to get it right right? And then you apply that precision cut I guess. Garrett  And for me, the struggle is having the wisdom to recognize they should stop, but I can't turn off the excitement or the interest, right? And so I do still want to work on it. I just know better. And it's hard when those two don't align. Yeah, that's, that's been a struggle. Ben  Yeah, I've seen saying the same thing, but I think my living experience so far has been like the, the eventual outcome is better, even even when I have that, you know, I want to do more, but I don't know, I don't have the energy to more, But having that time to reflect more when I do sit down next time and have that  minutes an hour or whatever, like that time is much better spent coming up with the right solution rather than Garrett  just uh just the other day. I was and I mean, I think we've all had this happen a million times, but this just happened. I don't know, friday, I think banging my head on the desk for an hour and a half on this thing. That just makes no sense. There's a ruby thing like this doesn't make sense. What am I missing here? Like is there some really quirky ruby behavior I don't understand. Um And hour and a half and finally was like, I've got to give up, I've got to stop, this isn't getting anywhere. And it was only like , right? So I still was like, I had time in the day, I was like, I just got to stop The next morning. I sat down with in  minutes, Garrett  like solve cold, right? Like there's no, that was from the time I sat at my desk at the time, I solve the problem and it was just, you've got to step away and clear your head or you know, it just doesn't go well, Ben  yeah, yeah, I've had that same experience so many times and uh I think a lot of times you hear people say yeah just take a break, go for a walk whenever you're like yeah what everyone's gonna power through it but it actually does work Garrett  well for me. Walking doesn't cause then I'll just fix it on it too much and like I need to let go like my brain has to let it go. Um And so for me usually it's more getting a getting a night of sleep um is what kind of resets it for me at least from what I've found. But I've probably every three or four months. It's one of those where like This is going poorly and the next morning less than  minutes it's solved. Uh Ben  Yeah I have that too, like a good night. So definitely goes to reset. The one. The one problem I've had with that though is that then I will wake up at four a.m. I have the solution in my head, I'm like I got to go do it, Garrett  I do that too and for better or worse I don't even fight the sleep anymore, I just get up and go start working. Um And then if I need a nap later or something I just Ben  so be Garrett  it. Uh But like that's so much of that like We're so indoctrinated that like  is when people work. And that's been a really hard thing to let go of two and not feel that way every day and to basically, it's not about like working when you feel like it, but it's not like pushing back when the urge to get something done strikes, like go do it and then circle back, yeah, you know, and get some either for rest or whatever. Um you know, take a long lunch or whatever it is. Uh and that's uh I've found that to be helpful to just to try and not forced to work, but do it when it's fresh in my head and just go, Ben  yeah, yeah, I love having that flexibility as a, as an entrepreneur or business owner and being able to work when it's most effective. So You know, if it's  and then I take a break and maybe come back in a couple hours in the afternoon and then I'm done for the day, that's, it's cool. Right? So I wanted to hit on one other thing from, you're talking about there about with adaptable and you know, I love what you're saying about there's a, there's a software solution here, let me go build that, right? And then over time. Like uh maybe not. And I can totally relate to that because I feel the same way. It's like, oh if there's something missing in the world, there's, there's obviously assad's there that can satisfy that need, but Ben  but in reality like salad, you don't have to go all the way to says, right, you can uh, you can start with, you know, youtube videos or uh, maybe even just a reddit, right? Maybe maybe you're hanging out in the community and on offering back and building up that stuff that you want to see in the world. Garrett  Uh, so there's definitely still an element of that with what I want to do and uh, a lot of it is like, right now I'm focused on videos and more mechanics and uh, you know, here's things to think about if you want to get into mountain biking as an amputee or things to think about with snowboarding or, you know, whatever it is. Um, but there's this whole other facet or many facets really, um, of like limb care and recovery and you know, when you beat your leg up doing something active in a carbon fiber socket all day Garrett  and then you get home and it's destroyed, uh, you know, you got to take care of it. And so there's things like that and there's a financial aspect that like insurance only helped so much with prosthetics and they help with basic, like daily kind of day to day prosthetics, but they don't help if you need more advanced prosthetics, um, for certain activities. And so for that, you're either on your own or you need to find financial assistance and there's a ton of great organizations out there that help with that, but they're all non profits and their websites are less than stellar and less than informative. Um, Garrett  and in a lot of ways it's difficult to find the one that is right for you that will cover the type of equipment you need based on, you know, just your disability fall into the disabilities that they cover. Um, and so there's all these different requirements and details and it's difficult or you forget right, like life happens and some organization has an annual grant cycle and it's in october and then october blows by and you're like, oh crap, I totally forgot to apply for that grant and now you got to wait till next year. And so, you know, my thinking is that it's not just a tool to like educate people and help people find the information. They need something to proactively help reduce friction and remove the barriers that stop people with disabilities from being active. Garrett  Um, and that could be everything from pain to financial stuff to simply, you know, needing somebody to talk to who's done it. Um, and there's just, there's so many solutions and everybody, even within a category of disability is unique, even if they're not unique from the disability perspective, the activity they want to pursue might be more unique. Um, and so it's just really difficult to make it all work and to find answers and you kind of just gotta go try and you know, from experience the first couple of times I try new activity is miserable because I'm just figuring it out and that takes a lot of the fun out of it. And a lot of people like this isn't for me and you know, until you learn Garrett  kind of about that learning curve and how it exists and how it's a lot steeper than it is without a prosthetic or what have you. Um it's tough and it's easy to give up because it hurts and it's inconvenient and you know, there's just you're worried about your prosthetic, right? You've got this $, prosthetic that you need to survive day to day and you're like, oh I'm going to go paddleboarding, so what if it gets wet, can it get wet? I don't know, and there's just so many questions and so many easy reasons to give up or be intimidated and Garrett  you know, it doesn't need to be that way because more more importantly, like once you're in that situation is more important than ever to be active and to stay active and to not let it just lock you down on the couch or something. Um but it's not easy, you know, it's way harder than before and I don't think it needs to be, it doesn't need to be as hard as it is. So yeah, I'm hoping could help people get answers and you know, do their thing, whatever it is that moves them figuratively and literally Ben  yeah, yeah, that sounds like a tagline for the website Garrett  actually. Right. Ben  Right. Garrett  Yeah. Ben  Yeah. I I have uh so we have in our in our family some some experience with a kind of obscure medical issues like uh which is kind of similar to, you know, go into a prosthetic situation, right? Where all of a sudden you're into this community where you have to, you can get the speed really quickly on what does life look like now. And how do I do the things that I want to do and where do I go to find that information? And so often it seems that in our in our experience is that the only people who really know much of anything are the doctors that you're working with or the therapists or the nurses, right? And and they can connect with resources. But like if you just happen to have the wrong, you know, chemistry, Ben  you know, with with someone or you don't just happen to the right person, you can just feel pretty isolated. And uh so I thank you for having having resources for, for that is is so helpful because I've told my wife a number of times like you could write a book on on all the things that you've learned, you know, through this experience. And and then my my my brother's family there was a significant motorcycle accident that left someone with, you know, just a lot of parallelization from the waist down basically and his his, you know, going through all the things that he went through two surgeries and the rehab. And so to get back to a point where he could walk, you know, uh, which was, which was assisted so much by the great people that he had around him. Ben  But fortunately he had them right for those that don't, it's got to be a much, much harder rodeo Garrett  and it's just all over the board. Um, amputations really interesting is what most most frequently right into with people is there surgeon doesn't want them to amputate and is constantly trying to talk them out of it. But after you go through it, I saw my surgeon, I mean, my surgeon, I had to switch surgeons. Um, but he saw me twice after my amputation. He's never seen me with a prosthetic. He has no idea what I'm doing now. And so these people are asking their surgeons about amputation. The truth is the surgeons, unless they're actively helping. Um, you know, in other contexts and volunteering. Uh, they have no clue what life is like after amputation. They might read some stuff, Garrett  right. And you know, there's plenty of paralympians that are amazing. But then you wonder those people edge cases or you know, can anybody run and do that stuff again? Maybe not at that level. Um, and the, your surgeon just doesn't know. And so people are asking the surgeon because that's supposed to be the expert and then the surgeons giving them, I don't want to say bad information but incomplete information. And so it's tough for people because you can't get those answers, you know, and again, every disability so different how it affects people and how your doctor, what their background is in terms of how they understand like being active or you know, doing more than just day to day functioning. All right. Yeah. There's so many layers to it all. Mhm. Ben  So, one thing I wanted to go back to was talking about, you know, the time that you spend on that, obviously it's it's tough when you've got a family, you're the breadwinner. You know, you're trying to build a nonprofit thing. And at some point it sounds like you realize, you know what, I just gotta I gotta do some work. I got to bring the money in the door, right? I can't spend all my time focusing on this this nonprofit platform. So it sounds like you're doing that in your spare time and that you're you're paying the bills of freelancing doing a bunch of bunch of rail stuff. But as you've been doing that, you've actually built some tools that I want to talk about. So it sounds it sounds like Ben  you've been doing this work and this work has prompted you to build the review thing you've been working on. And also the heat map thing for many tests, let's talk about that a little bit. Garrett  Uh Yeah. So the nice thing, the one the only intentional thing I've done the last . years is to try and make sure that whatever I'm doing at all kind of syncs up somehow um and for the most part that was always leading back to ruby and or rails um and you know, so a lot of my client work is helping with legacy apps that are profitable now, but they built the app quickly and there's some, you know, legacy pain that needs to be fixed, re factoring that kind of thing. Um And then there was adaptable where I was starting with a Greenfield fresh modern rails app um and one of them was fun and the other one wasn't and I'll let you guess. Mhm. And so a lot of what I started thinking more about was like how does an app that Garrett  has all this legacy craft get from there to a point where it's not miserable to work on and you know, there's a lot of ways, there's a lot of paths, there's a lot of great books on re factoring um and a lot of that kind of stuff, uh what I started getting more interested in was how we've got all these great letters and static analysis tools for um security for syntax for just cleaning up code, right? And a lot of little auto correct and format stuff for you. Uh and the more I I dabbled with the tools previously but they were always so difficult to use because they're all command line um you know and they all have different syntax, different names for the same flags that do the same thing like Summer Garrett  auto, correct, some are right, some are, you know, and so like you gotta then remember the quirks, they're using the wrong flags with the wrong tools and it just gets tedious, right or like you know, you want to use a dozen tools, but if you run them all at once, like it's going to take  minutes to run through your whole project when really all you want is like just look at the files, I'm about to commit or uh you know look at the files, I just committed and let's do a pass it like with Robocop or whatever, clean them up and then I'll commit a separate one that's just pure clean up, you know, all these kind of things and but it was so tedious, I love these tools but I just wouldn't use them because there was too much friction. Garrett  Uh and so with adaptable and like when I start a Greenfield project, I was like I've got to use these tools from the beginning to make sure that never gets into a bad state because once that ship sails it's too much effort to go back and too much risk to like make those kind of wholesale changes and uh so it started with just that it's like how can I make it easier to use these tools and remove the friction so that they're enjoyable to use and kind of in the back of my mind was because like Guard does a lot of this, right, if you're running guard constantly. Uh But Guard also drove me nuts because it would my fans would spin up and make so much noise and I couldn't concentrate. Um Garrett  and so kind of and I still like guard, but my thinking was what if the tool could be so convenient that you didn't feel like you needed to use guard to watch files as you changed them and that you could do more than just have your automated test front, right? So like what if and I mean there's there's integrations for like Robocop and stuff, but like what if you change five files and you could just run a tool that will automatically run all of the relevant things you have against those files that you updated and potentially auto correct them if you want or um you know, this is all theory and it's it's come together and I'm using it on itself but it's not ready to like use in other projects yet. Um that's kind of the next step. Uh Garrett  But yeah and that's what I just I wanted that I want to be able to take it on a project that's raw and has a ton of craft and then every time I commit basically start cleaning up there and just make sure it doesn't regress, right it only gets better, you know and basically it makes it easier to or hopefully it will make it easier to just make constant steady improvement, right? It's not you run it and then it's like you know the tool just throws up its hands, it's like this code base is a mess, Ben  don't even Garrett  use this tool. Um Instead I want it to be you know what okay make some progress, let's start there and eventually, you know, over the course of a year, two years you're gonna touch so much of the code and eventually it's gonna get cleaner and it's gonna get better right? And it's not just formatting but like you've got things like brake man and things that are for scanning for security issues and all this stuff and there's so much bundler audit right and all these things to make sure that your dependencies and you know there's a lot of great tools out there like code, climate for reporting. But what drives me nuts is when I commit and then it gets to see I Garrett  and then the ci finds the mistake because the tool you don't run it locally like okay well now I've got to fix it and I gotta wait for ci again and like I want all these tools to be so frictionless to use, it never even makes it to see i like CS board because it never has anything to complain about because by the time it gets there it's already perfect. Um So yeah, so that's kind of the that's a reviewer um and it'll hopefully be more like the end of the year. Um And then I've also been obsessed with many tests lately because I used to use ours back and I just it never messed with me. It was too, I don't know, it's Garrett  the way I've always described, feels like it's the only thing in ruby that I feel like is simultaneously very ruby and very un ruby and it's just never worked with my head. Um And all the I'm very dependency averse from years of you know dependency breaks or has a security issue and the chain reaction of things that need to be updated and can't be updated because and so I'm very dependency averse. Um and uh so that's another reason I've gone with many tests because it's just there there's fewer dependencies, it's simpler. Um But many tests output even with all the formatting options out there just always, I felt like I was doing way more work than I should have to to figure out what failed what went wrong and how to fix it Garrett  and so what I've done is really over engineered to test reporter for many tests to uh when a test fails, it kind of catalogs what file was in the stack trace what line number in that file. Um and so what it's doing is in the background, it's kind of building up a heat map of everything that triggered a problem. And it's also differentiating between like failures and exceptions because if your test fails, okay, that's interesting. You want to start with the assertion, what was the assertion that failed? But if there is an exception, then the assertions kind of irrelevant. You want to go dig into the exception. But what if the exception came out of the test, Garrett  then you don't want to waste your time and source code just fix the test. Otherwise you're not. And so it differentiates between failures, a broken test and an exception. And it presents the output differently to kind of guide you in the right direction based on those. And if you've got anything that's failing or broken, it's not going to harass you about skipped tests or slow tests, right? It suppresses those until everything's fixed. And it's like, hey, by the way, you've got four tests here that you've skipped, you need to go right? Those, uh, and actually won't bother you about slow tests until all your skip tests are fixed, Right? Garrett  Uh, and so it kind of lets you focus on what's important at the time without reminding you of the fact that you've got a lot going on that is pending and problematic or whatever it is. Um, you know, so there's a lot of little things like that and like when you make that one change that breaks  things across your whole project, you're renaming a class or whatever it is. Uh And then it's just you will go from like a perfect test suite  failing tests like crap. Okay. Where do I even start? Uh And so the heat map will show you like look all of these problems come back to this one file, you know, whatever it is so you can get to the heart of the matter instead of having to like Garrett  visually scanned through  failures and try to find and recognize a pattern. Uh So it's kind of uh a proactive pattern matching reporter. Um you know with a few other tweaks to just help uh nudge and simplify kind of the output so that you can my hope be, you know, you see a test failure and you know exactly what you need to do to fix it before you even go back to your text editor because you've got enough context. Um And obviously that's not always possible, but more often than not and definitely more often than with just the generic reporter. Uh That's been the case and has been really helpful and saves me a ton of time fishing for what needs to be fixed and what what's worth fixing first and that kind of thing. So I have to think a lot less. Garrett  I just have to go fix it. Ah And so both of those combined are going to kind of I'm hoping work in a way that you know you type R. V. W. And it's just smart and it says here's all your problems. You're like oh my gosh, everything's perfect. But you could stand to improve your documentation here in this file, you're like okay I can do that real quick. Um You know so it kind of nudges you in the right direction without like wearing you out about how horrible your code is. Um Because when you're one of those tools just raw, that's basically what it feels like. It's like oh my gosh I'm horrible. I have no idea, I have no business writing code. Uh Garrett  And that's not a good feeling but if it's like hey you can fix this, here's how okay I can do that. Um You know there's a lot of really interesting ideas. There are like you know you ever run your test suite and it fails and you run it again and it passes. They're like oh crap what was the seed that it used when it failed? And uh so what reviewer does too in the background, it's recording a bunch of history. Um And so it will remember that last failed seed and so you can you be able to type our VW rerun and it would rerun just the failure and let you zero in on that and focus on fixing that. Um So there's a lot of little things like that that Garrett  I just want to make it easier. I mean there's bisect and some great tools out there. Um, but sometimes they're overkill and slow and they take you out of the zone and I want to make it easier to stay in the zone and get things done and get back on track. Ben  That sounds sounds really cool. Yeah, we um, remember having done some a few major rails version upgrades with the honey badger card base, you know, go from  to  or  or whatever it is. And like all of a sudden half your tests, you got thousands of tests and like thousands of them. It's the Garrett  most defeating feeling. You're just like, oh, okay, I quit for today. Ben  Yeah. And then, and then, you know, you dive through all those things like, okay, these all look the same. It's all the same. It's all the same and go and try this thing here and that thing there and oh, I made this one change and now half of those failing tests are now passing okay. Now, you know? So yeah, having the heat map I think is uh, it sounds like a great idea. And then of course, you know, you mentioned, uh, if it's an exception, you know exactly where to go, like it sounds like honey badger, right? You get the context that you need to know what to fix, right, yep. Yeah. Although I must say I'm, I'm an I respect fan Ben  have been for a long time and I've tried, you know, going back to many tests because I'll start your rails app like this, this new side project, I started a few a few months ago, like it's a new rails happen to me, you know, let me try any test again because that's the default and so I'll get in there for a bit. But then like one of the things I've come to realize is that I, what I love about our spec is despite how, you know, I can feel you about the dependency aversion, but at the same time our spec is kind of like a batteries included kind of thing. Like Ben  you've got the mocking right? Not the stubbing, you don't have to worry about what I do. I do, I do many test mock or do I do mocha, you know, like all that's kind of rails itself, right? It's kind of kind of its own duck and it has everything included. So you don't think about, you Garrett  know, and don't get me wrong, I don't dislike our spec, it just doesn't work with my head and like, I just get overwhelmed with how much it has. And so for me with many tests, like you're like, oh, which marked thing to use neither. Like if I feel like I need to mock something, I need to re factor it so it's more easy to test efficiently and directly. Um, because like marks, I mean that has all has its own issues, right? Like uh and so for me uh and and it was very much a mental thing. Like I just fully embraced accepted many tests limitations and now I use that as kind of a nudge to be like, all right, if this is really difficult to do, Garrett  then it's not that I need better testing tools. It's that I need my code to be organized in a way that lets me test this appropriately And efficiently without getting to set up  unrelated models so that it won't fall over. Uh And so that's kind of been more of a philosophical thing for me because previously when I drive many tests, that's exactly how to drive me nuts. I'm like, how the hell do I do any of this? Because my brain what little I did understand of our respect. I had learned to think that way about things. And so then I found myself doing all this like how do you mock in many tests and how do you, And it's like you don't, you know, use mocha or you know what have Ben  you. Garrett  Uh and so kind of accepting that and just saying, you know what, When it, when many test pushes back, I'm going to listen and I'll just re factor. Um and at first was a little painful. But now it actually has been really, really nice. Uh But I will say to a lot of that goes hand in hand with like I've been doing a lot of like deeper deeper reading on ruby and thus kind of understanding patterns, you know being able to see more patterns to re factor like oh this is why this is hard to test really. Just need to re factor using this pattern and take this approach instead or whatever. Um And so that's helped because otherwise I feel like I know I need to change this but I don't even know where to start. Um Garrett  So you know, that's definitely been a philosophical thing I had to accept. Ben  Yeah, that makes sense. So you mentioned code climate and I know, you know in the early days when kokonas started like it was basically a wrapper on top of flay and flaw right and eventually break man and stuff. Right? They assembled all these open source tools and put a nice ui on top of it, which is fine, you know, but you could just run off tools yourself, right? Um But review sounds pretty cool because you're basically giving that code climate kind of experience, but it's on your own right, in your own cli and you could I mean conceivably you could even use it like with left hook or something to do get pre commit kind of thing which might have its own problems but still it's an option. Garrett  It's definitely on the radar, there's a lot of get integration that I'm planning on. So you can do like our VW staged and it'll just look at the staged files or R. V. W untracked, it'll just looked at your file that you haven't staged, That kind of thing. Ben  Super handy. So do you do you see a path where review because there's some sort of commercial component to review or do you think it could always be pure, Garrett  there's, I've got a bunch of ideas that I think could um I mean the core one is just gonna be an open source jim. Um if I do follow any model um you know, it's probably going to be something more like sidekick where there's the core thing that is helpful and useful and free for eternity. Um and then there would be more advanced, either team functionality or kind of sharing of configuration files. Um There's a whole ton of tools that I've thought about building to to um things like if you have an existing app, it kind of auto detect and suggest, hey you might want to use these gems, these tools um obviously it's built in ruby but the idea is that it has to be ruby centric. It's really at the end of the day, it's just a wrapper for command line tools Garrett  that gives you some kind of either pass fail or score output. Um and so like if you've got  tools set up, like one reviewer, I've just gone overboard. Like I'll use everything because I want to kind of test it, you know, and dog food it um And so like if one fails it doesn't bother running the rest of them. And so the idea is if you can figure in the order of priority, like start with bundler audit right? Because if you've got a gym that's out of whack, then you need to fix that because that'll ripple And so it'll just stop there, so you have to wait  minutes for a whole suite to run on a huge project, it just fails immediately, insist fix this and then you fix that and then it runs Garrett  um and then two and this is all theoretical at this point because I haven't played with it, but I've got some, I'm really excited about the idea potentially. Um and I hate to make it ruby three only, but playing with tractors and some some threading and stuff so that you can have Robocop running in parallel with, you know, especially with multi core processors picking up and all this kind of stuff, I feel like there's a lot of potential Like what if you could run  tools in parallel and have the whole thing run in seconds instead of minutes and that could be really cool, There's other challenges there, but um you know that reporting obviously um like code climate, I feel like that's one of code climates really big things, Garrett  but for me the reporting is gonna be more an afterthought, I wanted to be a local thing that you can use friction free and then if people like it, which I hope they will, I mean I'm really excited about, I love using it to build itself, it's been wildly helpful. Um you know, then yeah, I'd start thinking about, you know, what other options are there for, how it could be better um and do even more cool stuff for teams or people who are just really serious about using it or you know, what have you? Ben  Mhm Yeah, I think, I mean I love, I love the sidekick model uh you know, give that great open source core that has great functionality and then build on top of that, you know, things that are useful to people who are going to use it more intensely and I think, I think the psychic definitely has that sweet spot, if it's it's an operations kind of thing where you're gonna be, you're gonna be running this forever in your production environment. So you want to pay that licensing fee, you know, every month, every year or whatever. And then there's also like the ASCII corp model, right? Where they have very, very good open source tools, you know, you can use Packer or Terror Form or whatever, Ben  you know, never paying them a dime but they also have great team collaboration tools if you want to move to their platform, you know, and coordinate your Terror Form running or you know, your console, you know, or your vault or whatever, right? They have a pro or enterprise offering for every one of those that can do additional stuff enhancing it, you know? So yeah, some great options there, Garrett  yeah, you know, I will say to a lot of my Garrett  thinking since selling sifter has been, I don't really want to run a sas app again, uh and I'm sure you can guess all the reasons uh at the end of the day, the simplest thing um and I mean I knew it when I was running sifter but I didn't fully appreciate it was the degree to which I let it change me to notifications and alerts of problems and a never ending fear that as soon as I went camping or hiking out of cell service was the day it was going to fall over in a bad way and uh like it wasn't this like huge thing, but it was just in this like ever present anxiety and after I didn't have that anymore, it was just such a like epiphany Garrett  that was like, I don't really want to go back there and if I build a SAS up, it needs to be something that can be designed in such a way that it's resilient and I know that, you know, if it goes into a certain state and it's like that for six hours or something, nobody's gonna be too upset. Um and I couldn't think of anything and uh so yeah, so then I just started building these gyms and I was like, I'm just gonna build the gyms and see where that takes me. I mean really, I feel like I'm just kind of pulling on a thread right now based on my personal curiosity and then just trying to also keep in mind like let's make sure this would also be useful for other people at some point, wherever that is. Ben  Yeah, I'm of course totally with you on the whole like it's tough to run this as because yeah, it is and yeah, I think about this the other day as this, this side project, I'm working on it, like, well it's it's actually right now just for fun, but of course it's like well how would I how to make money on this if I wanted to? And I could run a sad and this is a sad thing, it integrates with GIT hub. And uh so it's it's definitely a web based kind of stuff you do. Um Ben  but you know, if it went down for a few hours, people wouldn't be screaming like screaming about honey badger going down for a few hours. So like that's like that's okay. And then on the other hand, it's like, well it's it is very tightly integrated to get hub. So I could do a self hosted, here's a doctor image kind of thing, you go run this and it talks to your get up enterprise installation behind your firewall. Right? Ben  So I think, yeah, it's really good for entrepreneurs today who are so low to be thinking about that because there are a lot of options. There's the, you know, there's a psychic model. We just give one some someone some code, right? They license it, they run it and it's it's all them right. Or maybe you build a SAAS app that is also a docker image that they can deploy themselves. Maybe the codes available, you know, as maybe it's an open source thing, even like a matter most right, you can they have a hosted option, they have an open source options, have a self host adoption. Um Yeah, I think really good to be thinking about these things as you're, you know, deciding what you're doing day to day because it does, does affect quality of life. Like Ben  my first thought was, and I was when I think about this says I was like this side project, as I says, I was like, well then I got to have the laptop in the night time because Garrett  I'm like, I think I would much rather have an imac, but like as long as I'm involved in anything that can go offline, I don't think I can survive with just an imac, I've got to have a laptop and like yeah, I don't like that, feel like, I don't know, I mean, I don't think anybody but uh Yeah, Ben  Yeah, well that's, and I sometimes I think about a kind of metal level like oh that's a problem to solve, like how do you help? So the entrepreneurs run saAS operations without having to be, you know, always on like yeah, that's an unsolved problem. If someone solves that, that will be I think worth some. I mean Hiroko has done a pretty good job solving that problem, but it's not % solved yet. Garrett  So Well there's Ben  for me, Garrett  like I built a job board for our community here in the valley um because tourism based economies like the turnover and stuff is high and ah and so like for me I was staying with that and I haven't done this because it's just not critical enough. Um but the only thing I thought it would be like with a job board, if you could have it fall into read only mode where it's basically heavily cached on the front end and that's something that could work. But most apps where you're interacting with them because posting jobs, it's not like you constantly post jobs, you post a job and if you can't post a job right now you can come back in six hours and that's fine. It's not the end of the day, you know, into the world. Garrett  Uh but that's the only thing I've been able to come up with that has felt like it wouldn't be a huge issue as long as you designed and built it, right, so that I could do that. But everything else I'm like, nope, that won't work, That won't work. Like, I think that's why haven't start another business yet is because I've become really picky, like after selling stuff to, I'm like, what do I really want to do and not do again? And so much of the sad stuff while it's great. Um it was just like, it took a toll. Like, it made me not want to do so many things that now I love doing, like camping and hiking and like getting out of cell service. Um, and so I don't want to give that up anymore. Ben  So I guess the moral of the story is do all that kind of stuff when you're in your twenties have plenty of energy, right? You don't hate it yet, right? And then try to come up with something different by the time you're in your s, Garrett  use the experience to uh more wisely choose your battles. Ben  Yeah. Right. Yeah. Yeah. Cool. Well, this has been total fun. Yeah. Yeah. Garrett  Glad, Glad to catch up. Ben  Is there anything that we should have talked about that we didn't? Garrett  Oh, probably a ton of stuff. Uh, no, I mean, I wish this stuff was all in a better state. Many test heat is good to use now, I need to add a little bit more exception handling because now every now and then something goes wrong with many test heat and like you can't see your own test failures because it fell over. Uh so that's kind of my next step is to add some resiliency to that so that if it breaks, it says, hey many test heat fell over on this, but your things fine and have some like simple output. So you at least can see something because every now and then I have to go disable it and switch back to the regular reporter so I can actually see the the failure. Um but uh you know, it's ready to use, I'm using it Garrett  every day on all my projects now. Um and it's been pretty, pretty fine. Today was the first time in like a week that I've seen any kind of issue that didn't work so that people can use it. It definitely needs some tidying up and improvements, but that's forthcoming, then reviewer will hopefully be the end of the year will kind of see how, how things shake out with the holidays and all that, how much work I'm able to get done, but um I'm optimistic because I want it, I want to use it on other projects, like every time I go work on reviewer, I'm like, I really wish I had this for my other projects where I've just got dumb scripts that just run the same commands in order and you know, it's close, but it's not the same. Um Garrett  you know, I'm really excited about how much I know it's going to help my day to day work flow and I'm hopeful anybody else that's using rubio find those same benefits. Um And hopefully other languages too. I don't know. I haven't really tried, I mean in theory, javascript and a lot of that stuff will work like with the rails app. Um and like er be learning and and what night. Um So hopefully, but I haven't tried anything wholly outside of a ruby project to see if it could be useful there, but it should be, it's just a wrapper around command line, right? Strings. So hopefully Ben  and then next step V. S. Code plug in right where it's all just running all the time Garrett  code, right? Ben  Yeah, maybe that's your thing you sell. I don't know. Garrett  Yeah. You know, I haven't thought about that too much because most of them you can plug in on their own. Uh But then that gets overwhelming when you're trying to edit your file and it's like just yelling at you about everything. Like just let me think first, then yell at me after the fact after I've like figured it out. Yeah, I'm excited about it. It's kind of the most fun I've had programming in a long time. Um So we'll see. Ben  I love it. Well, scratching your niche is always fun and if you can make some money while you're at it. Hey, even funny Garrett  right? Well and so like that's the thing, like just kind of circle back and wrap it up, like part of it is in order for me to really pursue adaptable, I've got to have some kind of automatic income and like with sifter that would've been perfect, you know, it's recurring revenues, Great. And uh so a lot of it too is like, I'm really gonna unlock adaptable potential. I need to not be, you know, have an income tied to hourly rates. It's got to be divorced from how much time I'm actually sitting at my computer and uh so that's kind of been a driver too, but again, more just wandering and figuring it out, hoping it all comes together somehow. Ben  That's, we're all in the same boat. Garrett  Right, Ben  well, we will definitely link up uh the heat map and review and uh definitely get some people check it out if you're ruby ist and we'll link up your twitter so people can follow you and keep track of what you're doing. Uh Thanks again, yeah, hanging out with, Garrett  thanks. Great to catch up Ben  and thanks everybody for listening Again, you've been listening to found request from the founders of honey badger. We're excited to continue to bring you exciting episodes on podcast and a fantastic product, honey badger of course. So check us out on the bed, radio and you know, as star always says, review as if you like and don't review us, if you don't like, have a great one.
Tales From The Good/Bad Old Days Of Freelance Gigs
Oct 22 2021
Tales From The Good/Bad Old Days Of Freelance Gigs
Show notes:Links:Sweaty StartupHook RelaySpider seasonWrite for HoneybadgerAutomated transcript (only about 75% accurate)Ben  So I've been, I've been using Hook Relay over the past week and I got to say, there's nothing as useful as using your own product to make you see places where the product can be improved. So I've, I've opened a couple of issues. Yeah, yeah. And uh, I mean, they're not, they're not major things, but it's like, oh, it would be nice if this was different, would be nice if that was, you know, different. And it's been, it's been good. So I'm, I'm looking forward to having those things done making the product better. And we, uh, you know, we talked about spending some more time, uh, development time on really the other couple next coming weeks and months because I've had some, some customer requests coming in. So Ben  it's always a good feeling like when people are actually using it and saying, oh yeah, I like it, but couldn't do this like, Oh yeah, I could do that. It's fun. I love it. I love being developer and just building stuff. So much fun. Yeah. Josh  Yeah. Looking at our, our dashboard, we've got uh, got a few New year's is coming in. Got some a little bit more revenue than last time I looked at this, so that's cool. Starr  Yeah, that's good stuff. You know, it's the season for it. The, the pacific Northwest summer is long gone and we're just into the dark, wet now. We've gone through a spider season. Yeah, I mean, right, you've got um, yeah, you've got the summer, you've got spider season, you've got dark with it. Josh  Is that from that like list of pacific Northwest Seasons or whatever, that's like . Starr  You can, you can call me out on that. I was hoping to um, I was hoping to plagiarize. Josh  We should, we should put that in the show notes if we can find it though. That's a pretty good one. Starr  Yeah, that's a good one. Josh  I don't remember them all, but Ben  I'm definitely, definitely more productive in the winter time because like, I'm not outside playing, I'm inside hunkering down from the rain, the cold, so I'm like, I might as well do some code. Josh  Yeah, Starr  I mean, personally, I kind of um like I kind of stopped going on my morning walks in the summer because there's too many amateurs out. Yeah. And I started again once the fall comes, once it starts getting dark and drizzly and those are my favorite morning walks. Josh  Nice even in the rain. Starr  Yeah, especially in the rain, get out. Yeah, that's why you have a nice like Gortex raincoats and my scoots. Yeah, it's all about the gear. Yeah, it's uh, I don't know, this is very pleasant. I like it. The, yeah, the summer here, like it's nice, but after a while, the sun just, just starts getting to me. It's just like, I can't escape it. It's just boring into my eyeballs. Ben  It is truly a thing around here when the sun has been out too long has been to many is people do get a little so crazy. Like I need some wet and so the first rainy day comes, you can just feel the relief. It's just, it's just, I don't know how to describe it. It's just a sense of community, like relieved that things are back to normal. There's, there's precipitation again. Starr  Yeah, I came up with a theory and I have no idea how valid the series, so I'm just going to throw it out there because it's unfounded and I'm wondering, so like I realize this, this winter, this, yeah, this fall as I'm going out. It's like, okay, like the reason I, like this is because like everything is more muted, right? And I get over stimulated very easily. So, you know, noise and late and all that just kind of does it to me. Starr  And but when it's like dark and gray, like for like, I don't know, this may just be my, my perception, but like the water vapor like mutes the sound a little bit or something. It's not quite everything. Like all the edges are more round and pleasant, nothing is quite as sharp and stab. E And so yeah, and Seattle Seattle is like the pacific northwest in general. It's just like, it draws in like all the computer nerds, all the, all the people who just like it here and like that kind of environment. So it's like, oh do we all just, you know, we all have like sensory issues. I don't know. Josh  That's why all the tech companies are in Seattle. Yeah, probably. I think I need to get an office still because I think like, I think, I think Ben's right, like I I also would be more productive in the winter, but like working from home in the winter with with uh like Kindergartners is a a different experience than working at home in the dark by yourself. It's a bit of a challenge. So yeah, Starr  when you turn on the lights while you're working, you don't just leave them off. Josh  Yeah, sometimes I leave them off. Oh yeah, Starr  that's because you're a real hacker, I've been doing more marketing stuff lately. So I turn the lights on. I use light mode. Josh  I mean you probably forgot how to touch type, you know, and use them with you shut up, Starr  shut up. Shut up, you shut up. I get to say that. Not you. Josh  So you have to have the lights on. I'm sorry. Starr  Yeah, I don't have one of those keyboard with a blank key caps. Josh  Like truth be told. I've been um doing a lot less programming than I used to as well. And it's, it started to bother me a little bit lately. So I've been trying to find ways to get back into it because I'm like, if I'm gonna like forget how to build a rails app if I don't, if I don't like, you know, do some do some work. Ben  We do have like  items in our backlog for Honey badgers. It's true. She can find something to do. Yeah. Josh  I don't know, it's just weird like having like a legacy rails out for so long um Like even when you are working, like even when you do work in it, it's still like, I don't know, like your, it's, you know, I'm like not utilizing a lot of the knowledge that I built up like, like we we all built up working on client projects, like where you're constantly solving new problems and like building things out. Like a lot of those decisions are already have long been made in a honey badger app. So it's like, yeah, it's, it's weird. It's a little bit different. Ben  That's been nice about having the side project because like starting a new rails app and making new decisions and trying the new things and new toys like hotwire and you know, stimulus reflex, all kind of stuff. Like it's, it's been, it's been fun. But hey, you know, maybe uh you know, talking about client work like, hey, take on some client work, right? It could uh do something completely different and take on Josh  an option for sure. Yeah, I thought that could be fun. Ben  Good old days Josh  build a green field, a green field ap Yeah, Josh  this I mean, I think we're talking about like the problem of like what to do with your time when you're, you're like app is like nine years old and stable and, and you have all this time on your hands and you know, want to still build new things, right? Starr  Yeah, I've got a question like for, I mean, y'all probably don't know because you haven't been freelancing for a while. But to all the freelancers out there, do do people still um do people still higher developers to build like, you know, facebook for x. Like it's like, I just remember working on so many like facebook for so and so um facebook for um nurses, facebook for, you know, whoever and it turned out the facebook for all those groups with facebook, Josh  right? Was that before facebook groups. Starr  I think so. Yeah. Yeah I think so it was. Yeah. It's just weird Josh  because it's like I was our era I mean like for sure like our era freelancing was the facebook for ex Yeah Starr  because like the social media like the social network had just come out that movie about facebook and so I really wanted to be the next facebook by copying facebook for some vertical. Ben  I was just I was thinking back to the are kind of projects that we built you know, talking about the facebook for X stuff and uh I think I was like what was my favorite project and the one that I can remember maybe so I guess it's probably my favorite because when I remember the most and remember the most kindly is the Montessori project that we did. That was a lot of fun. Yeah. Remember started a lot of work on Josh  that project. Still around you know. Ben  Yeah, it's like still making bank. Mhm. It's gonna be like  years older now by now or something. Yeah. That's awesome. I wonder if it's still on rails too. Josh  Yeah Caitlin was doing some shopping for the kids last night and she was looking at Baden kids brand. There are many many Baden and I don't know if that name rings a bell with you Ben but it doesn't because they were one of the they were one of the affiliate shops with today shop flashbacks man. I'm much. Yeah I have all these like I've had all these like kids kids clothing brands like just like programmed into my brain for the last  years now. And now that I actually have kids like they're all resurfacing. So Starr  that's where that was like another that was like another um era which was the um it wasn't the facebook for X. It was the product aggregator. Like we're gonna make we're gonna make a website that aggregates lots of products across you know for different companies and we're just gonna be like an affiliate. We're gonna be really good. S. E. O. Josh  Yeah it was like the um and and that trend was like kind of I mean amazon was definitely around then but it was like I think these days like amazon is now where everything is pretty much aggregated like that. So this was like I don't know it seems like pre pre amazon like at least in their current scale. Starr  Yeah I mean amazon missed out on that. Sweet sweet. A sai Buri affiliate money though. Uh huh. Or it's like you got I don't know what it was like  or  bucks if he was an affiliate could like sign somebody up first. The scam a sai buri like subscription service. Well what it was just affiliates but it was a scan because it was recurring charge and people weren't familiar with getting recurring charges. Yeah so um well you don't Josh  want to boost your health just once. Oh no. And then lose out on all those benefits. So you're really I mean that's like in the that's in the interest of the customer star. Starr  Exactly. One of my friends worked um back then worked at a ah the call center for a bank and like half of her calls or just people like what the hell? Like why am I keep getting charged for this? Josh  Like all of your support requests or start with what the hell you work in a bank. Ben  Yeah. There's a lot of fun things to do when the projects are new and it's all green field. But then, you know, there's also fun things to do when the projects are nine years old. You know, like I was pleasantly surprised on monday morning to find that our database server had failed on sunday morning. You know, it's like, Oh really? That that happened. But our our high availability set up actually worked and the fail over happened and it's just like nothing, nothing happened. I mean these days of course you? Re wild, you would not even set that up, right? You just use already s or you would, you know, there's there's like a gazillion post graze as a service services out there now. But you know, back in my day, you know, we had to push the bits uphill both ways. Right. Mhm. Josh  So yeah. Imagine if the database server failed in like year two. Yeah, back on, back on snickers. Starr  Yeah. Yeah. Well our servers were named after candy bars. Candy bars were Josh  still I love that. We're still on first name first name basis with all of our old servers. Ben  Uh My favorite tricks though, Josh  tricks. Yeah, Starr  I mean it makes sense why that whole hosting platform didn't really work out for us because Trix are for kids been. Ben  I know, I know, but then my kids were young enough then it made sense. Josh  Yeah, these drinks, we should build a we should we should do a client project just for fun. I mean and obviously Starr  obviously right, Ben  your friends but of course is gonna be for money. Yeah. Josh  The great thing about client projects is like you get to build them and then and then you get to like, never see them again. Ben  It's like, it's like, it's like being grandparents right where you can send the kids back to the parents like oh we'll have some fun, will spoil the kid and then send them back to be the parents so you can grow this little rails app and you can have some fun with it and then send it off, you know? And Josh  yeah, yeah. And then you're like, you're like, oh I wonder what happened to deteriorate. Starr  Like a couple of years later, you were like, oh, I wonder what happened to little timmy and see a google him and he's dead. Uh huh. Josh  Yeah. Four little timmy. Mhm. Yeah, there's um I unfortunately I think a lot of my old client projects are in that category, but I think that's just kind of the way it goes. Ben  But you know, I remember the primary struggle that we had the with the ones that didn't, one that weren't reported means I was like, what do we do with it now? Because we like to building new things, but we didn't really like running them, you know, we didn't wanna be on the hook. And so it was like, it's great, you have this new app go enjoy, right? And they're like, yeah, but you know what about something breaks? It's like, oh, well, good luck, you know? Yeah, I Josh  was thinking about that recently, like, like does that still fly? Like what do people do these days? Like, I don't know. Ben  I would like to know Josh  if you have a non technical, like, I don't like, to be honest, um you had a knack for like finding those people that seem to been because like, you find these people that are just like nontechnical. They they just have an idea like, you know, they're like, like Star said, like the whatever facebook facebook for X people, but like, they just have you just build it for them? And then yeah, they would kind of just be like, now I'm I'm like, I'm a tech founder now, Starr  can I tell a funny story about um So I used to live in Tulsa Oklahoma is where I went to college and live there for a little while after and one day I was at like a local coffee shop and there was this guy who actually, I saw a couple times at the coffee shop who just um was chatting up the brief, such adding up everybody around him about this app idea. He had um called the love button, which is just, oh my God, like that, that name, but it's called the Love button. And uh basically it's not, it's not a dating app though, which is like, you know, you're winning when you have to explain that your product name isn't what people think it is originally at first glance, it's not a dating app. It's a uh Starr  it's about like you can put in like what do I love to do? I love carpentry so I can press the love, but you have to press it, it's important. And then it um he didn't say this, but I was sort of imagine like a slot machine type, you know, spinning type thing, like whirling and then it pops up the people nearby you who also love that thing so you can stalk them. Uh huh Ben  uh huh. I was with you right up to that Stockport. Starr  I mean, well, I mean that's I had at that part, but I mean, it's like we've seen what happens to the internet, we've seen having to go, Josh  it just like has their contact information. Like it's a Starr  yeah, it's just, it's like, it's a way for, yeah, it's a way for people to have uncomfortable interactions. So it's like, Ben  it's like chatroulette but in real life, Starr  in real life. Yeah, I'm just sitting there like why the hell would anybody ever consent to that ever? But maybe I wasn't the target market, you know, Ben  mm maybe, maybe not just trying to think. You definitely want to involve a map of nearby welded locations for people to meet up. Josh  Maybe you just don't love anything enough to press the button. Yeah, maybe you like really have to be into something Starr  and then it just shames you. It's like, hey, what's the matter? Josh  I mean like to be fair like craigslist exists and like people, people do like respond to all kinds of things on craigslist and I'm sure are not in well lit locations. So you know, maybe this, maybe this love button app has like a, you know, has like a pivot or something. Starr  Yes, I mean, I don't know, maybe he was going to pivot it to grinder, who knows? Ben  Yeah, Well, you know, another option to just building apps would be buying apps right? We could hang out on micro require and, or flipper or someplace and uh, you know, for these for these developers who built the thing and don't want to run it. You can just buy it and then we can run, Josh  no, I think there's, I think there's probably something there potentially for us because we, we have some of the experience now that maybe they don't, they didn't um, you know the people that someone that just build something to a certain point. So, and we have a marketing engine so we could potentially like acquire something and then plug it in to our existing systems. So that could be fun. Like, you know, I mean like this is like instead of, you know, like, like I got a friend in construction and him and his dad like flip houses, you know, like that's the, the thing they do but are, are flipping houses is like flipping flipping SAs apps I think because you know, that's like our, maybe someday you'll be um flipping saps with your, with your boys. But Ben  mm hmm. Uh huh. We'll have a show on tv about that, you know, let's take it to the next level. Instead of just buying zaps and flipping it. Let's, let's get investors. Let's get some, some, some of the partners up in here and we can use their money to go buy the apps and then we'll run them for a while. Then maybe sell them. Then we can be like those cool kids that are out there like buying all these as apps and doing the investment thing, right? Josh  Yeah, I like it. These are good ideas Starr  are private and private equity firms. The cool kids. Yeah. Yeah. I guess I guess you're right for some value of cool, right? Ben  If you ask the private equity firms, they will say yes, they are the cool kids. Starr  Yeah. Josh  There's a lot of new types of private equity these days. It seems Josh  okay. Yeah. We need to take stuff. Ben  Yeah exactly. Take advantage of this new micro pipeline like you know, tiny seed and calm fund, right? We need to, we need a pipeline like okay, those are the feeding into the pipeline and then we do some magic somewhere along the process, right? And then outcomes bigger companies and we make money somehow. It's kind of funny but I think we can make it happen Starr  if you just took all those platforms up to each other in a circle, you get uh infinite motion machine, right? Oh. Mhm. It just keeps getting bigger and bigger until somebody goes to jail. Josh  I thought you got like an R. Burrows. So I hear you pronounce that the snake eating its own tail. Starr  Yeah. Ben  Or we could go in a completely different direction. I saw a tweet from Patio  this morning where he was uh he was referencing a tweet from sweaty startup and if you don't, if not familiar sweaty startup, you really got to go check that out because that's, that's some cool stuff. Like he hangs out and read it, his cool beans. We'll put some links in the show notes if you can check it out. But somebody started up dude uh he bought like a storage company, self storage company and like applied software to the process because like they were still like, you know, pushing paper around or whatever. It was old school and then really like juice that business and made it pretty cool investment and so Ben  thinking, yeah, we could, we could do that, we could go, we could go old school and get all these old school businesses that are not online and apply our our marketing juice and Josh  tear it up. I'm down to buy like a brick and mortar. Yeah or something. Um Just first of all though, you can't introduce what the startup guy as sweaty startup guy. He's the tomato guy right? Like this is the guy that was like trying to sell like it was like bragging about how he could like whatever like like grow a tomato farm to like a billion dollars. But he Ben  was sweating startup guy before he was tomato guy. Josh  Well because that was, you don't start that was an epic troll. Did you did you catch that at the end? Like it's it's pretty amazing like. Yeah, it turns out that guy really like that. Really not like he knows his shit apparently. And I mean like probably also know like I'm like having like followed him a little bit like seen some of the things he said like I might be inclined to like listen to him on the tomato thing, Josh  Maybe I can make a fortune of tomatoes, you know. Mhm. Ben  Mhm. As long as you don't live in Seattle where it rains nine months out of you. Ben  Yeah, no sweat. He started like I've been following him on Reddit for the longest time and I just love, obviously not every idea is genius, right? But I do love his approach. Like get in there, do the work, do the work that other people aren't willing to do or that people are just haven't really caught on to yet. Like one of his, one of his classic things is like just go start a pressure washing company right? Go knock on your neighbor's doors and see if they want their driveway pressure washed and then and then pressure wash it right? And then you do that and you get some gaming experience and you provide a quality service and lo and behold now you've got a business, right? So I think I just like his his ethos of just go in there, Ben  do the work and try to make it happen as opposed to right, You know. Mhm. Sit back and complain or whatever. You know, it's just kind of like the I just like that I would Josh  I would hire that person by the way um because I could use some pressure washing like the moss around my house is just out of control Ben  really. Again pacific northwest Yeah, Josh  you know that's pretty cool. Um And I like the just the thought of like I mean they're so it feels like there's so many um little I mean there's so many business problems out there that are in the real world that will they need a software solution and um will eventually happen. Um It just like it seems like in order to solve those problems you have to have some sort of like actual like proximity to the problem. So like maybe the way to like get into those problems is just to go out and start doing more stuff in the real world and see where you know like see where the pain points are. Ben  So you're saying if you want to build software for dentist you've got to become a dentist. Josh  Yeah. I don't know like at least like yeah work it in reception or something or have a lot of cavities just go like do stuff for oh yeah, just be a repeat customer for this. Ben  Yeah. Yeah. I just I just love how there's so many ways to make money on the internet. It's amazing. Starr  Yeah but the sai buri opportunities are long gone. That started a long time ago unfortunately. Josh  I think we'll see more. We'll definitely see more internet scams in the future though. So hope is not lost. Ben  You mean like thank goodness. Josh  Oh shots fired. Josh  I like I really want to see just like a like a smart contract. MLM. I mean like I think there might be something out there, but like, I want to see one. I just want to see one succeed, you know? Um Ben  Okay. You have to, you have to be the change that you want to see in the world job. Uh huh. That means you have to do it yourself. Josh  I know. I don't know if I can, I just don't understand that world. Like, I don't know. Like, I'm sure I could go like build, yeah, like comprehend the technology. But I just, I don't know. I'm just not motivated to at all. Like I've kind of tried a little bit, but Ben  yeah. Yeah. I'm still the old guy shaking fist at cloud stage of N. F. T. S. I'm like, I don't get it. Get off my lawn. Yeah. Josh  Well, there will be something there. I'm sure the FTS necessarily just in, in the, in the technology in the future. Ben  But my one of my sons who's really into tech and keeps on top of these things every time I say N. F. T. He's like money laundering. I think that's a really Matic response. It's like, well, okay, I'll trust you Josh  get that kid. A twitter account. Ben  Yeah. That's, that's interesting. Things like my kids not into facebook, not into twitter, you know, there's not Starr  social network for old. Tiktok Ben  absolutely hate Tiktok. Yeah, It's like, it's the opiate of the masses. It's like, well, okay, that's technically. True. Starr  Yeah. I don't know. I really like to talk. It really depends on like, where um like what like you follow and all that. It's, you know, it's just like twitter and that really? Josh  Yeah, yeah, I, I signed up for a Tiktok account recently just to check it out and see like what, where the rabbit holes go and um kind of scared me a little bit, but I mean maybe that's because I was like trying to see how bad it was versus how good it was. So maybe I should do a different experiment where like, I only Starr  like the trick is to take on cat videos or whatever trick is to like follow the things that you like and then you'll get more of those and all the things you don't like, you'll get more of those, Ben  yep. So you said it was scary was more or less scary than kid Youtube. Josh  Uh I haven't really, I don't know like, I mean just the whole idea of Kid Youtube is scary, so it might be just different kind of different things, but just like the algorithm, like the algorithmic bubble that Tic Tac seems to create. Like, I mean, all of these, all of those services have that, but like maybe it's because like the videos are so short and there's so many like strangers that you can end up following or whatever, but it just seems like you could like someone who doesn't understand how that works, could easily end up in some sort of like alternative universe. Uh you know, Yeah, yeah, again, I have Starr  used as um I don't know, it's interesting to me because it's like much more than other, much more than other services. You can really see the algorithm at work. Like be like, okay, you're, you're like testing me to see if I like this um carpentry videos where people take these very expensive, expensive looking hand planes and then like play like take minute lee thin shavings of very expensive looking wood. Um So you watch the whole video, so I'm gonna give you like three more of those. We're gonna see how you do on those. And um and then like sometimes it gives you things that you're just like, nope. So it's like, I just don't want the algorithm just just see that I'm watching this, so I'm just not even gonna try. Josh  Yeah. You have to like, you have to tend to tend your algorithm. Yeah. But in order to do that, you have to understand that that's what you're doing. I think we're in a good position to do that. Yeah, Starr  But also just like the tactic, the tactic, What am I saying? The content on Tiktok? I think it's in my brain, it's I'm just nothing I say is like everything I say is it's going to become some variant of Tiktok um the content I found it's like, I don't know, like, I I and much happier, like looking at Tiktok because it's like you know, I don't know, I guess I'm just looking at happy or content. The Josh  content is so like the whole like the niche aspect of the content, like you said, like the narrowest type of video, like, like a hobby but where people are like, you know like whatever creating very thin strips of wood and there's some sort of like, you know, just like they can feed you very specific types of videos to see like and then you can get into that like specific like subset of like whatever woodworking video. It's not you're not even into woodworking at that point. You just ended this like very like Misha part of it. Starr  Yeah. I don't know. That's well, see I'm sure I'll get bored bored with it eventually. Josh  I don't think you will. Starr  You know, it's ever renewing stream of just Josh  delicious content. I trust trust algorithm, you trust, Starr  I trust in the algorithm to josh to Josh  keep you to keep you engaged. Yeah. Yeah. Starr  Okay um you all have been listening to another episode of founder quest if you want to um review us on apple podcast or whatever it's called these days, go for it. Um You want to write for our blog and we've got to write first page on there at honey badger to I  slash blog um scan for the right for us link, that's your first assignment. Um Until yeah. Until then. Um See you later.
Hook Relay Launched! Was it Fireworks or Crickets?
Oct 15 2021
Hook Relay Launched! Was it Fireworks or Crickets?
Show notes:Links:Hook RelaySSL Server TestSecond brand marketing tips Twitter thread XhtmlchopHook Relay Twitter announcementHook Relay blog announcementDerrick Reimer & Corey Haines Product Hunt launch Startup Director List Indie Hackers launch repeatedly Not very accurate auto-generated transcript:Ben - you know, last week I recorded a quick little message talking about why we weren't recording our podcast. That was in the middle of the let's encrypt ssl certificate fiasco that swept across the internet and you know, at the time it really didn't feel like a huge problem. Uh like from our perspective there wasn't much of an impact, but there was some impact, but then later on that day and the next day I was reading some articles and like apparently it was a pretty big deal for a lot of people. So uh yeah, wasn't wasn't just us, it's one Josh - of those things like I could just kept seeing it more and more like just pop up in random places though to like, not, not necessarily in our world, but it was just like affected all kinds of different things. Ben - Yeah, yeah, so shout out to ssL labs for their ssl testing tool to put a link to that in the show notes. Whenever you have a question about your ssl you should check that first because it does tell you when, when things are bad. Josh - Yeah, I hadn't used that tool before and it was very very helpful on customer support. Especially like sending to people and we needed to like prove that we were, we were not at fault like you know, it gave us like a smoking gun that we could. Yeah. Yeah. Really great. Starr - That's always a weird thing to do in customer services and it's like um it's like no, actually like I found the line in the library you mentioned. That's actually the problem. It does everything to do with this. Yeah. Yeah. And then um and then facebook goes down so I'm thinking I'm thinking we are like, like spooky Tober is starting up like things are starting to get witchy. Josh - I kind of like I I was like checked out the day facebook went down so I like missed most of like the fun on whatever online and I guess on what the other social networks that didn't go down, twitter mostly. But yeah, that's kind of wild. The story that I at least what I picked up. Yeah, I'm not on facebook. So Starr - my favorite part is how they house since everything was tied together, they couldn't get access to the building. They have the servers to do the like you know, manual physical reset then you had to do Josh - because of that security. Starr - Yeah. Like that's like I don't know that. It seems like it's out of some sort of movie or something. Yeah. It's just like a comedy. Josh - They like accidentally deleted their private keys to the building or something. Starr - Yeah. Or maybe like in oceans  type movie where um like they like the crew does that like the cruise like well if we mess with their DNS records and they'll be locked out of the hotel for six hours, let's give us time to like airlift the loot out. Josh - Yeah. Or what about like just like mission impossible. But with nerds. Uh huh. You know like trying to break into the building. Starr - I mean that's what we are here at found requests aren't right. Mission impossible with. Starr - Okay. Um So in addition to all that um just terrible stuff happening, there was um some good stuff happened. We had our, you know we have the hook relay, we did a little launch to our user base or honey badger user base. Um Do you wanna talk about that a little bit? Ben - Yeah that was that was the day before the ssl problem. So Josh - that was it. Yeah that's maybe that's why I was like the details. I was like trying to like remember what I did last week or whatever and I was like I could and then I remembered I'm like how did I forget about the hook really launch. But yeah, maybe that's I spent the next day, like on support. Ben - Yeah, yeah. Unfortunately, who really was impacted by the ssl thing. And so like, the day after our launch day, we had to deal with the on fire kind of situation. But you know, props to kevin very quickly finding that issue and fixing it. And uh, it's nice to have, you know, the service, uh, deployment that we have, pushing it out was quick. That was that was nice. But yeah, we, we were able Josh - to help some people on twitter because we, uh, we did some crowd sourced troubleshooting and yeah, we're able to share our fix with a few friends. So that was heroes. Hopefully we Starr - were, hopefully we think people like you for everyone. Ben - Yeah, but I think think the launch went well. We had an email out to our, to leveling up mailing list and got a pretty good response right on that. We had put a banner up and on the, on the website and put a banner up on the app. And those had some pretty good click throughs as well. I'm just looking at the stats from Fathom this morning and yeah, it's a good good share of traffic from those sources. So it's nice to see that people care enough to click through and zero working on that was pretty cool. Josh - Yeah, because I think, I think like the, uh, it was, I felt pretty encouraged by just the, you know, the level of engagement that we got from, from everything, like it seems like, I mean the worst that could happen is like you put out the, you know, you put out everything that's just crickets, like, you know, and so yeah, I mean people signed up, we got some sign ups and we started, I mean like we've our support and feature request throughput has increased for sure on like from almost zero to something. So, you know, we got, we got some feature requests coming in, that's that's all good. Starr - Alright. I suppose we should mention what hook really is and why people should be interested in it. Um since, yeah, that's some people might want to know, Ben - are you gonna tell the star what it is? Oh, I, I mean, I'm trying to find out Starr - your, well, uh, I'm on the edge of my Ben - seat over here. Starr - There you go. I don't know. Hook relay is an enterprise level Blockchain analysis tool. It's not love it, look really uh, lets you have um, web hooks that are, you know, as high quality of stripes. Web looks like very high quality, very fully featured and just like a couple of minutes without much code or work. And um yeah, and honey badger. We have a lot of, you know, web hooks that go out and stuff and we use that for all of ours, I think right now for some of them at least. And yeah, so so that's what it is. Ben - Yeah, great for debugging and in the past week I've been doing a little side project that has inbound web books and so uh since I don't have it's launched yet, it's been handling my inbound web books for me and just storing them so I can go back and you play the we play the payloads against my uh my test instance. And uh there's a there's a button in hickory. They that I think I think kevin added, which I'm totally in love with now it's the copy as curl button. And so I can just click that button and dropping my terminal and boom, now I have a curl payload that I can send to my my dove, you know, server great. Starr - So you can be so so the the thing you're working on the like you can just like go do other things and will collect your inbound web hooks like just like your Jeffrey Bezos or something like you could be on the beach um doing whatever you want and then just um yeah, then just copy the curl Ben - you got it. Yeah. And then and then even better once I do launch, I would just add my production U. R. L. As the hook relay in point and then we'll actually start delivering them. So I want to change anything with that web provider that's sitting in the stuff right? Josh - Doesn't have as replay to right, Like if you if you have a bunch, can we do we do that add or? Yeah there Ben - is a re send button so you can okay you can send it again. Josh - So like for local development you could also like pointed out like an end rock like to your local host or something and replacing my books or something if you wanted to do if you wanted to do it in real time. Right? Yeah, Starr - that's cool. Yeah, pretty heavy. Josh - Maybe we should make like a like a hook relay native End Rock. They just like, you know, you can spin up your hook directly to your local host or something. That would be kind of cool. Ben - I had the same thought this morning. Yeah like stripe provides you a cli tool that will listen to their web hooks and then relate it to your local instance while you're developing. I'm like oh yeah, we should have the same thing really. So they can just listen to your endpoint and suck it down and replay it for you with it on the feature list. Josh - Yeah I do. Starr - I mean what's there? There is a danger here though that like if you make it too easy for people like they might not feel like they're being productive or like they really bring much value. Like if you make it also turnkey for developers and so easy. Like the developer just might be like what what am I even here for What's my job? Josh - You wouldn't feel like a hacker anymore. Starr - No, no, like that's something we've got to watch out for as we move forward boldly. Josh - Well how do you like write some like assembly code for a capture or something? Mhm. Josh - So yeah, we got a lot of the ideas for the uh hook relay uh launched a honey badger customers through a tweet that I had sent out a few weeks before just asking like like what's the best way to um launch for, you know, for what company with one product to launch another product and let their existing customers. No, and ah asking twitter is always, I mean it's usually helpful at least in our indie hacker space, everyone's always got ideas so we got a lot of good ideas from people there um including I think one of, one of the ideas was like depending how far along we are, like, you know, do you make a separate brand or like how do you like, like how does it change the, like the parent company, you know, if you're moving from, Josh - You know, a one product company to multiple products. That's all, that's all interesting. We opted just, you know, we're kind of like honey badger is the company and then it's hook relay by honey badger, I think it's kind of our our approach there but there's a lot of different ways you can do it. Ben - Yeah the one the one snag on that has been the other day. I was poking around in stripe and I was looking at the email setting options. They have, you can, you know, have stripes and emails when a payment fails for example and then it points them back to a payment collection page. I was like, yeah, we should have that, it's like click the button to turn it on and I preview the email and the, it's based on the business name. So uh it says oh honey badger industries LLC, you know, payment page or whatever. And I was like, well people who are hungry customers aren't really going to recognize that name necessarily. Uh so I Ben - can't have that. And so I went dug around the stripe settings and it's like, well you can't really do anything but the actual business name on that particular page, even though on the end of stripe settings you can set the credit card like, you know, that shows up on the actual payment thing, you can change that and uh so that's set in our case to hook dot gov but you can't change the the email header from to be something different from the business name and well we haven't registered cookery they as a business name because it's like yeah, it's just a, it's just a product, right? So I didn't feel comfortable changing that in stripe because like, well it's really not our business name so I think what can you Josh - do like a D. B. A. Or something? Yeah. Ben - Yeah that's what I thought it's like, well I guess perhaps it's time to register that? D be a for every day so I can actually change the business name and blah blah. Josh - Yeah. It's kind of exciting though, like all the all these, you know, new problems come up, but it's because we have this new product that has to become more official. So um we're like we were also talking about like like now that we actually have some people using it, we're gonna need a way to like notify them of changes to the product or improvements or you know, all the all the little infrastructure things that we have for honey badger that we haven't quite gotten around to yet on hook relay. Mm Ben - Yeah, these are nice, nice things to deal with as opposed to like crickets. Josh - Yeah. Ben - So glad that somebody showed up to actually use the app. Nice. Josh - So next up for hook relay is this quarter, we've decided to do some uh spend some additional time on product development and implement some of those feature requests. I think that should be uh should be a good time. Ben - Yeah, I think I think we have a backlog of like  or so items and in good health, so I think we have plenty of stuff that we could keep us busy for the next few months on a greeting. It's cool. Starr - Yeah and you were talking about taking a, um, and sort of multi lunch approach, right? We just got out of always been watching. Yeah, always be launching. So we're going to just have from now on every episode of this podcast, we're just gonna launch really, I'm gonna make people explain what it is. Uh, Josh - next week is show hacker news. Starr - Yeah. Yeah. So I guess at some point like you have to just call these things campaigns and instead of launches, but it feels very dynamic to call them launches. Josh - Yeah. Well you got to call him a launch. Like for the sake of the whatever platform you're your campaign is speaking to because you know, you got to make them feel special first. It's the launch for them. It's, you know, it's, it's for them. It's, it's a, you know, it's the first launch ever. I've never heard of us before, I'm sure. Starr - Oh, that makes sense. It's like you're launching the campaign, Josh - right? Yes, you're launching the campaign. So I think we'll probably be doing, I will do a show H N. And we'll do a, we'll probably do something with indie hackers at some point. I imagine. Um, there's a list, I, I saw a list somewhere, I'll take it if I can find it, but just a list of like all those little, like all those, like a big list of platforms basically like that that you can, you know, forearms basically. But Ben - yeah, you know, we should go, we should go old school and we should do regional launches. Like I used to work for a company where it was very much local and so like every, every few months would be a new city. We're gonna send the crew, we're gonna set up stuff and we're gonna launch in this city. So we should totally do that. Like we should start and of course here in the Seattle area and then branch out to California and then you move across the country and you're saying Josh - we're gonna do a national tour. Starr - Does that mean you like, can we get a bus, you lock access based on geo location? A very p Ben - it's like, yeah, sorry, we're not in your area yet. Please check Josh - back. Mhm. Ben - Please sign up to be notified when we're in your area. Starr - Nice. Josh - Well if we do regional launches, we might have to have regional managers. Oh, you know, I gotta think about your chart. Mhm. Josh - Yeah. So I think like the launch, you know, there's a lot of small places you can kind of launch to. Um, I think the big one that is on our um, on our radar is product cut. But I think we're quite, you know, based on the advice, we've heard about doing an effective like initial product launch. It sounds like maybe it would be better to polish polish the product hops and feedback feedback about it. Maybe like be a little bit more established or something. Um it just seems like the, the products lately that have been really had really successful product launches have been, have had like um they put were like a lot of work into the actual like launch campaign Josh - before products like had a video and some of them almost seem like Kickstarter quality type campaigns or something, I don't know how over the top we're going to go, but I think that the current plan is to uh you know, kind of do some of the smaller things and implement some feedback and start to, you know, we might we're planning on doing like a redesign of the website eventually um with what we learn, so um then you have a designer in progress I think Ben - Yeah, three years. Yeah, yeah, first I guess it's the first time we've had an external designer working on one of our products, so we have a we have Josh - someone do, we had someone do the honey badger website at one point started, I think you did yeah, yeah, way back, I thought that was all star Starr - um now I built it, I built the html but I built it based off of uh like pds or something. Ben - Yeah, well this time it's being built so it's even more hands off, that's nice uh someone reached out to me on twitter and uh we mentioned a few episodes ago that we were getting this design done and I didn't know at the time what kind of built was option we had, whether it's going to be a tailwind, which is what our new hotness these days that we love or is going to be something else and it's going to be something else going to bootstrap, but even bootstraps as long as as long as we can modify it, that's that's my thing. Like, I remember back and way, way back in the day before a bootstrap when we were doing, you know, freelancing for people, we would get those designs from the designers and it would be a PSD Ben - right? And then I had no, no way to really deal with that. And so I would send it off to this chop chop shot. Yeah. X. Html shop I think was the name of the business, I think they're still around even and and they would they would take the PSD and convert it into html and CSS, which was, you know, of questionable quality I guess. I mean it worked, but it's like, oh, it's ugly, like just like I don't ever want to touch that and uh and being able to actually have like a designer give you html CSS and it's actually going to be, you know, structured like in the same way because it's based on a framework like Duceppe like that's that's awesome. That's much as Josh - an alternate, like tabs and spaces. Mhm Ben - Yeah, the good old days Starr - they just wanted to keep you on your toes josh. Josh - I remember, yeah, I used to do why I didn't do, I wasn't a chop shop, but I used to, you know, implement my own Photoshop, um, yeah, designs and html and stuff and yeah, that was, that was fun. Like getting all the pixel dimensions and the, you know, in your overall Photoshop layout, piecing it all together. Kind of like, it's kind of like a puzzle. Like you're putting a puzzle together. Starr - Yeah. I mean they called it a chop shop because like it was, they made a lot of, they made big use of the slice tool in Photoshop. Josh - Yeah. Starr - Where you basically, you basically went in and you know, you couldn't do CSS borders or drop shadows or anything like that. I mean, I guess you could do borders but not like nice. They didn't have rounded corners. They didn't drop shadows, anything like that. And so, um, you basically had to go and like tell Photoshop like, okay, like, like you could you tell it to split up the image in these parts and then like, you know, leave make this middle sort of a place for you to put some html so you can put stuff in the middle of your box and then, I don't know, it was just, it was not the best and so a lot of that bad. Html and CSS was, I mean, I imagine a lot of it was auto generated. Yeah. Josh - Yeah. Yeah. There were even some, some tools just to like that, you know, you kind of like dry your borders and stuff and fill out, I don't know, like fill out some stuff in the app and then it just like generates the html page for you. And that was always like the worst, like the absolute worst thing you could go with. But you know, it, I guess the people's standards weren't as high in those days either. So you could get away with a lot, Starr - I guess not. Josh - But yeah, we'll, uh, we'll get to product hunt eventually. And uh, yeah, I guess if if you as a listener have a tip for us on how to get a good product launch, go and let us know. Um, and also we will hopefully involve, um, we're gonna want to like bring in our networks to this, I think eventually. So, uh, yeah, I hope that all of our listeners will, um, will help us when the time comes to, uh, to have a good product launch with lots of up votes and, you know, telling your friends and whatnot. Ben - And, and maybe we could even get one of our listeners who might be interested in a half a particular talent for doing a product promotion. Like we could even just hand out to someone and say, hey, go go do that for us. Josh - Yeah, that would be, that would be nice too. Because then we wouldn't have to do it ourselves. Yeah, like a product consultant. Ben - Exactly, there's gotta be some out there, I mean product has been around long enough now, there's got to be specialists. Right? Josh - Yeah. Well isn't that kind of uh Cory Haynes helped derek with for the cow? Right. Yeah. Yeah, Ben - I'm sure Corey is really busy, so if someone wants to be like Corey do that for us, that would be totally awesome. Josh - We just need a we just need a guru. Ben - I was surprised on the day I signed up for the uh product hunt rss feed, I put that in my news reader and I was I mean I've seen you know probably things on twitter from time to time and I click through and I look at stuff but I never really followed closely, I was surprised how many launches there are products on every day, There's a lot there, so I think you really got to stand out in some way to be able to mix them, get some head space because there's just a lot of competition for things on the products on, Josh - I gotta say like just the Indy hacker space, like not indie hackers dot com but like just the overall in the hacker community is just like wild lately, like I don't know about you but I feel like a total just like dinosaur. Um Like I feel like I've like like I'm becoming out of touch so I need to like I need to I probably need to pay a little more attention to like, you know what the what the new uh what the latest is? Starr - I think it's inevitable that you get out of touch, right? I mean that's that's why Josh - Yeah, but like people I don't I don't think there yet, like I don't I don't want to be there yet, I'm not ready for it start. Josh - Uh huh Ben - Yeah geriatric highly valued developers there we are Josh - now we're we're you know, we're getting back out there. We did our we did our Emma or any hackers Emma. Starr - Uh that's right Josh - yeah, we'll have to do it, we'll have to do some Amas for uh for relay to like all that sort of stuff. I just like that. I love that. Like it just think it seems like the ecosystem is just much, it's so much more developed than when we launched honey badger. There's so many more places to go, especially if you have a tool that appeals to like the, you know, developer, you know, I guess just developers and yeah Ben - and it feels like there's so many people in the community now who are, you know, identify in that group. Uh you know like there were three micro conferences in the past three weeks or four weeks right? There was to locals and then one in europe. So Uh that's just one indicator that there are a lot of people out there like us, you know definitely more than there were  years ago who are enjoying this life of building things and sell them to people. It's nice Josh - love. It's awesome. We should talk about um the Q one  marketing campaign that we have in the works for Hook really? Because I thought that was an interesting idea. The I guess I'll just say it the the idea, I think this was been your idea uh to basically we want we want to like try some marketing like you know, putting some dollars behind Hook really and see if we can actually generate some, you know new customers that way. And um we already have like a marketing budget and um like a bunch of you know ongoing relationships and campaigns and stuff that we run for honey badger. So the idea was to basically just like have a swap. Josh - Not I think we're gonna go with a quarter, not a month, like just basically try swapping out some of our advertisements for honey badger which are typically like um more like just kind of general awareness brand style. I'm like, you know, keep us top of mind sort of advertisements. Um you know like we do a lot of podcast ads and that sort of thing, newsletter sponsorships. So swap them out for a little while and just replace them with hook relay and uh you know, see how that goes um at this, you know, I guess a side benefit of that approach is that we we get to see what happens when we stop putting money into the honey badger advertising, which is always, I mean like that's a good experiment in its own like, Josh - you know, so I'm interested to see how that how that turns out both on both sides. Like you know, do we, do we lose any momentum with honey badger? Do we gain a lot of, you know, how much momentum do we gain with hook? Really? Ben - It feels like kind of like the pricing experiments that you're always nervous about doing because you don't know if you're going to like royally hose your business, you know, you won't and in our case you don't know for a while you have to let it play for a few months before you find out. Right. And so uh yeah, so switching the marketing like that feels like one of those experiments like well this could be really bad or it could be like there's no impact. And so it's like, oh well then maybe it's we re evaluate how we spend our marketing dollars for honey badger at that point, you know? So yeah, I'm pretty exciting, nervous and excited about trying that. Experiment Josh - my prediction. I'll make a prediction is that I don't I don't really think it's I don't I don't imagine it's going to uh have a huge impact on honey badger, like conversions and sign ups and all that at least not if we do, if we do like a quarter, I would all kind of be surprised if we see any difference if we, you know, as long as we resume at some point. Um Just because like a lot of our advertising and we just we really don't have like clear, you know, like clear objectives necessarily. It's more just like brand advertising. Like and we see we do see a lot of sign ups like Josh - of people coming to us because they heard us heard about us on a podcast, or they saw us in a newsletter, but it's not like click click through, it's not like a like pay per click or something or like click through this and you're gonna convert and we're going to track that. So I think like the it would be bad if we stopped advertising entirely for like a year or two because people forget about you. Like I think that's why we do advertising for the most part at this point, it's just like so people remember that we're here. Um and so that's my prediction is that I don't think we'll see a huge impact on honey badger. Um but I think that because no one knows about hook relay, it could potentially have a big impact for hook relay Starr - uh side now. Um you know, just all of it, all of our listeners, you all should really um you know, enable tracking on your browser's disable your ad blocks and that will make life a lot easier for us because we will be able to um, you know, track funnels a lot easier. So Josh - we can do, we can do marketing, do real marketing on the internet. Um we are using uh, we're using fathom on hook relay and they're like the privacy, whatever privacy first um analytics tool that a lot of people use these days and they're also indie hackers and I don't know, maybe twitter friends for some of us, but they're pretty cool. And uh, they have a feature that um, you can set up like a custom, like domain that like hosts, they're tracking scripts like, because it's all like GDR and like privacy compliant like by default. But even so like if they're added to like a ad blocker, you know, like tracking prevention thing, um you can't host on your own domain so that, you know, it's, it's, you're guaranteed to have accurate accurate results Ben - except for those people who are still using links as their browser, Josh - right? If they're using or Yeah, they're like if they're browsing from their terminal that or if they have javascript disabled. Um Yeah. You know, I mean, I guess if you're, if your audience, your Starr - richard Stallman, if your Josh - if your audience is Lennox, it's like arch Linux users, you're, you're kind of out a lot. Like no matter no matter what. Ben - Just, just put ads on on slash dot and call it a day. Yeah Starr - slash hot. That's that's a tragedy in that they really went downhill. Ben - They're still around though. Like one of the cockroaches of the internet last time is still there. I don't know. I haven't looked at it for years, but you know, but back when I was posting my code to source forge, I was reading slash out everyday Josh - source forage Starr - source for it for ages Josh - still there, isn't it? It's Starr - really hard to use. Ben - It's probably still there. I don't even know. Yeah. Josh - And that was two cows Ben - subversion instead of get we're just this this is the way back episode. We're going back to P. S. D. S. And S. V. N. And slash talk. Josh - Every episode is kind of the way back episode. I mean, yeah, we're way back founders. So Ben - I mean our our company name is now a vintage meme. So it's gotta be a way back. Yeah. Josh - All right, okay. I just got like we had a marketing meeting earlier and Ben Finley, our marketing manager was like looking at R. S. E. O. Performance. He's like, Like we we could improve our website if we if we like if we optimize the three MB Jeff on the home page. I'm like wait we have like a three, we have like a chip on the home page and I remembered I had like this easter egg that if you click like the resolve button in the, in like the screenshot of our, of honey badger on honey badger. Yo it well you can go and do it and you can see what happens. Um We'll make sure we leave it in even if we optimize it. But yeah, that's how we roll is like, we just like kill our search engine optimization. Because Josh - we had to have uh like, yeah, for the walls, we had to have this easter egg. Starr - That's awesome. Ben - Uh The the main thing reminded me that I have an interview being published tomorrow. I believe in Saas Mag at a link that in the show notes but had a great chat. Uh And it was funny because I was like, we were talking about humor and that's like one of our core values of the honey badger our business. And I was like, well, yeah, because like, I mean, we named our company after me, right? So like, you got to have fun in that kind of business, right? Josh - For sure. We should, we should like send out a leveling up email that just is designed to rick roll our customers. I don't know if they'd appreciate that. Starr - We should rename hook related berries and cream. Josh - Uh huh. Yeah, that's a that's creative. You can do that. I mean hook really is kind of like, very like business business formal descriptive. So we could, we could definitely get weirder Ben - for sure. Yeah, that was, that was not one of my more creative days when I picked that name. Josh - I mean the other, you know the upside is that it actually tells people what it does. It's instead of, it is not just named after a, after an animal joke on the internet. Ben - Yeah. Josh - Yeah. Um also it has a proper casing. Ben - Yeah, yeah, yeah, that's you know, one of the things that's funny, I have this I now for whenever we write anything, like we're doing any kind of copy or a blog post or whatever and if we ever reference get hub without the capital agent. And I always catch it now because because of how many people miss capitalized honey badger, like so I knowing how much that like I catch that. I was like, I bet they get how people really appreciate what people actually capitalize their name properly. So yeah, it's like six out to me all the time. Starr - Just for the listeners. The proper capitalization is one capital at the front because it's one word. It's not two words Ben - and go, Josh - yep. For honey badger. Starr - Yeah, yeah, sorry, not get up Josh - as uh two capital letters to capitals. Get lab. But I also now notice the companies that are like us where they have just, they have opted for the lower case in the second word as well. There's a few of those out there. I'm not remembering them off the top of my head, but they always stick out. I mean, I usually remember those now too if I'm familiar with them or I I know that I need to go check and I always go and like check when I'm writing their name at least usually. Starr - And then if you just want to, oh I'm sorry. And then just like if you just want to like just set the world on fire, you can be stripe and have your logo, your name of the logo, low, all lower case. But then in your body text capitalize it. Like they just want to watch the world burn. Uh huh. Ben - Oh, Ben - they're probably trying to punk the new york times editors, you know? Starr - Yeah, probably. Starr - Well, um we're getting a little quiet. Are we reaching the end? Ben - I think we are Josh - depends how far you want to go because I mean like we've got a whole list of topics here, but we are already into this episode of ways. And uh I think like this has been a pretty good episode, you know, it's it's for once. We've actually like managed to stay on topic for the most part. Like this has been mostly a hook really episode. So I think we should probably quit while we're ahead. All right now. And you better you better wrap this up quick start because I'm like, I'm ready to like Starr - dive in the rest of this. So you're about to explain this episode of founder class has been brought to you by hook relay a striped quality web hooks in minutes. That's awesome. Thank you. Uh, if you want to give us a review on Apple podcast, whatever they call it now, I don't know itunes, music to itunes. Um, please do that. If you want to. If you're just in writing for our blog, we are, you know, currently looking for um, ruby python, PHP writers. Um, go to our blog, honey badger to I.  slash blog and look for the request page. And yeah. All right. So I will talk to you guys next week.
Everyone Says It’s a Bad Idea; Should You Do It Anyway?
Oct 1 2021
Everyone Says It’s a Bad Idea; Should You Do It Anyway?
Show notes:Links:Felix LivniSchedulistaTranscript:*This is an unedited, automated transcript, with only about 80% accuracy*BenAll right, so, uh welcome the founder quest today, you have me, Ben, because Star and josh are taking the day off and we have Felix of me who is with us or with me chatting about uh founder related stuff. It's just one of our uh, intermittent founder interview kind of episodes where we're just going to have a great chat, talk about some stuff, so welcome Felix. Thanks. So, Felix was telling you tell me right before we got started about the differences of having an actual conversation versus a podcast conversation and you had a great great tip about email. So, if you don't mind, could you like, hit me with that again? Because I thought that's pretty cool. Felix  Yeah, what I've noticed is if I write an email knowing that a lot of people are going to read this email, maybe it's an onboarding email that's going to be sent out to uh you know, many, many people, I don't seem to be able to write it in the same way as the emails I write to just that one person and I often feel that if I could just if I was just trying to sell to one person, I could probably do a pretty good job and I think the better attitude for me has always been to then trying to do that and then try and automate that and it turns out very differently than when I'm trying to to do the thing that is going to be automated right away. Ben  So yeah, I like that, I've had the same kind of experience where it's like, well you spend a lot of time crafting, crafting, crafting and then it feels crafted right? It doesn't, it doesn't feel like a real email. So do you like uh Try to like email individuals for like  times  times first and before you get the final copy that you want to send everybody? Felix  Yeah, exactly. And I think really not thinking about tools at all is really the right way to go about it um where all you try and do is think what is the best thing for this one customer and you do that for a couple of different customers and then you look for patterns and I would say when you do it a lot and this is the advantage you have with podcast is once you do it a lot, you kind of see some patterns as well, some sort of meta patterns of like how, how do the things that sound unnatural look versus the things that sound natural and I'll just tell you one that I've noticed, I don't know if this is something you've noticed, but when I write an email to a single person, it usually has one sentence in it, maybe two. Felix  Uh but when I write something that I think is, let's say, an onboarding email of some sort uh it's not gonna be that short. Uh so that's definitely a pattern I've noticed. I think we we noticed that as consumers or business owners, when we see inbound email, we automatically filter emails that have just one sentence very differently than we filter ones that are multiple paragraphs. Ben  Yeah, I never really noticed that. That's true. Yeah, because most of my personal emails are just like a couple of sentences, man, I was thinking back to the initial like set of onboarding or just stock emails that we had for honey badger, like, you know, you're building has failed or thanks for being a subscriber or whatever. And I was thinking back and like I wrote them and they're all like one or two sentences. I'm like, yeah, that's that's true. It's like versus this big long book, right? Yeah, Felix  yeah. In general, I think I'm a big fan of looking at software, automating things that people already do. I think sometimes that's the best software and as opposed to sort of rethinking everything, because I think a lot of the time when you rethink everything, most things people can do just less maybe less quickly than it would be if it were automated. And so I think when you rethink everything a lot of the time, it doesn't fit as well as it seems like it might have back in the lab. Ben  Yeah, true, we'll get back to that. I want to talk more about that, but I want to uh introduce you more fully since everyone might be thinking, hey we just dropped to the middle of conversations like yeah, you did just kind of jump in both conversation because Felix and I are old friends, we've been uh we've been hanging out and chatting about business for years now uh and Felix is an entrepreneur who is running a business called Schedule Ista, So Felix want to give us a quick rundown of what schedule list is. Felix  Yeah, well before Schedule East it was scheduled to, it was sort of an idea of, hey I want to start a company that is a B two B sas company. And one of the very first conversations I had about that Was with Ben, I don't know if you remember, I was looking back through my email  Ben  yeah, Felix  our mutual friend paul introduced us and the topic of conversation was marketing and BtB Sas um something admittedly I still struggle with, I kind of had it on in my mind is oh this is something I'm going to be bad at and I don't know how to get customers. Um maybe maybe I need to reach out and figure out how that happens. Um and I don't, I don't know if this is okay to bring up here, but I'm curious to know, I mean, tell me if my characterization of our conversation is correct, but that conversation way back then I think you were pretty pessimistic and or at least I think as a friend you were looking or as a new friend, you were looking out for me and you were saying kind of don't do this crazy thing. Um Felix  Was that the advice you gave me and then if you were to meet someone like me today, would you, would you give different advice? Ben  Yeah, my my memory of that conversation was not that I wanted you to not do it, but it was like, I I saw some concerns, some red flags and I wanted to save you some pain just in case you hadn't, you know, like considered like, because as I recall trying to, you know, rewind back to  years ago, what that conversation was like, you're sitting across table from me and you're saying I want to build this business that's gonna require a lot of sales effort because I'm gonna be selling to some people that, you know, I can't really reach well online and here I was thinking, okay, so Felix is going to be like walking down the street, knocking on doors, trying to get people to buy his says and I'm like, Ben  okay, sure, but are you sure you want to sign up for that? That's kind of but I remember is that is that kind of Felix  remember, I think that's accurate and that's basically exactly what I did. And we even did some, some things like send out postcards. I might have mentioned that as an idea that I've had, I said, you know, I think uh well used to do that kind of thing and then it fell out of fashion, maybe there's maybe there's some wisdom there and I think um you realized how crazy I really was and how little I knew and there was nothing but love I felt coming from you, which made it even like harder to hear, I think. Felix  Um so I believed you and the irony too is I think I would probably, so I don't you didn't tell me yet how your answer would change, but I would I tell people, I meet people all the time who say they want to start a bootstrapped company and my first inclination sort of out of love is to say, you know, that can be tough, it can be uh you know, I've seen lots of them fail. And is this are you sure this is something that you want to do? Yeah, Ben  I'm totally with you on that. And uh funny, the funny thing is like, the postcard thing is stuck with me for  years, like I still want to do a postcard mailing thing myself and I just never got around to doing it. Felix  So we we did it um and it worked. It worked and then we never did it again. Uh I would say there's a pattern, everything that we have done has sparked actually just not that well. And I actually, this is one of the ways that I think about marketing is uh in a sense, it's stochastic or at least one way to view it is stochastic. So if you make a cold call, there's some chance that that the person on the other end is going to buy what you're selling, even if it's even if most people don't want it. Um Felix  but it may not pencil, right? You may have to make so many calls that it just doesn't pencil. So in a sense everything works. The question is just how well does it work? And what we've found is almost everything does better than break even, but not by much and uh, you know, for probably for a variety of reasons, but we sent out, I think it was  postcards. We scraped yelp. We looked at businesses that had five stars. They were only massage therapists. Uh and they were only in I think three cities and we sent, we didn't license the photography very right. All really. So I would, I would probably, it's hard to find Felix  good photographs of you can license, but anyway, the photograph we sent out was this awesome black and white photograph that just looks so hardcore has joseph Pilates on it. So the guy who founded Pilates and he's in this weird machine that he built at home and it's so gritty and it would really resonate with the people that we were sending it to and so we sent out these  postcards and we got one customer Felix  that we knew of. The only way we would know about it is because if they were to type this long you're well that was on the postcard. If they just went to our site we would have no way to track it. So we have one. We got one customer, they're one of our biggest customers, we still have them today and it cost us  bucks to send those  postcards and get them printed and post digital that and yeah we you know had penciled I don't know if that proves anything but and I have had another conversation you know about a year after we sent the postcard. I talked to someone on the phone that was in Malta and this person Felix  friend had sent them someone we've never heard of had actually emailed them a photograph of this postcard because she loved it so much and she had had it on her wall and she decided to give us a call. So I know that it had some you know impact and yeah there's been a lot of things like we've done like that that it's that we just never really try to scale but it does seem like it's got a lot of problems. Ben  I love that. I wanted to answer your question. Uh, yeah. I think my answer today would be pretty much the same because it was like you said motivated from this place of love. Like hey, I just want to make sure, you know what you're getting into. Like sounds cool. But you know, and I love talking to entrepreneurs who have ideas and they want to run it by me and I always try to look for, you know, look for the good. Like, hey, yeah, that could really work. And also like bring some realism to the things like, hey, have you, have you thought about this because it might be something you want to watch out for, you know, Ben  but it's never, I never want to say that out of like, oh, I shouldn't do that because like I don't know right? It's not my business. But uh, hopefully that's, that's taken well. Like, like, like you took it well. Apparently Felix  I took it well. And I think the reason I didn't listen to you and I think it's the right reason was not because I thought you were wrong. It wasn't rational. I actually think there isn't a great rational reason to do these kinds of businesses a lot of the time. Um, just because I think we live in the world of tech, uh, it's pretty nice to go and work at a big tech company. It's extremely comfortable you get financially compensated great. I think what a lot of people overlook is the marginal value of any additional money that you might make is essentially zero. So doing financially better is just sort of not even interesting. So it has to be something that has to do with meaning in your own life. And Felix  it's the kind of thing when you add up all the negative reasons to not do it, that you're gonna do it anyway. So I feel, I feel like that's another reason that I tell people, I don't tell them don't do it, but I essentially say, uh, you know, a bunch of things that are going to be really tough and I hope that they'll ignore me because I know that if they ignore me, they'll be doing it for all the right reasons, in a sense, at least in my opinion. Ben  Yeah, totally. Uh, it's, it's so much, uh, I don't know if passion is the right word, but there's definitely passion in it. That's probably not all inclusive, but the, the idea that, um, once you hit a certain baseline of, of money in your life, like you're fine, like what's where's the fulfillment gonna come from? It's probably not going to come from other more money, it's probably gonna come from doing something that you really want to do. For whatever reason, maybe Ben  like me, you're very independent minded and you don't like having a boss, right? Or you just, you see this need in the world and you can't let it go or it doesn't let go of you. Like when an idea keeps hitting me and hitting me and I know I'm like, oh, that's probably something I should spend some time thinking about. You know, I think this, this, this kind of selection process, not everyone is born to be an entrepreneur, but when, when you get that bug, it's kind of hard to shake it loose. Felix  Absolutely all of those things you said resonate with me, I might add as well, being able to choose the people that you work with really carefully and also protect people. I think this this this makes sense. The kind of technology that you work with, it's no small thing to be able to say, I want to work on this cool new tech, just because I think it's cool. Which you seldom get to do that at a big company. Ben  Yeah. Being all that self determination is huge for sure. So you picked a business so schedule, it's, it is a, is a scheduling widget that sits on websites that, you know, hair stylist or massage person can use to help, you know, schedule appointments online for their customers. How did you decide that was the thing you wanted to do? Because when you came to me, those  years ago, like you pretty much already decided, I think you had some other ideas, but this was like at the top of the list for you, Felix  how did Ben  you get to that point where you're like, that's that's the thing I want to do. Felix  Yeah. So uh I knew I knew a couple of things and I started this company with a friend of mine, Lowell manners, we were best friends, we work together. And so really everything I say here, we decided together, uh we saw the world pretty similarly, but we also built a lot of our theories about what kind of business we wanted to start. We built that together. Um and what we knew initially, I kind of was trying to remember exactly when you and I have that conversation and where in the timeline, I didn't know yet that we were going to do scheduling, but that's that's a good point that we had probably already decided that by then yeah, I knew that we wanted to do BB rather than a consumer product. I knew what we wanted it to be software and we wanted it to Felix  be a bootstrapped company right from right from the initial uh, starting point. We knew that we wanted it to be bootstrapped. So we were we were intentionally bootstrapped. And so one of the core things we try to do is think about what is a bootstrap company, what makes a bootstrap company successful? How is it different from some other kind of company? And we came up with a a theory about her and the theory, I think is contrarian, But I also think that there's a lot of truth to it. So the theory was almost everything that is good about a venture backed company is the, if you take the opposite of that, it's good for a bootstrap company. So Felix  I'll give you some example. I'm trying to find our original, I have my, because I was doing a little bit of research for this chat, I found our original slide that we made for ourselves and what we thought was good for VC backed companies was that there was a strong network effect, uh, that they had an idea that there was kind of a winner takes all when, when there was a product that there could be a winner takes all. That would be good. It would allow you to create a moat. Uh, and this would typically be in the form of a new idea because if there was an old idea that had a network effect, there was probably, there was too big of a mode to enter that Felix  or it was, you could be a second mover, but you had something in your formula where you'd be able to kill the competition. So there's a, there's, there's this first mover benefit or the ability to kill the competition and then a lot of the time investors will ask how many competitors you have and they'll get worried if there's lots of competitors. So what we thought was good for bootstrap company was that they would be low network effects, that there'd be lots of winners, that there'd be no moat. That it was an old idea that was proven to work, that there were many late movers that did very well and that there were lots of competitors. Felix  So if you pitch that to an investor, uh, you know, they'll, they'll, they'll be like, okay, you, you, you, you hit everything wrong here. Um, so we, we, that was, that was one of our sort of initial ideas and then we created a fitness function to evaluate a couple of things and I'm trying to remember what they were, but it was essentially how big of a network effect does this have. We were looking for a company that was for a product that was established, but not super mature. So it was right at that point where there were examples and we were specifically looking for examples of other boots trappers because we thought that other successful bootstrap, because we thought that that would be a good sign that we could do it too. So we were like opening up a coffee shop in Seattle Felix  versus opening up a coffee shop where they've never tasted coffee. Those are very, very different. And there's difficulties for both. But at least when you open up a coffee shop in Seattle, you know, hey, there's gonna be people that are gonna enjoy coffee and you can look around and you can try and see what things work and etcetera. So that was kind of, you know, because we were bootstrapped and self funded, we thought that seems a lot less risky and that seems like an environment that we kind of have believed in. We like the idea that there could be lots of coffee shops and that they were in competition with each other, but not in a way that an independent coffee shop sort of desires that no other coffee shop exists. Ben  Yeah, I like that contrary and take agree investor probably kick you out of the office for coming up with that. But I mean what you're describing is like there's a healthy market already, right? There are people who are already looking for this product, like you don't have to convince someone that hey, you want to drink coffee. So kind of my coffee shop, right? Ah and if there are a number of businesses already doing that, you know that Felix  it's viable, Ben  right? Uh people spending money in that marketplace because there's other people currently receiving that money. So yeah, I think that's some pretty awesome criteria there. Felix  Yeah. So we, we wanted to come up with  businesses and then evaluate each of these  and then choose the one that we thought would be best for us and it wasn't completely scientific, but we did use uh, uh, you know, some numbers next to them and we had some kind of internal calculus that we did and I'll give you some examples like e commerce is an example that fits a lot of what what I mentioned, but it's too mature and so we thought okay e commerce uh there are, you know, since we started actually there's been some companies that are in the e commerce space that have done extremely well. Felix  I'm not sure when Shopify started maybe a little bit before us, but around that time. Yeah, but around that time and there's other examples that didn't do, you know, aren't as well known as Shopify but still did very well and I think it's because they have all of those criteria that the investors would not be so excited about, but they don't have strong network effects. So I think this kind of contrarian idea does, does hold some does hold some water, Felix  but so for us, e commerce was too mature then we thought of a bunch of ideas that they might have been like one or two examples of, but we thought it was too knew that it was just not yet proven and was a little unclear exactly where this was going to lead. So there were a lot a lot of ideas that we had around doing kind of online ordering from your phone that kind of dovetailed with how businesses already did business. So you can imagine you're sitting in like a T. G. I Fridays and you can order right from the menu from your phone or you could order from a from the waitress or you could be in a bar, you could maybe order some drinks at the counter and then at your table you can order, Felix  you know, additional drinks. So we're looking at lots of things that kind of intertwined with how the real world does things, but automated some aspect of it. But we thought we can see a little of this, this was before a lot of the online ordering that we have today because this is back in . But I think it would be much more viable to do to do those things today as a bootstrap company. But a lot of these ideas I think are more would be more interesting as a venture backed company. So those ideas were lowered down on our list. I did think of an idea actually um called, I think it was tell the manager or ask the manager or notify the manager or something like that. And I pitched it Felix  at a probably the only start up of the local and I ever went to was like it's night in Redmond and we went to this event and I pitched it and about six months later I was contacted by someone who said it looks like you never did that, do you mind if I do it? Uh and the person did it and did did well, so it's a funny story. So there might have been other ideas on the list that, that are still interesting. But yeah, so online scheduling really hit that sweet spot. It's very similar to e commerce in a lot of ways. I think in ways that maybe people don't really realize actually, but it's a lot less immature even now,  years later. Yeah. So yeah, that's, that's, it seemed good to us and we were like, let's do it. Ben  Yeah, I love it. And I like, I like the, I love the contrariness that's right up my alley. So you started this with bowl, You worked together, built the business at some point. I mean I've known you all this time and I know now that you're not working with low anymore on the business on a regular basis. So what, what happened like just in general, like what was that transition like and you know, what are some lessons learned from the co founder experience and now that co founder is no longer with you? Felix  Sure. Um Felix  yeah, let me, I don't know the best way. There's so many different ways to tell the story. I would say. One way to tell. It is to tell about how we founded the company. So we founded the company in my backyard, we had a conversation one summer day and we were drinking some beers and one of us said we should really just start a company and uh, I think I must have said that and Lowell said I'll quit, I'll quit tomorrow, let's do it. And uh you know, I knew he was joking, but as he left, I was like, okay, don't quit. Um Let's think about this, I'm really excited, but let's think about this. And the next day he, he texted me and he said I quit, have you quit yet? So Felix  I then, you know, took about another two days and and quit. Uh Ben  that's that's jumping on both feet right there. Felix  Yeah, and I think sometimes, you know, the biggest decisions that I've made, I've made sort of the easiest and maybe Lowell doubly so ah and I would say that's that's kind of how we separated too. Um It was really, really, really, really good until one day it was um and I think, you know, when you start out on, you know, definitely when we started out and I think this was maybe more true for Lowell, who is significantly younger than me, I think if I had said, okay. Yeah, but there's one rule, we've got to do it for four years, he would have been like, what? Hey, wait a second, I need to think about this a bit more. So it was unclear like Felix  we we thought, I mean, to be honest, we thought our first few ideas would fail and we were looking forward to that because we were thinking we would learn a ton, we were really aiming where the direction that we thought that we would get the most learning and there was no sort of long term commitment other than we just, we we thought we were gonna have a lot of fun. We did have a lot of fun. And I think that there was a point where there were some other things in that local realized that he wanted to do and when he, when he realized like, Felix  oh there might be some more long term commitment involved in this, uh it didn't seem so great anymore and it kind of happened at a time that was extremely destabilizing for both of us. We, we had entertained an idea of selling the business and that would have come with kind of some golden handcuffs which kind of explicitly put into uh, you know, black and white, this kind of long longer term commitment. So I think it's a bit more complicated than that. But it wasn't, it wasn't something that built up for for years and years and years and just, you know, kind of deteriorated. It went pretty rapidly from uh this is amazing too. Let's not do this anymore. Ben  Yeah, I would like to see that. Yeah, that makes sense. If if your expectation is to just, you know, do whatever and then all of a sudden is like, oh, you want me to commit to the next five years, whatever. That yeah, that could definitely put some cold water on it. Felix  Yeah, absolutely. And it felt very different after he left, but it has a business wise, the company has done, has done great. I would say as far as how it feels today, I enjoyed it more working with him to be totally honest. Ben  Yeah, it's nice. It's, I mean there's so many benefits to having a co founder, having the accountability is one that people often think about, but you know, just having the camaraderie, right, you're, you're doing the same thing, you're in it together. You know, it's uh, Felix  yeah, to me, I think it's a lot harder Ben  even even as as independent as I am and as self directors, I want to be, I do feel it's harder to do something so completely, so low because you just have to have all that motivation yourself and there's no one happening out. Felix  Yeah, absolutely. I agree totally. I would never have been able to do schedule is to, without having role as a co founder, it is much easier to run a company that's already in place than it is to start something from scratch and there's just no way that I, that I could have done it and it's not from, hey, it's not so much that we complemented each other's skill wise or anything like that. It's just the, there are a lot of things that are psychologically difficult and doing that with someone else makes it possible, in my opinion. Ben  Yeah. Yeah. I feel the same about honey badger. Like there's no way it could have been done with the three of us working together, there was just, I mean, first there's a lot of work, but also, yeah, getting through those times where it's just a struggle is Yeah, I think I would probably throw in the towel if it hadn't been to have two good co founders who helped me out. Felix  Yeah, absolutely. Ben  So I know from our conversations that we have from time to time, that you spend some time mentoring people who are looking to start businesses or who are just, you know, in the beginning end of this, this entrepreneur adventure. So what, what are the two or three kinds of themes that you see coming up time and again, people coming to you and you're like, uh you know, maybe maybe look at this, you know, so if someone today is thinking about something like, well, and they sat down with you, what are the kind of things that you would poke at their ideas and say, have you considered this or have you thought about that? Felix  Yes, most of the people I talk with are looking to raise money. Uh and I actually have found out that there's another definition of bootstrapping that I wasn't aware of until I started mentoring. So to me, bootstrapping meant a company that doesn't raise money and is structured in such a way that will make profits and poor those profits back into growing the company. So there's a, there's enough that's not how the kids today are using the term bootstrapping at least the ones that are looking for venture capital to them. Bootstrapping is what you do until you raise money. So you're structured is a typical venture backed company, but you just haven't raised money yet either on purpose because you want to build, you know, a prototype or Felix  or something else that an investor might see and you'd get a better deal or you just haven't managed to to put it all into place to raise the money. So most of what I do, actually, it's like, I love venture backed company, it's kind of funny that, you know, I'm so much of a bootstrap er but I don't know if I've told you this before, but one of my heroes is Craig Newmark and I don't know if you know that crate that craigslist started as a list of startup parties Felix  because he loved the startup scene and here he, he loves everything about startups and raising money and all of this stuff and then he starts this company that's like completely counter to that. Um and I feel like he is a hero of mine in many ways, but I feel similar in personality in a sense that I love the start up world and I love working with these people and who knows maybe I'll do a venture backed company one day, but uh everything that I do in my business life is about bootstrapping, but all my mentoring is pretty much about venture companies. So I think a lot of what I do is I try and you know, tell them all of the things that are opposite of what I did with schedule is to, uh, and uh, I really problem in the other direction and Felix  uh, it's, I guess everyone's different, I think I just try and help out where I can based on what I've seen. One of the things I love the best actually is working with other mentors, I love working with a founder with multiple mentors and so I feel I try to not do harm, you know, the Hippocratic oath of mentoring, but I think it's easier to kind of say what's on your mind when it's balanced out with other mentors. So I don't know, I'm struggling to think like if there is a single pattern or thing that I see that I would help people with, maybe I'm going to think about that for a second, We can come back to it. Ben  Sure, well maybe maybe maybe this is a different way to look at it. Like if you could go back  years and mentor yourself, right? You you come to you with your idea for schedule is to, what kind of things would you say to yourself with the experience now that you have, Felix  okay, a couple of things popping in my head, I don't know if these are pop things, but one of the things I tell Felix  new founders is about linkedin, how wonderful linkedin is. It's the only social network that I understand, but I think that I, which says a lot about me, but I think I understand it pretty well and I tell them you can reach out to people on linkedin who can help you. And it's not sort of like, hey, look for another mentor or look for people to give you advice about X, y and z. But let's say you're starting a business in the analytic space. And let's say that it's very similar to maybe some of these three other businesses, maybe these folks would be competitors, of course, I would say reach out to those people, which is so counter to what a lot of people are comfortable doing. But, Felix  and I have a formula for, they think that they'll never hear back from people. I have a formula for how to reach out and link, which is you craft an email that there is only one person in the world that can answer that email and that's the person you're sending it to. So if you ask someone a general question, like, you know, hey, how should I market this business or something? They'll think to themselves and I'm not gonna answer this, anyone can answer this. But if you ask them a question that only they would know and you make that connection in a way that hey, you are facing something that only they have seen, they will respond. So that's my sort of, that's one of the tips that I share is Felix  make those connections with other people in the industry that you're going to be in, ask them a lot of the time, you know, they'll have some plan And one of the things they want to do is understand each step of the plan. They call it the risking that's like the $ word. So I think one of the best ways to sort of the risk a plan is to find out other people who follow that same path and succeeded and try and map that path on to some other path that a business has followed and then talk to those people and and run what you're going to do by them and ask them if it's going to work. Ben  I love it. That's great. Felix  So I can say also another thing that I that I offered that I believe, and I don't know if you agree with this, but I think that there are far a few different business types out their business structures out there than people think because we're in tech. We often, and let's say we're a venture backed company, we're doing something that the world has never seen before. It's going to take, It's gonna be the next unicorn. It's by sort of definition, nothing like anything else out there. But we extend that to the business structure and what I mean by that is how customers are required. What metrics that you should measure, how growth will happen, how marketing will operate, how you'll get your first customer, your th customer, your th customer and what your channels are those kinds of things. And Felix  I don't think there is that many different patterns out there. I think that there's just a handful of patterns and there are businesses sometimes that introduce brand new patterns, but they're very rare. So a lot of the time, what I encourage people to do is to figure out exactly what they think their business structure or pattern is and then map it onto another business that was successful. That has the exact same pattern and maybe find three or four of them And then figure out how did they acquire their first customer? How did they acquire their th customers? And sometimes that you can find that out by looking for interviews and things like that. But reaching out to people as well that I just mentioned can be very, very powerful. So innovate where it matters. But you know, don't innovate everywhere. Ben  Yeah, that, that lines up with uh, you know, the technology world, we have this idea that you should use boring technology because like you only have so much innovation, you can do in your business. Just use a plain old database, right, Don't, don't go crazy with the newfangled hotness. Right? And yeah, I think I totally agree with you actually like use those well worn paths, Use those channels that everyone has done  times before because it's, you don't need to innovate there. Felix  Yeah, you can find so much depth in anything that I think there's sort of a fear that at least I have this fear I always want to orient myself towards whatever I think is going to be the most interesting life. And so, but I think if, if everything is interesting, that doesn't necessarily add up to more interesting, I think that sometimes, you know, a lot of things can be boring, like you can be steve jobs and wear the same black turtleneck shirt every day. He's not innovating in his wardrobe, but that doesn't mean that he's not innovating, He's not maximizing innovation. So I try and remind myself of that. I think it's an easy fall to fall into and really being intentional. I would say here's an advice that I would give myself that I thought of and that's kind of aligned with, with, Felix  with, with what I've been saying so far, which is uh huh A lot of thing I kind of think separate sort of opportunities into inbound and outbound, so inbound opportunities or opportunities that come to you, they arrive in your email box. They, you know, there's a phone call, a friend tells you something over lunch. You see a cool movie that inspires you. And then there's outbound an outbound happens because of some mental model that you have about the world and you intentionally decided to go and do something. And I think all the time you get bombarded with inbound stuff and most of it is not that interesting. And then sometimes something interesting comes along and you think, okay, I'm going to follow up on that. I actually think if someone ignores Felix  and I think it's more subtle than ignore, but if someone does not respond to all inbound, they're way ahead of the game. If you just sort of erase every inbound email and never read it, you're way ahead of the game. And if you do things that are that are only outbound for, for your life and for your business? I think that that is very, very powerful and by ignore, I don't mean like let's say you see a movie and it's about, uh, some people that move to Argentina and reinvented themselves and that really inspires you and you think, okay, I could move to Argentina and you do and it's great. That kind of stuff happens all the time. And, but I don't think it's optimal. Felix  I think you should watch that movie and be inspired, but then you should figure out what is it about that's inspiring? Is it living abroad? Is there something about Argentinian culture that's really cool. And then you should come up with some kind of a fitness function and you should also think what is the opportunity, cost of doing this versus everything else. And then you should as an outbound effort figure out. Okay. So I'm really gonna do this abroad thing. That's going to have the following characteristics. Where's the best place to be? And I bet you don't end up in Argentina. Felix  I love it. That's, that's Ben  awesome. And, and this is why  years later, like I still find every conversation with you secret productive and sometimes inspirational to Felix  write on. Ben  It's great. It's great job with Felix as always. Um, I think that's a great place to wrap it. Uh, do you have any parting thoughts? Felix  Um, yeah. How different did this conversation feel from a conversation that you and I might just have, Ben  you know, it's pretty close. Yeah. Obviously like we've got, we've got the world listening with us and so it's a little different. It's not quite as intimate as usual. And of course we haven't talked about any numbers and things like that that we usually get down in the weeds with you and I, Felix  but yeah, pretty close to our usual Ben  cars. What do you think? Felix  Um, closer than I thought? But I don't know, I might listen to this back and just be like, I'm not going to send bend the wave file. Ben  Well, my pro tip is, I never listen to the recording. So I mean that's, Felix  that's, that's the way I do it. Okay, good. Good. That's actually I should do that too. Ben  It's easier that way. He really is. Well, thanks, thanks so much for you. Thanks for taking the time. I appreciate you uh doing this for me and uh hanging out. I know that I've learned some things and I hope that people who listen to podcasts, I've also learned some things. If someone wants to reach out to you, where's the best place twitter maybe? Felix  I don't know how to use twitter with twitter. You have to show me the ropes. Um I would say just you can send me an email. Uh you can find me on linkedin. How about Lincoln? There you go. Find me on linkedin and asked me a question that only I know how to answer Ben  a lot. All right, Felix. Thanks again so much. So like Star usually does our outro is but I will I will try to fill in for Star as best I can and I will say you should, you know, go and review us somewhere. Give us those five stars on those podcast listening things that you do. And uh as always let us know if we can answering particular questions for you or talk about anything that you find interesting. Thanks so much for joining us and hope you have a great week. Felix  Thanks Ben was awesome. Ben  All right. So, you can stop the quicktime. We can stop
Our Outbound Sales Autopsy
Sep 24 2021
Our Outbound Sales Autopsy
Show notes:Links:SaaslerKoombeaHook RelayTranscript:*note - this is an unedited, automatically generated, transcript with only about 80% accuracy*Ben  So I say we we just had a new customer signed up just like minutes ago and said that the reason they signed up was our podcast. So awesome. Good stuff. Good stuff. So pro tip for you says operators out there, put a little box and your on boarding, asking people how they heard about you or whatever. It's very, very informative. Starr  Yeah, it does. And then do a podcast and wait  episodes. Ben  Those steps are optional. I really do like they're having like those, those uh onboarding introductions is what we call them. We have a channel in slack for them and having those show up periodically is like a little little endorphin rush. Like I love seeing those show up in our slack channel and you know, we also have a cancellations channel has the same thing with cancellation messages and that's not quite as fun. But thankfully we see if you are those messages that we do the onboarding messages, but I just, I really like having those things in slack. It's nice to see that throughout the day. Starr  Yeah, definitely. So imagine this is gonna be a little bit of a shorter one because we just recorded um last week's podcast, like on monday in today's thursday. So I don't know if there's, there's not as much time that's passed to let um I don't know to let the hot takes regenerate themselves. Mhm Ben  Right, well, I have a hot date for you and it's the grape, I guess most hot takes are great Josh  what we're best at. Ben  Uh so I'm working on an update to the Roku integration. So, you know, we haven't a clue add on and Uh we started to add on like, I don't know, back early, early days, it must have been like , or so. A long time ago. Well in , apparently Hiroki released an updated version of their API for partners like us and uh it has a new provisioning thing and you can actually call back to their API and get some information about like supervision to add on and stuff like that. Which is great. Uh We haven't ever really gotten around to changing our particular add on because it works just fine. So why bother? Ben  But I've been looking at synchronizing the Heroku pricing with our current pricing because we've done a number of pricing variations since we launched the Heroku. And so now the two sets of pricing are pretty out of sync. So as I started to get into that I was like well you know well I'm here, how about I just you know update the A. P. I write classic classic rabbit hole. Right? And and and so I spent some time doing that and found you know some interesting quirks and so on about our integration and anyway it's all good like I got the work done and I did a pr and and josh and kevin like giving the thumbs up and I'm ready to deploy except Ben  I have two questions for the Heroku people about about the migration because the migration you gotta be careful right? Because like the V one A P. I. Is not compatible with the V three Api And so you have to store different sets of data and the I. D. S in particular are different like they used to pass what they call a ready and now they pass an add on I. D. And you gotta you know handle the transition carefully or else someone you know maybe they can't add on the thing. Maybe they can't start being customer, maybe they can't remove the adult which would be a problem because you know or maybe they can't log in that would also again yeah prop trading right? Josh  And so because they still get the emails Ben  so so my questions for harajuku around this migration revolve around this idea and like handling sso and making sure that we can still provisions and provisions properly anyway. So I put two questions to them and support two days ago and that's my gripe because that's the holdup. That's the holdup I can't deploy it because I can't get answers to these questions apparently. So I'm just like oh okay I understand like people are busy and stuff but uh I would like an answer some time you know and there's no like there's no auto responder there's no we'll get back to you in X. Amount of time. No it's just like off into the void and I'm just waiting Starr  did you maybe did you maybe use the legacy um support page Instead of the current ? Ben  No no use the current one. Okay good question though. Good like that Josh  this is just another example of like coding being the easy part. Uh huh. Ben  Yeah and also a good example of like rd party integrations causing you know uh technical maintenance burden like like um oh for example like clubhouse that recently renamed themselves the shortcut. Right? And so we had to, you know, do a little bit of work there and renamed stuff inside of our app wasn't a whole lot of work but it was some work but you you add, you multiply that kind of work by the number of integrations you support and all of a sudden like this is ongoing maintenance work that doesn't, it's just you're just treading water trying to keep up with what everybody else in the world is doing. Right? Josh  Yeah. And as new as new integration, you know, his new apps come onto the market and everyone wants to integrate with them, you just gradually expand until you, I mean you still have to support the old ones. Yeah, I think we're definitely getting to the point where every new little thing we add is like yeah, yeah, we're starting to feel it, we are starting to feel it. Yeah. And like the the depth of the integration is also I've noticed is like a big, big thing because like there's a few integrations that we like go a lot deeper with like get hub, you know, heroic. Who obviously is like a good example of that. We have a lot of issues with vera I've I've seen but who doesn't Ben  um Josh  but it does seem like the like I don't know, the more standardized something can be. Um and yeah, just I don't know when you're like integrating with a lots and lots of custom API's and stuff like that. They're going to switch it out on you at some point. Josh  Yeah. Support. It Ben  would be, it would be nice if there was like a happier plus plus, like a next level happier right? Where uh it just, it just abstracts away all these differences and you can just, you know, it's like a universal kind of thing and it's like, yeah, possibly be impossible. But Josh  are almost like the pitch I get to the pitch there being almost like an LTs, like like an LTs contract for for integration API is like, you gotta, you gotta contract. This API isn't going to change for like  years. Um and they'll just, you know, they'll do the and we'll do the internal migrations to keep the ap the same for you. Ben  Yeah, there you go. That's that's an interesting idea. I wonder how that kind of service would cost. Josh  I don't know, I know there's been a few um someone a micro, someone, a Microsoft had like a service that built like manage the integration side for you. Um was that Jonathan? Um Yeah, yeah, I don't know if that was like similar. I know it wasn't quite, that wasn't quite the idea, but like it was the idea that like, you know, they like give you  integrations, you know, for free or whatever, like much easier to integrate with them. Ben  Yeah, you just plug in and all of a sudden you Josh  have immigration. Ben  Yeah. Yeah. But the link in the show notes or see if it still exists. I haven't, I haven't Josh  talked to Jon tester. I can't Ben  yeah, sounds familiar. Josh  I don't know. I remember like having their like sticker in front of me at the table microscopes. Ben  Yeah. I haven't uh you know, having, having not gone a micro comp or business software or anything else for a couple of years now it's like it's going to keep track of what people are doing and because usually that's where I see Jonathan, Josh  you know, there was a Microsoft Microsoft local happened in Portland yesterday. I was kind of, I was kind of, I didn't go but in hindsight I kind of wished I had. But yeah, I saw, I saw a little bit of activity on twitter Ben  yeah look like they were having a fun time and I had the same kind of feeling. I was like, yeah I wasn't really thinking about going but then after seeing some of the tweets and like actually would've been fun to me, you know, Josh  wow I'm in the middle of like my kids are home from school this week because there was a covid case at the school and uh, so it's got yeah got that that's fine and in the school like was not as equipped as we hoped to like handle like the, you know right, just all the um coordination and stuff like the communication, I don't know, just they're still getting it together, it seems so it could be better. Ben  Did you sit there and think there should really be an app for managing this kind of communication between that would be family. That Josh  would be, yeah, that would be uh that would be something because yeah, it's like, like, yeah, not everyone seems to know how to use email. Uh huh Ben  That could be problematic. Starr  I've never gotten so many emails about like a specific thing is, you know, recently now that my daughter is going to school. Yeah, and they're not bad. They're just like, there's just so many of them about all these different aspects of things. Josh  Do they do they put urgent everywhere because like I've got a whole inbox of urgent emails. Starr  Oh no. Uh huh Like they seem to be pretty on top of it. Like they're kind of um like the whole covid stuff puts a whole another layer on top. Like, I'm sure opening school is already like a lot of work, but you know, they're scrambling around and like erecting tents in the, on the blacktop so the kids can eat lunch outside and you know, all this stuff. Starr  Okay. So they've created an official, an official channel for parents to raised their safety concerns with the school because I think they were just getting bombarded. Bye Everyone. Josh  Yeah, I think that's where we are and I'm hoping that's they come up with something like that like some sort of process for raising concerns. Ben  Yeah. I wonder if you start seeing like a a school board or maybe a school level position right? Like pandemic coordinator, right? And that's your point. I Josh  I really hope I hope it doesn't last long enough to like bake the position into society. But like I guess like yeah some sort of health coordinator. I could see that being a thing for sure. And I guess yeah I mean I could probably do other things when there's not a pandemic happening I imagine. Mhm. Still be useful. Ben  Wouldn't be a full time job is what you're saying. Josh  Yeah. Well Starr  I was like I was surprised at like um the school does offer like free um like flu vaccine drive through clinics and like they do a lot of stuff, it's just not just directly school and that was a little bit surprising. I mean it's awesome but Josh  maybe I need to move to Seattle. Starr  Um Yeah. Ben  Yes. Well um yeah Ben  we'll help you find a house. Starr  Yeah it'll only cost you like a million dollars Josh  on the low end right for a starter house. Yeah man. Well um we could talk about one of the things that I've that we were discussing this week um was the you know the hook relay launch. And I thought one interesting conversation we had was because we've we're making a few improvements to the sales site um before we sent out this email and um like published a blog post and do some basic like you know launch to our customers um sort of thing. Um And Ben you had you've been working with like a contractor or you found a contractor Josh  to do some website, like some redesign stuff because the website we put it together kind of like I don't know what is it, It's a tail end tail insight. Um Just like what like telling you I um fairly boilerplate and uh not really very polished. So we thought it would be cool to uh you know kind of polish it up and rethink some of the content and make sure like everything flows together in terms of like called call to actions and things like that. Um But we're at the we have a decision to make like do we do we kind of just like do a little bit of work to make it you know, launch Hubble and then launch or should we like go for this full redesign that the designer of course is trying to pitch us on. And Josh  I'm thinking that like ship it is the way to go. You know make make it make it ship herbal and then uh come back and and we'll we'll do the big the big overhaul. Ben  Yeah I I've heard smart people say that if if you're not embarrassed by what you ship then you waited too long. So Josh  yeah so we're probably making a mistake by not just uh shipping it as is, huh? Ben  So the current, like if you look at the, I mean there's only like four pages right? Of the sounds like uh and of those four pages, like the best looking one I think is the one that kevin did. That's the documentation page. Uh put a lot of good work into that. And then the second best I would say it's probably the guide that you wrote. So that's Josh  that's job because because I copied kevin Ben  copy, Josh  kevin's work. Ben  And then I would say the next the next in series is the pricing page. I think it looks okay, but that's like straight from tailwind ui Uh basically copy based, like we paid, you know what, $ for the components and then worth every penny, right? Uh And then I would say the worst of all the pages is the homepage. And that's the page. That's all me. Like I I put that together. So uh I think it's pretty clear who needs to stay away from design at honey badger. It's been. Josh  But in your defense, like you put that together, like when the product was like, like barely even alpha and we were like, we should just like, we should really like buy a domain for this. And so you like wrote a little letter and put it on there. Um And we haven't revisited since, so that's kind of what we're talking about is just revisiting um you know, making a few small changes and then then we'll get around to hopefully making something more um professional or I don't know. Ben  Yeah, but it's funny that, as I was, as I was working with that designer that we found to help us, as we were like, scoping out the project, it was, I felt a bit of deja vu but from the other side, because I remember as a freelancer, like, I was always, you know, pitching people on the project and I would give them the grand vision and, you know, and here's the price tag, Ben  and they'd be like, oh, out, could you, could you cut, you know, x, y and z could get the price down to whatever, you know? And uh it wasn't about the price, in this case, it was about time we wanted to get that homepage done faster so they could get this launch done sooner rather than doing a whole redesign, but I still felt kind of guilty going back to design and say, okay, that's that's great, but could we, you know, cut like all those pages and just do this one, it's not Josh  the it's not the price timeframe, so are they going to be able to you think they'll be able to do a quick ish turn around, like um so that we'll get to get to ship this thing. Ben  Yeah, I think so, I didn't made the mistake of not actually setting a deadline. So I'm I realized that after I agreed and paid the deposit and all this kind of so like I don't actually know when he's going to deliver stuff. That could be a problem, but I figured I'd just wait a few days because you know, I'm thinking it should only take a few days. What do I know I'm not a designer obviously, but I figured after a few days if I see nothing, I hear nothing then I'll be like, okay, so what's the timeline? And hopefully it'll be something like, you know, next week, but Josh  this project is just like is he is he already like is you just have access to the like get a repository or is he like working something up? Like some sort of prototype or Ben  or something like that? Yeah, you should be doing a prototype. So st, st thing is he asked us do we want how do we want to get the design part? Uh So like the choices were a PSD or stigma. So I chose stigma because we use stigma. Uh and then the second part would be okay. And there also was a question and the on boarding was okay, you want me to build this out in html CSS And of course, yes, like yes, I want you to do more work for me, thank you very much. So, so the first version is just a design and stigma and oh, actually three. So he gave us the option of just doing one, like I'll do a design and you accept it or not? Or doing three designs. Ben  I went for the three designs because I mean I'm a client now so I get to like, you know, be deciding and stuff. So that was that was slow us down a little bit obviously because there's gonna be three designs, that one, but we'll get those three designs. That's Josh  for that's for like the big project. Right? Or or is he doing three for the initial bill? Ben  Well, I think that I think for the further homepage Okay. I think that's basically, I think what I was trying to communicate, I think I communicated was we want to do is basically to stage project, like we want to do the whole design, but we want the first stage to be, Let's get the homepage set. So what I'm thinking is like the design that he goes with for the homepage will then carry through to the rest of the project. The rest of the pages. Gotcha. That's mine. That's my hope. Josh  I don't do you know, I it sounds like he's more like he's going to be coding if he's coding this up in html and CSS like I wonder he's probably not using like uh is he using anything to start with? Like could he use could he do this in tailwind for instance because that might be useful in the future if we want to like, you know, take over if we want to like do some, you know, of our own design in the future, which, you know what we're capable of is basically tailender bootstrap. Ben  Yeah, I didn't specify to use tailwind. I didn't really care at the moment. I just wanted whatever was fastest. Uh Right. And I figure if we decide to revisit and do some structural stuff, we can always adapted the tailwind ourselves, like that kind of thing I can do, you know, I can take an existing design and I can, I can rework it, you know? Uh so I figured just get it out the door, get it done as quickly as possible. I don't, I don't care what you do and then we can, we can revisit if we need to. Josh  Cool. Well the, I mean, once we get the whole thing redone that, that'll be nice. I don't know. We've never really done that. We've on our current on, on honey badger. Io we've never like, we've always just done it ourselves. Ben  That's new news. Something a new venture for us to try try this sort of thing. It's great. I like experiments. So we had, speaking of experiments, we had an experiment that did not work out and I suppose we should talk about that. Uh we, we decided that the sales, the outbound sales effort is not working out for us. So uh worked with Harris at interest there and we talked about this on the podcast before. Uh, and Harris is great interest. Um, it's great, % recommend Harris and his team. If you're thinking about doing some sales stuff and you want some training, some coaching or you want someone to help you do it. All those things are great. But after having done sales work with Harris, I just realized it's Ben  probably not gonna work for us. Maybe it's maybe it's me, maybe it's our business, maybe it's our customer segment, maybe it's a combination of all those things, but you know, Harris and I, so I told Harrison and it's just not working out, we need to, we need to turn this down and turn it off. And, and Harris was like, yeah, I was getting the feeling based on the response rate, like which is zero, uh, just wasn't working. And so, and we also like on Tuesday, I had a great call with Harris and we just did a post mortem basically the whole project and like why why didn't it work? Like we were hoping it would work and Ben  uh, and it was, it was a blameless postmortem, like I don't think there was a particular fault. I think there are factors like, uh, we sell primarily to developers and developers, primary that usually don't want to be talked to right, They don't want to talk to a sales person, they don't really want to get unsolicited stuff. Uh, And so that's a factor, I think also like the nature of our product, like you don't really need a salesperson to explain to you exception monitoring, right? Like it's, you know, it's like if you go to the car dealership Ben  and you're looking for an accord, you don't really need to spend a lot of time with a salesperson as he explains to you what an accord does, like, you know what an accord does, right? It's a car. Like if I know I want an accord versus camera, like I don't need any help, right? Just just tell me the car and I think it's kind of some kind of thing here is like we're not selling something that's really complicated or that needs a lot of education or it needs a lot of configuration or whatever. Like it's not a solution based sales, which I think would be a better fit for that kind of sales process. So, and, and there are other factors. Um but yeah, so that's an experiment that I think is just, uh, does it work out? Josh  It seems like we're really positioned to sell to the developers and it's not that we couldn't, I mean, we could try to sell ourselves too because it seems like, like depending on the size of team that's using a tool like this, like you get people in the organization higher up that get involved, like managers or product managers or uh, like engineering leads and stuff that are trying to do more of the like management and coordination um stuff and those are the people that like the dashboards and the samel and like all the more enterprise features, but we don't typically like lead, like that's not that's not how our um product is positioned to, we're not like we haven't positioned ourselves to sell to that level really, it seems. Um and Josh  yeah, I don't know, that's that's kind of interesting because, you know, you wonder at some point like if the developers are deciding what tool to buy, do they buy the same tool as like their bosses and we're trying to give the developers what they want, it may be more than we're trying to give their bosses what they want, and you know, and then we try to build those features too so that we can keep everyone happy, but like um it does, there's like yeah, it's kind of a different, like you could see like trying to take the same approach with like, you know, someone up the higher up the ladder or whatever, I could see that not being as interesting. Yeah, Ben  one of the things and there are other factors, like one of the things that Harris taught me about sales is uh he said the money is in the follow up basically like you need to keep reaching out to the same people basically until they tell you to go away and that's not what I'm about and I don't really want to do that to people. Like we email sequence and uh inherited like, well we need to do an email sequence like this and it's like in emails long and I'm like um how about two? We send one and then we send one more and that's it. And Harris was like uh so I think in many ways like I was tying his hands because I didn't want to do the kind of sales process that a lot of people do. Right? Josh  Well I imagine like putting your face on those emails probably like you don't, you don't want like to make a bunch of enemies of developers that you might have to work with in the future. But like what if you like, did you consider just like making a completely fictional sales? Just like salesperson persona? And it could have just been like, you know, we could have put them on the, on the sales page and everything. It's just like this fictional person that takes all the heat for sales. Ben  I never thought of that. That's a great idea. Name, bobby bobby, the badger. Josh  Yeah, um maybe that's like a side like, you know, kind of an Upsell offering that Harris can can add to to his product eyes thing. Like, you know, if you don't want to take the heat, like we can create something for you Starr  that's a Ben  that's an awesome idea should afford that on. Yeah. Yeah. So the and another factor is like uh you know, because there are there are companies, we have competitors that are selling into the enterprise and do that sort of thing and um, I think I think you hit on a point there. It's like are we, are we selling to me selling the typical enterprise solution where the buyer has to be happy or are we selling something where the user has to be happy? Right. And and sometimes that they're both happy but and often times it isn't and in our case we're focusing on that and user and it doesn't make that user happy if we're pestering them with emails or you know, getting in their way of actually just trying the product. And so anyway, I think for now at least we are Ben  Better served as a % inbound kind of company and maybe spend those resources on customer success or engagement or something like that. Yeah, Josh  it's interesting but it Ben  was fun while it lasted. Josh  Well, I'm glad, I'm glad it wasn't a complete drag. You got to, you got to learn a little bit about sales. Yeah. Yeah. Imagine. Yeah. Cool. Yeah, I think like uh like competition, just like the, we're in such a like a competitive space and most of our competitive, our competitors also go for those like enterprise segments. Um so it could actually be, you know, it could be good for us to stay, you focused on the on the smaller, like, you know, the smaller, the smaller end of the market in a way because they're probably somewhat underserved at this point, Josh  yep. Starr  All right. So um when is the hook really lunch Starr  or is this and how to fix fixed? Okay. So we don't know what to tell people Josh  we're meeting, we're meeting next next week to kind of finalize it. But I'm imagining like we're going to push it out the door as soon as we have, you know, some I think we're going to wait for a few updates to the homepage, but otherwise we're going to ship it. And who knows? Like if if this project ends up kind of dragging on at all or anything like we could just decide to, you know, kind of just go what we have. It's not, you know, it's not it's it's workable. So maybe we should just like stop procrastinating, right? But we'll we'll decide next week at our um hook really marketing meeting. Ben  Yeah, the good news is we already have customers who are using it who are paying us money to use it. So that's that's nice. Like it's not just burning cash with a bunch of a rack of servers doing nothing. You know, Josh  So I would say it's in the next couple weeks. Starr  Awesome. I'm sure when that happens we'll um be blowing horns and making all sorts of noise on this show and directing people to the right place. Uh huh. All right. Was there anything else you guys want to talk about? Should we should wrap it up? Josh  We can wrap it. We can wrap it. Starr  All right. Well, you all have been listening to um found request. If you want to go read us on apple podcasts or whatever the kids are calling it these days, go for it. Um And yeah, we'll catch you next week. Thank you. Josh  Yeah, No.
There Ain't No Business Like No Business
Sep 17 2021
There Ain't No Business Like No Business
Show notes:Links:Bold Badgers NFTMantis scooterRidwellWrite for HoneybadgerTranscript:*note - this is an unedited automatically generated transcript with about 80% accuracy*Josh: So we really are we doing this, uh, super quick. Do we need to like speed up our voices? ArtificiallyBen: The chipmonk episode.Starr: There you go. No, we should just, we should slow them down. So it'll um, we can just record  a  minute episode and then we'll take  minutes to listen to it.Josh: Yeah, yeah. That's right. That's what we've been doing all along. That's our life hack is it takes us  minutes to record these episodes and you listened to them in  minutes.Starr: Yeah. So that's the, um, so I'll fill in our listeners. We, um, we miss our normal recording day on Friday, and so we're making it up on a Monday, which means like we're jam packed in with a bunch of other stuff. Um, so this may be a little  shorter than usual and I'm sorry. I know you just have to have all of us all the time and we're just giving it all we can right now.Josh: Yeah, it'll be just as off topic though. So, um,Starr: I would thank God.Ben: Yeah. Speaking, speaking of off topic, I have, I have a public service announcement to make. As, as you know, I've been getting more into the electric vehicles scene, uh, personal mobility, micro mobility, all that kind of fun stuff. And I, you know, a few months ago bought an electric scooter.  It's a mantis for those who are curious, who are in the know, uh, and I've been really enjoying that, like riding back and forth to work and goofing off and that sort of thing. But the thing that's, the public service announcement is, uh, wear a helmet. If you're going to ride one of these pillars. I just, this past week saw two different people riding on scooters, similar to mine, like higher powered scooters, mixing it up with traffic, like on  mile per hour roads and not wearing a helmet. And I just thought that is insane.  Like, I don't know. Maybe, maybe, yeah, you should definitely wear a helmet if you're going to ride electric scooter at  miles an hour, just saying that's my PSA.Josh: I did go for, I went for a, my first ride on an EBI bike, um, last week and I must confess I did not wear a helmet. And, uh, I have to say it was, you know, it was kind of fun. Like, you know, little dangerous,  there was no traffic. Like there was very little traffic, so in my defense.Ben: Okay. That's a plus. Do you remember what kind of bike your Rover's like a super ? Like one of those modelsJosh: I have, I have a very bad memory for names of things and I was told, but, uh, no, I don't know, but actually I was, it was with, uh, it was the bike of, uh, Mike Perrin, who is a friend of the show and creator of sidekick. So I'm  sure he will, uh, hopefully listen to this and, and let us know. And then we can fill everyone in the next week. MaybeBen: I think, I think he has a super . It's a, and that's a pretty sweet,Josh: It's like the super it's like one of the fastest ones on the market, he said, yeah, cool. Or something like that.Ben: I'm going to have to get down to Mike's house and borrow some of his bikes. AndJosh: It was a lot of fun. I'd never, I'd never done that before. And I, I get the appeal now.Ben: Yeah. So when, when I got my scooter, Mike was like, I don't  know, scooters. They're kind of, uh, I don't exactly what he tweeted, but he's like, yeah, they're kind of sketchy because they're not very stable and stuff and he's right. They are integrated stable compared to the bikes, but it's still a lot of fun. So I just wear a full face helmet to counteract the wobbliness. Yeah.Starr: Did y'all know I have a, an electric bike? No, it's called a Peloton.Josh: You were so smug with that one.Starr: It's the perfect bike for me because it doesn't move. Um, it's like all the, got all the nice things about the bike, like the workout, but you don't go anywhere. You don't have to Dodge any traffic. Uh, don't have to wear a helmet screen.Josh: Yeah. Those sound, those do sound seriously though. Those, those, uh, look pretty, pretty nice.Ben: Yeah. I have, I have a low-tech Peloton. It's just a trainer. I brought my bike on.Josh: Is your bike on it? Yeah. Yeah. But I like, I don't know the what, from what I've heard of the Peloton  , uh, those they've got all the bells and whistles right star.Starr: Oh yeah. Yeah. I mean, really it's um, it's not so much about the actual bike for me. It is, as it is about having some like super enthusiastic person, like, um, playing really good music and just being like, you've got this, you were born for greatness and just like saying stuff like that at me. Um, while I'm like trying to, you know, read them a little bit,Josh: You say that, but like, you know, like I, I try to, you know, give that experience  to Katelyn, for instance, my wife and she just like, she hates like, she's like get, get out of here.Starr: I think, I think it's easier. I think it's a little easier when there's not like an actual person there, you know, Just hire a social exerciseBen: That started out live, get, you know, the, uh, the motivational speaker guy lives in a, down by the river. I'm just, I'm just thinking about Chris Farley,  like standing by your exercise bike. You can do it. You've got this.Josh: If we could get a, yeah. If we could get that, um, on the Peloton, I would subscribe like if he was one of the trainers, I mean, like, you know,Ben: So just bring him back from the dead, have him record some such the Peloton and then, yeah, that'd be awesome. I miss Chris Farley.Starr: So Ida likes to ride the Peloton too, that she's not big enough for it. Um, but she  is a, her, her feet can touch the pedals. Um, but they can't reach all the way down. So she's kinda like kicks the pedal down and then catches it on the way back up. And so she asked me to put on a little video so she can do it to the music too. Yeah. Oh, I need to give an update about my, um, about the printing press. I know everybody's like waited, waiting the press breath about thatJosh: Date. I thought, yeah. I didn't know. There was news so, well, IStarr: Mean, the news  is I have given up on it. I went down to Tacoma. I went down to see it and it worked and everything, and I just really got a sense for like how big and heavy it was going to be. And, um, then I started, I measured it and I started actually trying to figure out how I would get it into my building. Um, because like, it's just, my, my office is  in the backyard. It's, uh, it's, we're having our backyard redone soon, but right now it's just all bumpy and lumpy. And so it's like trying to like roll this thing. I would have to construct like a, a path out of plywood. I'd have to build a ramp up to my, um, the doorway, um, then to actually get it into the location where it's going to be. I would have to completely like dismantle all my shelving and, um, then like re assemble it once I had put the thing in place.  And so if I ever wanted to move it again, I'd have to like completely take down all my shelving. I was just like, this is too much. Like, this is, um, like I can't, I can't justify this on it. Like I'm, I'm waking up early in the morning and not being able to get back to sleep. Cause I'm like, how the hell am I going to like move this thing? It's like, no, that's not a good hobby for me right now.Ben: That's too bad. Have you looked into typewriters?Starr: I mean, quite the same thingJosh: I would get into typewriters  though. Just like aside,Starr: I am looking into smaller, into a smaller press. They have smaller like desktop ones that are a couple of hundred pounds. Um, not, not like a thousand and looking into that sad,Ben: sad to hear it didn't work out, but I let's get pictures of that in any one. If you get a small one, that'd be kind of fun.Starr: Yeah. I just have to, I, uh, I almost saw him this weekend, but somebody swooped in before me. And so now I'm just going to have to wait like six  months until another one pops up. Cause like it's, they're not very, there's not a very liquid market. It's not like in a, I guess, I guess there is a liquid market, I guess, I guess they just kind of get snapped, snatched up and then like, there's just not any of them. Yeah.Josh: Do you still get to like, do you have to do like type setting and stuff?Starr: Yeah. You do like, um, there's a couple ways to do it. Like you can do it the old school way where you have like the lead type and you like, um, you know, put it letter by letter and do like a composing  stick and do all that. Um, I probably wouldn't do that just because I'm not sure I have the time and patience. Um, so there's a, an updated way to do it where, um, you can, um, you know, send a PDF off and they'll make a, uh, a plate for you and it's plastic and then you just use that. So, um, yeah. And you can make them yourself too. It's just, you know, takes more equipment and more, you know, you know how I'm work and stuff.Josh: Maybe you could get like a specialized, d printer to like printer plates for you.Starr: Cool. Do you use like, uh, um, people to use like a, a Glowforge like a laser cutter cool. Or laser engraver?Josh: That's a, that's a fun hobby. That sounds, that sounds like fun.Starr: Oh yeah. Oh, I went down the rabbit hole of reading all about laser engravers too. Like there's like this cheap one from China that you can get for like  bucks. And then like,  it's apparently got good internals, but like, you really have to soup it up. And so like that's some people's whole personality is they just do that.Josh: Nice before we get off the topic of a paper and things that interface with paper. Um, I like ordered something off of Amazon that I was like, I don't know why I was like this excited about it arriving. Like maybe I'm just like extreme, like my, you know, I'm extremely  bored and needed something to look forward to. But like Amazon basics, paper, shreds, shredder, sharpening, and lubricate, lubricant sheets. And I get all, I'm not going to say that again. I hope you like got that. Um, I did not know that this existed though. Cause like I have like a paper shredder. It's like a cheap, you know, a cheap one, but like I never, like, I never oil it cause don't like just, I don't know how, okay. Like just the thought of like getting a, like a bottle  of oil or something and like trying to like dump it.Josh: Like I just, I don't know. So I like was like trying to figure out like, how do you oil these things? And it turns out they make sheets of paper that had the oil like in them and you just run them through the shredder. I didn't know. Like maybe everyone knows this. I did not know this was a thing. And uh, I mean it's like the perfect, it's like the perfect, uh, lubricant solution for your shredder because, um, you just, you know, it's like shredding a piece of paper, which is fun in and of itself.  Like who doesn't like shredding paper. So pro tip, you don't needStarr: Waiting. How do they work? Um,Josh: My shredder might be too far gone from the lack of oiling, but I'm going to like, wait and see. Oh no, we'll wait and see. Luckily I did get the cheap one. So now that I'm like an expert on shredder maintenance, um, my next shredder maybe I'll even upgrade or something.Starr: I actually, um, I bought an Amazon basic shredder. That  is, uh, it's a, it's a fairly big one, um, for home use, but it's, it's uh, Amazon basics and it's actually really good.Ben: That is a cross cut. Cause that's the key feature right there.Starr: I, I think the cross cuts. Yeah. SeeBen: Mine. Mine's a cheapo one that just does stripsJosh: And that's, I mean that's the strips. Yeah.Ben: Gotta have the crossover.Starr: Yeah. They can always go in the strips back together.Josh: Yeah.Ben: I was a little disturbed to find out  though. My, my local trash and recycling facility, uh, our city requests that you not put shredded paper in the recycle, uh, I don't know why they can't handle the recycle shredded paper, but yeah. So if, if all the stuff that I shred, it has to go in the trash, which seems kind of wrong, you know, it's like it's paper cause then recycle. Right. ButJosh: That's because I'm pretty sure recycling is a big scam and none of it actually works. Like you think it does because like Kaylin, like  Katelyn knows all about recycling and I am constantly trying to like be a good person and recycle things and she's like, no, that's not recyclable. Like you can't like, that's going to actually like, that's going to like make the recycling people mad because like they have to sort through this and like, you know, take it out before they can actually like repurpose. So yeah, it seems like there's very, uh, relatively little that is actually recyclable. At least in my experience. So farStarr: We subscribed to an additional recycling service,  um, read well. And uh, yeah. So they like, you can't recycle, um, just a normal city was like, when you can't put like plastic bags or any sort of like plastic film stuff. Right. So like they take that and um, like they'll take, uh, like fabric stuff, like clothes, um, and like batteries and light. And then they have like a rotating category where um, like once every three months or whatever, it's like, you can put your old  electronic devices in there and they'll like, you know, have those recycled and whatever. Yeah. Yeah. It's pretty nice.Josh: Yeah. Cause I'm everything I hear lately about like just normal recycling, just as depressing. Like it's like, I don't know. I hear like, you know, half the recycling isn't even like being taken care of taken,Starr: You know, like they're like shippingJosh: It to other countries or burying it in landfills anyways. It just it's like, yeah, it's kind of sad. It doesn't make me want to recycle.Ben: Cool.  Let's see. Maybe, maybe my municipality then is forward-looking because they know there's going to put in the landfill. So there's just saving a step, right? Yeah. Just put it in the trash. Cause we're going to put out the trash anyway. Right?Josh: Yeah. And thenBen: They actually did that for a styrofoam. We used to have a regular styrofoam collection event. Like every month you could go down to city hall and you could dump your old styrofoam and they would take care of it. And then like, you know what, we just can't even cost effectively handle styrofoam anymore. So don't even, it's not even worth driving down to the city  hall to drop it off. Just put it in your trash. It's like, oh, that's so sad.Starr: Well, the, the rebel also does styrofoam. Like it's um, that's cool. It's it's not included in the base like price, but they give you a big bag and they're like, okay, whenever you're done with filling up this giant bag, like it'll cost, I don't know, five or $ to recycle it.Josh: Okay. Well we got to remember put it in the show notes cause I'm going to look at it too. Okay. Sure. I mean, it does seem like I'd rather the city, like if the city like  legitimately can't handle it and they're just like secretly like just trashing it anyway. It's like, it's better just to acknowledge the problem so that a real solution, hopefully it can, you know, like maybe like something like this, like people can start to, you know, pay extra for it or, or whatever. But like, it just seems like ignore, like just pretending, like just, just so everyone can feel good. Like, you know, just keep the people, you know, let them feel like they're recycling when they're not, does  not seem like a solution that's going to like solve any problems.Ben: But you know, what's, what's free to recycle the bits that you send to Honeybadger. We recycle those things all day long. You send us those, those API bits and they get efficiently recycled right away.Starr: I thought y'all were going to recycle those into NFTs.Josh: Oh yes. We don't. Don't uh, can'tBen: Spill the beans yet. Yeah. LikeJosh: Tell everyone our new business strategy. I think already I put that on Twitter already that we're pivoting into crypto and Airtraq and it's going to be a side business. Yes.Starr: It might confuse people. There's already like a Honeybadger coin or something out there.Josh: Yeah. And there's also like multiple Badger NFTs by the way. SoBen: Yeah, just a little delight.Josh: That was like a brave badgers. Brave badgers on Salada. I think there's one.Ben: Yeah. Put that in the show notes. Make sure people check it out.  Not officially endorsed by Honeybadger, but still cool. IStarr: Think we should put out our own line of pugs.Josh: Yes. Yeah. I mean like I'm surprised pugs. Aren't like, so someone's rolling an NFT for pugs, to be honest.Starr: I wasn't making it come back. I hear.Ben: Yeah. If we're going to, if we're going to go retro, like let's go all the way. Retro let's skip the whole collectible cards and stuff and go straight to playing cards. Right. I'll play for the two cards with  different batteries on them. Yeah.Starr: I thought you were going to say to me,  light bulbs or something.Josh: Absolutely. I've been, I'm curious. Have you learned anything about, uh, crypto or NFTs lately?Ben: You know, no, I haven't really, I I've been, I've been watching people in my Twitter feed and it's, it's funny, there's this, there's this arc that I see, like their first tweet is like, what is this crypto stuff? And then their next tweet is like, this crypto stuff is crazy. And then a little bit later, there's another tweet. It's like, I'm going to look into this crypto set because I want to understand it. And then a little bit later there's like,  Hey, check out this NFC I just bought. And then a little bit later, their final tweet is like, here, come join this, this core community and get into my mint.Josh: And, and they have a new Twitter avatar that has like laser eyes.Ben: Yeah. It's kinda, it's crazy. So, so I've like, I've seen this again and again and again, I'm like, okay, I'm not, I'm afraid. I don't wanna investigate the Nazis becauseStarr: So R oh, I'm going to get, I'm going to get, I'm going to get so much hate over this, but our, um, our  NFTs just like, um, MLM for like tech rose.Ben: Yes, totally. They areJosh: Essentially,Starr: That's like, I've got, I've like, I'll just tell my I'm essentially. I've got my sensory over here. My essential oils.Josh: Yeah. Well spring as well. I mean like, technically I think you probably could code a MLM on Ethereum, so I'm sure it's already been done, but maybe that, you know, maybe, maybe we should just go for it. Just go full a  full billing. There you go.Starr: That's it. Everybody you heard it. We're going full villain now.Josh: Crypto villain. Yeah. I I've checked it out as well. A little bit. Um, I bought a, uh, an FTE on Solano just to see. And, um, actually I did not follow the pattern that you, uh, that you described Ben:, but I also did not let myself do this publicly, which I think is a big key. Like you people know,  like you can create anonymous identities on the internet. Um, it's still possible. And then you can go explore, you know, like NFTs or whatever, and you don't have to like have laser eyes on your main Twitter profile. Um, but you know, I went and looked at it and uh, I'm still, I'm like still learning. I'm like, you know, I'm trying to update my, you have the whole crypto scene is a little bit, you know, a little bit dated. Like I  checked it out, like after Bitcoin got, you know, it was starting to get popular and stuff, read some white papers, but I think it's, I mean, it's, you know, it's not going away regardless, so it's good to keep your view current at least. But, um, I am not, uh, you know, bought into, I have an eight in as the kids say,Ben: Well, I mean, back to the two lips, I think I'll just wait until the crash happens. Right. And then I'll have a bias of nice to have thoseJosh: Do that. Yeah. That's the, that's the cycle. I mean, you know, it's going to happen. That happens like in every, every, it seems like every new application of blockchain that, you know, comes out that goes through the same, like boom and bust cycle, um, and then levels out to, uh, you know, fairly regular boom and bust cycle.Ben: I mean, you know, confessional here, but I'm actually a laggard when it comes to tech stuff.  Like I'm pretty late on the adoption curve for a lot of things. Like, you know, my car is pretty old, my TV's kind of old, you know, I'm not really sure. Yeah. Yeah. That's just kinda, it's kinda weird. I'm in the tech world, but like, I don't really jump in on things like that. I'll just wait,Starr: That's pretty normal. Right. There's like, um, I don't know. There's I saw some, I forget where I saw somebody say it was like, there's two types of tech people. One has the newest of everything all the time. And the other one is like still working on like a,  a   PC.Josh: Yeah. Whatever.Starr: Yeah. I don't know about y'all, but like, I don't really know a lot of like tech people who have like, um, like voice assistance in their home.Josh: Yeah. I like that as much as like the consumer more than just regular consumers. Yeah.Ben: That's because we know it's like I write software. I know how bad it is.Josh: Yeah.  Yeah. That's why I don't like having them. So I don't trust, I don't trust software, but I don't know, like the block, the whole blockchain thing. Like, I, I, you know, I kind of get the, like the future application argument, like there's something here. Like I think it is like that idea of having like very easy, like making contracts easier, for instance, or giving software,  the ability, like making it easier to write applications that are built on like contracts or, or even like financial applications. Like the whole idea of like, like code being able to hold its own its own actual currency or money. Um, because it's like, you know, it's just bits. Like that is interesting. Like, I don't know, you know, I'm not enough of a futurist to be able to like see the future where, you know, that's like ubiquitous, but like it is, I can see that aspect of it. It's interesting. But like the whole, like, yeah.  I'm not like collecting a bunch of, uh, NFTs in the meantime.Ben: Yeah. I think smart contracts. The idea is interesting. I think, you know, the stuff that's being loosely called web three, I think that's kind of stuff is interesting, but the, but the whole I'm going to buy a smart contract thing that represents a JPEG and then I'm gonna hold on to it and it's going to be worth a million bucks. That part of it doesn't really appeal to me. Like, yeah, I guess I'm just not yet.Josh: Well, you're also not  an art. You're not like an art collector either. I would assume that's true. I don't think you have a house full of priceless art. I would, that would be my guess. I mean, I don't want to like, yeah, like over assume, but I mean, like, I think that's the kind of person that this would, this definitely like appeals more to like the collector and, uh, I'm, I'm also not a collector. So, um,Ben: Um, I do have one, I do have one piece of art in my house, so I'm not a complete,  you know, Rube, but, uh, but yeah, I am not, I'm not a collector. Yeah.Starr: I think the big, um, like, like I'm thinking about how like Bitcoin and stuff has been around and, you know, blockchain has been around for over a decade at this point. Right. Um, and like still now, like, you know, it looks a lot, I don't know, to me, just from the outside, it looks very similar to what it did back then.  It's like, it's like, um, a bunch of people, very excited about it and what it means, and this kind of like vague way, um, that like seems like, you know, it'll pan out in the future, but we're not quite sure how yet. And like, I'm wondering if the big, um, I'm wondering if the thing that like blockchain is actually successful at is in, um, being very like evocative to  a certain type of person, um, making a certain type of, you know, developer or a tech person, like feel a certain way. Like I wonder if that's the main success of blockchain, because that seems to be like, mostly what I'm seeing is like a bunch of people, you know, excited a bunch of people. Um, I don't know, like, like wanting to discuss the future of things and you know, being smart about it. And it's like, I wonder if that, um, that process is the whole reason that it stuck around. I don't  know.Ben: It's good, good point.Josh: There's definitely some interesting stuff out there. Um, and some very, I mean, like, I think it's undeniable that there are some very people that have thought all this stuff up, like yeah. But yeah, I don't know. You're right. It's, it's been around a lot. Like the, it seems like the adoption curve as much longer on this one. If, if it is going to be the, you know, the next big thing, I don't know. It does. I don't know. It'll be interesting.  But I figured in the meantime, like keeping, keeping an eye on, let's just try to learn more about it. But, um, I'm not really the, I try to avoid situations where I just like dive in and become a like true believer. So I'm, I'm learning from afar.Ben: I'll just go buy some GME. That'll go to fix.Starr: I dunno. I'm just going to go for  AMC, myself. Like the movies, like the movies have been around forever.Ben: Well, confession time I actually bought some AMC. Oh yeah. When the whole GME thing was going crazy and AMC got part of it. I went and bought some AMC. Cause I'm like, you know what, thinking about it. It's like, I wasn't really interested in the main stock thing, but I was thinking, okay, pandemics going to go away some point, right. People are gonna get back out and they're going to go to movies again. Right. It's going to be, and I'm actually, I think I'm doing pretty good on the whole AMC purchase.  We'll see how it goes. Pandemic didn't end yet, but I can still close the fingers.Josh: I mean, as a futurist, I do expect more things to become MIMA fide. So if you can like predict those trends, then go, you know, get in early because, uh, everything's going to be a meme on the blockchain. Eventually.Ben: That's a good thing. Our business is based on a meme now. We're, we're, we're totally with it.Josh: Yeah. All right. We're finally with it on the whole meme thing.Starr: Well, as the present test, I think you should just enjoy it while you can.Josh: You mean all the mains or I don'tStarr: Really know. I just want to get, it seemed like a pithy thing to sayBen: It's apropos. Yeah. Yeah.Josh: Well, we discussed like, no, like I think we, I think we actually discussed like nothing  related to the business this time and that is, you know, that's moving forward.Ben: This is our Seinfeld episode, the episode aboutJosh: Speed. Oh, speaking of Seinfeld, we finished the last, the final episode of Seinfeld, um, that like a couple nights ago. And it like, cause we've been like Kayla and I have been like going through it, like for like years at this point, like just slowly, like, cause it's not every night you want to watch Seinfeld.  Like it's, it's gotta be like a Seinfeld night. So we finally, like, we didn't realize we were like at the end. Um, and it was kind of a, it was a little bittersweet moment kind of likeStarr: At the end of real Seinfeld when it aired. So, and you just heard that green day song starts swelling. It's something I'm predictive of your life. I know. So enjoy it while you can enjoy it while you can.Starr: You've been listening to founder quest. If you want to give us a review, go to wherever you do that and do that. I don't know. I've never been given a podcast or review, to be honest. I don't know how you do it. Um, so I may just be sending you out to nowhere. Um, and yeah, if you're interested in writing for us, we are usually looking for authors and stuff for a blog. Um, check out  honeybadger.io forward slash blog and look for the right press link and learn all about, you know, all about that. And we will see you next week. See ya. See ya. Bye.
Hook Relay Is Livin' That FULL Duplex Lyfe!
Sep 10 2021
Hook Relay Is Livin' That FULL Duplex Lyfe!
Show notesLinks:Hey Dumpster FireGoatse.cxFull transcript:*This is an unedited automated transcript which is only about 80% accurate*Starr  Yeah, well, sad news. Um I did not see my printing press last weekend because I I came down with a cold, it wasn't it wasn't covid, so don't worry, it's okay. Um But we're waiting for the test to come back. So you know the difference between now and the before times is now when you get a cold life shuts down and you can't really do anything until your results come back. Josh  Well and you know the other thing about like during the pandemic, everyone's home like just the printing press market is just going wild right now, so like, there's going to be gone, I'm sure it'll be gone long gone by the time you're feeling better. Starr  Exactly, everybody's going to print their manifestos, Josh  right? Yeah, Ben  well, you know, since my kid is able to take care of his own school needs and I didn't have to like sideline myself for that, like, like star, I actually got some stuff done this week, but uh but not going to tell you me. So I've been really get into this groove on having other people do things, so Starr  it's not definite, Ben  it's so nice, so nice. So shall I was able to deliver a feature that we want in Hungary there for a long time and that is being able to deliver to multiple your ills. So we give you a hook address that you post to and then you can say, okay, up to three different Charles will then get that delivery that post. So Josh  that's pretty cool, Starr  wow, Broadcasting broadcasting Ben  your publisher, this is something that one of our customers asked for and something we've wanted for a while and, and uh I apologize, I think to shop because I kind of dropped the ball on, you know, helping this get this, get this feature over the goal, you know, he uh he had done some work a few months ago and I just was distracted and didn't really uh follow up on it, like, I should have, and then and then once I did follow up like I should have, then it's like, you know what, I don't think we want to go with this round, I think I want to go a different round. So we ended up re implementing the whole thing in a different way, but so I appreciate his patients but got that launch, That's feeling pretty good. Starr  That's awesome. So um so hook really is a product that we're uh you know, we've lost, you can just go sign up for right now, right? Yeah. Ok. Yeah, so it's uh it's like magic for your wife hooks, so if you if you want to um if you want to send a web hook, you just send it to our service and then we make sure that it gets deliver, that's super reliable, that I don't know, there's just a lot of details that you have to implement around doing web hooks, right? And we do this for you. And so now it sounds like you can have that sort of broadcast to multiple points Josh  also works for inbound web hooks. So no matter what the flaky services that is sending you sending you web hooks, I think what we're doing right now is broadcasting, by the way, um but yeah, no matter what the flaky service that you have to integrate with, you know, to send to receive data from them if your app goes or maybe your app is flaky, if if your app is going down, um you can just be sure that when you get back online, hook relay will be there to relay all the web hooks that you missed. Starr  Well, I've got I've got a term for it, you can feel free to use this in your marketing. So that means that um since it does both outbound and inbound, that means you're full duplex Josh  well, Duplex. I like it, I like it going to write it down, You know, like that would be an awesome, like if we did kind of like, you know, like, like I don't know, like s marketing theme, like with me on colors and stuff and we're like full duplex. Just that going well together. Ben  Do you remember speaking of the eighties, remember back and when you connect with your modem and it would be the wrong duplex setting. And so everything you typed would be double right? You get every care, it could be a double f. You know? And they're like, oh man, full duplex. I gotta reconnect at half duplex. Yeah, Josh  we should we should do like a, like a marketing, like, like a Youtube video, you know, like this little sketch or something of you trying to connect to your modem. Yeah, Ben  awesome. Josh  Yeah. So Ben  yeah, in fact, I used, I used to create this morning for doing an inbound hooks setting up. So we're working on the broadcast emails, that's the task, that's another task has been on our to do this for a long time. Uh I was working on that this morning and uh we use postmark for our email delivery and when one of the things uh they did recently a few months ago they had this new feature and their product called announced broadcasts, announcements, broadcast exactly what it's called. But basically before this feature, post Margaret, just about transactional email, like it could only send things that were triggered by a user, right? Like a password reset email or you know, in our case we send a lot of notifications for errors, you know, to individual users, Ben  but then they launched this new broadcast feature which allows you to use their infrastructure for, you know, kind of marketing, like emails like maybe announcements about your, you know, new products or your new features or maybe have new terms of service or whatever. So more and more of a broadcast email rather than an individual email. And uh one of the features that they have and the reason why I was using the web book is they can they have, we'll add an unsubscribe link for you at the bottom of the emails that go out. And so of course the person may click the unsubscribe if they don't want to hear from us anymore, which would be, you know, totes sad, but it happens Ben  and then it goes to postmark and then postmark records that unsubscribe intent and then sends it can optionally send a web hook to you. And so uh yeah, so I set up a cookery, they target for that postmark web hook so that even if our app goes down, which of course it never does, but if it did then we would have all those, you know, web hooks from postmark happily saved in Hungary. They uh getting along of it to see is nice. I wonder Josh  like the go ahead. Sorry, Starr  I was just going to say. So you can um the inbound web hooked payloads get saved and then you can just pull them down whatever you want. That's convenience. Like I want I want that inbound with a hook data, but I don't want to build a web hook right now, I don't want to build like something to like get that right now. I just want I just want to know that the data someplace and get it later. Josh  Yeah. Yeah. I wondered like the utility of that feature might be pretty, pretty huge depending on like what people are doing with web hooks these days, you know like I don't know like receiving, you know, recording payments or um activated subscriptions. Yeah, Ben  or you know if you're if you're building a feature that's gonna accept the web hook but you don't it is not launched yet or you don't know exactly what you're going to get because you know sometimes your provider might say, well this is what we're gonna send you but you actually really be sure. Right. So you can, you can set up the cookery. They link first start getting some real web hooks from them. See what they're like before. Well yeah actually we Josh  don't have an option. Yeah, we have an option to like to not just receive but not forward. Right. Right. Yeah. So he's a sort of as like a interim development. Starr  Can we have an option? Um do we have an option to receive and just immediately discard just for you know, just when you're just fed up with that website provider? Ben  Yes. I think we actually do have that. So we have like this. Yeah forget this. We have a disabled button so the link still works like I can still post to it but it won't, nothing will happen with the payload is just goes into it either devon all Josh  you can set up like that. The dumpster fire thing like like a base camp did well back where we, you know, we have someone just burn it for you. I mean it's probably like, it's like yeah environmentally responsible to Starr  like get sense to like it gets sent to a, did you see that star? We just take the exact yeah I didn't see it. No. Josh  Okay so it was pretty awesome. Like they yeah, I forget like what was the, what were the emails like it was, you would give you like they had an address that you could um, email at? Hey, right. Hey dot com. And like they had someone actually like with a printer set up in a webcam and everything. Like they were just like, like they would print out your email I think and like just burn it like in front of the camera or something like that, Wasn't it? Something like that. Yeah, Starr  That would be a weird job. Josh  Yeah. Well, it was, yeah, it was definitely start. Yeah. Ben  Yeah. We should definitely something that I don't know. Maybe every time you get a look at it, tickles a honey badger. I don't know. I can think of something. Starr  Yeah, that's an even weirder job. I don't think I want to do that. Good. Ben  Yeah. So I got, I got a tweet dM today um, from someone uh, asking about something from a previous founder quest episode in which we talked about. Yeah, it's pretty awesome. That was cool. So, you know, everyone's always welcome to do that because that's fun for us. The uh, the message was a question about, were we talked in the previous episode about the automation, the automated monitoring that I added for our sake too, compliance stuff. And the question was like, you know, did we go with a particular provider? And yes, yes, we did. We went withdraw to, so we looked at van to and looked at secure secure frame and we looked at Dorada and uh, they're, they're pretty comparable all three of them. But are we, it came down to, we really liked draw to just a bit more than secure frame, Ben  which would be perfectly fine solution I think to you, we almost went with him and then an advantage was kind of like in this kind of distant third like they're okay. But what I really like drought and secure frame. So I don't know why. I didn't say who he selected before but there it is in case anyone is curious and didn't feel like actually asking uh there you go, Starr  awesome. And remember the, the answer to the first security question is all of the above. Mhm. Oh my God, they're gonna drop us as a customer now. I just violated the terms of service haven't giving Josh  out the answers. Starr  Maybe it's none of the above. Hopefully they switch out the questions. Ben  Uh speaking of questions, we got a we got a vendor questionnaire, security questionnaire the other day and I was looking at the answer. I was going through and answering the questions and there was this whole section about card data. And I thought to myself, oh how quaint like back in the day when we had to actually worry about securely storing credit card data. You know, these days, you know, we use stripe and we don't care. We never touched a car or data. And so I was able to, you know, Mark in a to all those things. But I just, it's kind of a blast from the past to see questions about, you know, do you, do you ever send credit card details via email? No, no, we do not. Our whole Josh  payment system, man. Yeah. Starr  Business card data though. We just like have those in a box in the closet. Ben  Yeah, we secure this to our Starr  business cards. Josh  Well, they're apparently there are vendors that are still doing it that way. Yeah. Ben  Yeah. Which is kind of scary when you think about it. Starr  You know, it's funny like with the compliance, I've been um there's been a couple of times where um, well, I've got to explain my setup. So I've got a little office in my backyard. I'm the only one here. Um and there's been a couple of times where I'm about to like go into the house or whatever my computer's on and normally like I'm just going to leave it running and stuff. And then I was like, nope. I, and the compliance says I've got to lock it before I leave my office from which I uh and it's like, okay, it's like, should I leave the door open the office? No, I gotta lock it, compliance says I've got to have, you know, adequate physical security measures Josh  like you want, like one of the squirrels getting in there. Okay, finding it unlocked? Ben  Well, I appreciate your diligence star. That's, that's going above and beyond right there. Starr  Oh, thank you. Thank you. It's, it's ridiculous. But yeah. Ben  Well on that note, one of the things that has annoyed me about the compliance requirements is that they prefer that you have um your screen saver lock Within, you know, x minutes,  minutes or whatever it is. Right? And they actually check that we have an agent that runs on each computer to make sure that we actually have that enabled and I surveillance. I never had that enabled because you know, like you like who's who's here? Like it's just me, like I'm the only person here, right? But now I have to have this screen saver that locks and Starr  sometimes you want to read things so that takes a little while or like watch a video or something. Mhm. Ben  So, but you know, it serves the greater good. So Josh  I already had my screen saver set because I have perfect operational security. Starr  What's that outside that window, josh behind you? Is that Massad? I think it's Massad, Starr  but they can't get in. They can't get in. Okay. Good. Just banging against the door. Josh  I got the dog patrolling the perimeter right now. Josh  Yeah, well I learned to keep my screen lock at a small time window when I shared an office with my brother because we would like actually, I don't know, I don't know if you ever actually got me, I think I like one time I like installed a Cron job, like a random crime job on his computer that like remember that it played like uh like read out like a random random spot quote I think with, you know with the with the speech to text, text to speech thing in backup in Mac. Os. Yeah, I remember after that I was like he is going to retaliate and I need to, I need to like up my security game. So Starr  that would be one way to like um to harden an office. It's just like encouraged employees to prank one another. Josh  Well that's where I think it started. Like I think we're kind of like doing that a little bit and yeah, it is a I don't know if I should if it's recommended but it is hilarious. Ben  That sounds, that sounds perfect for like an internal security team at a large enterprise. Like they should give prizes for the best pranks, you know, that actually expose security weaknesses like that, you know because you know they do these things like they will send an email to everyone in the company and like click on this link and then someone does and they're like, oh gotcha, you weren't supposed to Starr  click on that. It's fishing Ben  and everyone's like, oh you suck. You know? But if they made a crowdsource it. Josh  Yeah, get everyone involved. Ben  Yeah, totally. Starr  It's like whoever the best rick roller is gets a bonus Josh  a hackathon where everyone's a target. Ben  Maybe maybe you have to maybe have to put some parameters around it like maybe it's only the week around april fool's right. And so you know, people can be on a higher guard. I don't know Starr  how it makes sense. Otherwise you'd have foster a climate of like continual mistrust. Yeah, it's like, just just see that important business document I sent you bob. It's like good try Jeff, try Ben  not falling for it. Starr  That's fallen for it. You got one of those word, macro viruses in there. I know it. Josh  Do you see like someone on twitter posted like this Apparently rick Astley got rick rolled on Reddit like a few years ago. Obviously that like you just Yeah, the person, the person that did it got like, I think like, like, like a century of Reddit gold or something like that. Like you just you just win the internet totally like Yeah, that's yeah, that is winning the internet right? Like that's the ultimate prize. Yeah. Starr  Are giant Zoomer fan bases. Like what? What's rick rolling? Mhm. Ben  Even my kids, You know what rick rolling is Oh, they do. Okay. Josh  It's just one of the ones that just never goes, Yeah. People are just never going to give up. Ben  It's going to persist through the generations of time until the sun has the heat death. Josh  That's that's that's heavy. Starr  Yeah, I guess it could be worse. It's not go to see Josh  Oh man. Yeah, Josh  that was, I don't know like there was like there's that thing goes around like always like, like date yourself by like the earliest mean, you remember or whatever and I think goats, he was one of the earlier once. I won't forget it. So Starr  there was a time before they called the means like maybe that, I don't know. Ben  Yes. Ben  Well do either of you have any last hurrahs for our lovely summer season before the weather turns cold and gray and rainy in any plans to do something fun? Don't Josh  know why we have kids in school now. And so our plans are to drive them back and forth Ben  repetitive lee. Starr  I'm just trying to survive. That's basically it and it's trying to get through, Josh  I mean, and get, yeah, we'll probably like, I've been like, the weather has been nicer outside lately. So I've been trying to enjoy the yard while I can because like, yeah, it's just the weird like pacific northwest thing now where like most of years rainy and what used to be the thing that made it worthwhile was the wonderful summers is now like half of the summer is also now cloud covered in smoke and, And like °. So, um, like right now everything is like picture perfect pacific northwest and I've been really enjoying that. Starr  Yeah, last in the past. It's pretty nice. I'm, I'm looking forward to the drizzle coming back because there's just too many people out on walks, you know, like I like, I like, I like to be solitary on my walks and these amateurs only come out when it's nice outside. Um you know, so yeah, I can't, I can't wait for a little bit of drizzle where I got my raincoat and I can go and you know, walk through my neighborhood and be alone Josh  is we are kind of at the point where like you start, you start to like, uh like not dread fall or so much. Like I'm kind of looking forward to it again and like, you know, seasons, seasons are nice, but then like you halfway halfway through the winter, I'll be like ready for summer and summer will be a long ways off. But I'm looking forward to fall right now. Ben  It's kind of kind of funny like there's definitely this uh there's a sense of angst when there is too much, when there's too much sun for too long. You know, when people like, I, I need I need some grey, I need some rain and then, and then the grain grey comes and the rain comes and you can just feel this, this uh you know, things are back to, back to where it should be. You know, it's just kind of fun and of course, yeah, february comes around like, oh, it's a son, Josh  you know, and see, I just want, I just want all of this on like a light switch, so I can just change it depending on the mood that I'm in. Um Ben  you know, Yeah, we really need some weather management technology. Starr  Uh We just need to get in with the movers and shakers that control the weather. Josh  Yeah, I think, I think it's the folks over at DARPA from what, from what I hear from the internet, you know, Ben  or you just, you know, take a vacation. I mean the old fashioned way you just go to some place, warm Josh  vacations, Starr  vacations, That's Josh  so that's so pre that's so pre . We we stay in one place and control the weather now. Yeah. Mhm. Ben  Yeah. It sounds like a lot more fun actually Josh  and it does. Josh  Yeah. Well I don't know, I've done stuff this week but I don't remember. Me neither and what not. So Starr  yeah, sure you make this a short one. I guess we should. Okay, well you have always been. Sorry, let me do that again. Um You have just now, just in this very moment finished listening to found request. If you want to right to serve you go do that. Um If you're interested in writing for us, you know, check out our blog honey badger dot I.  slash blog and look for the writers page. Well the right for us link I mean and just yeah, stay safe and we will catch you next week. Ben  Have a good one. Thank you