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Software

Gigster Wants To Be the Uber of Software Development (techcrunch.com) 181

HughPickens.com writes: Josh Constine writes at TechCrunch that a company named Gigster is trying to bring the Uber business model to software development. Simply: a user sends them an idea, Gigster passes it on to developers who sign up to build software, and when it's done they send back a functioning app. After converting product requirements into a development plan, they let their group of remote developers start hacking away at the code. It has already resulted in a dating app for Muslim millennials, a way for citizens of the developing world to buy electricity, and has over fifty more projects in the pipeline. The entire development process goes through their app, and they charge a flat fee rather than an hourly rate. Gigster developers who satisfy customers can earn karma points and qualify for higher-paying contracts. One major caveat: Gigster will still own the code to the app it designs for you, and it "leases" the software to you. They say they want to be able to reuse certain components on other projects.
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Gigster Wants To Be the Uber of Software Development

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  • by FunkSoulBrother ( 140893 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @12:42PM (#51100679)

    I guess they won't be paying benefits to their obvious employees then.

    • by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @12:58PM (#51100793) Homepage

      This is the new trend ... piece work, with no employment, benefits, or stability.

      This "sharing economy" bullshit is about letting the company who goes IPO to make money, while relying on a bunch of people they treat as disposable do the work for them.

      So, yeah, you're not an employee in this scenario, and you never will be. And meanwhile some asshole of a CEO makes millions of dollars for exploiting you.

      Doesn't sound like a fair deal to me. Not sure why everyone is so keen to participate in stuff like this.

      • by creimer ( 824291 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:13PM (#51100879) Homepage

        Doesn't sound like a fair deal to me. Not sure why everyone is so keen to participate in stuff like this.

        How is this any different from working at any other company? If you're an employee, you get laid off when the owner sells the business and retires with a boatload of cash. Or, in my case in 2013, I was laid off and out of work for eight months because the Fortune 500 company had a lousy fiscal year and the CEO got a 60% raise to buy a new yacht. Here's the secret of the new economy: you want to be an owner, not an employee.

        • by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:24PM (#51100945) Homepage

          Here's the secret of the new economy: you want to be an owner, not an employee.

          Oddly enough, both Adam Smith and Karl Marx sorted that fact out a long time ago.

          Doesn't mean you need to participate in the race to the bottom so some asshole of a CEO can cash out.

          I look at this entire "sharing economy" as people getting screwed over for chump change to make someone else rich.

          Fuck that.

          This is just taking every advance we made in employment over the last century or so and tossing it out and saying that it's so damned important that some douchebag profit we should all be willing to sacrifice ourselves to that end.

          Again, fuck that.

          • You're just bitching and griping and still not offering any better alternative. The OP already pointed out how the status quo isn't really any better.

            • by Gr8Apes ( 679165 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @02:01PM (#51101169)
              Not really, current employment has some benefits. A gig economy only works if the gigs pay enough to cover your long term. I doubt anything on gigster is going to pay that well. At best, you'll be getting $2/hr or something like that, by the time all is said and done. I really love the clause on gigster retaining code ownership. That just means you're a short term hack for gigster. Wouldn't surprise me if gigster also hides who you are, so there's 0 benefit to doing anything for them unless you're already in a hopeless situation.
            • by rockmuelle ( 575982 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @02:07PM (#51101197)

              Um, the OP is wrong about the status quo? Look, most good devs I know with 5+ years experience make in the mid $100k range, have great benefits, and can find a new job on a moment's notice. If they consult, they do it because they can have a nice rate that gives them flexibility in other areas of their life. Most non-devs I know would love to make half what the devs make and have that type of job security. (and I'm not located in CA, NY, WA, or MA)

              Also, most startup CEOs don't make millions. Most are looking for new jobs after a few years of making nothing. As for non-startup SMEs (small/medium enterprises), most of the ones that employee technical talent treat that talent well. Sure, if things go south, they may have to lay people off, but see my first paragraph for the solution.

              Remind me what's wrong with the status quo???

              tl;dr; developers have it really good right now. Quit your bitching.

              -Chris

              • by KGIII ( 973947 ) <uninvolved@outlook.com> on Friday December 11, 2015 @02:45PM (#51101437) Journal

                It's a frequent trait that people have where they see themselves as underprivileged and the fault being because of the more wealthy. What they don't seem to realize is that they are that person to someone else. I don't think this is a recent development. I do think we communicate more. I also think it's the people who complain that speak the most.

                The thing is, Grishnakh is usually more sane and logical. :/ It is understandable, it is Friday and the holiday is fast approaching. Really, I am pretty sure that the vast majority of us on Slashdot have far better lives than the average person could ever hope for. Considering that we've power to run computers that we own and time to post on Slashdot, it's quite likely. We've probably even got food and safe shelter.

                • by Anonymous Coward

                  >> the vast majority of us on Slashdot have far better lives than the average person could ever hope for

                  Which is exactly why we should shut down bs like 'uber of software development' when we see it coming our way

                  The bean counters have been working to marginalize us for the last couple decades and will continue to, to them we are a commodity that can be reduced like any cost

          • Just sign up for some of the 1099 jobs that should be W2 don't put on the unforims and when they ask where is your unforim? say where is my W2? and cash to cover my expenses that pull me under mini wage? Lot of the time with the 1099 stuff you can be on the clock under the law but not really in the app system.

          • by BenBoy ( 615230 )
            You're certainly right about these not being new ideas

            Alienation: (in Marxist theory) a condition of workers in a capitalist economy, resulting from a lack of identity with the products of their labor and a sense of being controlled or exploited.

            You're going to be lucky to get what you pay for, developing this way. Most likely you'll get worse.

          • And what are you doing? Not playing the game? Then, somebody else will do, and you will get no job at all.

            The impressive paradox of the sharing economy is closely related to game theory. It takes only one guy to accept the concept to make it inevitable to everybody else. If you're the only one guy to participate, it's not at all a race to the bottom, it's a jackpot. However, if we're all doing that, then it's clearly a race to the bottom (not only for those who do, but for the others too because of the comp

      • by TsuruchiBrian ( 2731979 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @02:06PM (#51101191)

        Whether a company is exploiting you has nothing to do with whether they offer benefits or stability. A company is exploiting you if they are under compensating you for your labor and skill.

        I can't even hire a nanny without becoming an employer who provides benefits like paid time off and payroll taxes, etc. I am not an employer, I don;t want to do any of that shit. I just want to pay for someone to watch my kid while I am working.

        Whether I am working as a contractor or as an employee, it is my responsibility to ensure that I am being properly compensated, and if not, asking for a raise or finding a new job.

        Doesn't sound like a fair deal to me.

        Then don't participate.

        Not sure why everyone is so keen to participate in stuff like this.

        Me neither, but that's for them to decide.

        The interesting thing about software development is that good software developers can write good code in less time than a bad developer can write bad code.

        A job that pays per project rather than hourly might be horribly exploitative for a bad software developer who needs to spend a month completing a project and another 2 months trying to fix all the bugs, and it might be very lucrative for a good software developer who only needs to spend 2 days doing it correctly.

        • by TWX ( 665546 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @03:10PM (#51101619)

          I can't even hire a nanny without becoming an employer who provides benefits like paid time off and payroll taxes, etc. I am not an employer, I don;t want to do any of that shit.

          The solution is to contact a service company that does those tasks, and you pay the company for the privilege of doing those necessary business functions for you plus their profit, plus the funds that ultimately become the wages and benefits for the worker.

          The real solution is to decouple healthcare from employment though. Make healthcare a function of a single-payer system and suddenly both the employer and the employee are much freer. A person hiring a nanny or au pair or other full-time care individual doesn't have to deal with the constantly-shifting nature of medical insurance coverage and only has to worry about following a prewritten withholdings plan that their accountant can figure out in a few minutes, and the individual employed isn't damn-near indentured to the employer just to keep the prescriptions coming.

          Yes, it requires more taxes to be paid than are being paid now. But, it probably reduces the total cost compared to the insurance situation now because a lot of the massive, parasitic bureaucracy operated by both the medical companies and the medical insurance companies can be simplified. Sure, those whose jobs to push paperwork for claims will probably have to find other lines of work, but this isn't the first time that a middleman position has been eliminated and it won't be the last.

          I suspect that in the case of entites like the one discussed in the article, they appeal to entry-level programmers that don't have a lot of experience to use to get hired, and who are still nominally dependent on their parents and haven't really ventured out on their own yet. They can afford to be intermittendly unemployed and they might still receive benefits through other means. That's a luxury that most of us don't have.

          • The real solution is to decouple healthcare from employment though. Make healthcare a function of a single-payer system and suddenly both the employer and the employee are much freer.

            Absolutely. This also removes much of the disincentives for hiring older people or people with medical problems.

            I suspect that in the case of entites like the one discussed in the article, they appeal to entry-level programmers that don't have a lot of experience to use to get hired, and who are still nominally dependent on their parents and haven't really ventured out on their own yet. They can afford to be intermittendly unemployed and they might still receive benefits through other means. That's a luxury that most of us don't have.

            I suspect that this is largely true, but low skill (e.g. entry level, or just bad) programmers are probably going to have a much harder time making a living doing this kind of work than an experienced programmer, given that they are paid by the project rather than hourly. I imagine the stress of finishing projects fast enough to earn a decent living would be a pretty inhospitable environment for

            • by TWX ( 665546 )

              I suspect that this is largely true, but low skill (e.g. entry level, or just bad) programmers are probably going to have a much harder time making a living doing this kind of work than an experienced programmer, given that they are paid by the project rather than hourly. I imagine the stress of finishing projects fast enough to earn a decent living would be a pretty inhospitable environment for those programmers. If it's possible to make a decent living for low skilled programmers, then it would also be possible for a high skilled programmer to make a fortune.

              It depends on the customer really. One thing that I've learned through the years doing technical services is that companies that charge the least get the worst and least-educated customers. The business can possibly make a profit if overhead is kept down and if volume is kept up, but it's very hard on the end-worker at times when they're getting crapped on from both the boss and from the customer. On the other hand, an ignorant customer can be strung-along for a lot longer than an educated customer and i

              • What I am saying is that even if a bad developer and a good developer are charging the same price to finish a project, the good developer will probably make more money over time because he/she will finish the project in less time, and generate better code.

                A good developer could probably make more money than a bad developer even if they are charging a fraction of the price to finish projects.

                If a customer was paying per hour, they might have to make this calculation of paying a higher $/hour but maybe finish

        • Doesn't sound like a fair deal to me.

          Then don't participate.

          The point is that once the "gig economy" takes over you won't have any choice about participating.

          Your comment is about as useful as saying to a child chimney sweep in the 1850s that they are perfectly free to start their own business instead.

          • The point is that once the "gig economy" takes over you won't have any choice about participating.

            Obviously *if* the "gig economy" takes over *all* the jobs, then you won't have any choice but to have a gig economy job. In every other scenario, you will have a choice. You might as well say, if hoverboards take over transportation, you will not have any choice but to use hoverboards. I reject the premise that the "gig economy" will be so dominant as to eliminate all other modes of employment.

            Your comment is about as useful as saying to a child chimney sweep in the 1850s that they are perfectly free to start their own business instead.

            If you were really going to use this analogy properly to try to characterize my position, it would be "Your com

      • by MBGMorden ( 803437 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @02:24PM (#51101323)

        As a primary job it is indeed pretty bleak. Depending on pay level though I could see it as a pretty decent second job to pad income. I've already got stability and health insurance and the like through my main job. If however, I could take on some projects on something like this on the side I could potentially save up a better down payment on my next car, or pay down my mortgage a bit, etc.

        • As a primary job it is indeed pretty bleak. Depending on pay level though I could see it as a pretty decent second job to pad income. I've already got stability and health insurance and the like through my main job. If however, I could take on some projects on something like this on the side I could potentially save up a better down payment on my next car, or pay down my mortgage a bit, etc.

          If you can afford the time and effort to do a second job, your primary job must be pretty low level.

          Either that or you're a failed human being with no interests outside earning money.

      • It is their choice whether or not to participate. If a programmer does not want to work under this model, he or she is free to develop under a model that suits their preference. No one is holding a gun to any programmer's head and demanding that they must participate in this program.

        You do have the right to say no.

        • It is their choice whether or not to participate. If a programmer does not want to work under this model, he or she is free to develop under a model that suits their preference. No one is holding a gun to any programmer's head and demanding that they must participate in this program.

          You do have the right to say no.

          Yes, you do at the moment.

    • by ranton ( 36917 )

      Many contractors do not get paid benefits. They simply add around 30% to their rate to factor in those benefits.

      The real question is what kind of rates can developers, designers, and project managers make with Gigster. If they are in the $75-$150 range for developers they could provide a very useful service for both highly-skilled contractors and companies wanting a quality product. If they are offering more like $50 or less then its just another company trying to exploit low wage labor to produce cookie-cu

      • by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:13PM (#51100875) Homepage

        then its just another company trying to exploit low wage labor to produce cookie-cutter products on the cheap

        Go with that one.

        That's the entire business model ... get rich by letting some schmuck compete to do the job as cheaply as possible. If you're really lucky, you go IPO and cash out.

        The people who do the work? They collect a little table scraps and hope it gets better.

        • Yeah, it sounds like it's basically competition for rentacoder or something like that, but Gigster just has more involvement in the process and probably coordinates putting together a team a little better. In the end, it's really just about getting a bunch of Indian coders to work dirt-cheap on projects for westerners.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            Yeah I don't get it.

            These guys would have to be some serious rockstars of design and project management to make this fly for * use cases and * talent pools. I think it is more likely that they just think they are, and that they are in for a world of pain. I find it unlikely that a developer with serious chops and flexible skills will want to participate in this scheme instead of the good job/contract they probably already have working on something long term and of greater weight/interest. Likewise I find

      • I hope that's per week and not per month!

      • by creimer ( 824291 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @02:07PM (#51101201) Homepage

        Many contractors do not get paid benefits.

        As a W2 contractor doing I.T. support work, I get paid holidays, 20 Paid Time Off (PTO) days , 401k and health benefits. According to recruiters who contacted me, I could get matching benefits and a 30% increase in pay at a different job. Ironically, the increase in pay rate is because many hipsters are unwilling to commute more than 30 minutes away from San Francisco. Southern Silicon Valley (i.e., San Jose and Sunnyvale) are starving for workers.

        • Not to worry. The problem is being solved by Gigster. Soon you'll be working for a couple of bucks an hour, you know, because "sharing".

          • by creimer ( 824291 )
            I'm not worrying. My job requires a security clearance, which isn't "sharable" for a few bucks an hour.
        • by KGIII ( 973947 ) <uninvolved@outlook.com> on Friday December 11, 2015 @03:05PM (#51101577) Journal

          That's a long ways away on a fixie.

          That said, I have a novella for this! ;-) I'll skip it but someone needs to do the opposite of this. I've talked it over with a few people and I think it'd be brilliant. Imagine, if you will, something called Graybeards Incorporated where basically the employees were all freelance workers, perhaps contractors for longer terms, where you do just the difficult things - where you go in and debug old COBOL that's not been touched or documented in ten years and now has failed and nobody knows why. Except, instead of paying the least, you own the skills and you make the company pay more than fairly because you're saving their asses.

          However, the Graybeards would need to be at the top of their game - the best of the best and recognized as such by their peers. They cost a lot and get to put stuff into their contracts like being allowed to wear a cape and mask or even wear their underwear on the outside of their pants if they so want. Like Geek Squad but with actual geeks that know what the hell they're doing and are willing to travel the globe - if the price is right and they can sleep in the executive lounge. However, the Graybeards would have to be not just good but exceptionally skilled.

          I actually gave it some consideration. I'm kind of willing to throw a dollar or two at the idea but I have way too much on my plate this coming year. I was thinking along the lines of funding it, getting it started, and then having it as some sort of co-op where my stake can be bought out. With, of course, my taking a reasonable interest on my loan. I'm not that altruistic. ;-)

          Seriously, someone should do this for you guys that are getting old. Instead of being subjected to ageist prejudices, capitalize on those old things that still require repair and crisis work. The guys who can walk in, view the layout, and see where the security problem is and then fix it... The guys who can, and will, sit in the back room in a bank basement to pour over (or convert) COBOL. The guys that still remember that FORTRAN was good... Those sorts of people but not people looking for employment so much as people looking to get paid because they're gods among mortals and know it.

          Ah well... That's the non-novella version.

    • by Junta ( 36770 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:04PM (#51100831)

      Well, yes, that's the deal pretty plainly spelled out.

      Traditionally you trade in the potential for big upside for consistency of a paycheck. Or you surrender the consistency for a chance to control your destiny and maybe make some surprisingly big bucks because you get to keep ownership of it.

      Here the company sees it being 'cool' to surrender the consistency of a paycheck, but still completely surrender ownership and control of your work, and they are understandably exploiting that for all it's worth. Hopefully it blows up in their faces rather than establishing a new normal.

      • Overall I like the "gig economy" idea, where you can do jobs more freely when you choose to, without being tied down. It's like good parts of being a contractor, but without some of the negatives (of needing to find customers, difficult paperwork, etc). Of course, not all places like Uber reach that ideal.

        The major negative is that you need to be paid enough extra to cover normal expenses, like healthcare and 401k matching that you would normally get in a job. If they aren't paying extra, it's not worth i
        • by Junta ( 36770 )

          I see the potential for freelancing, but not liking the terms of engagement here. If I wanted to freelance, I'd not want to give up everything to a company as if I were an employee. As it stands there are plenty of places that will find clients, do the paperwork, and give me a good steady wage for doing so. Now if they compensated well per job, that could be nice, but somehow I doubt they'd be able to do that and yet be competitive with the market.

        • by KGIII ( 973947 )

          I see a few downsides but I've been predicting this for years. It's even turning out a lot like I've expected it to. Well, in part... I guess I should have expected this.

          See, I do have one complaint that I think we'll see here like we've seen with Uber. The people who go into this, knowing what it is, will get in and start doing this (knowing full well what the deal is) and then sue to be treated as employees. It's not that I have a problem with labor laws nor do I think we should mistreat employees or cont

      • That doesn't actually seem to be what's happening here, though. Maybe eventually.
        Look at their website, and you won't see a place to sign up as a freelance developer. All their marketing is aimed at getting projects. It seems like they have a bunch of developers internally who are normal employees, building up apps and stuff.
  • Get away with breaking the law for extended periods, become vastly overhyped by the media without adding anything of value for anyone?

    • This isn't really like Uber or anything like that, because I don't see how Gigster would be violating the law. You're probably thinking of employment law, but your mistake is thinking that US employment law applies in India. It doesn't.

  • lol, ok (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    It's not like "take me from A to B", where the only room for interpretation is the route. In the end, you're still at B.

    Anyone who has ever written a spec and handed it off will tell you what you get back is not what you asked for, regardless of how detailed it is. Just giving someone an idea to code will result in something unrecognizable.

    I'm all for these APIs that sit on top of people like drivers and housekeepers, but this one is a shit idea and everyone involved should know that.

    • Just giving someone an idea to code will result in something unrecognizable.

      Of course, but if the "idea" part includes the use case, the result could be better than what they asked for.

  • Requirements (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Capt.Albatross ( 1301561 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @12:54PM (#51100761)

    Previous schemes like this have run into problems getting the requirements straight, and with estimating. Don't tell me that in the agile world, these things don't matter: they matter in the real world, where your customers live.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:02PM (#51100815)

      But this isn't in your antiquated "real world", old man. This is in the CLOUD.

      • by KGIII ( 973947 )

        That brings new meaning to, "Old man yells at clouds." He was probably yelling 'cause they took his job!

        • He was yelling because he didn't save for a rainy day.

          Don't worry, there is room in the future for old men yelling at clouds. http://everyoneishereinthefutu... [everyoneis...future.com] (medical warning: flashing lights) AmishGuy2006 is about ten minutes in. He definitely isn't liking the cloud.

    • Re:Requirements (Score:5, Informative)

      by blankinthefill ( 665181 ) <blachancNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:23PM (#51100937) Journal

      I would argue that in the agile world, it matters just as much if not more, especially with their desire to charge a flat fee. From the article: " A sales engineer discusses proposals with clients, and using the AI engine, comes back with a price quote and production schedule in about 10 minutes. Then Gigster manages the entire development process through delivery of the fully-functional app." This implies to me that they are coming up with this fee and the full schedule at the start, from someone who isn't going to be that closely invested in the actual development of the app (and who likely is going to miss a LOT of what's going to go in that development. I know some very good sales engineers, but they are almost all behind the development curve just due to the fact that they don't DO development regularly, if at all.) That's not agile. That's the antithesis of agile. The entire point of agile is that you can't know right from the start how exactly a project is going to turn out, and what kinds of roadblocks you'll encounter. And especially with the development of original apps, unexpected events are going to crop up. The agile method is built to zero in on requirements during the process of development, and to actually allow an estimate to be just that, an estimate of time and cost. And yes yes, I know that agile can't be completely open ended, but the entire point is to be flexible in your development so you can easily adjust when problems arise, which, again, is NOT what this company seems to be doing. This company is not doing that at all, they're like the epitome of waterfall style development. Which means they have to be nearly perfect at requirements and estimating, which is nearly impossible. And I think you're right that it will almost certainly come back and bite them in the ass. (And that's ignoring the bullshit sharing economy/labor issues involved.)

      • From the article: " A sales engineer discusses proposals with clients, and using the AI engine, comes back with a price quote and production schedule in about 10 minutes. Then Gigster manages the entire development process through delivery of the fully-functional app." This implies to me that they are coming up with this fee and the full schedule at the start,

        You can see a price list here [gigster.com] (scroll down). From the looks of it, the way they manage risk is by vastly overcharging for the work, and then in most cases they'll be able to make a profit.

    • Even if they (somehow) get the requirements exactly right, when was the last time you made a software product that didn't need constant maintenance and improvement? Giving up ownership of the code is going to seriously hamper you.
    • by Tablizer ( 95088 )

      Previous schemes like this have run into problems getting the requirements straight...

      In general, if coordinating domain issues (business requirements) are not the bottleneck, then something is wrong.

      In the desktop days, typical in-house or custom CRUD software was relatively easy to make such that knowing and working with the domain was the bottleneck, like it should be, not the technical details.

      However, the web stack came along and complicated CRUD UI's, making it an arcane labor-intensive art with too m

      • Otherwise, you dump the analyst problem onto end-users, who are then constantly in contact with the contractor trying to tune the software via trial and error.

        I thought that's what all this agile shit was about?

  • by Anonymous Coward

    This is why it wont be successful.

    • by ranton ( 36917 )

      "Leasing" the software out?

      This is why it wont be successful.

      They didn't mention what kind of terms are given. The lease could give unlimited rights to use, modify, and distribute the code. Gigster would still retain the ability to re-use code even if they gave these terms to the client. It doesn't have to work like leasing a car where there are monthly payments and a limited term length.

      • by Lab Rat Jason ( 2495638 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:13PM (#51100881)

        The issue I see with this isn't actually the lease stuff, that seems pretty straightforward. The problem at hand is managing the rats-nest of code produced by doing several hundred projects. Who is going to have enough knowledge of each project to know where the assets are and what they can be used for... they're trying to gain efficiency through re-use, but there's no way you can maintain that control... you're going to give access to all of these apps and ideas to every developer in your network? They'll use that info to obtain zero day exploits to the apps that have been built, and attempt to inject their own backdoors into apps. No thank you!

  • Puper wants to be the Uber of your bowel movements.

    Use the app to send in your request for texture, color, and any add-ons (corn being a favorite). Puper will show up to your door with your "delivery"!

  • I can just see some non-technical IT manager in your average in-house IT department looking at this as a replacement for "expensive" developers. "Hey, look, I can get a bunch of kids and desperate age-discriminated developers to do your job for half the price!" In that way, it is the Uber of coding -- driving out any way to make a living from low-end work.

    People like to point to the recent $15/hr minimum wage debate and laugh, but I'm not surprised it's coming up. If average people who would otherwise have

    • by creimer ( 824291 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:22PM (#51100933) Homepage

      If average people who would otherwise have a decent corporate job with a good salary and benefits have to resort to hustling for work, a fast food job might be a better option.

      Written by someone who never tried to look for a fast food job after being out of work from a technical job. When I was unemployed for two years (2009-10), I couldn't get a minimum wage job because managers would say I was overqualified and leave for a better job when the economy improves. Besides, they got all these teenagers and illegals looking for minimum wage jobs. I spent two years working two technical jobs for seven days a week to get back on my feet.

    • I can just see some non-technical IT manager in your average in-house IT department looking at this as a replacement for "expensive" developers. "Hey, look, I can get a bunch of kids and desperate age-discriminated developers to do your job for half the price!" In that way, it is the Uber of coding -- driving out any way to make a living from low-end work.

      Any manager with that mentality already outsourced a decade ago.

      And many of them have gone out of business by now.

      Even before outsourcing was the big thing I worked at a company that considered IT staff as a "necessary evil" that cost money but provided no benefit to the company. Our department got a lecture about how we were all overpayed since we were 10% of the employees, but made 40% of the salaries. "Uhh, yeah boss, that is because our jobs require a college degree, while a good portion of the company

  • In the 1st decade of the 2000s, everything had to begin with the letter "i"(and it had to be a lowercase "i") if it was technology and needed to be conceived as cool. Now, apparently, it's ending the name with the letter "r", even if it makes absolutely no sense. Apparently even apps with an Arabic name (Ishq or "love") has to end with an "r". I wonder when Dice will latch on to this fad and rename Slashdot to Slshr?
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Appers won't app as they did before. Now there's an app to let appers app by a tenth of the price. Appers goona love this app.

      Apps!

  • by Gravis Zero ( 934156 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:14PM (#51100891)

    Sure, I'll write you a great app for that below insultingly amount of money. I pinky swear it won't have any backdoors.

  • Uber works (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:20PM (#51100915)

    Uber works because the requirements are clear: drive someone from point A to B.
    AirBnB works because the requirements are clear: rent a place to stay

    This isn't the same. Software requirements are different every time and aren't 100% defined.

    • Uber works because the requirements are clear: drive someone from point A to B. AirBnB works because the requirements are clear: rent a place to stay

      This isn't the same. Software requirements are different every time and aren't 100% defined.

      Precisely this.

      Real programmers and business analysts find requirements and estimating hard. These guys will get it right - really super right, they'd have to - in 10 minutes? Because apps and AI?

  • by Ralph Barbagallo ( 2881145 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:27PM (#51100969) Homepage
    Every time someone says to me, "You make apps?? I have this idea..." I'll just refer them to this site whether it's good or not. I just need an effective way to shut down these conversations immediately.
  • by coop247 ( 974899 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:31PM (#51100991)
    Their highlighted case studies (https://gigster.com/success-stories) are quite funny. One of them is a "site down" page. The financial planning one breaks the second you change a value. The others are Twitter Bootstrap sites with minor modifications. Success!
  • Already exists (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jandrese ( 485 ) <kensama@vt.edu> on Friday December 11, 2015 @01:33PM (#51101005) Homepage Journal
    There are already several websites that claim to hook up developers with people who have small problems. They all suffer from the same problem: They're full of "idea men" who have no idea how much labor costs and shitty developers who don't give a crap about the work. You'll see jobs like "develop the database backend and website for a 500 million user website on this idea so clever I can't put it in the description or someone will steal it. Budget: $150."

    And then endless complaints from employers that the code delivered was shoddy and barely met the (horribly under-specified) requirements and they couldn't use it.
    • Who the hell is going to derive any value from this scheme for their company? You can't build core competencies around ongoing development with a la carte development unless your product is just that cookie cutter simple, in which case you're probably already too late to the game.

      It's crap like this that to me sounds like the beginning of the end for Dotcom bubble 2.0. People think that outsourcing grunt work is some new thing and that it will solve all problems.
  • "Gigster charges a flat fee, which the company is getting better at determining, so there is no incentive for developers to work more hours and run up charges"

    I do not think their definition of software development matches what we do for a living. Seems to me the time spent matches the difficulty of the problem, not the greed of the developer. Unless, of course, you're reinventing code you already invented, in which case you can "estimate" precisely...

    "It converts a client’s product proposal into

  • by tekrat ( 242117 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @02:01PM (#51101165) Homepage Journal

    Simply call it "body sharing" or "body gigs" so you can skirt prostitution laws. Make an app where you rent out your sexual favors. After all, if Uber can ignore Taxi laws, escorts should be able to do the same.

    But what they need is an app -- hmmm. Maybe these guys can make that app for me, and I'll start a business worth 40 billion like Uber.

  • by fahrbot-bot ( 874524 ) on Friday December 11, 2015 @02:52PM (#51101477)
    ... Guber - 'cause they think we're all chumps.
  • Gigster will still own the code to the app it designs for you, and it "leases" the software to you

    No, thank you.

  • The next time some jackass (I mean, "non-technical co-founder") asks if you can build his facebook clone (for free, of course), you can 302 him gigster.
  • Presumably if they "still own the code" you get no source for the product you paid for. No thanks: been burned this way before with commercial software. Ended up having to re-build and re-engineer the shit I paid for in order to get something that doesn't suck.
  • ... you really suck at being a developer.

  • These assholes aren't even trying to hide the fact that they are trying blatantly ripping people off. I guess they're betting on people being both desperate and stupid.

    Seriously, just write your own software. Pick something you like and write it. If it's good enough, try to sell or at the very least demo it at job interviews. You will be much better off.

  • I, unfortunately, work for a company that is broad driven, feed by info from mangers who know little.
    If the statement "X company makes apps for mobiles" gets thrown in at some meeting or after-fives, suddenly this gets the managers attention who pass this to the board who approve funding.
    "Makes app" is interpreted as the magically know our companies processes, requirements etc. And ensuing software must be but a few weeks away.
    So I can see this "Uber of apps" thing hooking some fish on their long line
  • Didn't this used to be known as Open Source ..

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