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What Programming Language Should I Use to Build a Startup?

Often entrepreneurs ask me 'What technology should I build my startup on?' There is no right or wrong answer to this question. It's a decision every company makes for itself, depending on what it's trying to build and the skills of its cofounders. Nonetheless, there are a few rules that one should adhere to. We discuss them in this blog post.

Incident Response Policy

What happens in your company when a production incident occurs? Usually in a typical startup, you will see engineers running around frantically trying to resolve the problem. However, as soon as the incident is resolved, they forget about it and go back to their usual business. A good incident response policy can help bring order into chaos. We provide a sample template in this blog post.

Why Software Deadlines Never Make Sense

We discuss why software deadlines usually don't make sense.

Analyzing Front-End Performance With Just a Browser

We discuss a number of freely available online tools which can be used to analyze bottlenecks in your website.

Why Smaller Businesses Can't Ignore Security and How They Can Achieve It On a Budget

In this article, we show that security is both important and achievable for smaller companies without breaking a bank.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Joel Test for Cinchcast

Here are the results of the Joel Test for Cinchcast (blogtalkradio).
If you are a stronger developer, then we're looking to hire at all levels.
http://cinchcast.com/about/join-the-team
You can also email me directly at alex@cinchcast.com

The Joel Test

Do you use source control? > Yes, SVN
Can you make a build in one step? > Yes, we use NANT scripts to do so.
Do you make daily builds? > Yes, Jenkins.
Do you have a bug database? > JIRA.
Do you fix bugs before writing new code? > Yes.
Do you have an up-to-date schedule? > Yes. Scrum for sprint planning which ties into higher-level project deadlines.
Do you have a spec? > Yes, we do for large features.
Do programmers have quiet working conditions? > Yes.
Do you use the best tools money can buy? > Absolutely.
Do you have testers? > Yes, outsourced QA team of 2.
Do new candidates write code during their interview? > Yes. Brush up on your data structures.
Do you do hallway usability testing? > Yes.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Why Smaller Businesses Can’t Ignore Security And How They Can Achieve It On a Budget

Why Smaller Businesses Can’t Ignore Security And How They Can Achieve It On a Budget
Thursday, October 6, 2011 // Cinchcast Blog

In the back of the Pizza Schmizza restaurant in Vancouver, Washington sat humming an old computer. An unwitting customer would walk into the restaurant to order a slice of pizza, and the next day his credit card number will go on sale at a hacker’s forum. A few years and millions of dollars later, the FBI learned the root cause of the breach: The computer was running old unpatched software, which made it remotely accessible without a password by a hacker Max Butler (aka “IceMan”) (as detailed in Kevin Poulsen’s book “The Kingpin”).

This story is not unique. We often hear of security compromises of large companies such as Sony or TJX in the news, but we don’t hear about daily compromises of thousands of small to mid-sized businesses. One of the reasons is that many of those businesses, such as startups, motels, mom and-pop shops, pizza shops, never find out that they were compromised in the first place. Another reason is that disclosing these compromises can often be catastrophic for their survival. According to a study from Price Waterhouse Coopers, 70 percent of smaller companies that get hacked go out of business within a year.

Smaller businesses often have no security personnel on staff. They prefer baking pizza or building a UI prototype for investors rather than fixing security holes. They think that they are too small to get hacked and that they have nothing to lose or that security is a distraction, which is too time-consuming and too costly. Others argue that their biggest security risk is “running out of money.”

In this show, we dispel these misconceptions. We show that security is both important and achievable for smaller companies without breaking a bank.

If you want to find out how, visit the Cinchcast blog: right here

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Ikea interview