Not your average Geek-developer;
Goblinfactory, Alan's company, is a small, lean software consultancy, who work with some great clients on some incredible SaaS projects.
Developer Events - CAMDUG
Snowcode & snowmeetup
Passionate about coding and snow, Alan sponsors and runs snowcode - (as far as we know) the only free developer conference in the world, held every year at a great ski resort...w00t!
Getting away to code
We work hard to provide a balance of onsite and remote working, which gives us time to get away without distractions when needed, checking in daily for the team standups.
Working from our base in Cambridge, only 20 minutes from Stansted airport gives us easy affordable access to Europe, perfect for anything from a few days to a week or more of high quality code retreating, coming back inspired, new features completed and with batteries recharged.
We're not strict TDD developers, i.e. don't demand 100% test coverage, but do follow BDD (Behavior driven development) best practices, where all our requirements are expressed as executable tests written in "Given When Then" Gherkin syntax. We are agile (small 'a') and use visual KanBan boards wherever possible. Goblinfactory currently scores 12/12 for the Joel test. We have a reliable CI process, do pair programming when needed, pairing to review code or when spiking to encourage knowledge transfer. We provide quiet working conditions, occasionally working a few weeks in the mountains as a whole team during winter and summer.
Part time consulting for startups at affordable rates;
Alan is a specialist in full lifecycle green or brownfield projects from prototype through to high volume scalable solutions. Flexible rates.
Assist with recruitment, agile processes, hands on coding, team mentoring (agile best practices), prototyping, project cost and duration estimating, spike projects (very low cost proof of concepts), server management, and of course traditional project management (Scrum, Agile and Kanban). We don't stand on ceremony, are pragmatic and (JFDI) "get the job done" guys.
Contracts starting from as little as 4 hours a week. Joint ventures (partnerships) and angel investments available for certain project types.
Alan works for exciting startups wanting to keep a cap on their burn rate prior to exit or sale. He has helped clients put in place and improve technical competence without the client requiring the sacrifice of equity and/or cash that a permanent experienced CTO would typically require, thus simplifying exit sale negotiations or simplifying building a team during early stage organic growth.
Already outsourcing overseas? (Outsource team technical due diligence)
If you are a non technical entrepreneur and have all your source code and intellectual property living with an outsouce team in another country, are you aware of all the risks, and do you have appropriate contingency plans in place? For example, do they always use the same developers on your project, or do new developers start from scratch, with a case of the re-write-itess? Is their development consistent and of high quality? Are they using automated testing, or do they have to manually test everthing every time they make a code or HTML change? Do they charge you for testing? How are they tracking bugs? What happens if they land a million dollar project with a big client, will they still respond with fixes and updates as rapidly as the business demands?
Goblinfactory has extensive experience working with, motivating and getting the best value out of outsource teams while managing risk. As an outsource CTO, Alan can help with a technical due diligence of the outsource team, providing your investors with peace of mind knowing that their investments are not held hostage by a single technical supplier and that you are able to switch outsource teams in an emergency.
Technical due diligence is available as a stand alone service from Goblinfactory at an affordable hourly rate.
Access to the very best contract developers and analysts
... a strong network of professionals built up over more than 15 years of active involvement in many developer communities.
Need help with a project that's out of control?
Are you battling with a legacy project that just seems to be getting buggier and buggier, or a project that you are too afraid to enhance in case it breaks, or that just seems to be getting slower and slower to make changes to? If yes, then please give us a call to find out how we could possibly help you bring that project back under control.
Green or brownfield project experts
We're skilled developers with a passion for test automation, and are just as at home working with legacy code (brownfield) projects as we are on new greenfield projects.
Early stage Investment
Alan is a Micro Angel Investor in his personal capacity and has invested early stage funding with various startups, always on the lookout to invest in exciting and challenging opportunities.