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999255 Posts in 39205 Topics- by 30615 Members - Latest Member: AlecKelley

April 22, 2014, 11:37:21 PM
TIGSource ForumsDeveloperBusinessReliable Programmers? Where?
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Mister Dave
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« Reply #30 on: March 30, 2013, 07:31:27 AM »

Well, since we're still carrying on about pay scale, you all should consider 2 things:

1) Not everyone is motivated by money. There are other things that motivate them including love of the work, royalties (if there are any), credits and so forth.

2) How many of you here can afford to pay the 5- or 6-figure salaries that most software engineers make in their "day jobs"?

Speak up and tell us what compensation scale you offer. I think it would be educational for us all if you reveal how much you pay or how much you make on average working under contract on indie titles. Sure, you can point to exceptions, but as a rule how much are you paid?
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« Reply #31 on: March 30, 2013, 07:51:01 AM »

not everyone is motivated by money but reliability tends to be motivated by money (e.g. without losing money, or very much of it, someone won't feel as bad about giving up a project)

i've done freelance writing; usually i'm paid $3 a page; i can write pretty fast, depending on the type of writing, so that it often comes to around $15 an hour (a lot more than 52 cents an hour, you see)

i've also paid people for music. for my first commercial game i paid someone about ~$2000 for arranging (not writing/composing, just arranging) 10 songs (this was paid as a royalty rather than a lump sum but eventually it wound up being over $2000), these took the musician about a month to arrange. i'm not sure how many hours total it took, but he was going to college full time at the time, so it wasn't like a 40 hour a week thing
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petertos
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« Reply #32 on: March 31, 2013, 01:58:02 PM »

I don't know about hiring a programmer, but I've made many music for games for free, with a proper credit. I just didn't found those 20-30 bucks they usually pay for a track useful, I chose to have a link to my website on the game or big credit titles with my name appearing on a fancy way on the screen...

I thought it was more important, and I still think like it. Now I can make music for free if I like the project. Though, as I said, this might have nothing to do with hiring a programmer...
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InfiniteStateMachine
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« Reply #33 on: March 31, 2013, 05:02:49 PM »

The key point on my original post is: "Are there any reliable programmers out there? Please, let me know where??? Because I need one!" Maybe I should of posted it in a different section... LOL

their most certainly are. Just not for the money you are offering.
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ananasblau
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« Reply #34 on: March 31, 2013, 11:55:22 PM »

I've read through your freelancer post and wouldn't have been interested despite having the skillset to do this project. Here's a few things that I dislike or miss

  • Mockups of how it will look like, you got all the graphics why not throw it together?
  • Your ridiculous demand to get six month of free support for it
  • No glitches/bugs in any of the milestones. Seriously? Is there any dev who can actually do this? Better you ask for daily releases (that will teach the dev to streamline his deployment from day one) and playtest those. That also makes any changes you request very cheap
  • Here on tigsource you write that you have more games that you want to have developed. This changes a lot and even for that low money fi I can make six games where I only have to 10% more work to make the next one, that would be acceptable.
  • Developing in the credits screen? Give us some privacy Man.

Now a little story: Years ago I (12yrs in webdev, 2yrs hobby gamedev) accepted a request (see there's the difference, those guys from 6 timeszones away found ME and did know I have the skillset) to make a prototype of a webapp. $2000 for two months is bad money and with new features being requested a few weeks into they did agree on paying more. After that prototype I kept working for them and still do. $500 is a prototype and only the base for a longer work.

A $500 contract with your requirements won't attract good developers, thus you won't get your game finished. Sorry.

What you should do: Look around on the app stores who's doing similar games and look if you find companies who do games like the one you want. Yes, it's like chatting with the devil about a new torture method you developed, but it's worth a shot. Plus they might have more experience in marketing such a game.

An alternative place to look for devs is to scan game jams games, from ludum dare to onegameamonth and global game jam. Almost all of the games you see there are going to waste because no one keeps developing them (like my own sole card game Traders of the Lost Park) and they might actually agree to take an existing game to your needs. In doing so you might have found Desperate Gods which is not open source but i'm sure they are happy to license it for your games.
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PR
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« Reply #35 on: April 01, 2013, 03:57:18 PM »

It's interesting how the whole post has evolved from one side to the other. Some comments since last one:

I have hired professionals in different fields for a fraction of what it costs in the US with outstanding results. Yes, I have hired for under $1000 freelancer programmers with good results, others for $500 and even under $300, but with time issues. not because of the difficulty of the game or the money was not right but because they were working on their spare time at their own pace and/or because they were booked, or simply amateurs or right out of school. So, I can't demand anything in those circumstances. I have traveled extensively, and I actually feel good to provide work at even higher salaries than what they are getting paid in their own countries working for local companies.

Large companies from all over outsource for cheaper educated and professional labor. The problem raises when people want to get paid salaries to match other countries'...

Reliability? It's not about money, it's about professional ethics. If you get hired under specific conditions, then you should perform and be RELIABLE. If you can't evaluate your own work and capabilities from day one that means you're just inexperienced, and should not be getting involved.

If I can't hire you because your fees are beyond my low limited budgets (sorry for that) or because you live in the top 100 economic countries and I can't reach you monetarily upfront, but you are still interested providing a pristine service; I would not mind providing royalties, partnering, or any other economical pseudo compensation that you can come up to for agreement.

I could simply say, that the games I have graphically ready are divided into 2 groups of similar behavior. So, yes, once you do the most "complicated one" the other ones are just simpler to program.

I've done a few websites in basic html, maybe I could pull it out by myself if I put my head together in Adobe Flash..., but I just don't have the time for everything. Besides, at my point in age I rather produce/accomplish more things in a teamwork than just one in a lonely quest.

Related to proprietorship, I do not mind sharing profits as long as the other party does his job well done. Many people say they do not want to pay taxes or pay less, but since it's a fact that you have to do it anyway; then my comment is "I wish I could be paying millions in taxes..." lol
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InfiniteStateMachine
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« Reply #36 on: April 01, 2013, 07:55:36 PM »

It's interesting how the whole post has evolved from one side to the other. Some comments since last one:

I have hired professionals in different fields for a fraction of what it costs in the US with outstanding results. Yes, I have hired for under $1000 freelancer programmers with good results, others for $500 and even under $300, but with time issues. not because of the difficulty of the game or the money was not right but because they were working on their spare time at their own pace and/or because they were booked, or simply amateurs or right out of school. So, I can't demand anything in those circumstances. I have traveled extensively, and I actually feel good to provide work at even higher salaries than what they are getting paid in their own countries working for local companies.

If you don't have trouble finding good programmers at this cost then why even bother posting here? You contradict yourself further in this paragraph by saying they were simply amateurs and/or right out of school. If you really could find programmers of a caliber and reliability you want for the price you want then you would have never made this thread to begin with.


Large companies from all over outsource for cheaper educated and professional labor. The problem raises when people want to get paid salaries to match other countries'...

That is happening less and less every year because of the sub-par results they get and the cost of the support required to guide development. Once more when this does happen it's for repeatable methodic work. Not things like games or anything that has any notion of creativity or design that constantly deviates. In many of the cases where this does happen they open development studios in those countries and have their designers live there (EX : Spicyhorse).

Reliability? It's not about money, it's about professional ethics. If you get hired under specific conditions, then you should perform and be RELIABLE. If you can't evaluate your own work and capabilities from day one that means you're just inexperienced, and should not be getting involved.

But this happens every day and hot just in the programming world. Ask people how have had house renovations, websites made, graphic design work done. There are stories like this in every field of business. The number one cause of this happening is a low-ball offer.

Of course anyone with a good track record would never take the low-ball offer because there are plenty of others out their offering decent pay.

If I can't hire you because your fees are beyond my low limited budgets (sorry for that) or because you live in the top 100 economic countries and I can't reach you monetarily upfront, but you are still interested providing a pristine service; I would not mind providing royalties, partnering, or any other economical pseudo compensation that you can come up to for agreement.

You wouldn't believe how frequently programmers get this offer.
 
I've done a few websites in basic html, maybe I could pull it out by myself if I put my head together in Adobe Flash...,

Unless you actually complete this then you don't actually know how hard (or easy) it is to do and you are trivializing the work of those who have completed these types of projects. There is nothing more annoying and insulting than someone who hires you to do a job then talks about how if they have the time they could do it easily.

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Muz
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« Reply #37 on: April 01, 2013, 08:21:01 PM »

Quote
   Mexico - $3 per day in U.S. Funds!
    Bangladesh $0.13 per hour in U.S. Funds
    China - $0.44 per hour in U.S. Funds
    Costa Rica - $2.38 per hour in U.S. Funds
    Dominican Republic - $1.62 per hour in U.S. Funds
    El Salvador - $1.38 per hour in U.S. Funds
    Haiti - $0.49 per hour in U.S. Funds
    Honduras - $1.31 per hour in U.S. Funds
    Indonesia - $0.34 per hour in U.S. Funds
    Nicaragua - $0.76 per hour in U.S. Funds
    Vietnam - $0.26 per hour in U.S. Funds

source: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_much_money_do_the_workers_in_sweatshops_get_paid

If you leave a freelancer in say, Vietnam to set his own wages, it'd be dirt cheap. But they've got more offers than they can handle. They're not the ones setting the wages... the guy giving out jobs are. I live in SE Asia, but am turning down $15/hour jobs because I just don't have the time or patience for them.

You can have two of three things: Quality, Speed, or a cheap price. If you can't afford a good programmer, you'll have to spend a lot of time looking and training one, or skimp on quality.


However, there's a bright side... not everyone is motivated by money. In fact, for creative jobs, money is often demotivating. I can dig up a dozen papers from way back to 1940 that support this. Studies have shown that giving incentives to do creative work makes them do it slower.

It's still a factor, but should be invisible. I'm not a fan of per hour pay, because it keeps money on the mind, and it's why freelancers suck so much. You want to pay them an 'above average' wage AND let them do what they like. This pulls them from other interests like personal projects, other hobbies, and worrying about getting a better job.

However, because of this, you can't rely on contract creative workers. You can outsource disposable stuff like backgrounds and logos and menu code. But never rely on freelancers to do your core engines.

If you want a good programmer, hire them properly - get a full time worker. Get a student friend to work full time with you. Failing that, just bite the bullet, write a business plan, take out a loan, and do a proper job offer. You don't need an office, but make sure that you're not giving any incentives other than a steady cash stream.

The key when interviewing is not finding their skills/reliability, but in knowing whether they're enjoying the project. If they like it and are willing to do it without the pay, you hire them and give them money anyway to make sure they stick to it. If they would never do it without getting paid for it, don't bother hiring.

If you're making a good enough game, you should have no trouble finding people who would work for free on it. If it's not good enough, don't bother.. it won't make money anyway. When either selling or hiring, people will look to why you're building it, not what you're building.
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ananasblau
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« Reply #38 on: April 01, 2013, 10:30:36 PM »

Large companies from all over outsource for cheaper educated and professional labor. The problem raises when people want to get paid salaries to match other countries'...

Outsourcing... did you know US tech companies started to shift production to mexico because China grows more and more unreliable and shipping takes an awful lot of time? http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/24/opinion/sunday/friedman-how-mexico-got-back-in-the-game.html?_r=0

Similar in Europe where a lot of manufacturing had been move to eastern europe in the 90ies just to create an extreme in qualified personnel 10-15 years later (everyone moved factories there) and actually making production there just as expensive as in the west? Factories are now moving back again to the west or even further east.

Just now in the UK again as shortage of a wide range of skillsets. Those dums who studied CTO, CFO, CIO, C3PO instead of proper computer science are now forced to get developers back in-house. http://www.computerweekly.com/feature/CW500-Skills-shortages-loom-as-development-comes-back-in-house

Outsourcing is a market in a constant and rapid change, I'd be too lazy to re-evaluate that market over and over again.
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motorherp
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« Reply #39 on: April 02, 2013, 12:54:10 AM »

Reliability? It's not about money, it's about professional ethics. If you get hired under specific conditions, then you should perform and be RELIABLE. If you can't evaluate your own work and capabilities from day one that means you're just inexperienced, and should not be getting involved.

It almost sounds like your intention is to trick a developer into doing more work than you're willing to pay for by trapping them into some kind of debt of honour.  The problem is like you say, only inexperienced developers will be applying for this because their inexperience means thay cant evaluate the work load correctly and thus dont realise from the outset what a poor offer you're making them.  If you wish for people to act honourably around you then you have to act with honour yourself and offer a reasonable wage for the work you want done.  Once you do you will find plenty of developers who will be more than willing to stick around and complete the project.

To be perfectly honest though I (hopefuly) doubt you are trying to trick anyone but the real problem comes down to your own inexperience.  It seems to me like you just dont even see what a poor offer you're making since you dont understand yourself the work that goes into software development. 

In all seriousness I would advise you to track down a proffesional developer with a good history of finished titles and pay them a days wages to sit down and chat with you over skype about your projects requirements.  Have them evaluate the work that needs doing, brake it down into sub-tasks, and give you a time estimate for each task.  Only then will you have a good enough appreciation of the work required to set a reasonable reward to offer a developer to do the job.  Not only will this lead to a more proffesional and reasonable pitch which will help you to acquire more experienced and reliable developers, but will also give you a yardstick by which to measure a hired developers progress and potentialy release funds on milestones dictacted by the task-list which will decrease the risk for both yourself and the developer.
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Schrompf
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« Reply #40 on: April 02, 2013, 02:20:35 AM »

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I've done a few websites in basic html, maybe I could pull it out by myself if I put my head together in Adobe Flash..., but I just don't have the time for everything.

Whenever I read something like this I want to point her/him to the Dunning-Kruger effect. It's really important for everyone, not just the OP. For every topic you're familiar with there's a hundred topics of which you read just a few catchwords in a newspaper. And you'll feel much better about your knowledge than you actually are. Be aware of this, don't come across as an idiot.
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« Reply #41 on: April 02, 2013, 03:23:45 AM »

If you get hired under specific conditions, then you should perform and be RELIABLE.
But what if the task is impossible? What are you going to do then? Try to do it for 10 years eating grass in the meantime?
The task you posted is impossible, no glitches and bugs at all is like asking for a surgeon with 20 years of experience that never killed a patient that could have been save if someone else was operating him, someone like that simply does not exist...
The problem is you don't understand the nature of programming. Comparing it with other professions (which in general are quite predictable in terms of outcome) is misleading. It simply is not working this way.

If you can't evaluate your own work and capabilities from day one that means you're just inexperienced, and should not be getting involved.
I have been a coder for 25 years, I still have trouble properly evaluating time and effort required for a certain game to be finished (even through I limit myself to a certain type of games only).
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ananasblau
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« Reply #42 on: April 02, 2013, 03:30:02 AM »

Regarding estimates and the Dunning-Kruger effect, last time I was in a scrum team we did play planning poker and that was quite fun and worked great. I never been in much of a team since but I'd do play it even it was just tree of us. Maybe I should list tasks in my devlog and everyone gives their estimate...
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« Reply #43 on: April 02, 2013, 04:41:34 AM »

Reliability? It's not about money, it's about professional ethics. If you get hired under specific conditions, then you should perform and be RELIABLE. If you can't evaluate your own work and capabilities from day one that means you're just inexperienced, and should not be getting involved.

Other people have said this many times in this thread, but let me repeat it once more: NO experienced programmer would work for you under the conditions you are offering. By offering 500$ for all the work you request, you are attracting inexperienced developers who can't properly evaluate their own work and capabilities from day one, for example school kids who are doing some programming in their free time. It's really no surprise your projects fail once these developers finally realize that they underestimated the work.
If you want reliability and professionalism, hire a professional developer. If you want a professional developer, you'll most likely have to pay more. You might have luck and find a student or so who is realiable and willing to do all this work for 500$, but as you experienced the chances are low.
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« Reply #44 on: April 02, 2013, 05:16:40 AM »

on the upside

Quote
I have 6 games graphically ready to go with illustrations, rules, text, icons, credits, etc.

you could also try your hand at something like gamemaker, then you can work with the most reliable person you know ... yourself.
when you have everything designed and ready, building a  game could be very easy.

and fun.


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