San Diego Web Development Spotlight

A few weeks ago my business partner and I ended up at a pleasant establishment to celebrate the beginning of a new internal project for our web development company. It was no surprise we ran into one of the most prolific frequenters of the establishment, and good friend of mine, Ted O’Connor, a.k.a. @hober. We had a lively chat which I’m now unable to forget surrounding the love of San Diego’s tech scene (and by “tech scene” I mean developers and designers, not marketers – social media or otherwise). Ted told me of an idea he was thinking of putting into action which brought together some of the client-side (read: JavaScript) geeks with some of the more “server-side” (read: Python, Ruby, and PHP) geeks to form a collaborative force of awesome front-end developers.

This kind of thing didn’t surprise me, coming from Ted. He’s one of the most vigilant awesomeness advocates I know. But, one thing I realized during that conversation…. if he could get the stack of front-end engineers together with the purpose of producing awesome stuff, there would be almost nothing stopping them except for one thing. The same kryptonite which stops all great developers – marketing.

Competition, Collaboration, Complaining

Competition, Collaboration, Complaining

Marketing is the bane of a developer’s existence. It’s the thing we ignore, but we need.

Marketing is similar to tourism. The locals hate tourists, yet they depend on them for their survival in the modern age. It’s a love/hate relationship. Development is no different. We need marketing, but we hate it too. It’s so fake. So contrived. So finicky. Why can’t the quality stuff just get to the top of the list and get popular simply because it’s awesome? It’s sad really.

But, it’s needed. And, there are plenty of people out there who love to market. They just don’t like developers.

Why do developers have to be so agitating, so controlling, so vigilant and annoying to work with? If marketers could just have an idea and get someone to build it without complaining, the world would be a much better place, right? I mean, marketers know the market. It’s what they do. They know what people want, so the developers should just listen to them.

Ah, conflict. Gotta love it.

So, here’s the point… I live in both worlds. I see both points. I understand both pains because I’ve been both. So here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to shine the spotlight on little projects that developers are creating which are awesome. On the other side, I’m going to highlight some marketers who are pushing some great stuff.

In doing so, I hope to make some connections, smooth out the rough edges, and bring two communities together. There’s nothing we can’t accomplish if we actually get along. My vision is to see developers with great ideas and great talent build awesome stuff, and have a great local marketer pick that up and make it huge. On the other side, I want to see marketers with amazing ideas get their stuff built by some crazy awesome developers. Everyone would benefit from this.

It should be noted that I skipped one major aspect of the community, and that is designers. I didn’t do that on purpose in this article, and I do recognize how different each skill is. I do think design is a major aspect of adoption, usability, etc. Thus designers play a critical role in the awesomeness quotient of a project as well. We’ll add designers to the batter when we get the first two ingredients playing nicely and that’s when the world will explode and finally realize that San Diego has some major powerhouses in all three specializations.

Nate Ritter lives in Austin, Texas (U.S.), popularized the #hashtag and creates web applications for a living. He also does miles and point hacking to enable cheap travel for his family. More here →

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