FounderQuest

FounderQuest

founderquestpodcast.com
Three developers building a software business on our own terms.


Schrems VII, The Return of Safe Harbor
Jul 31 • 31 min
This week the founders talk about their experiences dealing with the wild world of EU privacy laws when operating in the US. Learn about the potential impact on the Schrems II ruling on their business moving forward. Plus, learn some proposed names for…
Apps and Websites Sharing Domains. Is It a Highlander Situation?
Jul 24 • 41 min
This week the founders talk about the pros and cons of having your app and website share the same domain. Can they coexist or can there be only ONE? Plus, find out who has that new product glow and don’t miss grilling tips for veggies and garlic scapes!…
How Price Sensitive Are B2B Customers?
Jul 17 • 37 min
This week the founders recap their second quarterly meeting under Covid. They reveal how pricing changes have impacted business, share updates on Hook Relay, trademark renewals, and using ProfitWell Retain. Plus, don’t call it a chargeback!
How To Unlock The Gold Standard of Webhooks
Jul 3 • 36 min
This week Josh and Ben talk webhooks and announce a new product from Honeybadger. Testers wanted! They also touch on managing contractors, fallout from the Hey vs. Apple saga, and decide that there’s really no right or wrong way to pick up dog poop.
Spoiler Alert! The Apple Vs Hey Fight Explained and Who’s Right?
Jun 26 • 36 min
The Badgers break down DHH’s spat with Apple and Ben correctly predicts how it ends (this episode was recorded June 19th). It’s freaky! They also discuss Hey and if it’s worth the hype and how Honeybadger’s new pricing has impacted business.
How Many Hours Does It REALLY Take To Start A Company?
Jun 5 • 37 min
This week the hosts debate how many hours per week it takes to bootstrap a company. Other topics include politics and podcasting, SOC 2 compliance, and whether to treat free accounts the same as paid accounts. Also, in light of current events, we are…
Updating Our Pricing With Gravy And Special Sauce
May 29 • 37 min
This week the crew talks about decisions around Honeybadger’s recent pricing changes as well as the new mild and spicy plans. The discussion gradually fades to black when the topic of dark patterns creeps in, sparking rants about purposely poor UX. Listen…
Kickin It With Mike Perham, Author Of Faktory & Sidekiq
May 22 • 43 min
Mike Perham of Sidekiq and Faktory fame joins us on FounderQuest this week. We talk about the origins of Sidekiq, COVID impacts, and having a plan for your business if you, the sole proprietor, kicks the bucket. Can you kick it? Yes you can!
Is GitHub Codespaces Basically Just X Windows?
May 15 • 36 min
Question everything this week!?!? Can you use proprietary drivers and truly be an opensource developer? Is Codespaces really just X Windows? Did Elon Musk secretly create DuckTails for propaganda purposes? Listen before Big Brother takes this down!
Beware The Blinking Folder Of Death
May 8 • 31 min
On this week’s FounderQuest the hosts talk about upgrading API versions, using VS Code to edit markdown, and dead MacBooks. Plus, learn how to commit bank fraud by using spoofed phone numbers to perform literal man-in-the-middle attacks!
Ruby Is The Animal Crossing Of Programming Languages
May 1 • 29 min
This week on FounderQuest the hosts talk about using a Prosperity Public License for Heya and how it allows a product to be both free and open-source while allowing the option to charge for certain users. Also, are you team Voltron, Thundercats, Gobots,…
How Building Our Own Campaign Mailer For Rails Set Us Free
Apr 24 • 36 min
This week Ben, Starr, and Josh break down Heya, their freshly shipped open source email campaign mailer for Rails developers. Learn how Heya works, how it can help with GDPR and Soc 2 compliance, and how it saves Honeybadger $$$ in Intercom and Segment…
Tough Decisions And Drones Wearing Fedoras
Apr 17 • 40 min
In this episode, Josh, Starr and Ben talk candidly about some tough decisions they’ve had to make during Covid-19. They also talk about things Honeybadger is doing to help its customers, testing Zoom alternatives, the new world of dating, and why they’re…
FounderQuest Clips - Too Hot For Podcast Vol 1
Apr 10 • 16 min
This week on FounderQuest, it’s a cutting room floor clips episode. Hear vintage, unreleased clips of episodes that you weren’t supposed to hear. Discussions include: 90’s software stores, Alan Turing, water heaters, buying top quality spyware dongles…
This Is Fine. Settling Into The New Normal.
Apr 3 • 38 min
The world is burning, yet we find ourselves settling into our weird new daily routines. This week Josh, Starr, and Ben discuss the importance of company transparency during a crisis, Tiger King, and, political trigger warning, separating health coverage…
The Shocking Reason Aliens Haven’t Attacked Us…Yet!
Mar 27 • 28 min
This week on PandemicQuest Josh, Starr and Ben share insider trading tips via the dark web, explain why aliens haven’t attacked yet, and their thoughts around starting a SaaS company for hand sanitizer. The truth isn’t out there, it’s in here! Can you…
Dispatches From Inside The Honey Bunker
Mar 20 • 28 min
Glove up, mask on, and tune in to this week’s FounderQuest! Starr, Ben and Josh talk hot investing tips now that our 401(k)s are gone, plans for the “Honey Bunker,” pivoting away from remote and back to co-located working, Animal Crossing, hoarding…
Founder Life Within The Coronavirus Epicenter
Mar 13 • 39 min
Ben, Josh and Starr are transmitting…err…broadcasting from deep within the COVID-19 epicenter on this week’s FounderQuest. They talk about life in our brave new COVID-19 World, Tailwind CSS, and reminisce about the old freelancing days in the time of Big…
Welcome To The Land Of Tomorrow
Mar 6 • 27 min
Join Ben, Starr, and Josh on this week’s FounderQuest for a look at our dystopian future. Ben shares the most interesting questions he received while interviewing and the discussion results in the creation of an onboarding manual for time traveling job…
How Long Could Our Company Survive Without Us?
Feb 28 • 31 min
This week on FounderQuest, Josh, Starr, and Ben hypothesize how long Honeybadger could keep going if they went off the grid given the current pace of tech churn. They also discuss going all-in on COBOL and whether framework trends are actually any…
A Mortal Kombat Rampage for Pole Position on Galaga
Feb 21 • 47 min
This week Josh, Ben, and Starr talk vintage console games and announce details about Honeybadger’s upcoming RailsConf blow out. The episode then pinballs over to dismissing FU money, insights on hiring and more. Hold on to your headphones!
Founder Show and Tell
Feb 14 • 43 min
The honeybadgers have been busy this week! Ben, Josh and Starr each have work that shipped this week that they want to brag on. This episode strides over vast expanses, covering issues like compliance, open-source marketing and content marketing. It all…
FounderQuest Predicts The Future Of Work
Feb 7 • 36 min
In this episode the Badgers talk about their predictions for the future of work. They also discuss some of the pros and cons to working remotely and how to prevent loneliness. Conveniently enough, Honeybadger is also hiring a JS developer. Learn the…
Prepare Thyself For When The Tax Man Cometh
Jan 31 • 14 min
Ben and Starr have an informal fireside chat about recent tax changes and how to navigate them when running a SaaS company with nationwide sales. Learn about some of the surprising rules some states have around business classifications and why you might…
Should You Target Pieces Of Pie Or Whole Enchiladas?
Jan 24 • 54 min
History is made this week as FounderQuest welcomes its first ever guest, Justin Jackson, co-founder of Transistor.fm! A debate ensues around whether it’s better to build a product for a niche market or target the larger market as a whole. Also, the next…
We Pull Back The Curtain On A Secret Project
Jan 17 • 39 min
This week Josh reveals his super secret project that he’s been working on and it will…BLOW…YOU…AWAY!!! Just kidding, you and your surroundings are most likely safe but it’s pretty darn cool! Want more? The Founders get contrarian and talk about why they…
Discovering Our Strengths
Jan 10 • 33 min
In this episode Josh, Starr, and Ben talk about each of their results from taking the CliftonStrengths assessment and debate the validity of the results. They also discuss if having differing strengths and weaknesses has helped or hindered them working as…
Hawaiian Punch And 2020 Resolutions
Dec 27, 2019 • 27 min
The trio is morphing into a duo on this week’s episode of FounderQuest, Fireside Chat edition. Ben and Josh talk about their 2020 resolutions, upping their serverless usage, side projects, and holiday plans. Ben also drops a major update from a previous…
The Things We Shipped In 2019
Dec 20, 2019 • 46 min
This week Josh, Ben, and Starr look back at all of the things that Honeybadger shipped in the last 12 months. They also give Apple some free management advice and provide their thoughts on MicroConf’s latest announcement. Lastly, will Honeybadger move…
Is It Time For The Big Rewrite?
Dec 13, 2019 • 32 min
This week on FounderQuest Josh, Starr, and Ben talk about the quandary of not knowing how to build something until after you’ve already built it. Therefore, once it’s built it can be hard to fight the urge to tear it down and build it again taking into…
The 2019 Thanksgiving Freestyle Episode
Dec 6, 2019 • 19 min
The guys throw the show notes out the window and kick it freestyle on this special Thanksgiving episode. All of today’s hard-hitting questions are answered: Dark meat or light meat? Turkey or duck? The warm glow of a fireplace or the warm glow of a…
Is Offering A Free Plan Worth The Hassle?
Nov 29, 2019 • 31 min
This week on FounderQuest, the guys talk about their decision to offer a free plan alongside the paid plans for Honeybadger and how it impacted the overall business. Josh is also back shares the hottest of takes from his recent trip to Nashville to attend…
Is Marketing On Marketplaces Worth It?
Nov 22, 2019 • 27 min
This week Ben and Starr talk about Honeybadger’s efforts using marketplaces to get new business and whether it’s worth the development time needed to set them up. They also discuss Honeybadger’s participation in the GitHub Student Developer Pack, creating…
Should You Comply With Compliance?
Nov 15, 2019 • 33 min
On this week’s episode of FounderQuest Josh, Ben, and Starr talk about their Soc 2 and GDPR compliance efforts. They go over the different strategies to handle compliance, the potential costs involved, and discuss if it’s worth the time and money. When…
Should You Blow Up Your Backlog?
Nov 8, 2019 • 21 min
This week on FounderQuest the guys weigh in on a recent debate sparked by Jason Fried at Basecamp around the value of backlogs. In short, Fried proports that backlogs cause unnecessary stress and that if an idea will be forgotten about if it isn’t written…
How Honeybadger Creates Content
Nov 1, 2019 • 22 min
The guys talk about creating content for Honeybadger and the difficulties switching back and forth from writing prose to writing code. Starr channels his inner Anna Wintour and describes his latest initiative recruiting developers to write guest posts on…
Don’t Let Customer Service Crush You
Oct 25, 2019 • 34 min
The guys talk about how they are scaling up their awesome customer service without adding headcount and their journey from email customer support, to chat support, and back to email support. They also discuss how to deal with informational silos and if…
You Know What We Did Last Summer - Season Two Begins!
Oct 18, 2019 • 27 min
Season Two of FounderQuest is upon you! The guys discuss what they did while on summer break, releasing breadcrumbs on Honeybadger and why they help when debugging, launching the new blog, Amazon RDS, and Airwolf!
We’re Going on Summer Vacation!
Jul 19, 2019 • 0 min
The guys are taking a few weeks off from podcasting to enjoy the fleeting Pacific northwest summer. They’ll be back in late August or early September, fully rested and ready with hot takes to warm you as summer turns to fall.
To Be Or Not To Be Acquired - That Is The Question
Jul 12, 2019 • 37 min
The guys talk about their experiences with offers to acquire Honeybadger and go over some common structures of acquisition deals (hint - most don’t involve walking a wheelbarrow of money out of your office and never returning). They also chat about things…
What Does The Ideal Remote Office Look Like?
Jul 5, 2019 • 34 min
This week the guys talk about their office equipment and remote workspaces which range from working in a winery to building a standalone office in a backyard. They also go full old cranky developer mode on the new office paradigms and warn the youths of…
How To Gauge Customer Success With An Introverted Customer Base
Jun 28, 2019 • 38 min
The guys answer a listener question about how to ensure customers are happy with your product and how to be proactive in finding out if they aren’t. This can be especially difficult if your customers tend to be a little bit introverted…*cough* developers…
Are 3rd-party scripts out to get you? CSP to the rescue!
Jun 21, 2019 • 27 min
Do you know what the 3rd-party scripts on your website are up to? In this week’s episode of FounderQuest, the guys talk about CSP (Content Security Policy) and how it can enhance security in the browser. They also weigh adding it as a feature of…
Why Do Developers Get Burned Out?
Jun 14, 2019 • 42 min
Running a lifestyle business is awesome, contrary to what the VC’s say. Figure out your life goals and fit your business to achieve them rather than worrying about 10x-ing. The guys also talk about why developers seem to experience higher rates of burnout…
If You Aren’t Growing, Are You Dying?
Jun 7, 2019 • 29 min
The guys talk dissect the “If you’re not growing you’re dying” aphorism and debate if it has merits or if it should be discarded into the dustbin of history. Do entrepreneurs need to have a winner take all mindset or is it acceptable to be a minor player…
Chunky Bacon! Let’s Geek Out About Early Ruby & Rails.
May 31, 2019 • 39 min
The guys chat about the early days of Ruby and Rails and discuss how the developer community has changed from a more individual hacking pursuit to more of a team sport. Ben also talks about his experiences at the very first RailsConf and teaches young…
Document & Automate Your Way to a Vacation When Running a Startup
May 24, 2019 • 38 min
The guys talk about strategies for creating systems, documentation, and automation to separate yourself from your business so you can hire employees, get it ready for sale, or even take some time off. Balancing good customer service while being efficient…
Siloing Together, How to Move a Company Forward While Working Independently
May 17, 2019 • 35 min
Two part special! In part one, the guys chat about decision making in a siloed company structure and the challenges of making sure everyone is on the same page. That’s not all! More details about the secret Honeybadger conclaves are leaked, dirty laundry…
How to Successfully Market to Software Developers
May 10, 2019 • 43 min
Hey guys ladle out some secret sauce for successfully marketing and selling to software developers. Also discussed is their Facebook ad boycott, why you should never call a developer, Coke vs. Pepsi, and leveraging Princess Bride to weed out sales emails.
Is Marketing To People The Same As Robbing Them?
May 3, 2019 • 40 min
The guys discuss gorilla conference marketing and how they promoted Honeybadger back when they could barely afford to attend the conference, let alone a sponsorship. Also discussed is turning Honeybadger’s unprofessionalism into a marketing strength,…
Twilayfunbootrucknes!!! VC vs. bootstrap funding, recent layoffs at NPM, and more!
Apr 26, 2019 • 36 min
The gents look back with some hindsight on the debates around private equity, VC vs. bootstrapping Honeybadger, and how funding decisions may have affected recent layoffs at NPM and Travis CI. Our recent Twitter ad performance for FounderQuest is also…
MicroConf 2019 Recap, Confronting Ageism In Tech, And Badgercon 2020
Apr 19, 2019 • 31 min
The guys dish about their experiences at MicroConf. Ben talks about entrepreneurial ADD, Josh explains why the “good old days” at Honeybadger are now, and Starr challenges younger developers to a coding battle royale. There is also a preview of Badgercon…
Screw Dependencies! Learn How We Are Fighting Our Abandonware Problem.
Apr 12, 2019 • 26 min
We originally sat down to discuss distractions and Yak Shaving. What emerged was more like group therapy for a team struggling to cope with a spate of JS dependency upgrades. We also discuss purchasing an ice cream truck. Buckle up!
Personal Productivity - Dealing With Distractions While Getting Sh!t Done
Apr 5, 2019 • 33 min
Faced with a punishing week of distractions, the crew discusses their own techniques for remaining personally productive.
Technical Debt - Our Approach to Building Cool Tech Profitably
Mar 29, 2019 • 25 min
This week Josh, Ben and Starr talk technical debt and how to cope with it. They also discuss “suits” vs “hackers” is a trope as old as tech itself. Suits want to make money and cut costs. Hackers want to build cool things the right way. What if you’re…
Decisions & Events That Made Honeybadger What It Is Today
Mar 15, 2019 • 37 min
Looking at the major events in our lives, we can often trace them back to turning points — decisions big and small that had outsized effects. In this episode the dudes reflect on some of their major decisions, good and bad.
How to hire great software developers when you can’t compete on salary
Mar 8, 2019 • 26 min
How we attracted top quality software developer candidates without offering Facebook, Amazon, or Google salary levels. We talk about how to write the job description and reveal the feedback we received from candidates.
Programming in Elixir and Phoenix to build a proof-of-concept product during our hackathon
Mar 1, 2019 • 18 min
In their first episode, Starr, Josh and Ben talk about the company hack-week where they built a small proof-of-concept product with Elixir and Phoenix.