May We Live in Interesting Times

I’ve been a Xojo consultant for nearly 20 years.  BKeeney Software has worked on dozens of commercial applications and untold numbers of private projects during that time period.  Consulting is both an extremely rewarding and terrifying business since income can be so variable.  We’ve had multiple employees for years and providing health insurance costs is an expense that’s ever growing.  Having your own business is hard in the best of times.

Over the past twelve months we’ve had two employees leave on their own volition to pursue other employment opportunities.  During that same period the amount of new projects slowed to a trickle and even existing clients haven’t brought in as much new work as they have in the past.  Where once we routinely acquired new projects it just didn’t happen as much in 2019.

Consulting is a weird business where every client wants their project done last week for as little money as possible and then get yelled at when you tell them version 2 is going to cost a lot more money.  As a consultant I’ve had to compromise with what’s best for a project with what the client is wiling to pay for.  It’s a constant struggle and one that I can’t imagine going away as a consultant.  

Earlier this year I was presented with the opportunity to take a full-time job as a senior developer for a company that uses Xojo along with other programming technologies.  I have accepted that position and started with them in a full-time capacity a few weeks ago.

BKeeney Software will continue to support existing clients to the best of our ability.  We will not be taking on new clients and we will have to be very selective in taking on additional work.  We hope the transition is as painless as possible.  When we cannot do the work we will give clients a list of Xojo consultants to contact and we will coordinate with them as best we can. If you’d like to be on that list let me know. Send me an email with your qualifications, types of projects that are in your wheelhouse, and maybe even a client reference I can contact.

Several Xojo developers that know me socially (and knew about the new job) have asked about our products, mainly ARGen, Shorts, and Formatted Text Control.  At this point in time we will continue to offer support just like we always have.  However, we are hoping to find new homes for them and have already reached out to various developers that we feel will treat them and our existing customers right.  Our products were mostly driven by consulting and if we are not consulting we have no need for the products.  Since we know a lot of developers use these products we’d love for them to stay in the community and stay actively developed.  If you are interested in acquiring the rights to any of the products, please contact us.  

I love the Xojo community and its users.  I’ve never found a community that is as passionate about a product as the readers of this blog.  I’m not leaving the community – but transitioning into another form.  My new job uses Xojo. It’s a very large project and is certainly bigger than anything I’ve ever worked on before.

I’m looking forward to working on a set of products with a team of dedicated developers that are working on products that matter while providing a stable work environment for my family.  Certainly the events currently happening in the world do not make consulting any more stable so the timing of this opportunity was exceptionally favorable.

I still plan on doing some blogging about Xojo but it will certainly slow down.  As Web 2.0 and Android hits I will kick the tires and give my opinions of them because…well…I always have an opinion.  🙂

Stay safe and I look forward to seeing you all again at a Xojo event! Happy Xojo coding!

Real Software Job: Product Educator

An interesting job post came up today for Real Software.  They are looking for a Product Educator.  This position will be responsible for:

  • Updating the Real Studio Documentation
  • Interacting with customers via email, live chat and social media
  • Maintaining & Updating Real Studio example projects
  • Creating training videos
  • Giving Weekly “Intro to Real Studio” Webinars
  • Updating & Maintaining the Real Studio curriculum
This is a work from home position and ideal for someone familiar and energetic about the product.  Applicants should enjoy teaching and like writing tutorials and creating training videos.
I think this position should have been created long, long ago.  There are very few videos on their website (and those that are there are more marketing IMO), the example projects aren’t very good, the documentation isn’t very complete, and that there is no ‘user contribution’ area on their website is a real shame.  Hopefully a new position will do some real good.
One thing I hope they let this new person do is make mistakes in training videos.  One of the more consistent comments I get about my training videos is that people like it that I make mistakes and then I have to fix them.  That’s using the product like most people do.
I also hope that the person doing the training videos makes ‘real world’ projects and not just simple, let’s show off a single aspect of ‘x’.  I’d also recommend doing videos in each supported platform.
If I wasn’t already engaged in full-time Real Studio consulting work I’d seriously consider this.  I love the product and I really like showing it off.  I really like doing the training videos and wish I had more time to do them.