Breaking news: Redditech Revised With New Theme And New Direction

I was theme-browsing again, part of the process of building another Wordpress-based site which I hope to add to my portfolio and share details about soon. While doing so, I stumbled across the Ocadia 1.3 theme by Becca Wei and found it so much more appealing than my current theme that I instantly switched my blogging site to it.
Indeed it’s a bit appropriate to make such a drastic change, considering that Redditech itself will be switching gears a bit drastically soon itself. Why you may ask? Well to answer that, I need to start at the beginning…

Redditech’s Origin
About two years ago, I was frustrated as an IT professional. I was losing my love of technology because for some reason the local businesses were just not “getting” IT in my humble opinion and this led to a series of successful, yet uncelebrated or unremarkable IT projects under my belt over the years. I was ambitious, while businesses were concerned with web sites, I wanted to build web applications. So at this point I decided to go a different route and start my own business focusing on the local Trinidad IT industry.
Turning Vision Into Reality
I have tried for two years now to build this vision of an “Internet-based technologies company servicing small and medium sized businesses with out-of-the-box and customised open-source based solutions”. For the last nine of those months it has been my only source of income. And for about 3 or 4 months out of this it was mildly successful, no million dollar deals (or even a percent of this), but business enough to give hope that this was going somewhere.
However times have been hard. I was dipping more and more into the small “emergency” fund of savings I accumulated from work before Redditech existed and jobs done under Redditech’s name. Indeed, if it wasn’t for the financial support of my parents, out of whose house I work and whose car I use to drive to visit clients, Redditech would have died many months ago I believe.
Searching for Spock…
Quietly I began looking for partner organisations or persons who, like myself, were freelancing developers and would be willing to team up for larger projects, projects which currently I could not do on my own within a reasonable time period, but projects which would undoubtably have brought me a little closer out of the red if I engaged them because of the larger payoff.
However, if it’s one thing UWI has taught me though, is that for every 100 “sayers”, there’s not necessarily one “doer” among them. Still, one must start somewhere, so I engaged in several small projects with potential partners. Sadly, these projects, though delivered, cost me more money than I made and depleted my resources even further.
In one case it was a case of incomplete payment for a completed job, something which I am hoping is resolved, however I hold no high hope of and have already written off to experience. In the other case it was a case of too open-ended a list of deliverables which led to constantly changing deliverables and more requirements on my time than I had initially projected, something which was NOT reflected in my final billing because I preferred to get some of the money back from the project by undercharging, than to have a total non-payment because the price is considered too high. That project I am also yet to receive payment of any kind, and hopefully it will appear soon.
Opportunity? Is that you knocking?
As Trinis say though, “God doh sleep” and providence has a way of finding you if you keep your eyes open. In the middle of all this financial worry, an e-mail popped in that initially I had ignored, but when read I realised it was the chance to possibly meet with a potential partner organisation whose reputation I had heard of and was impressed by. The invitation was for an interview for a job, but in my mind, I would be the one doing the interviewing to see if there was potential future business with this company.
I ended up rushing off to a hurriedly arranged meeting on a Saturday morning, which turned out to be much more than a 2 hour meeting, it became an entire day interview process, not with the company I had expected, but with another, newer software solutions company called Medullan.
The guys behind Medullan are, quite honestly, one of the most intelligent group of IT guys I have EVER met. I have never clicked on ideas so well before with 3rd parties as I did with them. They were Harvard Business School and MIT graduates trying to put together a team of software developers to be based in Trinidad. They weren’t inexperienced, in fact they’ve been in the field for a number of years, in global markets, markets I have yet to even think about for Redditech. I spoke with them, went through the interview process, and in the end was offered a position as a Software Developer with the company. While Redditech was a dream come to life for me, I did not want to see my dream die because of my inexperience running a company and making proper business deals. The fact that this was a new company also appealed to me. There would be no tunnel-thinking, they were very open to ideas. So I took one of the greatest risk I have ever and signed on.
Redditech reloaded…my final thoughts
As of May 29th I will be one of the first Medullan employees of Trinidad along with a few other local programmers. Sadly, this means Redditech as a business entity will now become dormant. I will still use the handle Redditech, having become accustomed to me being synonymous with Redditech as a nick used online.
Perhaps as time goes by and I get accustomed to the time demands of this new position at Medullan I can revive Redditech the business again part-time. Who knows? An interesting project or two may pop up which I can’t resist intellectually and which may deal in some pervasive Internet technology I’ve been dying to have a go at.
But until then, I must say, it was fun running my own business. Though in the end not profitable financially, it gave me much profit in terms of experience with working with people, and “running the show” as my father would say, experience I probably would not have gotten for many years to come if I had not taken the risk and started Redditech.
The blog will still be active, although perhaps limited to just my comments as I deal with various Internet news in my own opinionated way. Since the code I write will no longer be my own, it’s yet to be seen just how many “how-to” tech articles I can post in future since most of my coding articles have come out of jobs I have done where I posted about lessons learnt coding these projects.
But still, in whatever form, Redditech’s blog remains!

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