Developer On Fire

by Dave Rael

Developer On Fire with Dave Rael is an interview podcast with inspiring and successful software professionals telling personal stories about their experiences with delivering value. It is a chance for you to get to know your favorite geeks and learn more about who they are, how they deliver, and what makes them tick. Learn from and get to know special geeks like Matt Wynne, Rob Eisenberg, Udi Dahan, Ted Neward, John Sonmez, Phil Haack, and David Heinemeier Hansson.


Latest Episodes

Episode 400 | Branden Schwartz - Underestimating Our Deficiencies

Branden Schwartz talks with Dave Rael about confidence, parenting, trying things even though you may not be ready, and gratitude

Branden Schwartz is a developer whose experience with the Microsoft tech stack predates the .NET framework. He lives just outside of Chattanooga, Tennessee, where he is active in the developer community as a member of the local chapter of PASS (Professional Association for SQL Server) and one of the organizers of both the Chattanooga Area .NET User Group and the Scenic City Summit conference. Away from the keyboard, he is a proud godfather and foster parent, gamer and movie enthusiast, husband and cat caretaker.

Branden's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Understand your problem domain
  2. Adhere to the "5 minute rule" - when struggling, take a 5-minute break and take opportunities to invest 5-minutes in enhancing understanding
  3. Nature abhors a vacuum, and so do requirements - implement something and show it to help in fleshing out requirements

Audio Download

Posted on 17 December 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 399 | Barry Stahl - Optimizing Impact

Barry Stahl talks with Dave Rael about coding for charity, family, optimizing your efforts, models, cognitive biases, and charitable interpretation

Barry is a .NET Software Engineer who has been creating business solutions for enterprise customers for more than 30 years. Barry is also an Election Integrity Activist, baseball and hockey fan, husband of one genius and father of another, and a 30+ year resident of Phoenix Arizona. When Barry is not traveling around the world to speak at Conferences, Code Camps and User Groups or to participate in GiveCamp events, he spends his days consulting as a Solution Architect and Developer and his nights thinking about the next AZGiveCamp, an annual event where software developers come together to build websites and apps for some great non-profit organizations.

Barry's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Make sure you exercise your brain
  2. If you're not testing something, ask why
  3. Always assume the output of others comes from a good place

Audio Download

Posted on 13 December 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 398 | Eric Anderson - Community Works

Eric Anderson talks with Dave Rael about community, web and desktop development, diversity of experiences, and communication

Eric Anderson is a technical lead at an agribusiness company in the Nashville, TN area. He has the privilege of being a cross-team technical resource and guide to more than 20 other .NET developers. Outside of work Eric blogs about .NET related topics, is co-president of the Nashville .NET User Group, is an avid reader, enjoys video games, and most importantly spending time with his family.

Eric's book recommendation:
Eric's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Take time to talk to your customers, get to know them, and understand what they need
  2. Make connections in your local community
  3. Always be growing and learning

Audio Download

Posted on 10 December 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 397 | Ben Scheirman - Screencasting Magic

Ben Scheirman talks with Dave Rael about open source software, speaking, writing, screencasting, and geeking out

Ben Scheirman is an experienced software developer from Houston, TX. He is the founder of NSScreencast, a site with over 350 screencasts on iOS and Mac development. Ben also runs Fickle Bits, LLC, where he builds apps for clients using Swift, Objective-C, and Ruby. When not programming, you can find Ben playing guitar, playing board games, or making award-winning Texas BBQ.

Ben's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Record video to share what you're working on and communicate about what is needed
  2. Include video and/or a picture in any pull request including visual elements
  3. Write tests and if it's hard to write test think about how you might improve design so that you can write tests

Audio Download

Posted on 6 December 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 396 | Daniel Lemay - Fast Start

Daniel Lemay talks with Dave Rael about his new career, learning to write software, helping and being helped, speaking at conferences and meetups, psychology, and empathy

Daniel is a front-end developer who is passionate about building performant and accessible web apps. He loves following the latest cutting edge technologies and has given several presentations on GraphQL and React. After 10 years as a Facilities Manager in the Educational sector, Daniel was dissatisfied and determined to change course. He learned to code around work and family commitments before being employed by Phase2 Technology. He is passionate about helping others break into the field and helps organize a meetup focused on that goal. When not writing code, Daniel enjoys the beautiful nature scenes of the Pacific Northwest and playing board games with his family.

Daniel's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Practice empathy
  2. Practice active listening and monotasking
  3. Always be learning

Audio Download

Posted on 3 December 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 395 | Martine Dowden - Accessing Goodness

Martine Dowden talks with Dave Rael about being a geek, psychology, art, accessibility, business, and lifestyle

Focusing on web interfaces that are beautiful, functional, and usable, Martine delivers products that adhere to WCAG and Section 508 for accessibility and compliance. She approaches User Experience from both Art and Science, drawing from her degrees in Psychology and Visual Communications. Martine has worked as an artist, educator, and consultant since 2005. She stays active in the industry, teaching new developers at Eleven Fifty Academy, attending and speaking at conferences and meetups, and publishing the occasional blog. In 2015 Martine's children's book Programming Languages ABC++ was published by Inedo, and in 2016 the Workbook Edition sold over 20,000 copies.

Martine's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Take care of yourself
  2. If you ever quit loving what you do, move on
  3. Be a mentor and have a mentor

Audio Download

Posted on 29 November 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 394 | Joshua Kerievsky - Accelerating Awesome

Joshua Kerievsky talks with Dave Rael about Industrial Logic, making great experiences, psychological safety, great businesses, and delivering value

Joshua is the founder and CEO of Industrial Logic, a pioneering Extreme Programming/Lean consultancy that radically improves the software development capabilities of organizations around the globe. In the mid-1990s, Joshua was among a small community of “lightweight methods” practitioners experimenting with better ways of developing software. Since then, he’s helped thousands of people across hundreds of organizations learn better ways of making software, carefully reviewing and revising methods with the greatest impact and return on investment. Today, he leads an effort to modernize Agile by removing outdated practices and leveraging the best of what the software community and other industries have learned about achieving awesome results. Modern agile practitioners work to Make People Awesome, Make Safety A Prerequisite, Experiment & Learn Rapidly and Deliver Value Continuously. Joshua is an international speaker and author of the best-selling, Jolt Cola-award-winning book, Refactoring to Patterns, numerous Agile eLearning courses, and popular articles like Anzeneering, Sufficient Design, and Stop Using Story Points. He’s active on Twitter, Snapchat and the emerging community.

Joshua's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Look at usage metrics or you you're flying blind and don't know if you're delivering value
  2. Spend time validating or invalidating ideas before you start to work on them
  3. Hunt for bargains - look for high value at low cost

Audio Download

Posted on 26 November 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 393 | Jamie Phillips - Setting Up Good Experiences

Jamie Phillips talks with Dave Rael about the scientific method, understanding the people around you, automation, impact, and setting up good experiences

Jamie Phillips is a Senior Software Development Engineer at SentryOne, and works remotely from East Tennessee. He has been working with .NET since 2007 after discovering .NET development in graduate school. Jamie's Geology degree has given him an appreciation for large systems and processes which has created keen interest in Solutions Architecture, DevOps, and the Cloud. During the day he works on Windows, but at night he is all about Linux. He can be found on Twitter @phillipsj73, his blog at, and GitHub as phillipsj.

Jamie's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Be repeatable
  2. Read
  3. Be open-minded

Audio Download

Posted on 21 November 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 392 | Riccardo Terrell - Seize Opportunity

Riccardo Terrell talks with Dave Rael about functional programming, concurrency, cultural expectations, taking breaks, mentoring, and healthy relationships

Riccardo Terrell is a seasoned software engineer and Microsoft MVP who is passionate about functional programming. He is active in the .NET community and the author of "Functional Concurrency in .NET", which features how to develop highly-scalable systems in F# & C#. Riccardo believes in polyglot programming as a mechanism for finding the right tool for the job.

Riccardo's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Take a break and leave the computer behind
  2. Be curious and never stop learning
  3. Find a mentor and be a mentor

Audio Download

Posted on 19 November 2018 | 12:00 am