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 382 | Christina Aldan - Fiercely Grateful

Christina Aldan talks with Dave Rael about branding, confidence, understanding why, lifestyle, and controlling what you can control

Christina Aldan is a TEDx speaker, trainer, and digital advertising consultant whose boutique agency, LG Designs, offers businesses brand consulting and creative content for everyday media. With over 12 years of experience in the digital advertising realm, Christina is highly regarded for her approach to business, partnering with clients to find unique strategies that ensure their advertising goals are met. Christina builds connections through her keynote addresses, training workshops, and technological education. She uses these tools to help individuals and businesses cultivate value in everyday media. She has presented trainings for the Microsoft MVP community and tech conferences worldwide. She is the co-founder for The FierceWomen Project.

Christina's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Ask pointed questions to understand the why
  2. Pick up the phone
  3. Look first at yourself in identifying problems and improving your situation

Audio Download

Posted on 15 October 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 381 | Abhinav Asthana - Big Impact

Abhinav Asthana talks with Dave Rael about vision, leading, value, patience, and using empathy to make something great

As a developer on a mission to simplify API development, Abhinav and his partners started Postman as a side-project in 2012. It has grown to become an industry standard API Development Environment. Postman has more than 5 million users worldwide and is used in every country and every industry sector. Growing from a simple REST client in 2012, Postman now helps developers do everything from design, testing, mocking to monitoring and publishing, in a real-time collaborative environment. Postman has offices in Bangalore, San Francisco and Austin.

Abhinav's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Be empathetic and listen
  2. Get context from a wide variety of sources
  3. Hold back and have patience on capturing value

Audio Download

Posted on 11 October 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 380 | David DeWolf - Humble Confidence

David DeWolf talks with Dave Rael about technology, family, leadership, mentoring, business, responsibility, and understanding context

David DeWolf is the founder and CEO of 3Pillar Global, a leading digital product development firm and an active member of the business and technology communities in the Washington DC metro region. Equally as important, he is a husband and a father of 7 incredible kids. He's active in YPO, serves on several boards and regularly speaks and writes at the intersection of his passions.

David's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Listen and ask questions
  2. Understand context
  3. Don't be afraid to put it out there

Audio Download

Posted on 8 October 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 379 | Richard Rodger - Conscious Decisions

Richard Rodger talks with Dave Rael about the maturing of the web, decisions, the human element in software and business, bitterness, microservices, and choosing wisely

Richard was co-founder and CEO of his previous company, nearForm, where he helped take the company from scratch to an annual turnover of €17 million. Previously, he was CTO of FeedHenry, a mobile application platform provider that was acquired by RedHat for €63.5m in 2014. For several years, Richard has been an active member and influencer of the open source software (OSS) community. He is the creator and maintainer of, a microservices framework for Node.js. Richard is also the host of the monthly Dublin Microservices meetup in Ireland. Richard writes a weekly column in the Irish Independent newspaper. His latest book, The Tao of Microservices, will be published by Manning in 2018.

Richard's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. There is always an acceptable error rate
  2. Don't forget the human factor - Design as much for psychological efficiency as technical efficiency
  3. Choose your career path carefully and with open eyes
  4. Isolate brain modes

Audio Download

Posted on 4 October 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 378 | Simon Harrer - Writing Priorities

Simon Harrer talks with Dave Rael about teaching and being a student, the importance of writing, family, and solving real problems

Dr. Simon Harrer is a senior consultant at INNOQ. In his daily business, he fights for simple solutions with domain-driven design, fitting architectures such as microservices or monoliths, and clean code in Java, Ruby or even JavaScript. Most recently, he wrote the book Java by Comparison that helps Java beginners to write cleaner code through before/after comparisons.

Simon's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Don't just just to a solution - try to spend time with the problem
  2. try pair programming and especially mob programming
  3. In comparison to people, tech is trivial

Audio Download

Posted on 1 October 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 377 | Michael Dowden - Autonomy and People

Michael Dowden talks with Dave Rael about business, people, writing, speaking, and lifestyle design

Michael is a Co Founder and Product Architect for startups Andromeda, FlexePark, and M2D2. For more than 20 years he has been writing code and geeking out over cool technology. He is passionate about keeping things simple and focusing on what provides real value to the end user. Michael enjoys helping other developers grow in their career, speaking at conferences, user groups, and coding academies. In 2015 he wrote Programming Languages ABC++ to share programming languages with children.

Michael's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Listen - check your ego at the door and be willing to accept that you may be wrong
  2. Practice compassion
  3. All other things being equal, simpler is always better

Audio Download

Posted on 27 September 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 376 | Michael Eaton - Connected Independence

Michael Eaton talks with Dave Rael about soft skills, writing, friends, conference speaking, and valuable life experiences

Michael Eaton is a speaker, leader, developer. Voracious reader. Lover of heavy metal. He also blogs at You can read more about him there.

Michael's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Work on emotional intelligence
  2. Communication is key - talk
  3. Don't be afraid to ask questions

Audio Download

Posted on 24 September 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 375 | Miriam Aguirre - Stability to Thriving

Miriam Aguirre talks with Dave Rael about eSports, accessibility, leadership, and humble beginnings

Miriam Aguirre is the Senior Vice President of Engineering at Skillz, the worldwide leader in mobile eSports, which was recently named the fastest-growing company in America by Inc. Magazine. As a vital member of the Skillz leadership team, she has seen the importance of fostering a strong, diverse engineering team firsthand. Prior to this, she worked as a software engineer and architect for companies including HubAnalytics, Krush Inc., Financial Engines and Hewlett-Packard. An avid gaming enthusiast, she has been featured in VentureBeat and CIO Magazine for her passion and efforts to bring diversity to the technology and gaming industries. Miriam grew up in Los Angeles and moved to the San Francisco Bay Area after graduating from MIT. Today, she can be found leading the Skillz engineering team and working to advance diversity in the eSports industry.

Miriam's book recommendation:
Miriam's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Try to understand the problem before jumping to solutions
  2. Work on things you care about (if you can)
  3. Most of the time, problems are people problems

Audio Download

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 12:00 am

Episode 374 | Tom Elliott - The Right Guidance at the Right Times

Tom Elliott talks with Dave Rael about performing, speaking, leadership, user experience, and the joys of the human side of software development

Tom Elliott is an Engineer and Team Lead at Yext, provider of the leading Digital Knowledge Management platform. Tom is a lover of side projects, some of which include Edward, a command-line tool for managing local instances of microservices and Speaker Alert, a mobile app for timing speeches. Outside of technical pursuits, Tom is an avid public speaker, and posts far too many puns on social media.

Tom's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Put people first
  2. Prepare for everything you do
  3. If you are good at something, you probably won't realize your'e good at it

Audio Download

Posted on 17 September 2018 | 12:00 am