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Episodes

33: Build vs Buy and Disrupting Processes

10/9/2018
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We're back after a couple-week break! Don and Randy discuss the ever-debated strategy of building versus buying your software solutions. But they up the ante by discussing how existing workflows and processes are perhaps a bigger consideration than SaaS fees or software development costs

Duration:00:30:28

32: Handling Critical Feature Updates

9/11/2018
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Don's firm recently underwent its first major platform upgrade and we discuss the various ways they prepared, tested, and worked through the changes, all the way up to the dreaded "point of no return."

Duration:00:49:07

31: Elon Musk and Leading Your Team to Burnout

8/21/2018
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Pulled from the media, Don and Randy discuss Elon Musk's interview regarding the personal toll that his attempt to run three companies, perhaps poorly, is taking upon himself. Moreso, they talk about what it means to be in a leadership position and how leading-by-extremes can take a toll on the whole team (or company). Oh, yeah, they also bring in a discussion about college football coaches, Urban Meyer, Nick Saban, and even Mark Richt. And for that, they sincerely apologize to those of you...

Duration:00:52:22

10: Skills for a career in tech leadership

2/18/2018
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If a junior developer is looking at the fork in a technology career path of software engineering or management, what kinds of skills do they need for the leadership side?

Duration:00:44:16

9: Developer focus is an excuse not to talk, right?

2/10/2018
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Is the call for "developer focus" a selfish complaint from precious snowflake employees? What right do developers have to ruin the design trend of great-looking open offices where collaboration magically happens? This week, we discuss how we feel about the need for managers to talk to employees at all times vs the need for folks to get work done without interruption.

Duration:00:46:43

8: Your hosting strategy - Choosing from self, managed, cloud, or serverless

2/3/2018
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How do you choose the best hosting options for your product or firm? This week, we discuss the thinking in a choice between self-hosting, managed hosting, cloud options, and the new buzz word: "serverless".

Duration:00:40:01

7: Work-life balance

1/27/2018
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We discuss the importance of a work-life or non-tech balance for someone building a career in technology. Do folks need to set aside a specific amount of time, or any at all, not working on things related to their job?

Duration:00:38:45

6: Does a tech manager need to code to be effective?

1/18/2018
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Randy is a CTO that codes almost daily. Don has found it difficult to string together multiple days where he's able to code for his current roles. Today, we tackle the topic of whether a CTO or technical manager needs to be able to code to be effective at their job.

Duration:00:33:23

Episode 6 - Does a tech manager need to code to be effective?

1/18/2018
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Randy is a CTO that codes almost daily. Don has found it difficult to string together multiple days where he's able to code for his current roles. Today, we tackle the topic of whether a CTO or technical manager needs to be able to code to be effective at their job. Notes Links CTO Think Podcast is creating Episode Transcripts for Accessiblity Closing Thanks for listening to the CTO Think Podcast. If you liked what you heard, please share a link to the podcast with your...

Duration:00:33:23

5: Antifragile and TDD - What's the value?

1/12/2018
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Don brings up the subject of chaos, based on a book he's been reading, Antifragile, by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. We discuss the merits of test driven development, unpredictability, and how technical managers can work towards a more resilient product in the face of inevitable failures.

Duration:00:33:19

Episode 5 - What's the value of test driven development in an Antifragile world?

1/12/2018
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Don brings up the subject of chaos, based on a book he's been reading, Antifragile, by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. We discuss the merits of test driven development, unpredictability, and how technical managers can work towards a more resilient product in the face of inevitable failures. Notes Links Nassim Nicholas Taleb websiteAntifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder on AmazonNassim Nicholas Taleb on AmazonChaos MonkeyAmazon Web Services EC2 Closing Thanks for listening to the CTO...

Duration:00:33:19

4: Risk and Exploits - Dealing with Meltdown and Spectre

1/5/2018
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Randy and Don discuss an item ripped from the headlines: What should a technical manager do about the recent Meltdown and Spectre exploits? They move into the CTO modes of research, understanding, translation, preparation, upgrading, monitoring, and, most of all, not freaking out. Randy requests a bobblehead or plush toy of the Spectre logo.

Duration:00:42:46

Episode 4 - What should a manager do about the Meltdown and Spectre exploits?

1/5/2018
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Randy and Don discuss an item ripped from the headlines: What should a technical manager do about the recent Meltdown and Spectre exploits? They move into the CTO modes of research, understanding, translation, preparation, upgrading, monitoring, and, most of all, not freaking out. Randy requests a bobblehead or plush toy of the Spectre...

Duration:00:42:46

3: Managing tech debt - When best to work on it?

1/2/2018
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Don faced an issue at his education tech firm: When should you slow down forward progress on new features in order to spend time on festering technical issues?

Duration:00:28:11

Episode 3 - When best to work on tech debt?

1/2/2018
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Don faced an issue at his education tech firm: When should you slow down forward progress on new features in order to spend time on festering technical issues? Notes Links CaptionPointAspirEDUHOA Done Credits Show music is Dumpster Dive by Marc Walloch, licensed by PremiumBeat.com Closing Reviews on iTunes are always appreciated and help us spread the word about the podcast.

Duration:00:28:11

2: Hiring developers - Who should I hire to build an app?

12/28/2017
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Randy was posed a question by a potential client: "I want to build an app. Who should I hire?" and he asks the same question to Don.

Duration:00:23:24

Episode 2 - Who should I hire to build an app?

12/28/2017
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Randy was posed a question by a potential client: "I want to build an app. Who should I hire?" and he asks the same question to Don. Notes Credits Show music is Dumpster Dive by Marc Walloch, licensed by PremiumBeat.com Closing Reviews on iTunes are always appreciated and help us spread the word about the podcast. Transcript Randy Burgess: Hey Don. Don VanDemark: Hey Randy. Randy Burgess: What has been going on this week? Don VanDemark: Couple things for the two companies I'm...

Duration:00:23:24

1: Introducing CTO Think

12/23/2017
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Welcome to CTO Think, a podcast about how technology leaders think about business, tech, and people problems. Don VanDemark and Randy Burgess, two current and former Chief Technology Officers will discuss the various challenges managers face in a product development environment. We'll cover topics such as team-building, product management, scaling, and software engineering decisions.

Duration:00:04:59

Episode 1 - Introducing CTO Think

12/23/2017
More
Welcome to CTO Think, a podcast about how technology leaders think about business, tech, and people problems. Don VanDemark and Randy Burgess, two current and former Chief Technology Officers will discuss the various challenges managers face in a product development environment. We'll cover topics such as team-building, product management, scaling, and software engineering decisions. Notes Links AspirEDUAll Aboard AppsHOA Done Closing Thanks for listening to the CTO Think Podcast. If...

Duration:00:04:59