Month: November 2016

Codeable Review – October 2016

work-review

October marks my second month at Codeable. My first month was very quiet, mostly because I was still busy with other things in September, including WordCamp. I also took my time getting into the Codeable process, commenting on only a few smaller tasks. I closed my first small task mid October, so I’m considering October as my first official month as a Codeable developer.

It should be noted that due to my other commitments I only have an average of about 20 WordPress development hours available in a week, which I try to split between plugin development, blogging and Codeable work. This means I tend to focus on smaller projects that don’t require my time for longer than about 4 – 6 hours a day, unless the deadline is very flexible.

Fellow Codeable expert, WordCamp speaker and all around nice guy Nathan Ello believes “transparency trumps secrecy” and I tend to agree with him. With that in mind, below you will find my income and client reviews from Codeable for the month of October.

Show me the money

First, a quick calculation. Based on the minimum number of hours I have available for Codeable development (4) and the Codeable minimum suggested hourly rate of $60, I am aiming to earn about $720 per week or about $2800 per month. For some this may not be much, but for my situation it is an acceptable amount (for now). I am also basing my income for the month on the amount I can withdraw on the 25th of that month, so any project I get hired for during or after that day, or that gets paid out after that date, gets moved into the following month.

So how did October go? To be honest it wasnt amazing, but I am happy with it. I’m already on a good path to more than double my October income in November and I’ve more or less figured out a good balance between Codeable work and my other ventures.

My total Codeable income for October is $504.50. Now as you will agree that’s only about a quarter of my target amount above, but I really only closed those projects in the last week of October. I was also hired for a task of about $1000 in October that is still ongoing and I have another project of a little over $1000 lined up for November. So November is already close to my target within the first week.

Happiness report

More important than the money is how my clients view my work. As I don’t have a lot of closed tasks for October I don’t have a huge amount of reviews on my profile, but those that I do have are very positive.

“Jonathan is The Best! Very knowledgeable and Very Professional. He is the right man for all Tasks. Glad to find him here. :)”

“Perfect teamwork. Clear communication and perfect coding.”

“A star! Smashing tutor”

A few thanks

Getting through the first few months at Codeable wasn’t easy with my specific situation. I had a few ups and downs, and I probably wouldn’t have made it this far without the help of the Codeable support team (Chris, Raleigh, Liam, David and Per) and a few fellow developers (Justin, Robin, Panos and anyone else I’ve forgotten to mention, who make hanging out on the Codeable Slack a blast) who helped and guided me along the way. A special shout out to Justin who had a nice little chat with me on Slack one day and gave me the push I needed to get back up in the horse, thanks man!

October was OK, November is already looking good, here’s to wrapping up the year on a great footing to kick off 2017 with a bang at Codeable!

Filed under: Development, Freelancing, WordPressTagged with: ,

4 WordCamps in 4 Months

WordCamp

Last year at WordCamp I decided I would speak at the next one, this year I did just that. So when I heard that there would be 3 new WordCamps happening in Africa this year (one in Johannesburg, one in Nairobi and one in Harare) I decided on the spot I want to attend all three.

In deciding to do this I realised that, with my attendance of WordCamp Cape Town in September, I’d effectively be able to attend a total of 4 WordCamps in 4 months (Johannesburg in November and Nairobi and Harare in December). The downside (as always), finding the money to do it.

As a self employed developer finding $2000 – $3000 to cover flights, accommodation and general expenses for the three extra trips is not easy. As such I am reaching out to the greater community, in Africa and internationally, to assist me in my plan.

Over at Elegant Marketplace I developed a really small plugin (that was released for free) which simply adds a ‘Next’ and ‘Previous’ link at the end of every blog post. For the month of November I’ve changed the pricing model to a ‘choose your own price’ option, with a minimum of $2 and a suggested price of $5. Elegant Marketplace has kindly offered to give me the full proceeds of the sale of this plugin for the month of November, waiving the usual management fees I pay for my other products.

If I can get 600 people to buy this plugin I’ll be able to cover the costs of my trips. Even if you never use the plugin, or you could really write one your own, I’d appreciate your support in making this trip possible.

You can read more about the trip and how it came about in my Elegant Marketplace blog post or you can just go ahead and buy the plugin here.

Thanks.

Filed under: Experiences, WordPressTagged with: , , ,

Why upholding the GPL might be so important to Matt.

Freedom

For those of you who don’t follow WordPress news and updates as I do, over the weekend Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg wrote a post accusing WordPress competitor Wix of stealing code. The CEO of Wix responded shortly thereafter. It’s been an interesting few days for WordPress and the GPL, with some people supporting and praising Matt for his post, while others have suggested that his post indicates a lack of leadership or that he was foolish calling out Wix publicly.

I’m not going to comment on either side. Nor will I be able to successfully comment on the legalities of different open source licenses. What I would like to do is offer some insight as to why I believe Matt is such a strong defender of the GPL.

Last night I started reading Milestones: The Story of WordPress. It traces the history of WordPress all the way back to the b2/cafelog days. In chapter 2 it talks about the original b2 developer, Michel Valdrighi, and his reasons for choosing the GPL license.

“It was important to Michel that b2 remain free, even if he stopped working on the project. He also wanted his code to remain free if other developers took it and used it in their own project. He recalls now that “at the end of that elimination process, GPL remained. It helped that there were already some projects using it, as I didn’t want the code to end up abandoned and forgotten because of the choice of an exotic license.”

Michel’s choice of license was prescient. Under a GPL license, software can be forked, modified, and redistributed. If development stops (as it did with b2), the ability to fork, modify, and redistribute can prevent software from becoming vaporware.”

It is vital to note that the freedoms provided by the GPL meant that Matt and Mike (the co founders of WordPress) were not only allowed to fork b2, but were allowed to study it, edit it, improve it and release it back to the community for further study, editing and improvement. All that had to be maintained through each iteration of the software was that it retained the GPL license and the freedoms it provided.

It’s probably safe to say that without the GPL license, Matt and Mike may not have chosen to fork b2, WordPress may never have existed, 25% of the web would be run on something else and the millions of people around the world (including me) would not have jobs today.

So, thanks Matt, for having the moral character to stand up for the GPL and it’s freedoms, the same freedoms that allowed you to create WordPress in the first place.

Sometimes the right thing to do isn’t always the popular thing to do.

Filed under: WordPressTagged with: , ,