“Helping people” was the main criteria I gave myself when I had to pick a career. That is the first reason I picked programming. It also helped that programming had just the right mix of creativity, logic and variability to keep me challenged and passionate.

Over the years, I have always tried to make applications and web sites that are easy to learn and to use. I hate manuals. If someone needs a manual or instructions for one of my creations, I failed, and need to go back to the drawing board. But this got in conflict with the conventional broad and generic approach to software development. Because you can’t possibly make something that will feel as intuitive to everybody. I came to the conclusion that applications should, in fact, be designed for smaller groups of like-minded people. Like the team of philosophically-aligned people in a small business. And that’s where I now concentrate my effort: designing custom applications to better fit the needs, thinking and philosophy of small businesses and startup companies.

I see software as a living, breathing and growing thing that needs to adapt to its users and change with them as the business matures. I work with my clients in a collaborative, symbiotic way. They gain a much better, more agile and intuitive set of tools, and I gain knowledge. Knowledge about their business domain, about them as users and them as persons. It is a far richer exchange than the usual mechanical production of a piece of software that fits technical specifications. It’s a natural, personal and helpful way to simplify the running of their business.

This blog is all about my journey from my more conventional freelancing operation called “Malus”, to my new brand of custom applications outfit: “nibnut“.

 

Why “Symbiont”?

The name of my company (nibnut) comes from the name of the nib tree fruit. The nib tree is one of the many organisms living in symbiosis with another. As such, it was a good example of the symbiosis I develop with my clients, this exchange of knowledge and experience we both partake in when working together. Being one half of this symbiotic relationship I am, in effect, a symbiont.