Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

RentACoder Losing Street Cred? 190

Posted by kdawson
from the lowest-bidder dept.
Itninja writes, "Having used RAC several times in the past (as a buyer), I was shocked by a recent experience. I did a bit of looking around to see if I was the only one having problems with Rent-A-Coder. Apparently, I'm not." From the article: "This unfairness of RAC fees motivates the majority of coders to negotiate payment outside the scope of RAC which amounts to you and coder getting a better deal. For example, I have several coders that I fully trust willing to work on projects on a monthly basis because it is easier for him to deal with established clients than to have to bid for projects all the time. It saves me time and trouble because I can work with a person that I trust and he knows what is expected." A comment to this posting links a discussion of RAC at Google Groups, and there the service has its defenders. What has your experience of RAC been, either as a buyer or as a coder?
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

RentACoder Losing Street Cred?

Comments Filter:
  • by eln (21727) * on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:18PM (#16566240) Homepage
    First off, both of those links have basically been overtaken by the same two guys throwing feces at each other.

    Also, I did try RAC for work during a time when I was unemployed about 4 years ago. Things might have changed since then, but at the time RAC was basically a site where small shops (a lot of spam sites and such) would post projects and get ridiculously low bids from foreign workers. As someone trying to survive in the US at the time, I could not really see myself working on a 10 hour project for $50 or $100, which is indicative of the sorts of bids that were being offered.
    • by cshark (673578) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @05:22PM (#16567250)
      I used to work with RAC pretty extensively as both a buyer and a coder. I don't see what the problem is that's being discussed. It's a great service. I don't mind working with the site, or the people on it. Generally, I did find that as a buyer I got a lot of bids that didn't sound credible. Or bids from individuals trying to look like companies, who did that by re-packaging my RFP word per word in a corporate formatted word doc.

      As a rule, it's been my experience that RAC is far better for smaller projects unless you have a support agreement with the coder. But you win some, you lose some. Out of the dozen or so projects listed with RAC during my period of working with them as a buyer, the service was outstanding on about nine of them, and I worked with people I grew comfortable with.

      As far as the others, not everyone is a people person, and sometimes projects needed to be re-drafted and re-contracted. Can't really blame someone for my lack of foresight. But you can blame people when they're rude or completely obnoxious for no good reason. And that happened once that I can remember in my dealings with the site.

      Being an American coder, I found it to be an extremely competitive market place. There were times when it seemed like everyone in the world was bidding on the projects I was most interested in working on for less than I could consider bidding. Didn't make much money at it, but I liked the way the site was organized, and most of the people that I met.

      Just after the service started, my boss at the time found out about it and fired six of us in favor of the "per project gurus" on RAC. Two months later he tried to hire us back, so I imagine that it probably didn't go well. When I went back, I managed the process of working through RAC for him. So it's all relative.

      It's a lesson in outsourcing.
      It can be great when it works. Or not when it doesn't.
      It's up to you.

      The key is to work with people who communicate well from the beginning rather than the low ball bidders or incoherent spec writers. Oh, and keeping your project specs, and bid proposals short and simple.

      If you're a coder, take the time to read and understand the spec. If it's unclear, ask for clarification before making a commitment to work on the project.

      If you're a buyer, it's a good idea to read feedback and make sure that the coder understands exactly what it is that you want him to do. It also helps not to get too friendly with your RAC coders. After all, it is a business relationship, and it's easy to offend or get offended when conversations stray too much from the task at hand.

      Just some thoughts.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by tinkertim (918832) *
      I use (as both a programmer and buyer) most of the major freelance sites. Scriptlance (scriptlance.com) is another major one.

      The market is so flooded I moved to Asia with a can't-beat-em-join-em mentality and its worked out rather well for me, I can offer the assurance of having non disclosure agreements actually binding and enforce-able and folks like cheap Americans.

      There is *no way* I could feed myself / family freelancing while living in the US. Absolutely no way. The whole idea behind going Freelance
  • Check out the gem way down the flame war in the first link:

    "How can you expect to win an arbitration if the arbitrator is not capable to understand more then 2-3 sentences plain English?"

    Heh heh heh.

    • by rizzo420 (136707)
      that whole discussion is hilarious. takereal, the guy fighting for RAC, can't speak english at all. it's really amusing and if that's the kind of guy that represents RAC, then i don't think anyone should be using them.
    • this explains why rentacoder team do not understand plain English if is
      more than several sentences
      the rentacoder team took to do job(rentacoder site) according their
      mental abilities


      I don't understand plain English either, if that's what you're calling English.
    • by pclminion (145572)

      Yeah, I get it... But you don't have to use the language perfectly to be comprehensible. There's a big difference between a grammatical/spelling mistake here and there, and completely butchering the language. I think the sentence you quote is better formed than a lot of sentences I hear from native speakers.

      Anyway, replace "capable" with "able" and the sentence is perfect. Or, replace "to understand" with "of understanding" and again, perfect. We're talking about nuances of the language here, not terrible

  • Obligatory... (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    As a coder living in the US, I looked at RentACoder with some interest back in, oh, 2002. These days there's no way any American coder is going to make beer money - much less a living - when the competition can afford to underbid the way they do.

    When you "conservatively" bid $100 on a gig, knowing even that's a low price for all they want done, and within an hour there are 10 other bidders, all of them under $10, some of them even under $5... You just can't compete.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:20PM (#16566304)
    Is after several years of payments you actually own the coder outright. You will have to feed them and find a place for them to sleep in the basement. And when you add everything up, you will find that you overpaid massively.
  • The Middleman (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nmb3000 (741169) <nmb3000@that-google-mail-site.com> on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:21PM (#16566318) Homepage Journal
    This sounds like RAC is facing the same problems any other middleman service does eventually. Specifically:

    1) People soon start trying to remove the middleman, saving both the client and vendor time and money
    2) There are always a few 'bad eggs' in the basket and there's not much you can do about it (and is one reason people start to do #1 above)

    I don't think there's anything wrong with RAC establishing relations between coders and buyers, but they shouldn't complain if people stop using them because they've already found a match. I'd much rather find a trustworthy contact for whom I could do freelance development and then stick with them, instead of hunting through offers and making bids.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Red Flayer (890720)

      1) People soon start trying to remove the middleman, saving both the client and vendor time and money

      Of course, any middleman company worth its salt would have legal recourse if any service provider of theirs actually went ahead and did this. Every employment contract I've ever seen stipulates that the employee cannot go work for a client without the express written permission of the employer.

      Anecdotally, a past employer of mine got sued (and lost) for poaching an employee of one of our consulting firms..

      • Yes, but in this context, the coders would be 'independent contractors',not employees, which would change what RAC could do to wayward coders.

        Of course, any middleman company worth its salt would have legal recourse if any service provider of theirs actually went ahead and did this. Every employment contract I've ever seen stipulates that the employee cannot go work for a client without the express written permission of the employer.

        Even your comment proves this point, as both client and employer ar
        • Yes, but in this context, the coders would be 'independent contractors',not employees, which would change what RAC could do to wayward coders.

          Not by much. If RAC puts it in their contract with the coders, they will be able to sue for lost income if a coder does independent work for a client that he met through RAC. And if a client does this, knowing about the contract between RAC and the coders, the client could be liable for intentional interference with contract.
          • by Surt (22457)
            In addition to the other flaws being pointed out, as soon as RAC starts 'employing' they're going to run smack into all the business with more than X employees rules.
            Benefits must be paid, etc.
          • by Rix (54095)
            Those clauses have been pretty clearly shown to be unenforceable.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by CastrTroy (595695)
        However, the middle man in this case only sets up work for specific projects. So if I hire a coder from RAC to do project A, and they do a good job, I may just decide to go around RAC and get them to do project B also. I may also decide to hire them full time. I don't really see anything wrong with this, as RAC (from my understanding) is set up to provide coders for specific projects. I don't imagine the coders sign anything saying they are only allowed to get work through RAC, or that the people hiring
        • by sgt scrub (869860)
          I may also decide to hire them full time. I don't really see anything wrong with this... (snip)

          US law prohibits RAC from any claims to the new contract unless they can claim the person is an employee. If they present the company as the employer then they have entered a contractual agreement and are required to give that employee all mandatory stipulations required by law. ie. They must pay for; medical, life, employment insurance, income taxes, sick leave, vacation time...
      • Every employment contract I've ever seen stipulates that the employee cannot go work for a client without the express written permission of the employer.

        Except in very rare cases, any clause like that is unenforceable. Regular employees are free to work for whomever they choose, just as their employers are allowed to terminate their employment at will.

        Anecdotally, a past employer of mine got sued (and lost) for poaching an employee of one of our consulting firms... nasty stuff, breach of contract is.

        That i
  • by porkThreeWays (895269) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:26PM (#16566404)
    Did it actually ever have any street cred? For as long as I can remember RAC has been filled with insanely low bids being eaten up by foreign coders. I've gone there several times over the years looking to pick up some extra cash and have never seen a bid I thought was worth my time.
    • by TigerNut (718742) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:34PM (#16566502) Homepage Journal
      From the coders' perspective they would be better served if they could submit sealed bids (or at least, if the bids or statistics were only visible to the organization that posted the job). In that way you wouldn't get people going "$500? I can do that for $400" and progressively undercutting each other right out of existence.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by CastrTroy (595695)
        It would be nice to have a silent auction kind of system. You could submit your bid, along with a resume, and they could pick from the person who they think is going to give them the best value for their dollar. They may not always go with the cheapest person, since they may not do the best job.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Raynor (925006)
        That isn't how i've seen it.

        I'm no guru (yet :D) but I just recently joined and put down a $10 bid to get some business and some credibility on a random number generator (I think someone wasn't doing their homework -.- ).

        I lost the bid to an Indian programmer who bid $20 and his bid was a generic "I look forward to hearing from you, and rest assured that the results will meet your requirements and expectations."

        Whereas I had just spent the last half-hour talking with the guy about exactly what he wanted, an
      • Very true... (Score:2, Insightful)

        by mohjlir (553108)
        In that way you wouldn't get people going "$500? I can do that for $400" and progressively undercutting each other right out of existence.

        This is a big problem, and one that is difficult to address. A lot of inexperienced programmers underestimate the amount of time required to execute a project to an acceptable level of completion. "Text editor? I'll do that for $50".
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Metasquares (555685)
          My experience is that you agree to create a text editor and deliver it well ahead of schedule. When you deliver that, however, the buyer's expectations change. Now he wants Word for the same $50.
          • by inKubus (199753)
            That's why you have a contract renegotiation clause at every minor (1/100) version.

            v0.01 Type on keys and it appears on screen ($50)

            User is not satisfied. Says he wants to EDIT text. Say that wasn't in the original work spec HE SIGNED, offer to make the improvements FOR A SMALL FEE.

            v0.02 vi

            User is not satisfied, says he wants INTERACTIVITY. Say that wasn't in the original work spec HE SIGNED, offer to make the improvements FOR A SMALL FEE.

            v1.0 You've just made $5000!

            Remember the wise words: fast, good,
        • A lot of inexperienced programmers underestimate the amount of time required to execute a project to an acceptable level of completion.

          A lot of experienced programmers do that too.

          /me returns to coding after 4 hours of sleep...

      • by pclminion (145572)
        If the bids are secret, it's not really bidding anymore. It's just the usual business of "pick the lowest price."
      • you wouldn't get people going "$500? I can do that for $400"
        It's called a "reverse auction", and they're actually pretty popular in commodities markets — which is what RAC boils down to.
  • by UbuntuDupe (970646) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:27PM (#16566414) Journal
    If you already know the person, and you can trust them, and have worked with them before, you no longer need RAC's services, and you won't get their escrow or mediation help either if something goes wrong. But at that point, the Coder is more like a semi-regular employee for you.

    Also, I had a bad experience there. It was partly because I rushed to post the program specs, but also because the Coder was a complete dick. He'd always demand payment despite not making milestones. He'd show he understood the specs with an example, and then two phases in, "forgot" that he had to meet that, and had a solution worked out that precluded it, requiring him to start over. He tried to clarify the specs for one of the phases by putting it in his own words. It looked good, so I just made that the formal contract for that phase. Then, in arbitration, he claimed the requirements were unclear and vague. Yeah -- his own words, vague. He's since been banned since the arbitration.

    Btw, what's with U.S. programmers complaining about wages? The task was a simple word-processor that handled stuff similar to html markup. It couldn't have taken a regular programmer more than 10 hours, working from pre-existing solutions (open source stuff was okay) and there were no (trustworthy) bids under $500. And none at any price from America.
    • 10 hours work 500 bucks 50 bucks an hour thats not much for consulting work. The prices on RAC in general were less that what you can telecommute a contract on dice for.
      • by QuantumG (50515)
        $50/hr is hardly anything to sneeze at.. especially if you're a college student or living in a country where $50 will feed your family for a month.
        • by xenocide2 (231786)
          I'm not gonna say that 50 dollars an hour isn't fantastic and espcially lucrative to people in places you describe. What I will say is that the downside to short term contracting is that you have to spend a lot of unpaid time finding more work, and things like health care that salaried people get with their job must be paid for as well. After all, you're essentially forgoing a regular salaried job so you can contract from company to company with ease. The general rule is 4 times salary. Rent-a-coder can pu
          • by QuantumG (50515)
            Yeah. Kinda makes me thing you need a corporate entity to find work for programmers. I know, as soon as you set up such an entity they'll just pay the programmers a salary and pocket the profits.. I've seen many consulting companies that do exactly that. The only other alternative is some kind of co-op.
      • by Bamafan77 (565893)
        10 hours work 500 bucks 50 bucks an hour thats not much for consulting work. The prices on RAC in general were less that what you can telecommute a contract on dice for.
        Not grand theft true, but it ain't THAT bad. If I had the time to spare, I'd take that in a heartbeat (as a side project). If you're planning to live off this though, the trick becomes lining up enough projects to keep a steady income (that's a LOT of 10 hour projects).
        • Lining up a pile of projects gets to be unworkable you can spend 10 hours getting 10 hours of projects setup. It's one thing to send in a quick bid it's another to make a living doing it. Assuming a 40 hour work week with an average of 20 billable hours and then taking into account overhead for insurance, legal fees (have to collect on those that don't want to pay) etc 3-4 times normal salary is about normal. Whats worse most are looking for bids on projects with no real scope and bids should always be m
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by bzipitidoo (647217)
      couldn't have taken a regular programmer more than 10 hours

      How do you know that? I think part of the problem with the basic idea is the extreme difficulty of predicting how long a project will take. But even before that, it can be a big problem merely to specify what is to be done. You sound like you were cheated by a coder who was deliberately making specification even more difficult.

      You mention pre-existing solutions. That's another thing that makes scheduling software engineering extremely diffic

      • The "cheating" was in "forgetting" a requirement he obviously understood from the beginning, even showing an example of its implementation. The "cheating" was in demanding that I pay him *right now* for work that's obviously not complete. The "cheating" was in griping about cost of living to get me to pay him more after we agreed to terms.

        Also, you seem to have a misunderstanding of what "word processing" is. A text editor that allows you to make words bold counts as a word processor. A wysiwyg html ed
        • by Tim C (15259)
          I used the term "word processor" here because I thought people would realize I was using a term with a standardized meaning

          But that meaning covers such a broad spectrum as to be useless in this context. You give examples of a wysiwyg HTML editor that only understands three tags (which is still potentially several days work!), then as proof link to an article citing MS Word and OO Writer as examples of word processors. That's a huge range of features all summed up with the same two-word term. It's impossible
      • by inKubus (199753)
        Utilize the quick-kill method:

        You make a fast project plan, determine who is invested in it. Determine the final value of the project. Determine the cost of the project. Then make sure you get 50% upfront, 25% at some predetermined point in the project plan and 25% at completion. If they balk at the second 25% you give them one chance then you drop the contract. As a coder, you will have to kiss some ass and take some shit work for the first couple of jobs to get a good rep. Then you can offer referen
      • by Splab (574204)
        I just don't get people saying stuff can be done in 10 hours, back when I did webapps the specifications could take more than weeks to get agreed upon. I wouldn't even think of doing a full site for less than $20,000.
    • by tkrotchko (124118) *
      Because the only way to make a decent living is not trying to hustle $500 jobs every odd week. You've got to find a regular contract that will specify 1000-2000 hours at a predetermined rate.

      Despite what the media and everybody is telling us, good programmers who you can trust to do the job without managing them like a 12 year old are rare and expensive, and when you find one you pay him or her enough money to keep them happy (in fact, I don't personally know a programmer who would even bother with anythin
  • I've done contract programming work for people directly before, and that always worked out fairly well. I tried using RAC a few times to find both small and large pieces of contract work, and always had a bad experience - either I'd deliver a working product and the buyer would run off with it without paying (and RAC would ignore my requests for them to actually do their job as an escrow service) or the buyer would continually redefine the requirements so that I could never actually 'complete' the work and 'earn' the payment.

    Of course, half the listings on there are so ridiculously underpriced ($25 for a week of work? No thanks!) or utterly brainless (Please write a custom clone of Winamp from scratch for $500) that it's not even worth bothering.

    You could literally make better money by releasing an open source app and putting google ads on the website. Seriously.
    • by mazarin5 (309432)
      I've been through that mill several times. The kicker is when RAC decided that I had too many cases that ended in arbitration and booted me. Then, because I couldn't log in anymore, I lost all my cases by default. Two months and $3200 out the fucking window :(
  • ifreelance (Score:5, Informative)

    by trwww (545291) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:33PM (#16566494) Homepage

    So use ifreelance.com [ifreelance.com].

    Its free and you and the programmer decide on your own payment method

  • Up and Down With RAC (Score:3, Informative)

    by Revenge_of_Solver_Ta (862178) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:39PM (#16566594) Homepage
    Got good PHP coders from Scriptlance.

    Good designers from GetAFreelancer or Designoutpost.

    Good content people from Guru and Elance...

    That's it.
  • http://www.kasamba.com/ [kasamba.com] (they have more than just a "technical" advice area)
    http://elance.com/ [elance.com]
    http://www.scriptlance.com/ [scriptlance.com]

    Personally these sites really don't encourage a Buyer/Bidder relationship, and I have had my accounts on elance, and kasamba, banned for initiating direct contact with my clients. Ofcourse talking through the vale of secrecy and the worst e-mail systems ever concocted by a webcoder are always the best means of communications with clients.
    As these sites want there Buyers to keep
  • Google Groups? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) <obsessivemathsfreak@@@eircom...net> on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:54PM (#16566840) Homepage Journal
    Discussion on Google Groups? It looks like it was on USENET to me. alt.computer.consultants to be specific.

    Has it come to this?
    • by drinkypoo (153816)
      Yes, yes it has. What's the next homebrew technology news site? All million of us can go over and fuck it up, next. (Not that there can possibly be a million active users - not because there's not enough people but because the UIDs aren't far enough over a mil.)
  • These work? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Jason1729 (561790) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @04:56PM (#16566866)
    I tried out scriptlance as both a renter and coder. As a coder I always got underbid until someone was willing to do a 20 hour plus project for $10 (with $5 of it going to scriptlance). Then I figured if it's so cheap, I may as well get help with my own projects instead of trying to make extra cash with it. As a renter, I got a bunch of bids from people who clearly didn't read my proposal or have any idea what I was asking for and what it involved.
  • by grcumb (781340) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @05:02PM (#16566968) Homepage Journal
    A comment to this posting links a discussion of RAC at Google Groups

    We prefer the term 'The Service Formerly Known as Usenet.'

  • Eh... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by daeg (828071) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @05:03PM (#16566990)
    I used to be a big RAC seller. It was great for a while, I hit the top 10 (as #10), had a perfect score, and thousands of $$ earned. As a US-based worker, English was my best tool available. A lot of US-based shops were very xenophobic, and perhaps rightfully so. I made more money off of failed outsourced projects than anything. I rarely saw any good work out of the foreign shops (usually India, although there were some eastern European ones, too). When it did work, it only did what the original project had asked for, and in the shortest, messiest route. Expanding one of their projects was almost impossible -- no scalability or future design in mind.

    Rent-a-coder lost it for me when I bid on three projects over the course of three months. Two of them alone would be been fine, however, Rent-a-coder permitted the buyers to accept months-old bids. I was away at the time and missed my 24-hours to decline the project. I ended up with 3 concurrent projects with altered scopes (much larger than the original bid had been for), but Rent-a-coder leans toward the buyers, not the sellers, in disputes.

    Despite my attempts, my account's cred was lost within a week due to the stupidity of the RAC system. This was about two years ago, so it may have changed.

    On the up side, I did find a few very nice clients through RAC projects. Dazzle the right guy and you won't need to go through RAC anymore. I got a 2-year consulting contract out of a $500 project, made a few good friends, got a few free trips from helping an unnamed travel website, etc.

    So, if you're going to do it, beware that you can find yourself royally screwed. If you're a native English speaker, that is your best asset -- advertise it, use it! Do not paste a form letter. Most buyers would rather see a short 1 paragraph response saying "Yeah, I can do that!" rather than a 6 paragraph form letter explaining what should be in your resume section, not your bid forms.

    Another thing to be wary of is if you are a college student. Helping another college student on their homework through RAC is likely a violation of your school regulations, e.g., cheating. $50 is not worth possible punishment for both you and the person you're "helping".
    • by aclarke (307017)
      I'll second a lot of this from my experiences with guru.com [guru.com]. For example, from one $300 project I ended up with a $30k+ followup project. For those of us without big teams of programmers behind us, it doesn't take many larger projects like that to keep us busy.

      However, the signal to noise ratio of most of these sites seems to be high enough that once I get busy, I don't bother bidding any more. I do still very occasionally get people contacting me from guru.com though, because I have a good rating fro
  • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Tuesday October 24, 2006 @05:10PM (#16567090) Homepage Journal
    How is this scenario different from any coding "headshop" agency, including giant consultancies like IBM?

    Except that IBM typically sells consultant hours fulltime (or more), across projects for years, so IBM can tell whether you're circumventing them to go work for the customer? And that IBM's customers typically rent different coders from IBM across projects for months or years, so they don't want to screw IBM and lose their supplier? And generally, which consumers of significant consulting resources want to piss off IBM, and its army of lawyers?

    The coders I know who are placed by IBM get paid about half of the $1-200K per year their project pays IBM. So I don't think this has anything to do with how RAC is especially "unfair", except maybe they charge their customers too little, then have too little left to pay their coders. And RAC is a lot easier to scam^Wcircumvent than is IBM.
  • I use these sites as a referral service. They're great for finding new customers/coders, but once I've established a relationship with the other person, it's foolish to keep on using the sites.

    That's also why I don't mind RAC's high fees, since the fees are peanuts compared to what I will gain from my new customers/coders in the long run.

  • Does anyone know of a setup like this but for media (audio/video)?
  • People are willing to take coding jobs to make $150 for what amounts to a day of work? If you think that's a lot, you have to estimate some serious overhead into that. So for all practical purposes, you're clearing about $15/hour to code? Or am I reading this wrong?

    Ouch. The only way to go is to get long-term contracts and do the work. Or take a staff position. Even if you hate it. You'll at least make decent money if you stick with it.

  • So the root of the problem is that he wanted an arbitrator and got an arbortrator . He might not have been specific enough, and if he requested Arbortration on his project, that's exactly what he got.

  • > They charge the coders an exuberant amount

    Did you mean "exorbitant"?

    exuberant [ig-zoo-ber-uhnt]
    -adjective
    extremely good; overflowing; plentiful:
    profuse in growth or production; luxuriant; superabundant:
  • I don't view the site as a direct way to make money. It is more of a way to meet potential clients and establish a relationship with them. Having some regular clients with money you can count on getting can make consulting a lot more fun. One nice thing about RAC is that it is a lot easier to get paid for your work than going it alone. The way the site is set up lets people resolve disputes easily with an impartial third party.

    Mostly it is a marketing tool for software consultants, or part time consultants
  • I have experience on both sides of rent a coder.

    During a period of low employment I bid on several contracts, and was outbid every time by overseas workers. OK, that's fair, that's why American jobs are going over seas, we are too expensive.

    Later when the tides changed I was in a position to put work up for bids. On 3 different projects the winning (overseas) bidders failed to produce anything usable. People who claimed to have direct experience were at best beginning VB programmers without a clue.

    My last e
  • I've done a lot of work through RaC. Their rates are very high, and their minimum charges make it very hard to partake in small jobs. I do enjoy RaC and am thankful for all the jobs I got through them and business relations I've made.

    Often I'll do one or two jobs for a client on RaC, after which we continue our relationship outside of the site. Usually for three reasons:

    Communication. Communicating via the RaC site is inefficient. It's much easier to talk via instant messenger or email. The RaC site is slow
  • When did RAC have street cred?

    I just don't buy the premise that RAC ever had any cred, besides letting cheap bastards line up to get crappy work from Bangalore.

    What kills me is that even half-way decent coders can find stable work in the US. Very few decent coders need to be low-balling their skills, because there are companies lining up to hire them.

    Unless you live in an awful part of the US, there is more demand than there is supply.

  • about a year ago, I did a couple of gigs through RaC. It took a while to dig through absurdly underpriced proposals to find something worth doing, but I bid and won a couple projects that were well suited to my skillset. They didn't pay well, but the competition was stiff, and I mostly won on the merits of my experience in the project's areas.

    * It didn't pay well; I did it at the time because I was a bit desperate.
    * It didn't pay fast; RaC pays by Paypal twice a month; you could wait a month after your clie
  • Its the way things go. New coders enter the market, take on 10-20 jobs, deliver them, and if they are responsible and of quality enough, an ongoing relationship starts between many of his/her clients and him. Clients prefer to deal with a person they know and trust, coder prefers to work with people s/he now knows, so after some time coder is off the market catering to his/her own clientele, everyone is happy.
  • I'm an engineer working for a contract house. I am a technical prostitute. And damned proud of it.

    I've only been in this industry for sixteen years--as a corporate employee, contractor, and small company employee.
    If you have been asleep for the past hundred years, please listen: Management f***s workers. The converse is also true.
    This is almost universally true. Almost.

    Anyone reading this can check out this field if you like. Send your resume to Aerotek, Volt (Manpower), or some similar whorehouse and
  • I had a developer build a windows-based tool that extracted the data from a Peachtree install into mysql, so I could write web-based tools for my client. He did fine, and I was pretty happy with the product. The only problem is that RAC seems to stay in between the coder and the client, making communication difficult sometimes. But it worked out for both me and my client.

    I can see how RAC could be more of a pain in the butt for more complex things, both for the coder and the client. RAC seems ideal for

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. -- Albert Einstein

Working...