Saber Blog

Experience all the excitement and crippling self-doubt, as I document my journey with Saber from Side Project to Profitable Start Up

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The Perfect Bug Report

13 Oct 2015

Bug reports aren’t about fixing issues, not directly anyway, they’re about giving the person on the receiving end enough information to be able to consistently reproduce the bug. That way it not only be easier for them to fix, they’ll also be able to create a test for it, and ensure it stays fixed.

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5 True Bootstrapped Start Ups that have never taken Funding

08 Oct 2015

I’ve seen a lot of articles that list “boostrapped start ups”, yet they all seem to include companies that started out as bootstrappers, but eventually took funding. Names like 37 Signals (now Basecamp), Github, GoPro, AppSumo and Freshbooks frequently feature on these lists, but if you Google any of those company names with the term ‘funding’, you’ll quickly find not one of them are bootstrapped any more.

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How I Accidentally Killed Conversions

29 Sep 2015

This story takes place in early 2014, so cast your mind back: Bitcoin was riding a sharp decline from its lofty value of over $1,000 per btc. Pharrell’s ‘Happy’ was being played on a non-stop loop. And the Lego Movie was making me wonder if a Lego Minifig’s hand really was the perfect size to hold a lolly-pop stick like a staff. Ah, happier times.

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Sometimes Bootstrapped is Better

23 Sep 2015

I’ve had this post bouncing around my head for a little while now, but I’d been reluctant to write it for two reasons: First, as the founder of a bootstrapped start up, I’m probably (definitely) biased. And second, I’m probably going to ruffle some feathers by voicing this opinion. But then, what is life without a little controversy?

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10 Things you should do before making a website live

15 Sep 2015

Whether it’s a brand new website, or just a new version of an existing site, I find going live is a lot like getting dressed in the morning - I’m probably gonna forget something. Over the last 10 or so years of website development I’ve gotten pretty good at making things live without issue, and developed a sort of mental check list of things to do before going live. I thought I’d share my check list here, and of course if you have anything you think I should add, leave a comment at the end of the listicle.

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How to get your Startup a great Intro Video for less than $200

08 Sep 2015

It seems these days that a fancy animated intro video is a vital part of any startup's home page. After all, intro videos a great way to tell your story, and quickly show people what your company does. Thankfully you don't need to pay a specialist animation studio upwards of $10,000 to jump on this bandwagon. In fact I'm going to show you how I was able to create this intro video for BugMuncher myself, for less than $200.

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Fullpage screenshots with Selenium Webdriver in Chrome and Safari

01 Sep 2015

Saber makes use of Selenium to create accurate screenshots in over 500 different browser / operating system combinations. The problem I (and many Selenium users) face is that the drivers for selenium are not consistent in how they take screenshots. Most browser drivers in Selenium take a screenshot of the entire webpage, but version 2 of the Chrome driver, as well as the Safari driver only take screenshots of the viewport.

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Finally - BugMuncher has per-highlight descriptions

04 Aug 2015

This was one of the most common feature requests I would receive for BugMuncher - the ability to describe each individual highlight, rather than just have one description for the whole feedback report. This was always something I wanted to implement, and has been on my mind for long time.

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Conditionally Disabling Database Sessions in Ruby on Rails 3

13 Jul 2015

I’ll start with the obvious: Why would you want to conditionally disable database sessions in Ruby on Rails 3? It’s a problem I’ve faced with BugMuncher for a long time, but for a different reason than most. The most common reason people want this is to stop sessions being created for web crawlers (bots). Here’s a couple of people having this issue - this person and this one too.

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Can Everyone See the Edit Button? - A lesson in User Experience

01 Jul 2014

Firstly, an apology - It’s been a little while since I last posted here, I’ve got a nice long list of forthcoming blog posts, but had no time to write them.

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