Friday evening, we got an emergency call from one guy in Netherland.
He is building a remote web platform for school exams. Covid & lockdown, Perfect time for it. He already signed schools. First real use Monday, National TV will be there to do a reportage on his solution.
Just a small issue, the app use 100% of the CPU. Impossible to type constantly. It was so bad that even my MacBook Pro was melting after 2min using the app.
As he is not a tech guy, he though it was a minor perf issue easily fixable. We accepted to help him on the weekend to try to solve this.
The code and engineering part was awful. Angular 2 stack, but the guy behind it have no clue about what he was doing. The product was visually ok, but behind the scene, just chaos & pure garbage. We made a quick fix to improve performances up to 70% on Mac, but we were unable to do more since everything was technically incorrect. That was still not enough for slower student computer.
He had to call school & TV to cancel the exams. All momentum lost.
As you imagine, the guy was demoralized.
Curious about how he ended up having such a bad tech, we asked him a bit more about his team. He was working 3 Pakistani guys for 6 months, and 6 others months were planned to finish the product. He spend 10k on his own fund with them. We advised him to stop the cost as soon as possible. I like to think we helped him to save another 10k for nothing.
Looking at the features, we would have price the whole product at 25k to 30k max, result guarantee, and ready to use in 3 to 4 months.
My advise: Don’t go with cheap guy on « complex » app when you don’t have the ability to control their work & quality.