Thursday, 06 September 2018 10:04

Coding start-up Koder aims to reward skilled programmers

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Elmer Morales: “Coders are the builders of this new era, and we’re unlocking the world’s coding department." Elmer Morales: “Coders are the builders of this new era, and we’re unlocking the world’s coding department." Supplied

A crowd-sourced coding start-up named Koder that helps businesses build software using a network of people has launched the beta version of its platform.

A statement from the company said its new, free app enabled anyone "to hire highly-skilled freelance coders and reward them with a bounty, not by the hour or by requesting bids from freelancers outbidding each other in a race to the bottom, two models that plague today’s freelance marketplaces".

The man behind Koder is founder and chief executive Elmer Morales, a trailblazer for Latinos in technology and a self-taught coder.

“Coders are the builders of this new era, and we’re unlocking the world’s coding department,” said Morales.

“Koder is bringing a decentralised network of highly-skilled coders to your pocket, significantly reducing the cost and time it takes to hires coders from several weeks to just a few minutes.”

koder team

The team at Koder.

Morales, who came to the US from Guatemala aged five, "settled in Los Angeles’ infamous South-Central neighbourhood, where neighbourhood bullies would regularly shake him and his siblings down for their lunch money".

His self-taught skills enabled him to obtain leadership roles in software engineering at Microsoft, American Express and Accenture.

"There he saw coders, including himself, sometimes billed out at $600 per hour, even if they were just attending meetings or reading a specification. Morales also noticed that one or two coders typically did most of the work on behalf of a much larger team and knew there was a better way," the statement said.

“The hourly billing model in software development is broken. It means low-performing coders get paid regardless of what they complete and that’s just plain robbery,” Morales said.

“For top performers, we sometimes solve problems in the shower and that’s not billable time. The bounty model we introduced rewards coders for their problem-solving skills and speed.”

Koder has done work for BMW, Uber, and dozens of start-ups such as BRAVO Pay, a blockchain start-up whose Koder-developed app recently featured on ABC’s Shark Tank in the US.

The Koder Platform is built on blockchain technology and its app is available as a technology preview in the Apple App Store.

Photos: courtesy Koder

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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