Devin Roché

Contract Project Reflection

Posts where I reflect on experience working on contract/industry project will have company and person names removed.


I was brought on to be a freelance developer to work on the CP1. I was the only developer on the project, so I had to make all the technical decisions without having to consult other developers. At first thought, this sounds like a dream to me, but I quickly realized how difficult it is to make decisions that can impact the entire project by yourself without outside opinions. The project ran about 7-8 weeks, which was about 3 weeks longer than expected.

The Good

I ran into quite a few technical hurdles throughout this project, but I was able to resolve all of them, or at least find a second choice that closely fit my employers’ vision. This was my first large scale react-native project, so I was learning while working, which is awesome! I also decided to set up the backend using new tech as well. I chose to use Go because it was new to me and I have little experience using it, but it seemed like a good fit because of how easy it is to set up and deploy too Heroku. and I picked PostgreSQL for the database because it made the most sense to use a relational DB for the project (also easy to set up in Heroku).

The Bad

It took me a few weeks to realize how critical it was to have good communication with the project owners was. I struggled to communicate my progress as often as I should have. This is something I need to work on. I tend to assume that the project owner and I are on the same page when in reality, we aren’t. This goes back to the communication aspect.

The Ugly

Woah already to the ugly… I think one thing I did a bad job of was making sure the application would be easily extensible. It is extensible, but I started rushing to finish the project and rewrote a lot of unnecessary code/styling. Again, this goes back to communication, if I had communicated my progress more often I wouldn’t have been rushed in the end.

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