I was thrilled to have been the moderator for New Relic’s recently completed three-city tech tour with Obama for America, Coding Forward. During each two-hour event, hundreds of developers in New York City, San Francisco and Chicago were treated to an insider’s look at how a presidential campaign built “a billion dollar, 18-month disposable start-up.” The highs and lows of such an audacious endeavor were retold by five of the campaigns tech leads: Chris Gansen, Ryan Kolak, Jason Kunesh, Nick Leeper, and Scott VanDenPlas. Their entertaining banter and ping-pong like storytelling truly demonstrated how closely these teams were working together.
The panelists shared their views on technology as a force for change in the world, sticking to the fundamentals and iterating quickly, building resilient applications, and focusing on the end user as the only way to build great software. The audience was also treated to an opportunity to ask questions, introducing topics from being “hired guns” to “what’s next” for the panel. Given the diversity of the panel, nearly every component of the campaign’s technology was covered. We heard how the campaign survived donations reaching $2 million per hour after President Obama’s official nomination at the national convention, how they moved their entire cloud-based infrastructure across the US to prepare for Hurricane Sandy, and why targeting the iPad provided the best user experience.
But don’t fret if you were not able to make it to one of the events, we’ve got you covered. The full video of the events will be up soon. In the meantime, check out our photo gallery and read what other people have been saying about the events over at the Coding Forward hub. We’ll let you know as soon as the full video is available. Just keep your eyes on the Coding Forward hub, this blog or follow us on Twitter.
Thanks to everyone that came out to the events. And thank you to the panelists for taking the time to share their experiences with us.