Mini-Review: Aardvark’d: 12 Weeks With Geeks

Short take, a really good concept, but not that great a documentary. You can find longer reviews here and here. I really appreciate Joel’s attempt at producing a documentary on Fog Creek Software’s internship program. The only problem would be a narrative never really develops beyond time passing over the 12 weeks and the growth of a tomato plant.

You do get the feel of a small startup, and you get to see the nice private offices (but not for the interns) and dual monitors + Aeron chairs for everyone. I did think seeing the interns negotiate for the domain name was funny. There was almost no actual negotiation. The first price from the owner of was 20k. The interns decide the most they want to pay is 10k, and they end up paying 10k because the owner claims there are ‘other bidders’. Don’t know the details, but it barely seemed like a negotiation.

I did like the quote from one of the interns on Coldfusion:

“I’m not really even sure. I don’t know what Coldfusion is. Umm, some web programming thing, I guess is some kind of half real language, according to the hard core people. And it’s the best thing ever according to the Coldfusion people.”

That was pretty much my experience starting a job back in 1997 and finding out the web team did all their applications in some strange thing called PowerBuilder.

Since I saw they were showing the movie at Software Development 2006 I may see it on a big screen and see if I get more out of it. With Joel and the director there maybe there will be some good stories to go along with it.

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