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So, I have a web application that I need to build. The application will be done in a LAMP environment. I'm being given the resources to bring in 2 other programmers to work on my team. I have team lead and architecture experience before, so taking charge isn't a problem.

The roadblock that I am experience is that I am currently living in a developing country. They have plenty of Software Engineer programs at universities, but no training/classes on really anything relating to LAMP. It is all C++/Java. So, I have a set of resumes I've culled as experience programmers that seem intelligent sitting in front of me. They come from various backgrounds, which include a couple Java developers, an old-school C++/MFC type guy, some C# devs, and a whole bunch of young out of school C++/Java developers. I'm honestly already leaning one way on which skillset I think would mold the easiest to web dev, but as I am not an application developer (exposure in school, but that was a while ago), I though I might open it up and ask you guys: Which skillset of these do you think would lead into the easiest transition to web development? I'm especially curious to hear from anyone who moved from application side over to web development.

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  • I'm in exactly the reverse situation, and I live in a developing country. There are plenty of PHP developers here, but very few people who actually understand systems programming.
    – user131
    Nov 15, 2010 at 9:19
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    What sort of web development? A static HTML page? A fully flying HTML/AJAX site? Flash? A major site that'll have 100,000 users? different skill sets will be required. Nov 15, 2010 at 11:14
  • As I mentioned, LAMP environment, although AJAX will be included.
    – Beaker
    Nov 16, 2010 at 1:01
  • Still not enough info :-). OK so it'll be a PHP app running on Apache on Linux, but what sort of transactions/throughput etc are you expecting? Nov 16, 2010 at 13:06
  • Haha, I was hoping to avoid a full description, but I suppose it must be done. It will be a knowledge management site, using AJAX to dynamically modify placement and values of said... umm... knowledge which are stored in folders. This will be synchronized with an iPad (and soon Andriod) application, which is basically the same thing. It is a collaborative knowledge management site. Heavy through-put and file manipulation, some DB, and a lot of PHP OO backend. Front-end will be heavy, but jQuery is easy to pick up for really anyone, so I'm not to concerned about that.
    – Beaker
    Nov 17, 2010 at 1:17

1 Answer 1

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A great developer who is "smart and gets things done" (via Joel Spoelsky - credit to @EricBoersma) will likely be more productive than a poor one no matter what language they work in

Unless you're on an extremely tight deadline (and you need the specific skill set) then simply hire people who are smart and work hard. They'll pick up the web development tech quickly enough, just give them some time to bash out a prototype or two first.

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    I prefer the metric "smart and get things done" via Joel Spoelsky, but otherwise I think your post is spot on! +1 Nov 15, 2010 at 13:48
  • It's actually Joel's quote I was thinking of, didn't look it up, so I'll correct that now! :-) Nov 15, 2010 at 13:50
  • Though Joel is genius and perhaps very hard-working. I wonder if everybody can achieve the same. May be I am hard-working but not genius for sure!!
    – PradeepGB
    Nov 15, 2010 at 17:25
  • @Pradeep: Relax, the guideline is "smart and gets things done", not "genius and gets things done".
    – timday
    Nov 15, 2010 at 19:51
  • Ahh, yes I've heard that before too. I was actually leaning towards the group of just outta college kids I have. Moldable, me thinks.
    – Beaker
    Nov 16, 2010 at 1:02

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