The Vaporware Blog

How Staffing Pros Deal With Prospect Droughts

In the recruiting and staffing industry, one of your crucial responsibilities is finding candidates for open positions in your business who have all the skills and experience necessary to succeed in those positions. But what if you’re going through a drought? What if all your prospects lack some critical skill, or you can’t find... continue reading

2020 Emerging Trends in Real Estate-5 Key Takeaways

“We’ve always done it this way doesn’t cut it in real estate anymore. We need to find the best way to do it.” I recently sat in on a great discussion by Urban Land Institute (ULI) Triangle, Emerging Trends, discussion led by ... continue reading

Software Developers Solve Real Estate Problems

Most commercial real estate businesses have issues spanning multiple departments, from marketing to staffing to actual real estate transactions to scheduling services with tenants. They know the right app or piece of software could potentially solve these issues, but they aren’t sure where to start. There are literally hundreds of... continue reading

Automation Leads to Faster Decisions and Results

Across all industries manual and repetitive tasks drain your overall productivity while reducing employee and customer satisfaction. Manual, repetitive work can limit your growth and ability to scale by increasing labor costs and the chance for errors. Just think about how each person involved in the execution of work at your... continue reading

"Is Custom Software Right for My Organization?"- 7 Questions to Help You Decide

We get asked the question a lot…”Is custom software right for me?” or “Why do companies create custom software?” Plenty of businesses come to Vaporware to look for custom software, but we take on a very small percentage. Why? Because custom software isn’t right for them. Custom software solutions are ongoing investments. Custom... continue reading

Top Property Managers Can Profit From Short-Term Rentals

While legislature is fighting Airbnbs through zoning laws, enforcement remains low. In addition to day-to-day operational challenges, now many multifamily property managers are tasked with navigating short-term rentals and shared apartments. At Vaporware, we help property management and multifamily real estate companies leverage... continue reading

3 Ways Amazon is Disrupting Multifamily Real Estate

Amazon is directly disrupting every industry they can get their hands on, including multifamily real estate. At Vaporware, we help property management and multifamily real estate companies harness technology to drive long-term growth. In order to do this work (and do it well), we constantly analyze market forces and major... continue reading

Top 3 Reasons Why You Need a Customer Portal

Use the words customer portal and the average person thinks of a static unchanging system that is a gatekeeper that prevents them from accomplishing their needs. What most people don’t understand is many of the services they use on a daily basis are customer portals in everything but name. Simply put, a customer portal is any... continue reading

Break Down Information Silos With a Single Pane of Glass

What does it take to get work done in an all-electronic world? An ever-growing selection of web apps and dashboards brings us a specialized tool for every task. We should be rolling in productivity gains. But how much time are we really saving? Hopping from tool to tool, each with a separate login and disparate data, brings its own... continue reading

Vaporware Now Featured on Clutch

In the B2B space, innovations in client engagement have shifted to cloud platforms. It’s a development that smart firms recognize, and the brightest firms take advantage of. Companies like ServusConnect, innovating maintenance operations for property managers through a... continue reading

Recruiting Software Technology Transforms the Hiring Process

Helping a client innovate tops our list of best ways to make a living. That’s exactly what we did for the folks at Scoutr. The Scoutr web app ranks and presents best-matched candidates to hiring teams, much like a dating app. Since the release of its MVP (Minimum Viable Product) in August 2018, Scoutr customers are experiencing a 50%... continue reading

Breaking Into a Cold Market

At some point, every company and every salesperson is breaking into a cold market. If you’re new in town, have a new product or changing your client focus, you’re suddenly the new kid on the block and need people to talk to you. And they may or may not be interested. If you’re working to generate leads and find business in a new... continue reading

An Overview of Type Safety in Javascript

Like a lot of developers who learned to code 10+ years ago, I got started learning C++ and Java. The public static void main and int sum (int a, int b) syntax was intimidating but I was determined to power through it so I could make the next great video game. After struggling with endless compiler errors I... continue reading

Talking to Developers - Frontend Components

This is the first part in a multi-part series about tips for communicating with developers about all aspects of a web or mobile app. From feature requests to bug reporting to identifying the different parts of an app, communication is paramount for a successful development project. We’re going to start out simple with some... continue reading

SEO Friendly URLs in Phoenix 1.3

While Vaporware is primarily a Rails and React shop, we're always exploring new technologies that'll help our clients create the best possible product. Lately, I've been doing a deep dive into Elixir and came across the need to have some SEO friendly titles for a blog-like feature. There's a... continue reading

Ensuring the Image Loads when Sharing Content to Facebook

When adding the ability to share content to Facebook in a web app, use this method to ensure the image loads correctly on the first try. Sharing content to Facebook is a common feature for many web apps. Ideally this should be done through Facebook's ... continue reading

Philosophies from the Top Software Companies

As a founder of a startup company, you’d want to know what your company would look like in 5 - 50 years from now. You’re probably constantly asking, “What am I really creating?” “What’s the purpose?” To answer those questions, we can look at the people that have come before us to find inspiration and see what... continue reading

JWT Fundamentals - How To Easily Share UI Components

When developing a web application, it is often appropriate to divide responsibilities across different "services" that each handle discrete functionality. While this can provide flexibility in the behavior of an application, consistency across branded UI components becomes difficult, as each service needs to maintain its own set of... continue reading

Lean Startup Mistakes Everyone Makes (& How to Rectify Them)

If you follow entrepreneurs, startups, development companies, or Eric Ries then you’ve probably heard of the Lean Startup Process. Popularized by Eric Ries’ The Lean Startup and commonly discussed through the startup community. Buzzwords such... continue reading

Four Qualities the Best Dev Companies Have

At one point or another, most of us have had an app idea. Some amazing and some…. on the more creative side. You’ve decided that you want to pursue your amazing idea. You’re going to want the best to help you develop the technical side of building an app. The first step to building your app is creating a minimum viable... continue reading

Finding Your Perfect Development Partner

Looking for a technical partner is, more often than not, a complex process. In a previous blog post, we provided a checklist of technical partner interview questions to help guide your search (you can check that post out here). Now that you know the right questions to ask prospective partners, let's talk about what TYPES of... continue reading

Triangle Startup Weekend Giveaway

Our last blog post focused on those #OfficeHours we are always tweeting about. If you still haven’t set up a time to chat with us - well, now is the time! We’ve got an awesome giveaway for those who come to office hours. There are no strings attached - we’ll help you with whatever you... continue reading

What are Vaporware Office Hours?

Have technical development questions? Not sure where to start? Come talk to the Vaporware founders - in person - for free - no strings attached. Whether you're a brand new startup, or you're on your way and could use some outside perspective, we're here for you. We've been through the startup journey and have made it our... continue reading

Technical Partner Interview Checklist

Having trouble getting the tech work done with your startup? Maybe it's time to hire some higher-level strategic help - time to hire a technical partner. We've made a handy checklist of the questions and answers you should (or shouldn't) be looking for when interviewing technical partners. This is also a small preview for our eBook... continue reading

Top 5 Mistakes Founders Make with an MVP

Imagine that you're finally getting things off the ground and developing your MVP. It's a rough version, which an MVP is supposed to be. You're aiming to it out quickly and on a small budget. As the project progresses, you may run into a few common pitfalls that unfortunately, risk putting your project at a stalemate. Our blog post... continue reading

Why is Feedback Important for your MVP?

Feedback [feed-bak] noun: A reaction or response to a particular process or activity. The word "feedback" often causes an automatic kick-back reaction and becomes the root cause of therapy visits. It's like all of our traumatizing memories from grade school papers and assignments covered in red pen hurls itself back... continue reading

Technical MVP Tips for the Non-Technical Founder

Do you have an idea for an app but aren't quite sure where to start? Are you looking to create a scalable company and be the CEO or leader, and need the technical role filled by others? Unsure of where to start with a Minimum Viable Product (MVP)? Your time and money are severely limited when starting a business, so... continue reading

Rails Feature Tests With RSpec and Capybara-Webkit

Using RSpec and Capybara-Webkit provide a great workflow for writing feature tests for your rails application. This allows you to write automated tests that are simulating page visits, clicks, filling out forms, etc. This can be extremely valuable in that it is checking every layer of code behind the processes that you instruct it... continue reading

Is your Minimum Viable Product Really Minimum?

Having consulted with over 30 startups in the last 3 years, we have experienced working with entrepreneurs that have never launched a company or product before into the marketplace. When learning the Lean Startup process for the first time, a first-time entrepreneur will come... continue reading

How to Define the Features of your App

You've created the next Facebook. Billions of users are logging into your app every month to get the latest news and updates from the world -- but you didn't always have this success. What were the first two features that you launched? Minimizing your feature list is one of the most difficult and critical decisions product... continue reading

The Bottom Line

The majority of the applications that are built today are not inventing new technologies but are using proven technologies to deliver innovative experiences. For these applications, software apps are the core of a User Experience that is highly scalable and therefore profitable. But if you're looking to build one of these apps, how... continue reading

A Focus on User Experience

Here at Vaporware, we're focused on delivering the right products to markets in short deliverable sprints. All products, including minimally viable ones, require the right team of people coming together in a streamlined fashion to deliver on the business goals. So far, Vaporware has taken the approach that responsive web is... continue reading

Learning from Failures

At Vaporware, we celebrate our capacity to fail. Whether it is the creative nature of development or our constant drive to improve, failure is a key part of our entrepreneurial culture. Learning from failures is one of the underlying principles of the... continue reading

Ongoing Communication, Development Valuation Part 3

To continue the conversation of valuing development, we're going to explain how we use the expectations (covered in the first chapter) to help mitigate the risks (identified in the second chapter) with the crucial concept of ongoing communication. While this defines a process and mindset that is used throughout the relationship,... continue reading

Balancing Risks for Development Valuation

This week, we continue our ongoing conversation about the best way to value development projects. To recap, our 4 steps center around setting expectations, balancing risks, outcome analysis, and ongoing communication. Hopefully at this point, we're on the same page with some of our default expectations with every relationship... continue reading

Setting Expectations for Development Valuation

Last week I introduced Vaporware's process for valuing products we work on, a four step process to determining how much we charge for a product. You already know the outcome, that we charge a weekly rate depending on the effort for a project. But let's get into the details. The first step to valuing development is setting... continue reading

Development Valuation, or Why Vaporware Uses Dynamic Pricing

Being in the consulting business, we’re approached by clients in a variety of ways. But out of all the possible backgrounds and variations, one thing is static: Payment. Investment can come in all shapes and forms. While companies have traded in very unique return structures — including equity, education, connections, licenses,... continue reading

How to Invest in Development

Is your development team an expense? Thinking about hiring developers or building an application? You've probably already considered how much money you're willing to spend. You may have even looked at a few companies and gotten proposals to fit your budget. But where did your budget come from? Was it money on hand, how much of a loan... continue reading

Job Application Sweeping NC

Over 10 years ago Morris Gelblum was cleaning an office in Raleigh. When he was finished, Morris found a way to replace himself - he invented Sweeps - a company that matches college students with jobs posted by clients. In the beginning, it was just Morris and his mother. Once Morris went to... continue reading

Bad UX Design - Can it Kill You?

Recently, we read an article about how bad design had killed a little girl. Three nurses had missed an alert that was not clear in the new software. Death is always sad, but when it could have been avoided it is downright heartbreaking. Everything that... continue reading

What's in a Name?

The irony of our name is lost to most people outside of the tech industry. You know that friend you have that knows how to talk the talk, but can't walk the walk? That is what the term vaporware is known for in our industry. It is software that is promoted early and often, but then never released. We see this as the old vaporware... continue reading

Website vs. Application

If you're new to the web development industry or are looking to hire a contractor to develop a website for you, you might not quite understand the difference between web applications and websites. How are these different? Are there different technology skills required for each? Until I started working at vaporware, I didn't quite... continue reading

From the Mountains of North Carolina

Just like millions of people do everyday, Justin Beard uploaded some photos to Facebook (of a place that he was renting). The landlord happened to see them and offered him Ski tickets and free dinner in exchange for the use of his photos on the landlord's website. This was Justin's "a-ha" moment. There are plenty of companies doing... continue reading

The (CSS) Journey is Better than the Destination

Whether you're a developer or designer, one unique property of the technology industry is our access to master's thoughts. Today, we're treated to not only the outcome, but the entire thought process behind @fat's CSS evolution process that was once internal to his head and Medium. While we have... continue reading

Road to Vaporware

Have you ever sat with a couple of your friends talking about ideas and how you can make things better, then have the realization, "We can do this!" That was the start for vaporware. After that conversation, it took four of us only one week to start the company. As part of the first Vaporware meeting, I bought everyone Eric... continue reading

Hello, world!

Vaporware, Inc. was founded on July 30th, 2013. puts "Hello,... continue reading