Opinions from the Field

We come across all sorts of interesting people, problems and solutions in the field. We would like to share our findings with you.
  • Are Frontend Frameworks Too Fast?

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-10-25

    There's been a lot of talk about performance of front ends and one metric that comes up often is how many frames per second a framework can handle. For the vast majority of us, these frameworks have been fast enough in terms of fps for the last ten years. In fact, just like my cinematography experience, I suspect we're making our applications feel unnaturally fast.

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  • Heroku Vs. Vercel : Which Cloud Service is Best for Me?

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-09-28

    I've long been a consumer of cloud service providers. I have historically used Heroku for the majority of the projects I have worked on over the years and have been pleased with their offering. New on the scene is Vercel, also a cloud hosting provider, but with a different focus. Where Heroku found success embracing the move to cloud based servers and building a solid platform on top of it that was easy to use, Vercel has done the same with a focus on the shift to serverless and edge computing. So which should you choose? As with anything in engineering, it depends.

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  • The Expanding Potential of a Virtual Reality Future

    By: Anthony Iritano2022-08-31

    Virtual reality is the next big thing in the world of gaming and entertainment but its use cases far exceed the limits of your traditional gaming console. VR has been around for decades and has been used in the military, education and entertainment industries. Recently, it has become more mainstream thanks to the introduction of affordable headsets like the Meta Quest 2 which provides a top notch VR experience completely wireless and without the need to connect to a high powered computer. This mainstream adoption has led to a large expansion in VR software and has brought us one step closer to the true potential of this technology.

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  • What is the best way to use a headless CMS?

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-08-30

    With headless content management systems, designers and developers are given incredible power and flexibility. Power we never had with the monolithic solutions of the past like Wordpress, Drupal, Shopify, or Magento. The problem is that with great power and flexibility, comes great complexity. We spend a lot of time and energy on the design of our interfaces for customers. Yet, we think very little about the user experience of the back end systems that go into this.

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  • Is there a basic explanation of Web3 somewhere for my mom?

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-08-30

    There isn't, but there should be! 💡 Blockchain is a tool for building Web3, which to me simply means the internet of value (owning digital things). But that also means blockchain need not be a part of that equation at all.

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  • On Building Bad Ideas

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-08-22

    As an agency owner, I'm the guy that has to pretend to like your bad ideas. I've heard all ranges of bad ideas. I've listened to a guy trying to sell jarred air from different parts of the world. I've entertained building a play to earn game described as "a total Ponzi Scheme." Some days I hear so many bad ideas I want to hang it all up and close my laptop for good. I'll move the whole family into a Yurt in the woods--never to look at another glowing screen again.

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  • The Cure for Client Anxiety

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-08-19

    Client anxiety, we all know the signs. It starts with emails every few days to check in on progress. They start benign at first. A new idea about a feature, a nice to have here, something they forgot to tell you about a customer there.

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  • High Pressure Delivery

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-08-15

    When it came to becoming a software engineer, I fell in love with how intellectually stimulating and downright demanding it is on the brain. However, most of the time, the job is devoid of excitement. Sure there are those crazy bugs that come up a few times a year, but the day to day goes by at your resting heart rate. It's far from boring, but it's not exciting.

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  • The 4 R's: Retention, Return, Retarget, Referral

    By: Justin Abrams2022-06-13

    Building software at the intersection of Marketing and Technology is always a tricky conversation with non-technical stakeholders. With the correct approach, we connect to business KPI's and ensure that the software or web solution accommodates the business goals.

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  • Are CEO's Commanding Lofty Salaries?

    By: Justin Abrams2022-05-27

    Cause of a Kind's CEO, Justin Abrams connects with KNXnews 97.1 Los Angeles FM Radio to discuss CEOs that are getting way bigger raises than regular workers. Justin rationalizes and offers a contrast to this common business practice.

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  • Guitarists, Drummers, and Javascript Developers

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-05-10

    Today I'd like to talk about javascript, why it's great, and how it relates to guitarists vs. drummers...

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  • Why Developers Need to Understand the Business

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-05-04

    I've had many engineers come to me asking for better specifications over the years. The specs are too vague or the design didn't account for certain states. Sometimes it's the client asking why the developer didn't "just do this." Sound familiar?

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  • Getting Down to the Purpose of Code Review

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-04-27

    Code reviews have always been a struggle at agencies. Most specifically because sometimes there aren't two people working on the same project. Who gives the review? We decided to change our approach to code reviews as well as re-thinking their true purpose...

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  • Misunderstanding Tech Debt

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-04-26

    A few years ago, a hiring manager asked me what my definition of tech debt was. I gave what I thought was a perfect answer, the hiring manager nodded and smiled, jotted a few notes and moved on. I have since learned that I was dead wrong.

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  • The Tension of Design and Development

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-04-25

    Inside every organization there exists a natural tension between design and development. In healthy organizations this tension produces magic results. These are interfaces that delight and win awards. Interfaces that leave you awe struck.

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  • Selling The Cure Has Nothing To Do With Implementation

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-04-21

    In 2019 my co-founder Justin and I pitched 40 prospects, of which we lost every single sale. Fast forward to today where in the last 12 months we've pitched 13 clients and closed all 13 deals. What changed?

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  • Delivery Issues

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-04-20

    Last year, we had a major delivery issue. We were struggling to deliver bug-free software on time. When we got into quarter one of this year, we realized that we had to put a stop to the madness, here's how...

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  • In Defense of Developer Experience

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-04-19

    A common gripe with focusing on developer experience (dx) is that it's less important than user experience (ux). Of course what we ship to user land is the most important thing. But in my experience dx and ux tend to go hand in hand...

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  • A Tale of Three Scopes

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-04-18

    One of the hardest things to figure out while running Cause of a Kind was how to scope different engagements. The entire agency business runs of fixed scopes, but they are incredibly risky and in the long run don't help the client, but hurt them through strained relationships...

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  • What is the difference between React Native vs. Flutter?

    By: Hadi Baltagi2022-02-24

    In this episode, we explore the differences and similarities of Flutter and React Native and ask the important questions: How much better should the other framework be for you to switch? And what actually makes a framework better?

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  • Pound For Pound: The Most Valuable Profession

    By: Justin Abrams2022-02-05

    If you sit back and think for a moment: what is the most valuable profession? What is the profession that single-handedly contributes the most to the world? Most will say the big obvious ones. Physician, Clergy, Politician, Real Estate, Lawyers, Nuclear Scientist, Quantum Physicist... Let's convince you, it's a Software Engineer.

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  • Software Development for Startups Without a CTO

    By: Justin Abrams2022-02-02

    It is quite often we encounter founders and their ideas, and more often than not, we collectively determine that the idea, while terrific, has some significant complexities that are far too often, overlooked. There is always a point in the conversation, usually around the time when a founder says, "this feature doesn't feel super complicated" after they compare their idea to Uber or Instagram, or Facebook, where we unpack and ultimately reveal exactly how complicated a "simple" feature can be. Founders often times have incredible dreams and goals, but often lack the advisors or the professional background to truly understand what they are asking for from a development agency. That's where we come in.

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  • 5 Common Misconceptions for MVP Software Development

    By: Michael Rispoli2022-01-05

    CTO, Mike Rispoli joins industry commrad Alexander Benkendorf on the DiTalks Podcast. The DiTalks Episode 2 - What if a badass coder shared his true beliefs and misconceptions about the current market and how projects should really be done to be a success?

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  • How to Say Goodbye to your Dream Job, and Hello to your Dream Career

    By: Justin Abrams2022-01-01

    An important lesson I have always lived by is, "first impressions only count, if the last impression, impresses." My time to practice that wisdom is now. This is how you say goodbye to your dream job, and hello to your dream career.

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  • Can you own an NFT, of a platform displaying an NFT?

    By: Alfred Indigo2021-11-10

    There appears to currently be a small missing piece to the recent explosion of NFT (Non-Fungible Tokens) platforms. To me, it is like real estate. You can own the house, but can you also own the land?

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  • Vercel vs Netlify : Which service is best for me?

    By: Alfred Indigo2021-08-17

    Are you comparing Vercel and Netlify? Do you know what makes each service different and what is best for your needs? Let's take a quick look at both and see how they stack up for creating your static website.

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  • If you Buy Cheap you Buy Twice

    By: Justin Abrams2021-08-06

    What is the primary goal of your website? Is it to drive revenue or is it to drive traffic? These are the only possible, true goals of a website. If these are the primary goals, why would you cut corners on any part of it? Would you cut corners on your storefront? Or in your home? Maybe you would. And that's why you keep rebuying the same things over and over. "Penny Wise and Pound Foolish."

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  • Why React and React Native are the Future of Web Development

    By: Alfred Indigo2021-07-29

    In this blog post, we will talk about why React and React Native are such valuable frameworks for web development.

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  • The Art of the Private Label: Mastering Software Agencies

    By: Alfred Indigo2021-06-28

    Private labeling could be one of the smartest strategies around. A business can do this in so many ways. But Software agencies are notorious for it. Everyone is a free agent and can look high and low for another individual or an entirely separate Agency to "Private label" services.

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  • The 2 Things Every Developer Needs From You Before Any Code Is Written

    By: Alfred Indigo2021-06-25

    For a software engineer, front or back-end web developer, or full-stack developer, it is absolutely critical to have 2 things complete before a developer ever even considers beginning a build. Comprehensive design phase accounting for all templates, all components, all integrations, and all database requirements. As well as, articulate bite-size task lists, broken into granular projects to ensure no missing steps.

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  • Scoping Your Big Idea: The Value of Giving a Professional Agency the Opportunity to Truly Explore

    By: Alfred Indigo2021-06-25

    Scoping your big software or app idea is so much more than just researching on google for 15 minutes to see if your idea has any competition, or making some sketches in your handy notebook or the way you envision the experience. Have you considered a truly formal scoping phase for your idea? Giving a professional agency the opportunity to truly explore the idea under NDA ( Non-Disclosure Agreement), in order to truly understand the investment, the tech requirements, the database architecture, the UX/UI, and the MVP (Minimum Viable Product) or MMP ( Minimum Marketable Product), is invaluable.

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  • eCommerce Technology is Evolving

    By: Alfred Indigo2021-06-24

    The eCommerce technology market is a competitive one, and eCommerce businesses are constantly looking for ways to provide the best shopping experience possible. This can be tough given that big commerce platforms like Shopify have limited product customization features. However, there are still quite a few solutions available to big commerce users! The future possibilities in big commerce range from unlimited variants (think color or size) product animations, and augmented reality all looking for ways to captivate new customers and entice them to return!

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  • Thou Shalt Not Build a Website Without Content

    By: Michael Rispoli2020-10-02

    Here at COAK, we made a bold decision. Copy writing is no longer an optional service for website projects. It was a bold move, and one we did not take lightly. Though we have lost contracts over it, we are sticking to it and here's why.

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  • Listen First: 4 Ways to Maximize ROI

    By: Justin Abrams2020-03-31

    The voice of the consumer matters more than you might think...

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  • Crossing the Chasm: Cannabusiness

    By: Justin Abrams2019-07-09

    Emerging markets have one thing in common at their core. Consumer trajectory. Understanding where the consumers attention will be in the near future is the art of the go to market strategy. Developing a web experience to compliment is critical.

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  • "I dont need a website"

    By: Justin Abrams2019-07-09

    Whether you believe your business needs a website, a better website, or a revolutionary website, the common denominator is, yes, you need a website in this current marketplace. Your customer expects it, your business depends on it, and the longevity of your goals and business commitments, depends on it.

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