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Wednesday, May 1 • 1:30pm - 2:15pm
Free As In Puppies: Toward a better build vs. buy understanding (Heidi Waterhouse)

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A free puppy, like a white elephant, is a gift that takes a lot of time, energy, and money. When we build an internal tool ourselves, we don't have to justify it to the financial department the same way, but the lack of a bill doesn't make something free.
The FLOSS community talks about freedom as an intellectual property right. The digital generation assumes that software without a charge is selling their information. Let’s talk about the other kind of free - the kind where you are just not clear on how much you’re paying for something, because it’s an internal tool.
When we make a build vs. buy calculation, it's easy to miss several important parts of the calculation, including maintenance, updating, security, availability, and finding operators. None of those are easy to articulate or value for either side.
To help argue a decision for cultural change and/or spending money on tools, I'll walk you through several examples and talk about how business value is more than money. You'll leave with a set of questions to ask about quality, cost, and long-term use.

Learning Outcomes:
  • The audience will leave with new tools to evaluate their tool spending and new ways to think about the cost of things that we build accidentally, along the way.


avatar for Heidi Waterhouse

Heidi Waterhouse

Developer Advocate, LaunchDarkly
Heidi is a developer advocate with LaunchDarkly. She delights in working at the intersection of usability, risk reduction, and cutting-edge technology. One of her favorite hobbies is talking to developers about things they already knew but had never thought of that way before. She... Read More →

Wednesday May 1, 2019 1:30pm - 2:15pm CDT
Hermitage Ballroom C