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Hi I have a programming problem/assignment that I am about to post to elance.

But a thought occurred to me that probably the best programmers are on Stackoverflow, and have a high reputation. Is there any services where I can post my problem, for hire, and specifically target it to users who have a high rank in Ruby On Rails and javascript for example?

I couldn't even tell, when looking at Stackoverflow, if there is an easy way to sort by ranking (in a particular skill) and contact those users directly.

If not.. we should build it.. that would be a business.

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A freelancing-oriented site built around the SE user base isn't necessarily a bad idea, it just doesn't exist today. The existence of careers.SO and the ongoing cautious expansion of the SE network makes me think the SE team might be open to the idea, but that doesn't help you with your current project. –  McCannot Jul 25 '11 at 21:57
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Cool.. I'll take "isn't necessarily a bad idea" as a compliment! I posted on elance for free. –  Charles Oppenheimer Jul 25 '11 at 22:58

4 Answers 4

up vote 7 down vote accepted

No, through StackOverflow you're not able to contact directly. You're able to do it through http://careers.stackoverflow.com

Just ask your quesion on Stackoverflow, that's what is it for. If you want to hire someone, use http://careers.stackoverflow.com

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Yea, careers.stackoverflow.com is quite different - a job posting costs $350, and you hire for a full time position. I am posting a contract that will likely cost $350 all together (if I find the right programmer - they would probably think it even cheaper). –  Charles Oppenheimer Jul 25 '11 at 21:35
    
But, that does answer it... not easily done.. think, all those guys, who are contributing so much knowlegdge should be able to leverage it. –  Charles Oppenheimer Jul 25 '11 at 21:36
    
There are some other sites that also offer something similar, Charles Oppenheimer. You can go to vworker.com and see programmer ratings. You can also hire some kind of intermediary guru to guarantee that your contract goes off without a hitch. When I hire someone, I use that site specifically so that I can get the project manager. I can't stand it when I hire someone, and they end up being incapable. I'd rather have someone with a pre-existing network do the hiring for me, and if things go wrong, then it comes out of his pocket. –  千里ちゃん Jul 26 '11 at 9:58
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@Charles - Many high-reputation users provide contact information in their profile if they are OK with people reaching out to them offsite. Others are not cool with this, and that should be respected. I've received a number of contract offers based on my answers here, because I make it reasonably easy to get a hold of me. Also, I hope that you're not expecting to have someone do more than a handful of hours of work for $350, considering the consulting rates that the top users here can draw. In my area, $150 / hour is fairly standard. –  Brad Larson Jul 26 '11 at 16:08

Head over to http://careers.stackoverflow.com and log in as an employer.

I believe there is a cost associated with searching for suitable candidates, but I'm not in a position where I'm hiring at the moment.

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A high reputation on Stack Overflow does not mean that:

  • The person will get the job done on time
  • The person will work within your budget
  • The person will be available for bug fixes and updates

Most freelance oriented web sites and services offer something that I think you'd find a bit more valuable, reviews by other members over time. While skill is critical to getting the job done, you probably also want someone who has a track record of shipping stuff of reasonable quality on time.

I would think that high reputation users on Stack Overflow that actively solicit freelance projects would at least mention their Stack Overflow participation in whatever profile space the service permits. Since, as others have said, there is no way to contact someone directly through Stack Overflow - I can't imagine why any service would prohibit such a mention.

I have, on several occasions thought of proposing a sort of marketplace, but always stopped short of suggesting it once I contemplated the massive administrative headache it would bring. Escrow disputes, buyer disputes, seller disputes .. meh! I'm not even touching on how excitable people become when money doesn't show up in their bank account quickly.

Beyond the careers site, I don't think anything else market related will surface as an official product. I could be wrong, though.

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Forgive me, but my train of thought was:

  1. Why not create a proposal on Area 51 for this.
  2. We could call it 'Code Monkeys', 'Coders for Hire', PSMtC, ...
  3. Are there any other proposals on Area 51? No.
  4. Hmm. CC-wiki. Hmm.

As this is a community website, the intent of the Stack Exchange engine is to provide information freely in the form of questions and answers. To facilitate a coder-for-hire website, you'd probably want/require the option to keep the answers private. Not to mention a vastly different payment infrastructure. Hence, the creation of a site of the implied magnitude would require a vast resource commitment and clear planning on the part of Joel/Jeff/et.al. I highly doubt they'll do it. Stick with Elance

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Just wanted to clarify, I'm not opposed to Careers, but as the OP appears only interested in a single short-term project, the $500 fee sounds a bit much... –  M. Tibbits Jul 26 '11 at 16:39

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