P2P startup needs high-performance C++ developer

Huzzah! We've finally found the ultimate JavaScript/PHP/CSS/HTML jockey. Damn that was a hard position to fill, but that shores up that front, bringing the team up to me (C++ guy), two other C++ guys, one full-time web guy, and one CEO extraordinaire. (The bizdev search is underway with some *awesome* candidates; ops is likewise advancing apace.) Slowly but surely we're assembling the ultimate team. However, we're not done yet -- not by a long shot. Next up: hard-core C++ programmer.

Now, I'm not sure if you've ever hired anyone -- it's a long, arduous, and grueling task. There's an incredible temptation to just say "he/she can probably do the work, hire!", especially when there are so many incredible opportunities just waiting to be explored. It's so time consuming you desperately want to hand it to some hiring manager with a list of keywords and be done with it. But we're not just filling seats with warm bodies: we're building a real team with solid legs. Everybody needs to fit together, complementing our strengths and compensating for weaknesses. If I were cheesier I'd try to fit in the word "synergy".

I give this long preamble to help explain the position we're trying to fill. In essence, it's a summary of our current weaknesses, and thus is our highest priority to fill. However, you should by no means consider the position as limited by what's stated here. This is the starting point; everybody has their hands in everything, and there is ample opportunity to go around for all to advance careers and interests in every conceivable direction.

So with that said, we're looking for someone who can do some significant subset of the following:

  • Perform rigorous, low-level optimizations to ensure we never go above certain CPU or memory caps.

  • Port our nearly-platform-independent client to a Linux-based embedded system, and then Mac.

  • Provide comprehensive, system-wide analysis of a multi-component, extremely-distributed architecture for end-to-end performance, efficiency, and reliability.

  • Offer wide-ranging input into the engineering process based on hard-earned lessons and real-world experience.

Basically, we're looking for a very solid, very grounded, very experienced C++ engineer who's been there and done that a dozen times. Whether you have a degree or have a thousand years at some prestigious company doesn't matter -- the ideal candidate will have forgotten more by high school graduation than most people will ever know, breezed through college because it's such a joke, and then hopped around a bunch of cool jobs doing cool stuff looking for "the next big thing". Well perhaps I'm a little biased given that I'm betting everything on it, but I'd say this is it. This is the next big thing. There ain't many opportunities like this, so you'd best not pass it up.

Anyway, this is a seller's job market, and as you're reading this you know you have the pick of the litter. So the real question is why should you send your resume to [email protected] now versus passing and going onto the next ad? Clearly, only you know the answer to this question, but here are my suggestions:

  • There's nobody else out there like us, and thus nobody else is hiring for the same position. You'll be doing things with us that nobody else has ever tried, such as doing AJAX over a localhost socket to our P2P client to web-integrate swarming downloads and streaming video playback that is faster than a webserver while coming 99% from peers (and thus, at only 1% of the cost of a regular stream).

  • We solve real problems for the biggest (and smallest) customers. The average US household watches 2-3 hours of content a day, and it's all going online. There literally isn't enough bandwidth in the country to do that with centralized streaming - we know, because Mark Cuban (founder of Broadcast.com, sold to Yahoo for $5B) is our lead investor, and we know all the CDNs and they agree. There is literally no choice but to go P2P to make ends meet, and the biggest names in the business know that we're the ones to do it.

  • We do business the old fashioned way: we sell products, not ads. Our business model doesn't depend on suckering in a new round of investors every year with hand waving over a hockeystick chart of projected ad revenue that never quite materializes. Companies pay us to make their bandwidth bills disappear, and thus enable them to build web-based video features (like IFilm, MeeVee, Endavo, and other customers) that would simply be too expensive otherwise.

  • We know everyone. Travis, our CEO, goes out drinking with folks of legend on a regular basis. We operate at the highest levels of Fortune 500 companies. The deals we have on our plate are with companies you will certainly recognize. It's not only what you know, but who you know, and we know everyone.

  • We're small, enthusiastic, and have a lot of fun. It might not sound like it from this post as I'm tired from working all night on an incredibly awesome deal that I can't tell you about, but we're actually pretty fun guys. We recently took the whole company to Thailand for six weeks just because, why not - the internet goes there, so why can't we? We're thinking of doing Brazil next time. We work Monday/Wednesday/Friday in the office and telecommute the rest. The office is in SOMA next to a bunch of nice restaurants. Basically, Swoosh is more than a job, it's our lifestyle. We want our lives to be fun, exciting, and rewarding in all forms, so we've done our best to create a healthy mix (not healthy in the granola sense, but in a work-hard / play-hard kinda way).

So that's the scoop. Click [email protected] and send me a line, and we'll take it from there. It's easy, and it might be the best decision you make all day.

- david