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Many programmers listening to this podcast are working at a big company, and they would prefer to be running their own software business. Patrick McKenzie has been writing about this topic for several years on his blog Kalzumeus.com. Almost a decade ago, he was working as an enterprise developer at a large company in Japan. Over time, his side projects started making enough money to justify his leaving to work on them full-time.
Starting a small successful software business is not about luck, or taking big risks, or having your muse deliver some brilliant insight. It is about studying the markets where you can build software that can deliver value. Patrick and I discuss this topic, as well as Stripe–where he now works today. He sold his small businesses to go work full time on Stripe Atlas, so his story of transitioning back to a big company is fascinating as well.