This post contains a comprehensive list of startups and software companies in Oakland, CA + my favorite picks of private startups well positioned to succeed 🚀

Mural in West Oakland. Photo credit: me.

Oakland’s great. If you’re reading this article you’re probably already interested in the tech scene in Oakland, CA. Maybe you’ve founded your own startup, work in tech or are looking to break into the tech industry. Maybe you’d just like to figure what the Oakland startups are. What are they working on? What do they do? Finding that straightforward information can be a pain, if not impossible for someone without a Crunchbase Premium account…


Introducing filter companies by investor on Employbl. Find private and public companies that VC firms have invested in. See what companies VC firms have invested in so you can work at a “winning” company.

Photo credit: Cristofer Jeschke

I was sitting at my Mom’s kitchen table after graduating from college. I had a degree in Political Science and had picked up a bit of coding. I knew I wanted to work in tech and all of the opportunities were in San Francisco. I’d spent lots of time applying for jobs but it all seemed so random. How did I know the companies I was…


Summary of 2017 article by Joseph Stiglitz on concentrated corporate power in America

The Bosses of the Sentate, political cartoon, 1889

For me the problem with monopolies is seeing the same shopping mall with a Starbucks, CVS and Walmart wherever you drive in America. An economy run by billionaires and monopolists is boring. Stiglitz begins his piece by describing this sad state of affairs in America today. It’s kind of a bummer but follows with concrete ideas about solutions. Keep calm and read on 🤙

There is a widespread sense of powerlessness, both in our economic and political life. We seem no longer to control our own destinies. If we don’t like our Internet company or our cable TV, we either…


Coding circa 2001 in the movie Swordfish

Ah the coding interview. Have you cracked it yet? Do you know how to invert a binary tree? Fear not. With dedication you can study to do all of these things. Here is one of many resources, a resource of resources if you will about preparing for software engineer interviews.

  • Outco: this is a more or less full time program for a month. I’ve found it helpful so far; I’m still in the program :)
  • Employbl: is a program I’m working on with a small but mighty team. The idea is to help candidates organize their job hunt by providing…

Humans, homo sapiens our unique genus and species is remarkably different from any other creature on Earth. We cross oceans and setup limited liability corporations, tame animals and breed crops. We’ve altered the climate of the planet through our activities. We’ve altered the Earth’s ecology and are the only species to have escaped the food chain. All these things happened because something flipped genetically in Homo Sapiens, giving us the ability to tell stories. This development set up the sixth extinction event in the history of the earth that’s happening right now. Throughout earth’s history rapid (on the scale of…


The internet is ruled by concentrated corporate power.

I’m here to talk about what happens when you type in “oatmealdream.com”. Why Oatmeal Dream? Because perhaps you want to start a website about the dreams you have about Oatmeal. It’s going to be huge. There are major business implications for the oatmeal and sleep businesses. The first thing you do is check if your domain name is available. You type it into a web browser. The web browser market is dominated by Google with one of its flagship products Chrome. There are competitors but most people use Chrome. Only heathens and people required by business contracts us Edge, a…


We are seeking a talented DevOps Engineer to work collaboratively with our software engineering team to build the next generation of our SaaS product. Our product has driven more than 18 million connections with elected officials since our founding in 2012 and we’re just getting started. If you have great problem solving, analysis and design skills, and a true passion for quality, you will be a great fit for the Phone2Action team.

The Role

  • Develop and manage infrastructure in AWS (CloudFormation, Terraform, etc)
  • Monitor and maintain existing infrastructure (CloudWatch, New Relic, Lacework, etc)
  • Manage automation and CI/CD pipeline
  • Manage configuration and patching…

Picking how to move forward requires reflecting on why you wanted to learn to code in the first place and defining goals and where you want to go. Whenever I feel stuck in how to advance professionally I try to focus on a few of these areas.

There are tons of ways to learn to code. If you were starting from scratch you could do a coding bootcamp or a four year academic Computer Science program. Some people completely teach themselves or learn from friends and family. There are millions of blog posts, articles, videos and online courses out there…


This blog post goes over the technical implementation of the Employbl candidate approval process for candidates using Laravel and PHP.

Image courtesy of Unsplash

This is the template that we’re sending to candidates introducing them to Employbl. The way the system is set up now is around an approval process. Candidates apply on the candidates page. This goes to a MySQL database hosted on Laravel Forge where a users table row gets created with users.active = 0 after the candidate successfully submits the form. For candidate login to work users.active must be set to 1 or true. This is to ensure that candidates work…


These online courses can help you learn new skills, build new things, advance your career and make you a more confident software developer

Photo credit by NESA by Makers

Part of being a great developer or tech professional is learning new skills. I’m a pretty firm believer that the best way to learn new things or technologies is by trying them out yourself. The best way to learn is to build things. That said, learning through more structured processes like books, courses and video tutorials can be super helpful, give you new ideas and ultimately save a developer time. It’s great to build things but not…

Connor Leech

Engineer, writer and community organizer. I built Employbl to help candidates get jobs in the Bay Area: https://employbl.com/

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