the contest

So here at thoughtbot we’re really proud of the two company founders, Chad and Jon, for finishing up their first book: Pro Active Record: Databases with Ruby and Rails. To celebrate the publication of the book, we’re going to have a contest where we’ll be giving away some copies of the book, and maybe we’ll throw in some other sweet thoughtbot swag.

Master of your domain model


We think that a lot of you are like us - you have ideals about how you want to do software development - but you live in the real world and sometimes a request comes in that’s a little too zany for even your limber agile mind to fathom. Maybe it’s a request from one of your consulting firm’s clients; maybe it’s a request for an internal application at your company; maybe it’s an RFP document you received.

We want you to email us your most ridiculous or bizarre client request — and tell us how it turned out. Did you implement it exactly to the specification even though it was absurd? Did you get them to compromise? Did you leave your job?

Now, since we all kind of know each other, I’m sure that we’ll all feel comfortable within the confines of the honor system. To protect the innocent (or not so innocent), please anonymize your clients names (internal project teams, your boss, whoever) in your submission.

Here are a few example entries…

  • Request ~ Allow users to import their entire iPhoto library and then do facial recognition to compare their photos to their facebook friends via the facebook api; Result ~ convinced them that their windows servers would not support jpegs produced from iPhoto.
  • Request ~ Tags must be taggable; Result ~ We passed the project to a college kid using PHP.

Send email to with your entry. We’ll post the winners right here on Giant Robots Smashing Into Other Giant Robots.


The top 3 most ridiculous stories will be chosen by us and will receive a limited edition copy of Pro Active Record signed by Chad Pytel and Jon Yurek.