Hashnode - Community for Software Developers - Interview with Sandeep Panda

One of the challenges of being a web developer is keeping up with the world. The field moves ahead constantly and it's easy to fail to see the forest from the trees. In part, SurviveJS was born to address this problem, but obviously it's only a small part of the solution.

Hashnode is a service that approaches the problem from a little different angle. To get a better idea, I'm interviewing Sandeep Panda, one of the developers behind the service.

Can you tell a bit about yourself?#

I am Sandeep, a software developer based out of Bangalore, India. I have been developing for the web for last 6 years. Apart from programming I also like writing and helping people get better at coding.

I have written two books, Jump Start HTML5 : APIs and AngularJS : Novice to Ninja, and have contributed many tutorials to SitePoint.

Recently I, along with Fazle, started Hashnode which is a community for software developers.

How would you describe Hashnode to someone who has never heard of it? How does it differ from other solutions?#

Hashnode brings a social angle to how developers interact. Stack Overflow already does a great job at helping developers with specific questions and programming errors

At Hashnode we encourage subjective and opinion based questions and want developers to express themselves. The broader goal is to help developers get better, stay relevant and connected.

Apart from Q&A, we also let developers share links, write about their experiences in the form of stories. Also, we recently introduced AMAs where we invite influencers and awesome tech teams to conduct live Q&A sessions.

Why did you develop Hashnode?#

While writing books and tutorials for SitePoint I realized that there should be a community that is more welcoming to beginners and helps them get started with newer technologies.

Communities like Stack Overflow are too focused on specific programming errors. So, we thought of building a community around developers with focus on questions that demand in-depth explanations and discussions.

Another reason behind developing Hashnode was to connect developers with influencers and tech teams that have built great open source projects.

What next?#

The current priority is to grow Hashnode as a community and keep getting more and more developers to use the platform. It's still new (around 3 months old) and will probably undergo a lot of improvements in coming days.

What does the future look like for Hashnode and web development in general? Can you see any particular trends?#

Talking about the future, we want to build a modern day community for developers where they can hang out with others on a global scale. Right now Hashnode is doing good progress by attracting developers in areas like JavaScript, Node.js, CSS, React, PHP, RoR and Java. But eventually our goal is to have all kinds of developers in a single platform.

I think isomorphic (universal) apps are going to play a key role in future. Hashnode is built with React and is isomorphic in nature. So we, as a company, are going to invest a lot in this area.

That's why we released an open source project called mern.io which helps developers get started with building isomorphic apps using React and Redux. With around 1900 stars on GitHub, it has got good traction and we are actively looking for contributors to improve it further.

I also think React Native is going to be used heavily in the coming days.

Who should I interview next?#

TJ Holowaychuk. Don't forget to ask him about his productivity hacks.


Thanks for the interview Sandeep! We'll be hosting a SurviveJS AMA at Hashnode on Friday 29th (18:00 GMT+0). So if you have any SurviveJS, Webpack, or React related questions, see you there. I'll be writing answers for solid two hours and there's a little something in store for the top questions.

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