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Private Equity Funcast

The PE Funcast is a weekly show featuring Devin Mathews and Jim Milbery -- partners at ParkerGale Capital. We discuss all things related to privately-owned middle market technology companies -- the kind of great businesses that are outside the sphere of venture capital.
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Now displaying: Category: Technology
Jun 22, 2020

Jim talks with Kelley Powell, Alan Williamson and Jim Headley from the MacLaurin Group about tackling large-scale technology projects in a private-equity-backed company.   All four of us worked together on a very complicated project some years ago. We focus our discussions on the Valley of Anguish, the deep hole between the initial enthusiasm and the finished project.

Apr 29, 2020

Jim talks with Paul Petefish from Evolve Security about the ins-and-outs of an actual security assessment -- ours.   We cover everything from penetration testing to phishing attacks.

Mar 30, 2020

We talk with Paul Petefish, Founder and CEO of Evolve Security about some simple and fast suggestions to make remote working more secure.

Dec 3, 2019

Jim recently got massively over-billed by Hertz, prompting a discussion about what happens to customers when process automation goes off the rails. Ryan Milligan jumps in with a Zappos story that will warm your heart.

Oct 30, 2019

Come have a listen as Stephen Tallamy CTO of EditShare talks about strategies for making technology transitions for complicated software platforms.

Oct 15, 2019

Hiring technical people is hard when you don’t know all the buzzwords and acronyms. Devin and Jim help you with good process and some helpful questions to ask when you are hiring Engineering and Software Development leaders.

Sep 20, 2019

Jim talks with fellow Babson College Alum, current portfolio company CTO, Tom Shore about application software from the early 80s through today.  We talk Digital Equipment PDP/11s all the way through the current no-code fascination.

Aug 23, 2019

Buckle your seatbelts for a fast-paced conversation with Dave Kellogg. Dave and I first met back in the early 80s at Ingres, when I was a pre-sales engineer and Dave was a technical support rep. We’ve each spent over 25 years in enterprise software, in mixed roles that involve both technology and sales & marketing. We reconnected recently and met up up in Chicago at ParkerGale’s “intergalactic headquarters” for a pretty broad-ranging conversation about a recent blog post that Dave wrote (Things to Avoid in Selecting an Executive Job at a Startup) along with a lot of interaction about differences between PE-land and VC-land. Come have a listen -- where else are you going to hear the phrase "Axe Battle of Differentiation"?

Jun 27, 2019

More madness with the Mad Scotsman, Alan Williamson and special guest Tom Shore.  We talk about the just how much automation and software tooling do you need to write applications.   The big social media software companies would claim that nothing short of continuous delivery is enough.   But is this really necessary for smaller companies that are delivering enterprise-class applications?

Apr 19, 2019

Jim and the MacLaurin Group Team -- Alan, "The Mad Scotsman", Jim Headley and Kelley Powell tackle Paul Graham's "Makers versus Managers" essay.   How do you balance the need for managers to "meet up" with programmers/writers/creators need for large blocks of uninterrupted time to complete projects?

Mar 7, 2019

We're back with the Mad Scotsman, Alan Williamson and his partner in crime, Jim Headley, of the MacLaurin Group. Alan and Jim give us their thumbs up and thumbs down on various development tools,
cloud platforms and business intelligence software stacks.

Jun 6, 2018

A follow-up conversation with the Mad Scotsman, Alan Williamson.  This time we're talking about the technology section of the 2018 Stack Overflow developer survey.   It's Java vs. C#, MariaDB vs. Oracle, AWS vs. Azure and much, much more.   

May 17, 2018

The Mad Scotsman, Alan Williamson, returns to the funcast for a lively discussion of Stack Overflow's 2018 Developer survey.  We talk about all things development, backend vs frontend vs. full stack -- and the myth of the high school dropout programming genius.

Mar 29, 2018

Our day jobs have been getting in the way of our podcasting ... but the long wait is over, we are back in the saddle with our annual March Madness Episode.  This year we cover the technologies that are having the biggest impact on our portfolio - it's Amazon vs. Google, Netsuite vs. Salesforce.com, C# vs Python, PostgreSQL vs. MySQL ... and more!

Jan 29, 2018

Jim and Devin walk through the list of technology companies where Jim has worked over the years. We talk about the lessons learned as they apply to PE-owned tech companies in the middle market. We cover decades of computing from Digital Equipment Corporation to Oracle and beyond. Bonus content includes a Rupert Pupkin shoutout and a Regis Philbin impression.

Mar 14, 2017

Jim spends an hour talking about Information Security with Evolve Security's CEO -- Paul Petefish.  We keep bumping into Pete and his team at 1871 - and figured it was time to talk a little bit about Information Security.  Everybody KNOWS that it's an important topic, but how does one get started figuring out where they stand from an InfoSec standpoint?  

Nov 2, 2016

Jim and Alan talk about a scary subject on our Halloween episode -- Distributed Denial of Service attacks.  Two weeks ago the internet experienced an unprecedented DDOS attack against a popular DNS hosting service -- Dyn -- that blocked access to a huge number of popular sites -- eBay and PayPal included.  What does this mean for the small business owner -- should you avoid the Cloud altogether?  Come have a listen and find out.

Oct 26, 2016

We had a great conversation with Kevin Hurley, a recent graduate from Fullstack Academy. Kevin is a high school math teacher who caught the coding bug and decided to switch careers. He's exactly the kind of self-motivated technologist that will thrive our the tech economy. So, if you are thinking about jumping into the tech space, or you're a CTO looking to hire talent from "outside the box" -- then come have a listen. One more thing ... if Chevy Chase is reading this description, we assure him that in this episode there will be NO math.

Oct 19, 2016

Jim talks about all things social media with Cappy Popp and John Maver from Thought Labs -- a leading Digital Marketing Strategy company. We've worked with Cappy and John on a number of projects in our portfolio, and they know what it takes to develop a social media strategy. This is the first part of an ongoing series on social media marketing. In this first part we cover the basics of when/why/how you should consider a social media campaign for your company.

Oct 11, 2016

Alan and Jim spend a fun hour talking with Zeke Nierenberg, Academic Director/Chicago from Fullstack Academy. Fullstack teaches qualified non-programmers to code using an immersive 13-week program. Our bias going into this conversation was Alan's belief that you can't learn to code in 13 weeks. Zeke managed to school us both with Fullstack's point of view. Come have a listen and and decide for yourself.

Oct 3, 2016

Alan and Jim spend an hour talking with Ben Johnson, author of BoldDB and and freelance Go developer.  The Go language is a relatively new open source programming language (and platform) started by Google and maintained by a community of developers.  The authors promote "Go" as being easy to build simple, reliable, and efficient software.   Go is somewhat unique in that it compiles into a native operating system executable that can be easily distributed across platforms (Windows, Linux, Mac OS).  Is "Go" the right choice for smaller companies?  Have a listen and find out.

Sep 15, 2016

Alan and Jim spend a fast half hour talking when you should consider upgrading older pieces of custom (homegrown) software. You don't have to upgrade older software just for the sake of upgrading it -- and converting from an older language to a newer language doesn't make the software any better. The first of a three (or maybe four) part series on modernizing your infrastructure.

Sep 6, 2016

Jim and Alan spend an hour arguing about whether you should consider bolting an
application programming interface onto older applications as a path to modernizing them. The conversation meanders into a brief history of application-programming-interfaces without getting too nitty-gritty -- suitable listening for Founders, CEOs and technologists.

Aug 1, 2016

We recently had to find a home for a legacy client/server accounting application, running in a location that was far, far away.  The software came to us through an acquisition of another company.   Our ultimate goal is to migrate the parent and child to a single, unified cloud-based application.  In the near term, however, we needed to allow the remote team to access the software as per usual, right alongside the finance team back at headquarters. And, we needed to insure that the software was backed up properly and secure.   The solution turned out to be Amazon's WorkSpaces product.

Jul 26, 2016

Jim and Alan talk in detail about the Valley of Anguish and how to survive it.   All large projects (ERP implementations, software re-writes, data center moves) start out with heady expectations and hardy enthusiasm.   Inevitably, as your teams start tackling the stickier issues they slide down into the Valley of Anguish -- all willing to abandon the project and go back to doing things the old way.   As operating partners, we've had tons of experience in the valley -- and can help you and your teams survive and thrive -- and come out the other end of the project with smiles on their faces.   Also, we talk about Alan's really bad hat.

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