Sourcerer – An intelligent profile for software engineers

Ryan Osilla (co-founder at Sourcerer) and I go back quite far. I first met him while he was working on his struggling startup and contributing to a political campaign in northwest Florida back in 2004.   We hit it off and I convinced him to move to Silicon Valley to help me build MerchantCircle.   He eventually rose to lead product for us and then subsequently went on to build the fastest growing Internet Company in Brazil, Peixe Urbano.

Given this background, when he first approached me on the idea of Sourcerer I was ecstatic to learn more. Not in the least because he’s a friend but even more so that I was looking at the concept back during my Borland CodeGear days.   Specifically, wanting to develop a social/professional network of software engineers. It obviously never happened but it’s core always held something captivating for me.

small_logo_green_blk_bkrdEnter the Sourcerer deal. The two co-founders, Ryan and Sergey met up with me one early morning in San Francisco to discuss “An intelligent profile for software engineers”. They detailed their strategy to index the abilities, habits, and preferences of software engineers using public and private Git repositories. It made a ton of sense for me for a couple reasons:

  1. Software engineering is a rapidly growing skill and career path. There are 6M software engineers in the US alone. There are 18.2M worldwide and projections for there to be over 26.4M by next year.
  2. The information they are looking to index is massive. Github alone has 57M repositories, which is only one part of the whole when you think of the many companies/users using a privately hosted version.
  3. Much like what Behance did for the design community, I believe should exist for the software engineering community. There is a real art/talent associated with great engineering that deserves their own place to discuss, grow, and socialize professionally. Why shouldn’t they be able to share the languages and libraries they use, what math they like, who they work with, how much they hate unit tests, and how brave they are to refactor. All of which would be discovered through Sourcerer’s indexing and a community sitting on top of it.

I could go on for quite a bit more but I think you get the point. There is a real opportunity here that I along with the other angels and investors including 3KVC, Graph Ventures, Social Capital, and Accelerator Ventures couldn’t pass up.

In addition, the team is top notch. I can’t wait to see their progress. As of now, I’m told they are already collecting early users for their alpha release. If you are an engineer, I would highly recommend you check out what they are doing at Sourcerer.

Exciting times.

About Ben T. Smith, IV

Founder of, investor in and advisor to technology and media companies
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