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A long time ago I decided that Joel on Software would be non-political. In programming terms, politics are orthogonal to software, and tightly coupling my personal political viewpoint would result in unnecessary arbitrary incompatibilities.

On the other hand I feel guilty every time I delete a post about politics from the discussion group. So I’ve taken some readers’ advice and created a second discussion group, called Off Topic, where you can feel free to flame about political or personal issues that are completely unrelated to software development, marketing, or management. We’ll see how it goes.

In Other News

I’ve been putting off writing new Joel on Software essays because every time I start writing one I realize that it’s much more important to get FogBugz 4.0 out the damn door. With any luck we’ll start trickling it out to beta testers over the next couple of weeks, with wider betas starting in about a month. The beta is only open to existing customers; you can request to be a beta tester here.

I’m totally excited about FogBugz 4.0. It’s our biggest release ever, it’s got lots of incredible new features, all of which make it even easier to enter and track bugs, features, and respond to customer email and even run online discussion groups. One of my favorite writers, Mike Gunderloy, who wrote Coder to Developer, is coming out with a book about FogBugz. One of my favorite web designers, Dave Shea, who created the famous css Zen Garden and has designed supernaturally beautiful templates for FireFox, TypePad, Blogger, and Fog Creek, has redesigned the visuals in FogBugz. Oh, and do you remember Jill McFarlane, the tester I raved about as being measurably 12 times as productive as average? She’s working on FogBugz QA. When this thing ships you can tell me if you think having a great team is worth the trouble or if I should have just farmed the development out to the cheapest bidder.

About the author.

I'm Joel Spolsky, co-founder of Trello and Fog Creek Software, and CEO of Stack Overflow. More about me.