Fiverr Community Forum

Having a hard time finding the right programmer

I need help figuring out how to pick the right seller for my project and wording my request so that they’ll understand what I need.

I’ve had to cancel on three sellers. Two of them could not understand what I wanted even with several examples and explanations. The other one I felt like he was wasting my time.

So pretty much what I am asking for is a program that can format text in such a way that it line breaks any amount of text under specific circumstances.

I need a desktop GUI program that will make lines based off of a set minimum and maximum character count without breaking words, line break after certain punctuation, and line break before certain specified words. The program must be capable of doing all of this without compromising quality. And all lines must be double spaced. This is a personal use program.

For example:

The dog is green, and I thought, “maybe it’s sick?” Justin interrupts my thoughts and says, “Mom called and wants you to start cleaning.”

Piss poor punctuation and grammar aside, I want my program to do this (pretend that there is a set minimum and maximum character and that there are specific words that I want this program to use as line breaks like I mentioned):

The dog is green, and I thought,

“maybe it’s sick?”

Justin interrupts my thoughts and says,

“Mom called and wants you to start cleaning.”

NOT:

The dog is green, and I thought,

“maybe it’s sick?” Justin interrupts (There is a question mark that should automatically make the part “Justin interrupts” line break)

my thoughts and says,

“Mom called and wants you to start cleaning.”

AND NOT:

The dog is green, and I thought,

“maybe it’s sick?”

Justin interrupts my thoughts

and says, (does not meet the minimum character count although it might meet the word used to line break)

“Mom called and wants you to start cleaning.”

The last seller told me that for what I wanted I needed a machine learning program that costs thousands after I had already discussed with them what I wanted and they said they could do it.

Is this program going to cost thousands? Is it really that complicated? I took some programming fundamental courses years ago. I started to try to come up with how I would make this program. I can tell that this is not as simple as I thought it would be. The problem is the program needs a lot of checks and balances. It needs to check the line character minimum and max, check if the line can afford to break after a word I’d like it to line break at will put it below the minimum. Check if the word I want it to break at is at the end of the line and that it needs to break anyway even if it is below the minimum. Also, check how long a sentence is, and probably more to it.

I feel like it’s just my job to tell the programmer what I need and they figure out how to do it. Am I wrong? No, I don’t think so. I think I might just be scraping the button of the barrel when I need the cream of the crop, but I don’t have that kind of money. I just need an unbias, honest professional opinion. Thank you.

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Yes. It is going to cost thousands. You are essentially asking for a task to be completed that requires state-of-the-art AI and can perform with comparable accuracy to platforms like Google Translate.

The top reason for failure when developing software is clients having unrealistic expectations. I’m afraid your expectations here are unrealistic.

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It seems like it would be easy enough to simply do that yourself manually?

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I told the seller exactly what I was looking for and they acted as if they could do it. So if they understood that what I wanted is unrealistic, why didn’t they say this before taking my money and acting like they could do it? Expecting me to just accept whatever program they came up with because “this is the closest I’m going to get” is wrong.

No, the reason I am here is because I want this process automated.

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It is likely they misunderstood your requirements. - And to be fair, you do need to define the scope of your project a lot better than you have here. Adding line breaks to text is easy. What you are looking for, though, is a program that adds line breaks and automatically optimizes content for human readability.

As it is, I’m afraid that no such program exists yet, nor really can without a bucket of investment capital. In this case, you should probably abandon this project.

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No, I am not going to abandon my idea, but thank you for your feedback.

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Writing technical requirements is a job and you may want to consider hiring someone to do that first if miscommunication/misunderstandings are frequent. Proper technical requirements are 40% of your project’s success. Then I’d look for a developer in the Pro category.

Revolutionary tech products tend to get created by enthusiasts who have skills and some extra time to play around with the code. If you want to finance creation of a product like this from the outside, so to speak, it’ll be thousands of dollars, yes.

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If you had to cancel the same order 3 times, surely you realize the problem are not only the sellers, right?

There you go

You’re wrong! If you don’t have the budget for it, you cannot expect people to come up with solution for you. I second @lenasemenkova, if you’re having troubles getting your idea through, get professional help.

It seems you got that from all 3 sellers you cancel on, as well as @cyaxrex and you just brushed it off. Maybe you should change to : “I just need an unbias, honest professional opinion, that tells me what I want to hear”

By all means keep wasting seller’s time, it’s not like we need it to make a living.

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That’s why I came to the forum to understand what was wrong with my request. The first two seller’s couldn’t articulate the problems with my request, but the third seller gave me some insight and I wanted more opinions on this.

Again, this is what I came to this forum for to understand where I was going wrong.

No, I didn’t get an unbias, honest, professional opinion until the last seller.

No. Just because I don’t want to give up this idea doesn’t mean I’ll continue to contact sellers. This thread was to regroup and figure out what I need to do to get where I want to be.

@lenasemenkova Thank you, thank you, thank you. You are the only response so far that’s been helpful. Again, thank you.

You’re overall attitude and tone in your writing suggests hostility and condescension that I feel is inappropriate. I’m here to get help on what I can do to be a better buyer not be criticized by people who are clearly jaded by the gig economy. You’re jumping to conclusions and making assumptions. I don’t know what made you mad, but you need professional help yourself.

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80% of software development projects fail.

To prevent failure, most successful software projects start when businesses hire a bisiness and project analyst who’s job it is to define the scope of a project, discover if a project is feasible, estimate costs, and then reach out to developers with a full project brief.

Development then only gets underway when analysts and developers agree that project goals are feasible.

If you had taken any of the above steps, you would already be aware that your project goals cannot realistically be achieved.

You have said you want honest feedback and you are currently getting it from someone who works for a reputable software development agency.

If you really want to try and power ahead with this project, that is up to you. However, you are not going to get the results you want here on Fiverr or even by paying a small fortune to hire a top industry developer. This is a simple fact, sorry.

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Obviously, I didn’t realize how complicated this would turn out to be. I thought it was simple, honestly. But, again, as I keep saying, that’s why I came to the forum, so that I can understand what is difficult about this program. If I really had this all figured out I wouldn’t waste my time coming here.

Obviously.

Again, thank you for your feedback.

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The problem that I see is that “for human readability” catch that @cyaxrex mentioned. I’m not a programmer, but I do know that programming anything to mimic human behavior is hard sole from observation of current technology.

Those multi-thousands of dollars that everyone is agreeing this will cost, would likely be better spent hiring a proofreader to look over a written work. You’d likely be able to find one that could parse out the proper structure of that example you gave from context alone, for a fraction of what a program would cost.

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Good practical suggestion.

It sounds like it would be a project for someone who is good at writing macros for Word, or some other word processing program.

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I honestly thought something like what I’m asking for already existed in Word or something else and I just haven’t found it yet.

I thought so too. Word can search out whatever you want. It seems like you could run the text through it twice, once for each thing you needed it to do.

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In my mind this is a program that would be based on a “When x=(example) then line break” type thing (not a programmer). However, the sheer number of provisos needed would make even a simple version like that extremely time consuming to create - you say in your example that the ? should make a line break, but that would then have put the " on the next line too. So then you would need to make exceptions to your rules. You are talking about thousands of possibilities to be input and that will cost a lot, even with my simple code type idea - IF it was even possible.

Stick to hiring editors and proofreaders.
Sincerely,
An editor and proofreader who wants to still be in a job and not replaced by machines :smiley:

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This is not suppose to replace proofreaders. This isn’t about proofreading. It’s about formatting text to be a certain way for specific purposes that have nothing to do with the context significance of grammar or punctuation. I’m not trying to put you out of a job lol. It’s just in your example the quotation marks would be ignored but they’re still a character that needs to be counted. I know what I am using this program for so I have it in my mind what should happen. This is great. This continues to narrow down what I am looking for and how it should be done.

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The problem is that I am guessing this app was for more of a commercial venture. After all, there is a tone of money to be made in writing aids like Grammarly.

You could make this less complicated by saying what you want this app for. For instance, lets say you wanted an app that can turn books into screenplays. If that was the case, you could get a programmer to create code that removes any text not between punctuation marks and places a line break after every last " symbol.

Obviously, though, you will still end up with text that needs to be edited and tweaked by a real human.

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I don’t think it’s as complicated as some say it is. I think a real expert in word processing could figure it out. I don’t think it would be anything that would involve one simple step though. Someone would still need to run it through a word processor multiple times.

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The idea seems like Excel’s text to columns function on steroids.
From experience I know how hard it is to just get that right!

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