a mini-product from scratch – #1, the idea

Categories goal, Product Development, Projects, Uncategorized

Because I need to tune my process I’m going to build a mini-product from scratch. First, some history. Once upon a time… just kidding.


So let’s begin.

The core product, idea, “the why” or the “benefit” is the first thing that we need to figure out. That’s the need for the product, and the seed crystal that everything else gravitates around.

You can get it from an instant flash, an organized idea pool or brainstorming session or you may even steal it (and make it better of course).

For this experiment everything started with a funny tweet from @notepadconf that led to me an article on lifehacker and then it hit me – an app that you can use to jot down  a little bit of text every day, like a daily log, a diary of sorts, or even a small poem is good idea for a semi-useful mini-product that wouldn’t draw me in the technical side of things but it would:

  • allow me to do an end-to-end product development tracer, from nothing to something user-accessible
  • allow me to fine tune my toolbelt and try some experiments with new third-party services

So, although you may just say “I’d just go and use Evernote” or “that’s what a text file on Github is for”, it’s not about that, it’s about building something new from scratch, in the open, as a kata.

Although ideas are pretty important, it’s good to know that they don’t hold all the weight. The implementation is far more important than the idea so don’t stress about you “giving your idea away” (if you’re working in a really competitive R&D sector I’d hold back on discussing my ideas, but most of the time nobody’ll steal your idea and work on it for a couple of years before it bares fruit) and talk freely about it – it helps.

So, my why is this: “Every day I write information in a text file on my desktop, I usually write small todos or snippets of text or things I’ve done, or some URL I want to revisit but I seldom do, or I delete it, or I forget to look at it ever again. I’d like to not lose this information, be able to look it up using a calendar, have it searchable, and from time to time randomly pop-up one of my dailies”

So my double personality is my client, and it has a need. That’ll have to do for now.

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