Building new things is an expensive, arduous, and long path, so product builders are always hunting for means to validate new ideas. Chasing ghosts is costly and deadly.
The “data-driven” culture we now live in discourages making bets from the gut. “I have a hunch” isn’t good enough. We need to hold focus groups, do market research, and validate our bets before we make them. You need to come bearing data, learnings, and business cases before allowing your dev team to get started on new features.
And there’s nothing wrong with validation! If...
For any company, keeping track of your position in the competitive landscape is an important element of making the right decisions. When I think about competitors, I think about them separately as “direct” vs. “indirect”:
- Direct competitor: one with a product offering highly similar and seen by your customer as a direct substitute
- Indirect competitor: one that might look glancingly similar (or very different) on the surface, but addresses the same jobs to be done
Direct vs. indirect doesn’t matter all that much at the end of the day;...
If you’re on the internet and haven’t been living under a rock for the last few months, you’ve heard about the startup Clubhouse and its explosive growth. It launched around the time COVID lockdowns started last year, and has been booming in popularity even with (maybe in-part due to?) an invitation gate and waitlist to get access.
The core product idea centers around “drop-in” audio conversations. Anyone can spin up a room accessible to the public, others can drop in and out, and, importantly, there’s a sort of peer-to-peer model on contributing that differentiates it from podcasting, its closest analog.
Jonathan Rauch on pluralism and the necessity of disagreement in the search for truth.
His book Kindly Inquisitors was first published in 1993, but is as relevant today as ever. The book is a defense of what he calls “liberal science”, our decentralized process for knowledge discovery that relies on relentless-but-gradual error correction:
Liberal science, by its very nature, has little tolerance for fundamentalism; conversely fundamentalism is a threat to liberal science. Fundamentalism, defined by Rauch as...
Concise summary of Robert Gordon’s book on Roots of Progress.
A solid comprehensive, step-by-step overview of how to conduct JTBD interviews.
A pointer somewhere on Twitter led to this post from the Slate Star Codex archives, discussing a paper that supposedly debunks the Fermi paradox:
The low-code “market” isn’t really a market. Rather, I see it as an attribute of a software product, an implementation factor in how a product works. A product providing low-code capability says nothing about its intended value — it could be a product for sending emails, building automation rules, connecting APIs, or designing mobile forms.
What are termed “LCAP” (low-code application platform) software are often better described as “tools to build your own apps, without having to write all the code yourself.”
This post isn’t really about low-code as a marketplace descriptor, but about refining the nomenclature for...
This is one from the archives, originally written for the Fulcrum blog back in early 2017. I thought I’d resurface it here since I’ve been thinking more about continual evolution of our product process. I liked it back when I wrote it; still very relevant and true. It’s good to look back in time to get a sense for my thought process from a couple years ago.
In the software business, a lot of attention gets paid to “shipping” as a badge of honor if you want to be considered an innovator. Like any guiding...