People are doing more but they’re also opptimizing less. Who I love reading is Jordan Mechner, who wrote Prince of Persia, He put all his journals while he was writing Prince of Persia online. He was a kid, like 18 or 19, when he was doing this. There’s this point [in the game] where it’s you and your shadow self. He said, “Well, we didn’t have any memory left to do this other character, so we just took the character and bit-flipped it so there was its exact shadow.” The types of creativity they had to do back then when you had 8K of RAM, to make that work, was crazy.
Many sites let users choose how many items they’ll see on each page. This is often overkill, as when pop-up menus let users View 10, 20, 30, 40 items per screen.
It’s usually better to offer a single default number—such as 10 or 20—and supplement it with View All for people who want more. Instead of a pop-up menu, this design requires only a simple button and is thus much faster to operate.
Alternatively, if View All would generate an unwieldy page, give users the choice between two numbers, say 10 and 50, where the second number is substantially bigger than the default.
If the choice is between two relatively similar numbers (such as 10 and 20), users might as well click the Next Page button rather than suffer the cognitive overhead of trying to decide their display preference.
But don’t think you get to call who is or isn’t a “real entrepreneur” based on who has or hasn’t quit their dayjob. If anything, the folks doing it “the hard way” deserve more respect and recognition than the people running around acting like raising a round was an end unto itself, and who seem to think that the point of a startup is to raise money (as opposed to making money).
The biggest problem with side projects is that the lack of commitment dilutes the startup talent pool, hurts the side project or startup, and in turn kills great startups from succeeding. If you’re looking to start a business, take some time to consider whether or not you’re ready to be all in.
As an interface designer I am often asked to design a “better” interface to some product. Usually one can be designed such that, in terms of learning time, eventual speed of operation (productivity), decreased error rates, and ease of implementation it is superior to competing or the client’s own products. Even where my proposals are seen as significant improvements, they are often rejected nonetheless on the grounds that they are not intuitive. It is a classic “catch 22.” The client wants something that is significantly superior to the competition. But if superior, it cannot be the same, so it must be different (typically the greater the improvement, the greater the difference). Therefore it cannot be intuitive, that is, familiar. What the client usually wants is an interface with at most marginal differences that, somehow, makes a major improvement. This can be achieved only on the rare occasions where the original interface has some major flaw that is remedied by a minor fix.
Simplicity is not about making something without ornament, but rather about making something very complex, then slicing elements away, until you reveal the very essence.
After all the slicing away, you may realize, now that you can clearly see the idea, that it’s actually not very good.
The fact that I call it “the rest of my life” gives you an indication where work stood in the pecking order.
I don’t have children, so it might seem that my story lacks relevance to the work-life balance debate. Like everyone, though, I did have relationships — a spouse, friends and family — and none of them got the best version of me. They got what was left over.
Well that means you’re well into your second quarter. You better do something with yourself in this job. What do you want to do?