Side note. Our entire family has been destroyed by fighting over money. Money isn't everything. :)
Like any other book... There is no recipe for success. But there are a lot of techniques on how to maximize your income.
So I rented a desk for $10 overnight (EST hours) and billed the hours after 2 nights.
In Cebu, $960/month is more than enough to live comfortably. So I realized I made an entire months living (traveling) expenses in one day of work. That's almost like the "2 hour work week"
In the book Tim, emphasises that burning through 90 hour work weeks are pointless if you are not able to enjoy the $$$ it will bring in. Rather spend some money to reduce your workload and focus on things that excite you.
While most the examples he cites are not very useful for me. (I am from India and outsourcing the boring jobs to India isn't very effective ). It helped me focus on what I want in my life. And what is the $$$ amount which will help me achieve that. Its a hard conversation which most of us don't have with ourselves.
I sum up the book as; "There is no point in feeling like shit in your 20s and your 30s for a great life in your 40s which might not even come." Its not exactly YOLO as it emphasises to have a great time and not just let life happen.
It's striking to me how people seem so baffled about anything anymore these days. Is there a God? The best framework humans have discovered for figuring things out is the scientific method, and according to that, the answer is: not as far as we can tell. Why is this even a question anymore and why do religions still exist, 20+ years after the internet has been around for the public? Again, the answer to that is on the web as well (the answer probably has to do with how longstanding institutions take a long time to die without meteoric disruption - and physics research/the discovery of the Higgs boson clearly wasn't enough to disrupt religion, nor was the recent rise in popularity of Nick Bostrom's simulation theory which happens to be my favorite theory about what this universe is, etc.).
Anyway, I digress...the point is that nearly anything can be figured out via Google. Want to become a rocket scientist? Google it. Read the best books out there. Don't sell yourself short. Want to be an engineer? Google it. And then do it. You can also learn almost anything with very low cost, thanks to the Internet.
I just gave you the secret to the 4 hour work week. Google + determination.
If you're struggling with accepting this answer - start with getting better at searching Google. You can get good at it like any other skill.
Actually kinda amazed that there arent many similar people in the thread...I can email you from a public address, it would prove I have a real reputation and not just Tims paid commenter.
Gotta milk that survivorship bias though!
He created product where the brunt of the work took place in the first few months/years, but the SEO traffic paid dividends for years to come.
Interestingly, both eventually got married and settled down back in the states. They each seem to be doing well - but have more conventional lifestyles now (i.e. Living in the burbs with kids).
To provide a bit of additional context, we launched the program on March 23rd (which closed on May 8th), received 285 applications, and then selected four of them as fellows on June 20th. We notified everyone that had applied that day.
From there, we still had to coordinate the final logistics with the fellows who were selected. A few were at full-time jobs and needed time to coordinate long-term sabbaticals, so weve had to delay the announcement on the selection process.
As far as why you werent contacted, this is totally my fault and an honest mistake. Even though the deadline was May 8th, we still had an apply late form that was able to submit applications for late participants. However, nobody was monitoring the form after June 20th since wed already accepted the fellows and were still figuring out the logistics with them. I just checked your application and it came in on June 21st.
Im really sorry about that, well do better here next timeI honestly feel terrible for botching the logistics, and can totally understand the frustration. For what its worth, nobody had seen your application until now, and I removed the application form earlier today to ensure this mistake doesnt happen again.
Happy to answer other questions here or at email@example.com, well be announcing the four fellows in September.
> Will you read my manuscript and tell me what you think?
...."There's another reason, and that's a legal one. I've been sued for plagiarism 8 or 9 times. Any writer who has deep pockets has been sued for plagiarism from time-to-time-that goes for J.K. Rowling, John Grisham, really everyone. For everyone who publishes best-selling fiction, somebody wants to think, 'Oh, he got that idea from me' and so it's just much easier and much safer to say I never read that book at all".
I mean, out of hundreds of applications that they received, one idea slightly matching with what they were already doing is highly probable. It seems rather unlikely that a company leader would see an application and jump out of his seat to instruct his team to copy the idea without any credit.
Is it someone from segment informed you about this upcoming commercial product? How did you learned about this info? What if there is no such plans or upcoming product?
Are you sure about their terms & conditions? Some companies include special clause to own or implement these ideas on their own.
I hope someone from segment will address your concerns.
I hope someone from Segment responds to your concerns.
Balanced ternary could be a real fun starting point-- getting negative numbers involved asap surely has some great benefits. I think if balanced ternary was exposed to children more often at an early age we'd have a lot of these new fangled type level numbers being balanced ternary. I was playing around with implementing such in Rust: https://github.com/serprex/lambdaski/blob/master/src/typenum...
Binary comes off as particularly weak when type systems are still resolving lambda terms / prolog logic as associative maps & trees. http://repository.readscheme.org/ftp/papers/topps/D-456.pdf benchmarks 5 as being an ideal radix perfwise, but that does seem implementation dependent
My father wrote a song reflecting on our digital world: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Bw-au4sqKD2gWVJqOGFzSEVoakx...Stay strong & good luck
Yes, a 6yo can learn to use a saw, just make sure it is sized accordingly and has small teeth - both because they are easier to use as well as less likely to cause injury.
1) Prime Climbhttps://www.amazon.com/Math-for-Love-Prime-Climb/dp/B00PG959...
2) Tiny Polka Dotshttps://www.amazon.com/Math-For-Love-Tiny-Polka/dp/B01N1UUHP...
- Tiny Polka Dots might seem too basic, but counting is this complex topic that we forget because, well, we know how to count. Lots of downstream advantages of having the kind of secure understanding a kid can get from understanding counting inside and out. Tiny Polka Dots can help.
Literature: A membership in the local library was enough for me.
Problem Solving: Chess and related board games; any kind of puzzles - I loved metal puzzles where I had to separate/join pieces (e.g. those found here - not endorsing the shop, just the first hit on DDG).
Cribbage is a nice blend of strategy, applied math and pattern matching. I plan to teach my 17 month old daughter cribbage as soon as I can.
Tanagram Frisbee Bike Prism Magnifying glass
As kids we loved it, and then, even in college we still used it in our robotics projects :)
Same goes for puzzle games - Sudoku, or even those little golf tee + peg board games you see at like cracker barrel. Simple but educational and they exercise the brain.
As others have said, Legos and similar toys teach spatial reasoning and similar skills as well.
If you are looking for toys that teach a specific skill (eg algebra) that is likely trickier to find.
Kapla Blocks (building)https://www.amazon.com/CitiBlocs-200-Piece-Natural-Colored-B...
Dominos for Toppling (lots of tutorials online to do amazing runs)https://bulkdominoes.com/collections/all
If you don't have a hard smooth floor pick up a sheet of plexiglass for dominos and kapala blocks.
Legos, get a variety of sets, encourage mixing and building your own creations.
Catan JuniorSettlers of Catan
Ticket to Ride
Scrabble (deluxe with plastic grid)
Stratego (Original General is 1)
Uno Card Game.
Snap Circuits (Electricity Projects)
Do science night where parents use a white board to teach how things work, let them ask questions/explain things they know.
Lego Mindstorms is good too, but they would need to be on a screen some for this.
(originally a Kickstarter)
A compelling way to introduce children to laws of nature. You can see him sharing his philosophy here:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YOllmFfELT8
 https://youtu.be/2zvjW9arAZ0 www.improviseforreal.com
Also the games by thinkfun.com (Rush Hour etc) are very good
Ship in a bottle
Woodworking projects (especially involving measuring, proportion, etc.)
I Hate Mathematics Book by Marilyn Burns
Stolen Sharpie Revolution by Alex Wrekk (and other books on creating Zines)
Problem solving/lateral thinking books.
Reading of course.
Pretty much anything you throw at them will teach them something.
The question is, what do you want them to learn?
6 might be a bit on the younger side for it, but 10 definitely not. You learn to use a screwdriver and screws and basic mechanics. You can go all the way to elaborate designs.
It's a timeless toy, my father already played with it (looked like this back then: http://www.dalefield.com/nzfmm/slap/RoyalMeccano.JPG ) and so did I. Heck, even an adult can use these, I once made a distillery platform with height-adjustable burner with these. Really nice to slap together sturdy prototypes.
EDIT: Now that I'm looking at modern MECCANO, I feel like they have diverted too much from the original path. I'd rather have the basic old metal kit in the second image than a fancy MECCANO car consisting of oddly shaped plastic pieces.
A Pound of dice: https://www.amazon.com/Wiz-Dice-Pack-Random-Polyhedral/dp/B0... (I'd be keen to know if there's dice at a similar price in the UK)
You can then play something like Button Men (which could easily be rethemed to "Pokemon battle") https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Button_Men
Luckily, my company doesn't have a policy that anything I work on during my shift is theirs. They don't mind me doing me during downtime, and in fact, they encourage it. I believe its right in the handbook that they encourage us to go on social media if we have nothing else to do and have gotten all of our work done. I work for a media company, so it kind of makes sense that they would want us to be up to date with social media trends and news.
I've built several successful websites during downtime and off-hours (after I leave work and continuing on it). I think much of my success outside of work has to do with the hours I've had downtime at work. We can definitely get busy... but we pretty much sit around, waiting for an inbox to have work in it, and we just get it done when it comes in. After it's done, I return back to what I was doing before.
While I definitely procrastinate, it's rare for me to not do anything. Always working on something. In my early days, I had started up a side gig freelancing, building, maintaining, and editing websites for clients, and then I started up a side business while working for my main job and currently in the process of starting up a second side business.
None of my side businesses steal away any business from my company, and if anything, only compliment their work and mine. In fact, I try to reel in business for my company so that I can keep doing what I do. Everyone wins.
I firmly believe that obtaining a doctorate is as much about jumping through hoops that they have set on fire as it is mastery of your academic field of study. I just wonder the quality that was surrendered because sleep was in critically short supply.
In business, I believe it is better to work smart than to work hard. I acknowledge that when I was working on my doctorate had I taken a step back even for a solid day, I would have recharged and likely saved myself 5x that in lost productivity. Unfortunately, it is hard to see that when you are under intense pressure to produce huge volumes of work on a very brief timeline.
On average, I think that number is about 6-8 hours per day for most people. But even that length isn't functioning at your peak, just high enough to be generally worthwhile. Peak effectiveness would be more like half that.
You need to do your research and find out what works best for you and your team, but the larger the group, the more likely you are to fall into the typical pattern.
Sounds to me like you need to reduce distractions rather than working more hours.
With that in mind, not all coding is equally brain-intensive. If I put in a serious intense hardcore 3 hour session of gnarling code wrangling, I'm pretty much done for several hours. Conversely I can do minor refactoring and code cleanup all day.
It's well known that pushing developers to work more hours isn't effective. It might (might!!) get a product to deadline faster, but it will be at the cost of burned-out developers who will have greatly reduced productively, and a decreased quality in the codebase and more defects at the time of launch. And the better developers tend to leave for a healthier environment.
Regarding skipping meetings and emails, figure out (if you haven't) why you're doing that and take appropriate steps. Maybe it's having a discussion about why a particular meeting is unproductive, or alternate forms of communication. Maybe it's finding a reason to go to a meeting other than its stated purpose.
I do think progress is proportional to time spent on it. The only question is how much time you can get in and at what cost. You can always push harder, but it can lead to burnout and deplete passion.
Plan your day so you can use those 4 hours of focus the most! For me that means no meetings, phone calls and email in the morning if possible.
We have Jira at work as well as some legacy Bugzilla systems. I have been trying to get everyone sending requests to my group to put them in Jira.
I prefer a structured process so I can minimize interruptions of developers.
In point of fact, the observation of no interruption for the team (by anyone including management) means more work is done in less hours. This observation, which I have found to be true, was made in the late 80's.
Any interruption in thought processes when doing engineering/technical work requires the person to spend a significant amount of time returning to the place where the interruption occurred.
Management practise since the late 80's has ensured that all technical staff (engineering, programmers, etc) must be interruptible at all times (especially by management itself). The team/team members have no ability to redirect phone calls, email messages or management meetings to management PA's to deal with.
The experience that I and my technical colleagues had was that if we could have a non-interrupted period of 2-3 hours to work on any project, we would achieve more than we could in any normal interrupted 8 hour day. Often we found that an extended uninterrupted period of 4-6 hours would allow us to complete technical work/projects that would normally take us a week to complete. This was based on a total effective 1 hour due to the continual interruptions we normally received during our normal days. This lead us to start work early and finish late when we could work uninterrupted. Of course, this worked against as this was in effect unpaid time.
The common management practise of the last 30 years has ensured that every technical/engineering team works at its lowest efficiency. There are some managers who will protect their engineering teams from such interference and as a consequence get a much higher efficiency out them in a normal work day of 7-8 hours. Unfortunately, these kinds of managers are few and far between.
I would say that any team that works beyond this number of hours will still not achieve anywhere near the same results as a corresponding team that has the unfettered ability to block out all interruptions.
In addition, it also requires group offices for this to work. Open plan layouts are an instant cause of inefficiency, especially with technical/engineering groups. Two to three team members per office would be ideal.
As an office is considered a status symbol within management circles, we should not expect any sensible outcome in this area. All of this was documented and published in the late 80's.
In relation to your comment that in any day there is only 4 hours that you write solid code, I would suggest that if you had an uninterrupted 4 hours that the amount of code produced would very likely double or even triple and be even better.
Just don't expect any management or management guru's of today to see it this way.
The comment regarding brain-intensive work being fatiguing is certainly true when you have to deal with multiple interruptions. From my experience, mostly the fatigue is from having to get yourself back to the place you were at before the interruption. A uninterrupted period of time devoted to a brain-intensive activity is less stressful than the same period that has had interruptions.
I am also saying that such periods of time need to be regulated by oneself so that burnout doesn't occur. Good physical activity, good food, rest, relaxation and good non-work related socialising make one able to keep at peak efficiency.
Have made some edits about to fill in more explanation and correct spelling and sentence structure.
However, if you have an RF component and/or RF circuity in your PCB, you should be careful with conformal coating. As the frequency goes up and impedance requirements gets tighter, conformal coating becomes harder and harder to use, because it alters the RF circuit behavior. Also, obviously, you should not be coating certain sensors (pressure sensors, humidity sensors, etc).
Your next line of defense is your enclosure. Ideally, all your connectors should be IP67 or IP68 rated, and you should place your PCBs in an enclosure which is itself IP67/IP68 rated. This is usually achieved by using a gasket and designing the enclosure with a proper gasket opening.
If your device is going to be exposed to sunlight, you should make sure that any active IC in your system will not exceed its operating temperature. Metal enclosures exposed to sunlight will heat up considerably. You may want to think about a cooling solution, based on your power dissipation (enclosure with fins, etc).
I've had good results with simple plastic cases, as long as a few rules are followed:
- The case must have a gasket on its cover
- Any openings must be on the bottom of the case (including antennae!)
- Cable glands or waterproof connectors must be used on all openings
- All cables must have a little slack, so they hang below the case and come straight up
- Put a couple of dissecant bags inside the box
I've been using this for various DIY outdoor projects for years, like putting mikrotik routerboards, raspberry pis, arduinos, etc. outdoors.
Water will accumulate in all openings not on the bottom of the case, and air pressure changes will cause the box to "suck" this water in, no matter how tightly sealed that cable gland is. That's why the openings should all be at the bottom.
Just my 2 cents.
Edit: Looks like you're aiming for an actual product release. There's no substitute for potting your circuit inside its enclosure. I'd look for a silicone based solution as you're aiming for large temperature swings.
Condensation happens when moist air hits a cool surface, how much power is your circuit consuming? You may not have a problem.
I have designed a number of telephony products (e.g. T1 repeaters) for use in outdoor environments, we never coated the circuit boards.
Along the lines of "do things that don't scale," household products such as Household Goop (aka Shoe Goo), silicone sealant, etc., work pretty well.
If you have one or two components that can't be coated, you can leave them off the board and solder them by hand after coating.
The same guy that created that also recently made a second project of crowdsourced neighborhood characteristics within each city. For example, if you want to find where the tech or hipster neighborhood in a given city is.
For example, SF:
It's such a poor idea that you aren't even factoring the risks in. And can barely factor it, as it's bitcoin. What is the chance of this entirely thing breaking down tomorrow as people just give up believing on it? Big chance.
It's completely unusable. I can write a bash script which does more transactions than bitcoin on a calculator. The blockchain model it uses has no scale.
As soon as mining becomes more difficult and we hit close to 90% of the coins and use doesn't increase up(because usage didn't take off, like the prices), this is all worth 0.
Who has hit the jackpot is the one who sells before this ponzi scheme falls down and entered early enough.
LinkedIn crashed at the end of 2015, but recovered in early 2016, dropping from around $250/share to $92 and rising up again to $190. If you took $10,000 and invested it and rode that wave... it is now $195. Would've been a 112% ROI with about $11k made.
I did take a risk on investing in another company with $10k recently and made $1000 in a day or two. There are websites out there that help you... its definitely risk taking with chances of losing a lot of money if you aren't quick enough, and while it's not technically insider trading... it's more similar to penny stocks, where timing is everything, and if you have at least a minimum of $10k to invest, and you ride the small waves.. you can make thousands of dollars doing that.
Money makes money and with time money can be made. I have a 401k that I can't touch because I no longer work at the job. I have spoken with financial advisers about touching it or not touching, and while some suggested I move it, the fact remains: My money got invested into some really good companies at early stages that are just not available with any other plans, either with my current company, or Roth IRAs, so leaving the money in there is just best. The last time I put money in there was at 4k. A decade later, it is nearing $12k. Might not sound like a lot to some people, but that is the power of money making money on itself. I haven't touched it because I can't put anything into it. Being as I'm still about 30-35 years away from retirement, I'm sure it will be just fine if I leave it.
Kind of like a Futurama deal... where Fry gets frozen for 1,000 years...
>>The account had contained 93 cents in 1999, but after accruing interest at 2.25% per year for 1,000 years, the balance is now $4.3 billion. ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Fishful_of_Dollars )
2) Possibly various patents.
This is more a matter of the sheer number of people who could become involved in Bitcoin in a short amount of time (i.e. an artifact of the modern era) than it is about Bitcoin per se.
2. Lottery tickets
3. Slipping at Wal-Mart and suing them for millions
Most people who work at tech companies in the bay area don't pay for their insurance, or pay very little. It's just considered part of benefits.
I think they'd be shocked if they had to pay full retail price for it. Also, the government subsidies only apply if your making less than 50k a year, so most likely everybody would be paying full retail price if not for their employer.
 - Blue Shield monthly cost for Silver 70 PPO Downtown San Francisco $462.54 Downtown San Diego $388.22 Santa Barbara $372.58 Beverly Hills $342.53
2. Marketing & Advertising.
4. Employer Share of Payroll Taxes.
5. Other Insurance (eg. Workman's comp, General liability, etc.)
6. IT (Including AWS).
7. Legal & Accounting.
After that it's hosting (we have no on-prem infrastructure), AWS is probably 85% of that cost.
e.g. here's an estimate of costs in Australia's IT consulting sector, as percentage of total revenue:
wages:40% other:26%incl. insurance, advertising, cleaning, repairs & maintenance purchases:16% profit:11% utilities:5% rent:2% depreciation:1%
Jumping down an order of magnitude we've got: software, bank fees/processing fees, insurance, taxes.
We were really happy when our salaries passed our hosting bills and stayed there.
Advertising + Trade Shows
There's an unbelievable amount of backwards business process that's still out there. Unless you've experienced it first hand, I really don't think you can fully appreciate how manual the "business world" still is.
For the past year I've been working with an intermodal trucking company building an app for owner-operator truck drivers so they can accept/reject deliveries, turn in paperwork, and update delivery statuses via a mobile app. If that sounds dead simple, it's because it is. But the change it brings is amazing.
While deploying the app I'd often ask when so-and-so truck driver came in to the office. The answer was usually something like "every day at 5:00pm to drop off his paperwork". A week after they start using the app, the answer suddenly turns in to "Oh, he never comes in to the office. You'll have to call his cell."
Dispatchers that were tearing their hair out trying to get updates from their drivers so they can in turn update their customers now feel like they can manage double the trucks. They're asking if they can get a similar app on their phone so they can manage their drivers on the go. Managers are asking when they'll be able to ditch the office space they're renting and let everyone work from home.
When I tell people "It's like Uber for intermodal trucking", nobody cares. If they pretend to care, I have to explain what intermodal trucking is in the first place -- then they stop pretending. It doesn't sound "sexy". It's a boring industry.
I think there's a lot of boring industry out there that hasn't fully embraced technology, and I think when it finally does we'll see a cultural change in the way we view work.
Apple has solved few real world AR problems, which were usually hard for an average app developer to get started with. But with ARKit, apple, is "trying" to do the heavy lifting in terms of plane and object recognition etc.
Another thing is the platform of distribution. People will use AR apps, which will hit the app store after September like crazy. And these same people, will be primary audience for Apple headset.
It's like, before releasing headset, Apple is proving people that you really need a headset to overcome the pain of "continuously" moving your phone in the space.
Also, other OS and vendors will follow the trend and release AR compatible phones/hardware early. The only potential pitfall, I see is, battery usage. If it's properly optimised, I think a large AR wave on smartphones is about to hit.
Just my 2 cents!
I don't know if its around the corner, but considering the human genome was completed circa 2003, I'm pretty enthusiastic that it isn't too far away.
Single row keyboard that has minimal finger movement. It was to be delivered March 2015 or so, but it has yet to be released. They have testers who rave about it and it looks incredible, but it is perpetually around the corner.
Originally designed as an ultra-portable phone keyboard, those who have used it tend to use it for all their machines. It has jump slots to quickly switch from device to device.
But all these things aren't likely to impact the happiness and life satisfaction of those living in the developed world. The internet has been huge, but it really hasn't made us happier as a whole.
I would like to see someone create something that will make people's lives happier. That probably means doing something that will foster good human relationships and real world experiences.
I guess there's a lot of potential for driverless cars to help with that, but they could do the opposite as well. I think we need better tools for connecting with each other, understanding each other, forming social organizations and communities, and maybe changing the geography of cities to bring us closer together, rather than making it possible for us to be further apart. It's likely that new technology isn't needed, we just need to use what we already have in a new way.
Obviously both SpaceX and Blue Origin are the leaders here, but once they do it the other majors will either have to build the same thing or drop out of the industry.
There are so many things about space that we just assume are true, but are actually only true because access to orbit has always been so expensive. If we can get the cost to reach orbit down to a multiple of the fuel cost, then so many more things are possible.
We finally get large satellite constellations for low-latency Internet all over Earth. We get space stations and O'Neil cylinders. Moon bases and fuel depots on Titan.
At the same time, firms like Made In Space are working on in-space construction so you can build radio telescopes in space with arbitrarily large dishes (10 km, maybe?). Eventually we build mirrors that size too.
Basically just those two things are the only barriers between us and a solar-system-wide civilization like in The Expanse.
Although both of these have been around for a few years, we are yet to see a general adaptation of these. (might be due to inconsistent browser support).
Now with the rise of VR, 3d Printing, powerful GPUs these two technologies are bound to open new avenues of an immersive browsing experience. I imagine that in next few years we would have 1- Webs stores, that show a virtual 3d shopping mall, 2- 3-d virtual try out of garments, 3- VR coaching of physical activities like a- Playing Tennis, b- Judo, c-Taecondo, d- Dance
Still need an open GPU, but I think a bunch of risc-v cores with vector extensions running LLVMpipe would be reasonable for running a Wayland desktop.
It aims for more economically secure public blockchains with shorter confirmation times and less cost (electricity/hardware/inflation). I haven't delved deep enough into it to be fully convinced, but what I've gotten through so far is promising. AFAIK its the only proof of stake algorithm thats been formally documented.
Julia because it offers a nice, performant alternative to Python & R in data science, while avoiding Java & C++. It has some really nice features like multiple dispatch and the ability to run R, Python, Fortran and C code inside of it, so you can use libraries like Numpy in Julia.
Obviously I insist they still need to be as thin as they are now. That is much much more important than batteries.
WebAssembly helps create more space between the kind of languages that developers want to use, and any particular GUI output, such as HTML. In a different thread, I just wrote about what is wrong with HTML:
If by "tech" you don't mean computers/software, then CRSPR is clearly going to be a huge thing going forward.
Automatic language translation everywhere.
Big Brother everywhere. (Excited about, yes; happy about, no.)
Batteries + solar as the predominant energy source.
Electric cars getting some real market share.
GAN is a type of Deep Learning Network which can generate data after training.
- Text to image synthesis (Scripts to Movie ?) (https://github.com/reedscot/icml2016)
- Generation of Game Environments
- Image to Image conversion (https://github.com/junyanz/CycleGAN)
- 2d to 3d conversion
I think in future we will have highly creative deep learning systems, which will make ar/vr/movie/game creation faster and cheaper.
- an aggregation of everything I have to know to run a porcelain store in my country (taxes, suppliers, how to find staff or better yet: showing candidates directly, best location in my town, etc.)
- Fuzzy stuff like: the pic of that tree I took when I was on hollidays in XY a few years ago; or the note I took a few days ago about that band with some greek name
- a ready to paste, non-ancient js-script for XY
- a cafe where nobody cares about how long I sit with my laptop with a not too modern ambiente
- the lesser known types optical illusions
That said, I have some tiny glimmer of hope that even if they go vaporware, maybe someone e.g. from around the Lambda the Ultimate community might possibly try to revive their ideas and ignite some F/OSS clone.
* Election fraud and recounts can become a thing of the past* Everything that requires a contract could become completely electronic (the mortgage industry alone is probably a multi-billion dollar opportunity)
I can see the advantages of both of these and imagine (and have seen people) build them so I assume someone will fully crack this in the next few years and we'll all be using this.
What might be around the corner that I'd love: someone makes a mainstream general purpose visual programming language (or tools in IDEs using languages that are indistinguishable - revenge of smalltalk)
Basically shifting off of cloud onto separate peer-to-peer connections. Faster, more secure, more distributed, and no middleman. Think 1990s/mid 2000s but no servers, just client to client.
Soon everyone will want a home server.
I'm also excited about NVMe and on-the-horizon, faster-than-flash solid state technologies like 3d xpoint, etc.
Electric car adoption.
Solar isn't new or particularly exciting, but it's become a good alternative to burning fossil fuels and it isn't used widely yet.
I've been looking forward to real-time global illumination via ray tracing with photon mapping or path tracing or some other good algorithm to become mainstream. It doesn't seem like there's much enthusiasm for the idea from the game industry, though.
Genome editing has already been mentioned, along with reusable rockets.
If I need a new part for something that's no longer supported, no problem. If I want to test an idea, fine. etc.
e.g. Desal plants.
People in 100 years will look back to manually driven cars as we look back to horse-drawn carriages
I read a novel published in 1999 which predicted how VR headsets would be followed by eye tracking eye boards,etc. which would then be followed by control directly via the brain using electrodes,etc.
Along with suitable pricing.
There was a project called Radio Receiver which used an RTL SDR, but it is a chrome app and chrome apps are pretty much dead.
Should I ask HN to help with the beta test?
Also, read literature anyway. Learn how to by doing it. If a novel is daunting read short stories (particularly Jorge Luis Borges or Cesar Aira). Reading wasn't important in my life until about 2 years ago, and since then books have improved my life dramatically. Its low cost, high yield, fully analog, ubiquitous, and enriching. Just learning new words makes it easier to form new concepts in your head and be better at stuff like math and programming. Seriously I cant suggest reading enough.
But really, this sounds more serious than just boredom or ennui. I side with Cozumel, and might suggest looking into a counsellor.
With respect to software, your feelings may stem from a perceived deficit in value creation. No matter what we do, we all want to feel like we're contributing in some way and we all try to find ways to achieve that. Could be blogging, OSS dev, teaching classes, turning an app into a business (or just putting it out there for people to use freely!), etc. If you're just hacking on things to learn, that's great and necessary. But you might be better served taking it a step further.
I'd recommend putting down the electronics for a bit as much as possible. You might wish to learn to enjoy people and look for opportunities to do so. Spend more time observing yourself and your world without tinker toy distractions. Spend some time alone (leave the smartphone out). In nature maybe. Think about life. And death. What life means, what you would regret if you died tomorrow. What you really want. Who you really are. It's uncomfortable sometimes, being around people and being around ourselves. We look for distraction. And that's what you have to overcome.
I'd venture a lot of us on this site have the same symptoms to various degrees. I know I do from time to time. It's a job hazard I think kind of like skin cancer or a bad back. The above paragraph is my way out of the hole and back to a grip on what's important.
>> I don't like people that much though I do put up a front
Question: Do you not like people or do you not like the people you have to interact with on a regular basis? If you have to eat lunch with the people you work with, can you enjoy it or do you tolerate it/hate it?
I used to work in the consulting arm of a software company and got to interact with a lot of different teams. After the novelty of having a new challenge (new language, new algorithms, new project, etc) every few months wore off, I started to realize work was more enjoyable when I didn't mind spending time with the people I worked with. When I felt forced to work with people I didn't click with the work itself didn't matter - I felt either bored or frustrated. I asked about lunch because sometimes I'd rather have done anything else than try to force a conversation with some of the teams I used to work with.
"Enjoying" spending time with the people you work with is also not about after-hours or having a lively conversation. I used to work with a machine learning algorithm team that was filled with brilliant people, but they had zero interest in the typical office banter, small-talk, ping-pong, etc. Put them at a lunch table together and there conversations were not very animated. But after a while, an observer would realize these folks enjoyed spending time together, and there was a reason they had been together for 10+ years despite getting offers from big name companies who paid a lot more.
In my view it's easier to find a job with the a particular technology than it is to find a place where you can tolerate the people you work with for 40+ hours a week. I love to code and I'm introverted, but I struggled to fit in with the typical "developer" office environment and found myself happier in teams were I get to code but my role is more business facing.
In my case, I also often get hindsight into what I should be doing, and often end up doing things good for me, instead of things I've been asked to do (makes me do for me, instead of doing what others want me to do).
Find something you'd like to do, and the only way to do that is to explore other things than what you are currently doing (since you are obviously not finding real satisfaction in it).
Might I suggest volunteering your time or a charitable activity? That can be a very fulfilling activity for some.
Then the parties who value your work will naturally approach you, and by default value your work and give you more decision power in whatever the two of you will want to pursue together.
Sounds twisted, but that's how life works.
Oh, and making the program is not a goal in itself, solving the problem is.
Try something new and exciting, maybe extreme sports?
All I ever wanted from the directors; strong leadership. Decisions made. Directions set (the clue is in the job title). Listen to what we have to say, ensure that everyone knows that their points have been taken on board, and then for God's sake make strong decisions, tell everyone why that's the decision made, and enforce the notion that it is never inherently wrong to pursue the direction you set. I want to know that you're going to support actions that pursue your direction, so support them publicly.
I have never had any problem getting 100% behind a direction I disagree with when it's been made and communicated well.
(1) Andrew Grove's "High Output Management", it's easy to read: https://www.amazon.co.uk/High-Output-Management-Andrew-Grove...(2) Manager Tools "Basics" podcasts, especially on 1x1s and feedback: https://www.manager-tools.com/manager-tools-basics
There's a hell of a lot to learn outside of these things, but I think they're a good start.
What worked for me:
- One on Ones. Nothing I've done has had as much of an impact as weekly one-on-one meetings with everybody on my team. I tend to follow the format outlined on Rands In Repose: http://randsinrepose.com/archives/the-update-the-vent-and-th... (This is an incredible blog for engineering management. I would highly recommend reading everything he has written.)
- Read everything you can find on the topic and about leadership in general and start figuring out how you can incorporate the lessons from those books into your situation and context. This is a brand new skill set that you need to approach with the same effort that you had been approaching engineering.
Rands in Repose: http://randsinrepose.com/archives/category/management/
Radical Candor: https://www.amazon.com/Radical-Candor-Kim-Scott/dp/B01MY574E...
Extreme Ownership: https://www.amazon.com/Extreme-Ownership-U-S-Navy-SEALs/dp/B...
Becoming a Technical Leader: https://www.amazon.com/Becoming-Technical-Leader-Problem-Sol...
- Finally, one piece of advice I got when I first transitioned into management was that "first-time managers usually fall into the trap of becoming the manager they wish they had. What you really need to do is figure out how to be the manager that each person on your team wishes they had, and become that manager." Easier said than done, obviously, but I've always found it useful to return to it whenever I am struggling.
If you think HR isn't central to management, I offer to you that the top junior officers in the US Navy are sent back to the Academy as Company Officers to
* run herd on ~120 talented young midshipmen, basically a high stakes RA.
* meet each other
* earn a master's in HR, focusing on leadership, administered by the Naval Postgraduate School. Spitball annual cost: $10M for 15 a year (2 year program and they're drawing salary and benefits, which could have been invested in having them driving ships or flying airplanes).
Focus on your people, their development, their well-being. Let them handle the technical challenges.
Communicate your people challenges to company HR aggressively. Make sure they are giving your folks money for training. If you have a weak player, talk to HR early. If they think you can handle it, they'll tell you. If they have tools for you, they'll bring those to bear.
Collect data, ask HR what data they collect company-wide. Talk to the other directors. Those are your colleagues now. Use them. Be frank with them.
1) Clarity in vision and ability to articulate it to the team is very important.2) Engineers will zone out if you sprinkle sales (and/or management) mumbo, jumbo. Engineers (anyone for that matter) appreciate clear communication and reasoning behind management decisions. Many times, management decisions aren't clear cut. That's OK. But calling it out as is is being honest and engineers appreciate that.
Most recently, I had an interesting experience speaking with a Director during a job interview.
I asked for reasons behind building a product by their team. I explained why it's not a good idea. The Director kept throwing sales and marketing terms and was clearly out of his depth. What should have been a 30 min interview was cut short in 10 min and I was walked out. I did not get the job. I'm glad I didn't.
But key take away for me was, as a Director, they will be bridge to many departments (Engineers, Sales, Marketing, Customers). They should have good understanding of the product, how to pitch to everyone.
I hope this will be useful.
There's a bug in the code: you can fix it. But can anyone else fix it? If so, let them. Even if you can do it better. Let them learn, let them grow.
What can you alone, as the Director, do? Direct. Lead. Set a direction, make sure people are following. Figure out your goals and values, and state them, often. Visibly live them.
Make sure people are following your lead, by knowing what they are thinking and what they are doing. Create ways to find that out, because people won't tell you straight out they think your leadership is shit.
Here's what I intuitively understood that made it easier for me to get the job and be broadly successful:
- You're the public face of your group, you're essentially responsible for championing your team to those in the organization as a whole.
- You need to be listening to those other groups and thinking about what your group can do to help
- Aggregate all those things you hear at a more global level and think about how you can gather interested parties (from all areas) to solve them
Specific example, we weren't closing as many software development projects because our sales teams didn't know what we could do.
First, I worked with some of the sales guys to create some training to help them pick up on the signs that "this might be a dev project" and "this could be worth a lot of money".
Second, I got in on a lot of RFPs and proposals to see what was being asked of us. I refactored the initial training to target the patterns we were seeing.
Third, and this may not be applicable, I actually became a part of proposals and pitches. Nobody was bringing the tech folks in.
Here's what I didn't think about/had to work on:
- HR and management strategy at a much higher level. Knowing impending cuts are coming, the knots that come with having to be part of firing or laying off people.
- Instead of keeping a smaller number of people that you work with closely happy and interested, you're trying to keep them AND their employees interested
- Managing managers is totally different than non-managers
- Budgeting strategy. Fighting to get training dollars, head count, new hardware (that wasn't really an issue), etc. It's kind of a zero sum game and politics will absolutely come in to play here. Maybe more so than anywhere else.
- So many meetings.
- It's a lot harder to feel like you've accomplished anything at the end of the day. You need to start measuring by weeks and months.
- So many meetings, again.
- You need to get people interested in your ideas for change. You really have to sell them in a new way to every person you talk to.
- You better have ideas for change.
Being a director means you have more responsibilities, but if you are too focused on trying to make everyone happy, you could set yourself up for a burn out.
Identify key individuals to help you (usually lead engineers), and give them your trust to do their job.
Focus on larger initiatives, give both positive and negative feedback, encourage healthy competition, and always be forgiving. Always be approachable, but never let them take your presence for granted.
Ultimately, you will find a larger reward when you take time developing individual relationships. They will appreciate your attention, and in turn, you will have direct influence over them.
- it's not all about you. Make sure that you piblically represent your team, not yourself.
- politics isn't above you. Learn how to be effective with your peers. At the director levels even your friends can become your competition.
- appreciate that your decisions impact people around you and the company.
- study budgeting. Know where the money goes.
- when tough times come, know where you will cut. If the place is toxic, learn how to stockpile cash or human fodder.
Edit: surely it is the responsibility of whomever promoted you to provide the definition of what is expected from you.
The transition is not so hard. Think of it as another programming language, another architecture.
Your team is like a machine. You are not in it. You don't work in it. You build it. You improve and iterate on it. Your job is to look at it from the outside and see what can be improved.
You also have to make sure that information flows from top to bottom well. The lowest intern needs to understand that strategic goals and focus of the team. That's really what motivating is.
As tech management, one of the most effective thing you can do is to train the ones below you.
You should take complete responsibility for what happens in your team. One of your junior programmers breaks the product? Sexual harassment? A core member ragequitting? Your fault.
Ben Horowitz's The Hard Things About Hard Things is what I'd recommend most on engineering leadership. Extreme Ownership by Wilink, Jocko is a good book on general leadership. Do avoid a lot of the things on Business Insider, Forbes, or other business blogs.
2. have a support network or establish one through a coaching or mentoring program. if you've not done such before, seek to hook onto an existing one and go from there
Usually good techs make better managers than typical politically-embroiled middle management.
I would not change anything in a hurry just to prove that "I've got this one." You are promoted to Director (you do not mention this but I assume) because your management sees you do at least some of this job already, and they also see that you have demonstrated potential for growing in this role. (The other possibility is that someone got fired and you are asked to step into that role, in which case, that is a different game altogether.) So, here are the Dos and Don'ts.
1. Own the tech roadmap. You will not know why some of the items are on the roadmap and now is the time to find out and be able to explain why, and at this stage you need not be convinced that each item on the roadmap should be there.
2. Build relationships with your business stakeholders in order to understand what is their definition of success, and what is your and your team's role there.
3. Take a look at your team again. This time you will see a different perspective. You want to quickly reach an understanding about your team's strengths and weaknesses.
4. Reevaluate your communication style. What worked so far, may not be suitable or sufficient in your new role.
5. Meet with as many of your team members 1x1 and ask them what they think is working well, and what they think needs to change/improve. Just listen and take notes, without agreeing or disagreeing to what they are saying.
6. Be prepared to receive feedback. From anywhere -- your team, stakeholders, management, customers, etc.
1. Try to prove yourself a good leader. This is something that takes time, and there are rarely any actions that can be taken directly only to accomplish this goal. Also, if you think too much about "am I a good leader," you will stress out very quickly.
2. Make changes in the roadmap too soon. At this stage, you are more likely to not have enough information and context about why the roadmap is what it is. If you make changes too soon, be prepared to change it again after you have gained context in the next few months.
3. Make changes in the team structure too soon. In your new role, you are likely to change your opinion about some of your team members' effectiveness and impact on business.
Over a period of time, you will intuitively know what needs to change, and that is the right time to start making any changes in the way the team operates, the team's priorities, the team structure, etc.
My recommendation, learn how to translate "unquantifiable" ideas to quantifiable ones. You can do this through a simple tool called an "OKR", which stands for "Objectives, and Key Results".
OKRs are generally built for quarterly runs. No need to stick to that. But come up with four objectives, split them each into six or so actionable items. So those actionable items can be split up into tasks, sprints, etc..
At that point, you will have quite a bit of work set up, and it will be easily measured. Take the percentage completed of each of the tasks, which make up the percent completed of the Key Result, and then the percentage of the Key Results completed make up how far along in your objective you are.
The objectives should spread across several different domains that you're directing, and your priorities should take care of what goes in there.
Take a good amount of measurements on those, do Gap Analysis' often, to find out why you overshot, undershot, etc., and keep track of that information. Do Root Cause Analysis' often as well, so you can find out what is really going on.
The crux of it all really depends on what you're willing to do with your team, and how accountable you're all willing to be held. Without their backing on your objectives, it'll be a bit more difficult. So if they understand what it is that you're trying to accomplish, and they see your leadership (i.e. owning up to all mistakes, and sharing all accomplishments), they will back you. But the keys to that are understanding the goals of the objectives (not just the objectives, but the reason that they're up there).
If you can do those things, you'll find it very easy to manage.
Other more specific things might be setting up controls so that you can easily audit the SDLC: get "sensors" and "measures" in place. Sensors would be something like a CI server, automated testing, security unit tests, post deployment tests, code sniffing, static code analysis, dynamic code analysis, regular fuzz testing, ensuring that your environment is locked down with file integrity checking, track third party tools that are in use for any known vulnerabilities, get software bill of materials (while you're at it), get a known authorized hardware list, get a known authorized software list, have a monitoring system for when these are violated, and get the response time down to 1 - 24 hours.
The measures will be something like:* adding a benevolent unauthorized machine to the network.* adding benevolent unauthorized software to an unauthorized machine in the network* adding benevolent unauthorized software to an authorized machine in the network* make a change to a file that does not decrease the security of the environment (ex: change from 10 char password complexity to 14 char password complexity), and see if the file integrity check finds it.
Basically for every sensor, you want to have a measure that checks it, otherwise you won't know if you have it set up properly, or if it is broken.
The languages were usually some flavor of "business BASIC" which were in reality pretty bad. It was far too easy to end up with "ball of mud" apps. I worked for one company on a project over several years to replace a foxpro app with EJB 3 backed desktop app. A lot of the complexity in that project came from documenting and replacing what users were doing by manually updating the tables with proper workflows (permissions to perform actions? egad!). Note this is not the fault of the 4GL in particular, but more a result of the "throw something together" ethos (so I maintain). So my take away here is: great for prototyping, not so great for long term maintenance and support.
There are still companies offering 4GL solutions in this space like  and . I have no doubt there is some enterprise version of Microsoft Access that will expose your app to the web, with an appropriate licensing fee.
Something else I think about is; in those days, although lisp and smalltalk were around, doesn't seem like they were widely used. Nowadays, there's an abundance of dynamically typed, highly productive languages with extensive library ecosystems that essentially enable developers to move the language to meet (any particular) problem domain, and create solutions quickly. So the appeal of environments that bind language/database/display together isn't as novel as it once was. In other words, Ruby and Rails is your 4GL today.
> Or was there some snobbishness amongst programmers who didn't view these products as 'real' programming languages?
Definitely some snobbishness; but also the fact that as developers, we have to chase 'the new hot' on some level to stay current, and marketable. No one wants to be stuck only knowing coldfusion, when those jobs all go away.
1. Sony MDR-1000x
2. Bose QC35(or Bose QC25)
3. Senheiser PXC-550
Apparently, the Sony MDR-1000X has now beaten the Bose on noise cancellation. It has a lot of cool features, such us letting you turn off the noise canceling by touching the right earphone (I believe) and touch controls. In addition, it beats the Bose with amazing sound quality. Caveat: Expensive, if bought new. There is a build/quality issue at the moment -- where the plastic in the earphone is developing cracks. So buyer beware.
The Bose QC35 is/was the standard noise cancellation. I personally think this may be the best recommendation since it has been proven to be a quality product, very comfortable to wear. I personally chose the QC25 over the wireless version (to save money) and also because the QC35 battery is non-replaceable, after certain years if it dies, you cannot replace it and you are out of luck. Whereas, the QC25 batteries are AAA that you can get anywhere. It is wired version, but I am happy with it. Caveat: I own the ATH M50X, and let's just say Bose sound quality is a couple of notches below. But, if you don't know any better, you probably won't notice.
The Senheiser PXC-550 has also been getting really great reviews and has pretty comparable noise cancellation as Bose (a notch below). Great sound quality. Lots of cool features like the Sony. Caveat: More expensive than Bose if bought new. I don't like that you have to position the headphones a certain way to turn it off. Could be problematic if you are thinking of just putting the headphone in your book bag without putting it in its case
Ask HN: What are the best noise cancelling headphones? 3 months ago, 11 comments https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=14226574
while here there are other options named
Ask HN: Which headphones do you use while working? 4 months ago, 36 comments https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13978072
Some people say QC35 are a little bit better some say MDR-100x are better. I can only talk about the seconds and I highly recommend them.
In addition, they have some cool touchable control on the right side. I didn't like it at the beginning but now when I use other headphones I find myself trying to touch them to pass the song or lower the volume..
Been using it for 3 years now, no complaints (one for office and other for home)
I've been using them for over ten years and only had to replace a pair once. I use the mc5's which are there lower tier option.
If you have ear comfort issues you can also get custom made ear molds.
They really block out so much sound it's amazing. I prefer IEM's to headphones because of the weight and heat from headphones (my ears get hot when covered).
in my opinion the best option is actually isolation and to that end a pair of earbuds with a set of custom fit tips could be a good option, i have some myself on a pair of etymotic er4 and theyre spectacular, complete isolation from outside sound and comfortable enough to wear for 8 straight hours
I think there are two paths - (1) human code review to consider things like design patterns, and (2) automated code review through static analysis to consider things like linting, use of language idioms, cyclomatic complexity, code duplication, variable reuse, etc.
Code Climate  is one service that provides the latter pretty well. It's free for open source.
For other applications: Miners fees are high. Any data put into the chain is public and immutable and probably stored forever. So even encrypted messages may be attackable at a future date and the secrets leaked. So you want to stay anonymous there can't be too much interesting data stored in there.
Particular implementations of it can fail, financially, or due to bugs.
There's a pile of excerpts linked in the sidebar, and the Amazon "look inside!" shows you the first few chapters.
Honestly? Come by Reddit /r/buttcoin. The name gives you a good idea of the seriousness, and it's very much critics, but it's turned out to be the only place on Reddit you can have a serious discussion of blockchainy stuff, 'cos all the others are filled with the frankly delusional.
It's mentally agitating when I go to scroll on a webpage and it doesn't do what I expect.
And what content authors should be most concerned about: it distracts viewers from the site's content, because I'm thinking "what just happened to my mouse". And that reaction is the antithesis of what content creators should want: they should want to engage me, and explore the site more deeply.
Though were at the point where browsers really need to clearly separate what requires advanced capabilities from what really doesnt. For example, a browser could always display exactly two tabs per page: Read and Interact, where ONLY the Interact view can access scripting capabilities and dynamic content and the Read view may only display trivial things like images and text. If youve ever installed something like uMatrix on the desktop (and you should), it is astounding how much crap from how many entirely different domains is loaded and executed just by loading a simple page now. It has to stop.
There are some, like I believe most Apple product pages, where scroll-jacking is used to create a one-slide-at-a-time-effect where it may work. But even on those, individual slides often undergo transformations upon scroll revealing information you'd otherwise not see.
As mentioned on FAQ , HN limits the number of showed threads because its ranking algorithm. It depends on thread points and submitted time.
I remember, there is a website which provided weekly top Ask HN threads . This website is useful if you miss threads on previous week.
Default your app's language to the first match between the languages you offer and the user/browser's preferred language list. Fallback to English or the country locale, depending on the app's goals/requirements. If the user still changes the language , save it in a cookie/session whatever so on repeat visits the corrected option is selected.
This only solves the language problem though, not regional issues such as an online store in Germany vs Spain which have different deals and products. This is why you should keep a clean separation between locales and regions/countries.
Anyway thats my 2 cents from the trenches.
It would be nice if language selection happened via the browser UI rather than the site itself.
Fortunately the future is at least bright on the automated translation front.
You can get per word confidence levels back from the Watson API if you ask for it, which is useful to know what parts it is sure about and what parts it is not.
Disclaimer: I work at IBM. But feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want some help debugging on the Watson STT side.
Claims no less than 99.999% SLA:
Daily: 0.9s Weekly: 6.0s Monthly: 26.3s Yearly: 5m 15.6s
Usualy the validation goes in 2 phases : market interest and MVP.
The first phase is about faking it until you make it. Create your landing page presenting your product (don't spend more than a day on it, you don't care about design/ branding), post in your audience's facebook group, go to their meetups, shadow them to affine your concept. The goal is to have proof of traction and the assurance the market is ready / big enough. The best metric is usualy an email list you can reuse later.
Second phase, if the first is successful is building the MVP (main viable product). It's about having the most minimalistic version of your product that you can sell. Usually it's your main feature. You MUST hack it yourself, don't spend money yet, you'll lose it. The goal is to iterate quickly to have what's called a product market fit.
Product market fit is when you can write an equation like : "when a number P people see my product, there is a conversion of C% that get me X money". Then you can launch and the rest is about scaling.
Do not spend any money (aka > 1000$) until the product market fit. Not in ads, not in freelancers, not in consultants and especially not in PR.
If you product is expensive to make or need a big chain of production, sell it before building it. If you succeed it will be you proof of product market fit
It's difficult to make a standard advice since it depends a lot of the context but key insights are :
Your market is king, refer only to them.
Make them believe 80% of the job is done when you really just have a landing page
When proof of traction hack the main feature of the product and sell it.
If you have a product market fit, congratulation you have a business / startup.
The high level things about a startup are very consistent and good candidates to be fit into a framework. I'm not sure but I think these are just called unit economics. Things like "Our product is sold for $X because it saves our customer Y in time". However it's the unknown, and emotional values that I've found incredibly hard to fit into a framework. I'm fascinated now in seeing if the way the finance industry calculates risk is in any way a good framework for startups to assess which features to build.
What I've found to be the hardest questions to answer...
How do I find industry metrics on an industry that doesn't exist yet?
How do I prove people will want something that they don't want right now?
How do I measure emotional value? Tactile sensation(hardware)? UX, UI, etc...
These are the things that startups often believe to be their advantage over the competition. "Our product is much more fun/easy/fast to use/learn/teach" But how do we measure that?
The most valuable exercise I've come up with is this question...
How would your user recreate your product, if you're product didn't exist and they had to piece together the end result with existing technology?
I have a startup right now that creates custom educational podcasts by summarizing publicly available content (with attribution) to generate entirely new content and sort the corpus in increasing complexity. If you searched "Skateboarding", you would get a text document that taught you what skateboarding is, then the history of skateboarding, and then get into beginner, intermediate, and advanced skateboarding lessons. This would go through text-to-voice and be downloaded to your device for offline listening.
Search any topic and you get a 45 minute podcast to listen to on your commute.
In our case, I stepped back and said "Okay... If I wanted an educational podcast on skateboarding, the first thing I would do is search Google, then Wikipedia, then I would start going to skateboarding blogs and read them one by one in increasing complexity. If I wanted to consume this content during my commute I would take all of this content and copy it into a text-to-voice service, and download that audio file on my phone for listening offline." I walked through this entire process and it took me 1 hour to get 45 minutes worth of audio content.
Peter Thiel says that your solution must be 10X better than the existing solution.
Unfortunately for me, I think I will need to cut the time it takes to manually create a podcast by 1/10 and also 10x the quality of the content, which I don't know that I can do.
Tangentially, I often joke that if the problem your startup is trying to solve doesn't exist as a meme, than it's not a real problem for enough people.