The satisfaction of waking up to write down a fleeting thought.
A day in Detroit (click right/left arrows to scroll)
Survey Highlights re: Freelance mobile designers and developers.
A few weeks ago I sent a survey to freelance developers to collect data on major pain points during mobile development projects. Several results came in, but not enough to be able to draw meaningful conclusions. If you haven’t filled the survey out, please do. Otherwise please share it with freelance mobile developers in your network.
Survey highlights (“General Thoughts”) :
- “Think more! But don’t just focus on the idea, focus on the UX. I cannot stress this enough, the experience needs to be solid. A user without any previous interaction should walk in and know exactly what to do.”
- “One of the major challenges in my practice is that the usual project is structured in a way that makes collaboration between designers and developers difficult.”
- “…a lot of my initial conversation with a client is ‘Apple doesn’t allow that’”
- “Most people I deal with have more money than brains. It can be very frustrating.”
- “It’s [mobile] still a new concept with 1000 ways to do everything and no ‘set’ or ‘accepted’ standard of [measure]… as things progress, mobile projects will stop being so much like the ‘wild west’ and start being more predictable.”
[ ] Edits mine
All social apps end up becoming content apps, or else.
A social app can’t start out being social when nobody is using it yet. For that reason, social feature apps first need to be (1) seeded with founder-generated content (inorganic) or (2) play well in single-player mode. When early users are baited with something to keep them busy, they may get just enough utility out of the app to produce their own content and, in turn, grease the social mechanics of the startup.
If everything works as planned, the seeded content is just the opening act for the social feature. But this outlook might be a little short sighted. Several startups have come to a head, showing that their social engines were actually missing a gear. The two that stand out are Foursquare and Twitter.
Discount or cap? A spreadsheet that shows what happens when a note converts.
Venture math can be tough. Terms like convertible note, discount and cap can complicate a seemingly easy process. A convertible note is a debt instrument typically used when a company first begins to raise capital. The valuation of the company is determined at a later date, after a Series A investment. This is when a note converts to equity at the previously agreed upon terms. A discount and cap are typically included in those terms. A discount gives a note holder’s small investment a little bit more purchasing power. But with a discount, there is no limit to the valuation of the company. That’s where the cap comes into play. A cap limits the valuation of the company to a pre-determined price. In other words, it protects early investors (note holders) from being diluted to oblivion. Owning 0.0004% of a company sucks for someone who took most of the risk, and a cap prevents that from happening.
Not your grade-school social studies
When I arrived on campus at the Univ. of Michigan in 2001, a group called Komposit dominated the party scene in Ann Arbor. Komposit was causing waves on campus, down from the Blind Pig, up to the Church on Church.
Throngs of people flocked to their gigs so often that they should have earned school credit. The smell of vinyl burning at the DJ’s fingertips lingered in the air. B-Boys from Element One and dancers from Funktion and 2XS lit up the living rooms of house parties all around campus. An eclectic crowd who “thought they could dance” didn’t stand idle. They shouted in glee and ripped moves from their favorite music videos (remember those?) . High on jungle juice and hip hop, these parties were spiritual to some.