By the end of last week both Alex and I were tired. We were pushing through, getting things done and stuffing up along the way. With the exception of Christmas Day and a little bit on New Years Eve, we've both been putting in anywhere from 12 – 16+ hours per day, trying to implement new features, fix bugs and generally "catch up".
Not quite sure where I'm at!
- New servers.
- A breather.
- Getting some of the most critical features in.
- A lot of things we did that made sense at a few hundred users just don't make sense anymore. The best example of this is email – signing up with mail chimp and integrating seemed like a really good idea, but the reality is that we have enough users now that it begins to cost us to send mail to to people and hence the integration no longer makes sense as we are incredibly unlikely to actually send messages now! This is a consistent experience – at any level of success beyond a few hundred – 1000 users, you'll have to start paying to make it possible.
- There are lots of ways of doing things for free, but when you're time constrained, it makes a lot more sense to pay $30 per month to make it happen now and not worry about it.
- New servers implemented.
- Follow and social features improved.
Sorry, no time this week. Suffice to say the wave finally hit. We got Trunk.ly out the door (much earlier than we intended) and we've been chasing our tails ever since. We've caught the wave and we are surfing it for all we are worth.
When I consider that last week I touched on 5 out of 5 projects, started learning a new language and framework, plus spoke at the Australian Language Technology Association conference on Thursday afternoon, I think I know why I feel like I'm doing about 10 jobs.
- New Trunk.ly users invited on board.
- Exploring and learning Ruby and Rails.
- Speaking at ALTA and networking with several academics who heavily research and develop the type of tools we "plug in".
- If you're going to be body-shopping, you need to track your time. Yes, we've started some basic time-sheets so we can measure how much work we are putting into contracts.
- Sometimes those things you "put off" because they'll take a long time actually don't. Could of saved a heap of effort this year with some basic integration work that I did manually for far too long.
- Deliver a working Rails prototype.
- Ignite talk on Wednesday – great event and well run by Mark Mansour.
- SportsGeek project done
- New Trunk.ly launch
- Billing is a pain – especially when your bank stuffs up transactions and you can’t even tell if its you or them!
- Creative persistence is worthwhile.
- Learn Ruby on Rails and cut some code!
Last week was a cracker – lots done, both of our contracts have had substantial progress and are 80% – 90% done now.
- Finally we've found a consumer facing business model (we haven't implemented it yet, but Trunk.ly will not be a B2B proposition in it's early phases).
- Scarcity. I think in the past we've thrown things too open too soon. It's made it hard to asses and value what's happening. With scarcity, we can have a balance between getting feedback (critical) but also using it to iterate and measure impact and differences.
- Measurement. We have detailed measurement of everything people do on the site. This is a big change from previous products. Google Analytics is NOT enough – we need to know exactly how people use the site, what features they click on and how often. Our custom metrics are probably the thing we look at the most.
- Profiling: A result of the metrics, but we have some customer profiles now and are already beginning to understand how different people use Trunk.ly and are able to react accordingly.
- Progress with Trunk.ly and with contracts.
- It's easy to over-commit! No harm is done to our projects by putting them on the back burner for a week or two, no matter how hard that is for us emotionally.
- Lots of Trunk.ly iterations.
- Talking at Ignite Melbourne this week (Ignite is a fixed format presentation – 5 minute talk, 20 slides, auto advancing every 15 seconds).
- Complete the contracts