A List of Tools and Services We’re Using and Experimenting With

One of the exciting things about putting a new project and business together is all of the opportunities to try and experiment with new technologies, software tools and apps that are available to the fast-paced startup.

This can also be a veritable administrative headache if done poorly and if you and your team aren’t ultimately decisive with your tooling decisions but it’s a necessary part of getting a business off the ground.

And if you start to keep track of them (which you should) you’ll be surprised at how many you accrue very quickly.

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Building an Alpha Test Group

If you’ve been following us on Twitter (and if you’re not, then, jump on it!) then you may have already seen a few tweets about getting a few folks to start testing out our prototype.

So far we’ve got a handful of folks who have been more than willing to give it a go and we’re still looking for a few brave souls to enter into the fray! Just fill out a very quick form and we’ll start a conversation!

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On Value Statements and Real Behavior

I’ve spent a good deal of time in the past meditating and writing about the development, the creation, and the utility of value statements within organizations and how they can positively and negatively impact an organization when done well and when done poorly.

And as an ever-evolving person, my attitude and perspective has changed as I have spent more time within a variety of different organizations from being a staff and team member as well as an executive leader and founder. And like you, I’ve seen it all in terms of how well values are displayed and lived-out within and without a business.

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On Software Programming and Artificial Intelligence

The tooling and technology around software engineering has been rapidly increasing in size and scope and the things that were once very costly and that required a lot of time can now be executed near-instantaneously.

This, as many of us are familiar with, is a natural extension and expression of Moore’s Law and it’s more exciting than ever to be in computing and software. It can also be a bit scary (if you think about it for too long).

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A Better (Technical) Standup?

3 months ago I shared a few initial thoughts around standups and daily engineering activities and my thoughts have moved back to this exercise as we’ve continued to progress with our prototype and locking in on something that people really want.

And as I mentioned (and as many of you know) there are many different ways to go about doing a morning standup and the most important thing is that the team has a consistent time to discuss the project and the work that’s being done and that ultimately encourages dialogue and conversation to occur.

If those things are in place then you have the very fundamentals in place and it has all the opportunity to be a useful and beneficial block of time during the day.

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Survey: The Questions You Ask (While Building Software)

We’re passionately curious about helping others build software better and as we continue to iterate on our prototype and concept we want to ensure that we’re answering the right questions and targeting the right problem areas as we build out our solution.

Naturally, at this early stage we have a lot of assumptions and a number of core hypotheses that we’re testing against and we fully admit that we don’t have a perfect idea of how all of these things will come across.

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The Making of a Great (Developer) Blog

If you’re subscribed to this blog (or follow on Twitter) then you may have noticed a small yet significant uptick on the posting here, moving from at least one blog post a week to two.

And, as many of you know, writing can take up a lot of time, even when the quality and output is somewhat mediocre and balancing the consistent practice and discipline of writing for a business blog with the work of business-building is really difficult.

And that’s not to taken lightly. Most business blogs, especially in the early stages, are completely bare if not altogether absent from the scene.

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On Developers and Mobile Native World

If there’s one thing that is absolutely impossible to ignore it’s this: The rapid growth of mobile technology. It’s not just technology either – our entire way that we interact with it, the rest of the world, and especially with each other (e.g. relationships, communities). More people are experiencing the internet via mobile devices primarily than desktop. Full stop.

What’s probably most scary is that most of us have experienced this fundamental shift in our own adult lifetimes – we know what it’s like to spend 100% of our internet time on a desktop computer, and now, we’re spending much, much less.

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Building a (Developer) Community from Scratch

I’ve been thinking about building out our customer and developer community as we start putting things together here and there’s so many exciting opportunities to do this really well (and a ton of great resources and how-tos) that can be used for modeling.

And, to a certain degree, there isn’t a right or wrong way to build a successful community around the product, assuming that you have the right ingredients to get things kicked off. Our team does has some significant experience building communities, developer-centric ones especially, but there are always newer tools to consider and ways to engage.

So, exactly how does one start?

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Retrospective: Building a Feed

As I shared a few weeks ago, I put together a small working prototype for a news feed which was based on some of our original thoughts around a developer-centric feed and I promised that I’d share some of my work and the progress.

The motive for sharing this kind of stuff is quite simple: Providing an inside look at not just what we’re building but how and the why of our project is important because it keeps us honest and it enables us to get great feedback. And it’s just what I’m used to doing when I put new things together. I learn as much via the process of sharing as I do creating!

What I ended up doing was putting together a technical retrospective for myself and the team as to what I thought about it (so far) so as to give some useful context around the work itself and what I believed could be leveraged moving forward. It’s worth reviewing this post first to get some foundation of why I started and how I went about putting it together.

Hopefully you find this useful in your early-stage product / concept and prototyping work as you attempt to maximize the very limited amount of time that you have to build and get stuff done.

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