Breaking Development: How to Build The Right Thing

by July 23, 2013

In his presentation at Breaking Development in San Diego CA Hampton Catlin shared his thoughts on how to focus on the right product ideas. Here's my notes from his talk on How to Build The Right Thing.

  • Quality without clear understanding is meaningless.
  • 100% test coverage, responsive web design, new frameworks, more features, or style will not ensure your product works everywhere.
  • You might have something that's too ugly, limited, easy to build, confusing, slow or complicated but its right.
  • There were many things right with the Newton but ultimately it did not solve anyone's immediate problems. The iPod did a lot less then the Newton but it did the right thing for people at the right time.
  • If you are surprised it doesn't exist, keep digging. You're likely on the right track.
  • Find people who do what you don't. Don't bring in people who do exactly what you, extend your skills.
  • Listen to people complaining. These are opportunities.
  • Take the simplest development approach. Focus on the most important part.
  • Solutions only come from problems. If people are doing something you didn't expect, they're solving a problem they have. You usually don't learn anything from things that are working -you're just proving your assumptions.
  • Whatever is pissing you off, you are not the only one.
  • You've learned things, apply them to another market. There's money in bringing new methods to other areas.
  • Solve your problem and you'll solve other people's problems too.