by Trevor McKendrick on November 1, 2013
After reading my posts about my first year in the App Store, Lim Cheng Soon reached out to me asking to publish one of the articles in Hacker Monthly.
by Trevor McKendrick on August 16, 2013
For people unfamiliar with Steve Jobs’ life Jobs is a decent albeit watered down potrayal of some of his time with Apple.
But for those of us who most admired him and his work the movie is quite disappointing.
The problem is this: How do you write a script that’s as good as what Steve himself would have said?
Ashton Kutcher even does a good Jobs impression. His precisely mimicked gait was particularly well done.
But the dialogue was mostly not Steve-like.
Two quick examples
The first scene, the original iPod introduction, was my least favorite of the movie. The few lines spoken were mostly a few cheesy jokes spoken by Steve himself. I wish I had written them down word for word, but believe me when I say they were so bad I wanted to get up and walk out. This is not Steve Jobs. Thankfully the script did improve.
Another example is Steve admiring the (almost) finished original Macintosh. Right before the scene cuts he mentions, to the disbelief of the onlooking engineers, that he wants to add more memory. All it needs is some extra RAM and it’ll be ready to go to market.
I get the point they were trying to make: Steve was demanding and always wanted the best.
But his frame of reference was never the technology itself; it was the customer. Steve might have said “this needs to be faster” but he would never just “add technology” for the sake of itself.
If you’re not in the tech world you’ll probably enjoy the movie and most of the material will be new. You’ll learn a lot about Jobs and the early history of Apple.
But for the few of us who already know that stuff, it’s hard to get past Jobs the character.
All I could keep thinking was “I miss the real Steve Jobs.”
by Trevor McKendrick on June 25, 2013
This week I wanted to share something simple: my first Elance project.
I believe you have to create an Elance account to see it, but you can check it out here: https://www.elance.com/job/29087530/proposals?bidid=29093644#bid_29093644
After doing this over a year ago I can now see what I did well and what I could have done better: Good 1. Gave specific example of similar app so the developer knew what I was going for 2. Created rough mockups
Bad 1. At the bottom I should have something “if you’ve read all the way write ‘i love to code’ at the beginning of your proposal.” I learned that trick from 4 Hour Work Week and it’s served me well since. 2. I did the mockups with Google Docs. Those terrible things took me forever. I’ve sinced learned that doing them by hand is much easier and faster than figuring out how to use some random sketching app. 3. I probably should have spoken to a designer first, maybe a friend who has experience with this. It would have been nice to figure out an even simpler way of implementing the few features I had.
All in all it turned out okay. We’ve grown a lot from that first project. It was done in 3 weeks and for less than $500. The latest remake will cost over $10k and has taken almost 3 months.
I’m convinced this is best way to go for most products though. While there are a few things that truly require a huge initial investment, many in tech don’t. No reason to step on the gas before product/market fit has been made.
In the next few weeks we’ll be launching our brand new Bible Study App which will have our brand new Christian bookstore. Right now we have licensed content from one publisher and hope to have more in the coming months (big companies have nice people but as a whole they tend to move slowly). This is a “bet the company” moment so we’re looking forward to see how it turns out.
Personally I think our customers are going to love it.