I’ve finally got bored of my Co-founder nagging me to increase my online presence and start blogging. I know I should, for all the reason’s he wants me to, but ultimately I want to do it because I’m not a great writer, I want to be better and I love a challenge.
Some Rules #
I’m laying down some guidelines, I don’t think hard and fast rules are ever a good idea, but certainly a framework will help steer me until the process becomes more familiar and natural.
- Write often: at least once a week
- Write about anything you want (from time to time)
- Pick a core theme to offer some consistency and something to fallback on when you’re out of inspiration
- Publish quickly and with out 3rd party help, I need to get over my fear of publishing stuff that isn’t great, because to start with it won’t be
- Get readers: my expectations are low on this front but I will need them if I am to…
- Get honest feedback: brutal, scathing but constructive and usage feedback
Picking a theme #
Writing Code #
I struggled for a while with what to write about. What expertise do I possibly have that would be of value to the world? For a lot of developers working with web technologies, writing code really isn’t that hard. It is after all just finding more and more complicated ways to join strings together. Sure there are some interesting subjects on writing and structuring code, but the pace of change of this material moves much slower than the technologies themselves. And for the most part these have been covered in depth by people much more qualified than I.
web development is just finding more and more complicated ways to join strings together
Building and Organising Teams #
The most interesting and challenging problems that web teams face in my opinion, tend to be around writing code rather than the actual writing itself. Things like hiring, culture, specifications, communication, diversity, processes, etc. None of these things are key problems for myself at Trak.io. We’re proud that we are a small lean team and fortunately that makes a lot of the above much easier to deal with. We are growing, and these things, will become more and more of a priority for me over the coming months. Consequently they will probably creep in as post subjects, but for now they are not forefront in my mind.
What to write about #
In part because we have been such a small team, and in part because it is always the case to certain extent, there is never enough resource to do the things we want to do. This has made prioritisation and value for resource two of the biggest and on going challenges that I have had to, and continue to face. There are number of topics under these that I think will be useful to tech founders in early stage start ups:
- Weighing the cost and benefit of features and bugs
- Understanding the difference between urgent and important
- Finding and utilising open source code
- When to write DRY reusable code and when to copy and paste
- Writing just the right amount of “duct tape code”
- When to delegate and when to do it yourself
- Discovering customer needs
- Balancing those needs against each other and your long term vision
- How to communicate all of the above to your non-technical founder
Here goes nothing!