Archive | Software testing RSS feed for this section

Problem, defination, innovation and… an App solution?

28 Nov

So, i have been meeting entrepreneurs and people involved in start up companies in Sydney and a world of possibilities have appeared for me

A major trend that has not run it’s full course is in developing apps, everybody has them on their iPhone, it seems clear if you can develop an app that somehow ties in with one of the seven deadly sins, you could be on to a winner.

Where is the opportiunity?

Image

In the example of Reid Hoffman, founder of Linkedin says:

Social networks do best when they tap into one of the seven deadly sins. Facebook is ego. Zynga is sloth. LinkedIn is greed.

But another train of thought for developing that doesn’t sound nasty that i quite like is

Just live your life until you come up against a problem that you can solve and helps others, then develop a business model around the solution.

So, i have ideas, but how do i translate these ideas into a form that can be presented, developed and released?

Why of course, you would define a business model, business plan, develop requirements and so on and so forth for these ideas.

An idea…

Image

So while swimming, i was thinking of this and i remembered a friend of mine that told me of her aspirations many years ago of becoming a Business Analyst in a company we both worked for.

I remember telling her to look at one of the completed projects in the network drive and :

  • Look at the finished product/project release
  • Trace the work by the Business Analyst, their names would be on any/all documents they participated on, you could do a simple ‘find’ by name search to retrieve all documents
  • Look at how the business need was translated into a requirement that was developed/tested and released
  • By identifying what the Business Analyst did, that’s what you have to do too, you just work backwards from the solution

And this got me thinking of our daily lives, just about everything we see or touch in a city was a problem in

  • Design
  • Production
  • Transportation
  • Usability
  • Safety
We’re all coming to recognize design is everywhere—everything we touch has been designed, and every economy is at least partly design-driven and becoming even more so. “A new value is being placed on design as essential to innovation,” says Carol Coletta, director of ArtPlace, “and on the connection between innovation, jobs, and economic growth.” This growing awareness is especially concentrated in cities, where design is being heralded not only as a savior of the economy but as the solution to a multitude of social challenges.Read more: http://www.dwell.com/articles/The-Design-Week-Movement.html#ixzz2DTxQxhi8

And the list goes on, the point is that a solution was found, the endless meetings and sleepless nights resulted in you sitting in the chair you sit in, but what were the requirements for the chair?

Well, your sitting in the chair, so the project must of been a success, it met the requirements, maybe it was innovative too?

Introducing Richard Feynman, a class act

Image

I remember reading when Richard Feynman was trying to figure out an equation, that could not be calculated before the times of computers as we know them, he would start off by guessing the answers and then he would work backwards, he often solved problems this way, he didn’t think he was anything special, he had a different way of thinking, a different approach, and that was the difference and quite often it made all the difference.

A brave new world of apps

Image

So it seems clear, if you want to understand how an app came to be, pick a good one (that helps people solve a problem) and work back towards the time someone had a problem, which became the idea, like for example ‘Drop box’, you can listen to the story through the ‘Stanford university entrepreneur pod cast’ through the ‘Podcast’ app (a fantastic learning app)

In case you don’t know the story of Drop box, the founder had an important presentation, he drove a few hours to this important meeting and he forgot the hard drive that he wanted to present.

This mishap was a personal disaster, the biggest of his life, at the time and he thought, ‘There must be a better way?’, step one in innovation, a question Steve Jobs would spend his Fridays with Craig Rispin asking this question

(Download Craigs ‘How to think like Futurist’ here)

Is there a better way?

Image

And there was a better way to access you files and share your files, and that’s how you have Drop box folks, it’s inspiring that someones personal disaster was converted into a triump that the world could benifit from.

Time to get to work….

Advertisements

You have to Innovate 20% of the time

26 Nov

I was watching a video of Craig Rispin last week, he talked about how you have to innovate 20% of the time to stay ahead of the game, to be future proof.

What does that mean to you or i? Well it means we have to try new things, do things differntly, you wont be successful all the time, this is ok, but you will find an idea that will give you a big return and here’s where you bring in the 80/20 rule.

In is a book called ‘The artists way’, Julia Cameron says you have to be prepared to make bad art to make good art, you simply cant just wait to feel inspired, the day you get the perfect paint brushes or that new laptop you always wanted to write the book you want to write.

Julia promotes a form of stream writing called ‘Morning pages’ where you write 3 pages of A4 foolscap of what ever is going through your mind, it’s nothing new, this technique was first discovered by Leonardo Da Vinci, Its about thinking different, here are some steps to think like Mr Da Vinci

Leonardo had many good ideasImage

Morning pages and stream writing are techniques of tuning into your subconscious that many find helpful in their lives.

I once watched an artist sketch his ideas on an old newspaper, with a pen he borrowed, that i feel was innovative, i would never have thought of that, maybe it was intuitive to him or maybe he was resourceful, before long i could see his idea, it was a lesson for me, if you want to do something, just start and your halfway done

80% of the wealth you generate comes from the 20% of you effort, you’ve heard all this before, i know did, somehow in the modern age we live in, it was a rule that didn’t apply these days, i haven’t heard it in a while.

Expressed another way?

Image

Well if you find the 20% of your effort thats giving you the 80% return and you double the effort (the 20%), before long you are getting a return of 160%, it doesnt take a genius to figure this out.

When Craig Rispin worked with Steve Jobs, they set aside Fridays to ask themselves one question.

That one question is…

‘Is there a better way?’

Image

It’s interesting that these guys that were so busy, probably had endless people they had to meet would set one daya week to this, but i guess if you have all the answers maybe your asking the wrong questions

Everyone’s heard the stories of google employees having 20% of their time dedicated to their own side projects.

Blogger and twitter came about as side projects, noone could have though they would have been as popular as they have become, one of the pratical applications of twitter was notifing people of the Calafornian bush fires, technology is being developed to predict these fires through crowdsoursing and social media 

All of a sudden having a side project sounds like a thing you should be doing?

Image
Kevin Roberts, CEO Worldwide of Saatchi & Saatchi, one of the world’s leading creative organizations says his number one innovative company is Apple.

Apple spend 10% a year on research and development of their products, all of it is self funding.

I read a while back the biggest threat to companies was the the fear of failure, or to put it another way, the fear of failing at something new was hampering the success of the companies, it would seem some people are so afraid to be seen as failures, this is why they do not succeed?

The simple fact is, you will fail at some things, but seen in another light, there are no failures, only stepping stones.

I read in a the Smh.com.au an article by Harold Mitchell on the weekend

Inaction is action and inertia is not an option

Where ever talent and innovation goes, innovation, creativity and economic growth are sure to folow

What are the 2 major trends right now in Technology?

  1. Transperancy,
  2. Crowdsourcing

Transperancy is how experiences the information they view online, in the video below Craig demonstrates how a user can view a movie, pause the movie, search for a seafood restaurant, find the nearest one on google maps and call the restaurant to order food.

Never has the consumer been able to search so much data, extract the valuable information and go back to watching a movie, so many difficult, complicated and valuable tasks completed through an interface anybody can use.

With Crowdsourcing, in the video below, Craig gives an example of how end users collaborated to design a hotel in a computer game, half life.

This design was such a success, the hotel was built and then the people that collaborated to design the hotel, including Craig Rispin went to stay in the hotel

Since his input was part of the output, he had an emotional attachment to this hotel.

Wisdom of crowds? This is one of Obama’s crowds

Image

Craig mentioned James Surowiecki and his book ‘The wisdom of crowds’, it encapulates three parts

1, Cognition     

Thinking and information Processing Market judgment, which he argues can be much faster, more reliable, and less subject to political forces than the deliberations of experts or expert committees.

2, Coordination

Coordination of behavior includes optimizing the utilization of a popular bar and not colliding in moving traffic flows. The book is replete with examples from experimental economics, but this section relies more on naturally occurring experiments such as pedestrians optimizing the pavement flow or the extent of crowding in popular restaurants.

He examines how common understanding within a culture allows remarkably accurate judgments about specific reactions of other members of the culture.

3, Cooperation

How groups of people can form networks of trust without a central system controlling their behavior or directly enforcing their compliance. This section is especially pro free market.

People have an emotional attachment to devices/products which is hard to believe.

This innovation didn’t happen by accident, it was planned

Interested?

Craig Rispin says:

%d bloggers like this: