In the past year and a half Rick and I have developed and shipped the following:
- Two projects for Adidas
- One project for a start-up
- A project for DEWALT Tools
- powerOne for Android
- powerOne for Tizen
- Two projects for The College Board
- Updates to DEWALT, powerOne for iOS, and a pro bono product
That’s eight products plus updates and, outside of powerOne for iOS and the pro bono job , all of these have generated revenue for us as work-for-hire. DEWALT, powerOne for iOS and powerOne for Android also generate a little bit of on-going revenue.
And what plagues me? The project I can’t get done. I really want to spend all my time on Equals and yet, to stay in business, my time is now spent almost full-time on contract jobs.
We get December, though, and our goal this month is to get the web version of Equals done for its first release. This will be a beta release as we have more features plus iOS we feel are needed for a true 1.0. But at least come January we should start seeing whether anyone cares enough to use it.
It will be a sprint. I hope Rick and I don’t get winded.
 Which was a trade for some bug fixes in the Android version of powerOne.
Incredibly good article from Aaron Hillegass outlining why starting a company is a bad idea even though he did it (and so did I). One of my favorite lines is this one:
I’ve been broke, and being broke sucks balls. Having Enough is awesome. How would I define “Enough”? Enough means that you can take a friend out to a nice lunch and not have to worry about how much it costs. I have hung out with a couple of billionaires—my experiences indicate that being a billionaire is just incrementally better than Enough.
I have never cared about being a billionaire. I’ve only cared about this description that Aaron defines here. I just want Enough, too.
By the way, if you want to learn how to code for iOS and OS X, start at Aaron’s company’s site, Big Nerd Ranch. Their books are incredible.
Jeff Bezos presented this video on Charlie Rose, I believe, highlighting a future where Amazon could deliver merchandise in less than 30 minutes via drone.
It’s fanciful and not very realistic for most items my family has ordered from them. (We bought a really nice air mattress bed recently that would take a small army of drones to move.) It still feels like a very long way off since the FAA keeps dragging its feet on drones for commercial use.
Om Malik fills in with some questions that Charlie Rose forgot to ask, including a very good one: why is Bezos, a very secretive and private man about his future business ideas, showing this now, clearly years before it is even feasible?
I have another: who will be buying stuff from Amazon? 
In the 1950s the general contract was that employers will pay employees enough to buy their stuff. That contract is broken now. We seem to so rarely think about the human costs of automation. Yes, it’s inevitable that this will happen. Computers will rule the world. What I never hear discussed, though, is how people will live when Amazon needs a tiny fraction of employees, compared to Walmart, which utilized a tiny fraction compared to mom-and-pop shops.
 Yes, I know I keep bringing this up. I’m still looking for answers.
As November winds down and we head into a long holiday weekend here in the US, I thought I would share something whimsical. It starts:
Every year, my wife and I devote the month of November to convincing our children that, while they sleep, their plastic dinosaur figures come to life.
Absolutely brilliant. The pictures are incredible and what an amazing way to tie into the amazing imaginations that kids already have. These types of mysteries, whether it be dinosaurs or Santa Claus or the tooth fairy, are all part of what being a kid should be about. I only wish I had thought of it first.
via Marco Arment
I’ve noticed a trend developing about myself the past year or two: if I’m not learning new things I am completely frustrated.
The past few months have been excruciating. I’ve been working on contract projects or repeating things I’ve learned before. My frustration level boils over. I’m irritable. If I have to write one more UITableView I think I could kill someone. And the last project I worked on was almost all UITableViews.
When I think about it, though, I had fun early on as I was starting to learn how storyboards work, learning what to do (UITableViews are a heck of a lot nicer, leaving me wanting to maim instead of kill) and what not to do. (Segues. Ever.)
This isn’t restricted to code, though. Learning new business concepts, about marketing or advertising or minutiae of business is interesting, too. It’s just that the new learning opportunities seem to manifest themselves more often in code. There is always something new to learn there.
While we aren’t making much money from powerOne anymore, the learning opportunities associated with completely redeveloping the app have been overpowering. I know in my head this doesn’t make sense and that we can improve the product by improving the existing code base, which is a heck of a lot less expensive than starting over, but the allure of writing it again is so strong.
Head or heart, which will win? I guess we will all find out soon enough.