KernelPop

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Get Version 1 Out

I stumbled across Paul Graham's startup essay again today and found this part resonated a little too much:

... get a version 1 out as soon as you can ... The only way to make something customers want is to get a prototype in front of them and refine it based on their reactions.

The other approach is what I call the "Hail Mary" strategy. You make elaborate plans for a product, hire a team of engineers to develop it (people who do this tend to use the term "engineer" for hackers), and then find after a year that you've spent two million dollars to develop something no one wants. This was not uncommon during the Bubble, especially in companies run by business types, who thought of software development as something terrifying that therefore had to be carefully
planned.


My world has become some odd hybrid of these two approaches. I'll say this: They don't go that well together. Gotta pick one. Or at least, crown one king.

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