Scientia Potentia Est

“Knowledge is Power”

In case you missed, there were some excellent comments over the past couple of weeks. Two of them had  video recommendations that were very inspiring. Check them out:

Simon Sinek – “Start with Why”

GitHub CEO Chris Wanstrath discussing how he came to start up GitHub

 

I hope you enjoy them like I did!

Buckets (Part II)

In case you are just jumping in, See Part I for the background.

So the stage has been set for a time tracking app. I’m sure you have a lot of questions and are unclear on a lot of this. Totally understandable. Hopefully some of the upcoming visuals will help. I don’t expect you to grasp all of it anytime soon and probably not until you have the app in your hands to play with. For the most part, I am sharing this with you all so that when the project does eventually happen, you can see where it started.

First a slight detour into my tools.

Hardware:

  • Lenova Yoga 2 Pro

Software:

  • Dropbox  – Document sharing
  • Bitbucket – Code Sharing
  • Trello – Task management and collaboration
  • PowerPoint – Preliminary visual layouts and methodology
  • Evernote – Note taking
  • iTunes – Music/Podcasts
  • Rdio – Music streaming (Currently playing “stranger than earth” by Purity Ring)
  • Chrome – Browser of choice
  • Gimp 2 – Image manipulation (think free Photoshop)
  • Xcode – Apple’s code writing software
  • WordPress – blogging tool

And now back to the project.

Preliminary Screenshots:

The next few pictures are of preliminary screen concepts crudely draw up in PowerPoint. Eventually these will be used as a reference for the graphic artist person to work with.

App Screen LayoutScreen Layout

Home Page ConceptsHomescreens
Recent EntriesRecent Entries

History/graphs and setting pages are still a work in process. I’ll possible share when I get something better. Showing the recorded data in a clean, sharp way is going to be critical to the apps effectiveness.

Features and UX (User Experience):

I’m going to hold off on this portion for now because there is still some work to do here. I have concepts in mind but I would like to test them out prior to trying to explain them. But they are all based around the goal of entering time as fast as possibly. So stay tuned for that.

That’s probably good for now. Now I need to go make check on my team to see if they are making progress. Also I promised my team I would read up on Git.

Cheers.

New Idea: Buckets (Part I)

My first project I bring to you is a mobile app. Now, I probably shouldn’t be starting with this type of project because it doesn’t line up with my skillset. As I have mentioned before, I don’t have a programming background nor due I have a graphics art background. So you might be thinking, “OK, so what’s your role then? I will be providing the concept, detailed layout, and then doing a lot of managing. But the reason I’m jumping on this project first is because this will be a great tool for all my future projects.

A couple of notes before I start.

  1. This app is a time tracking app. Be forewarned, seeing where you spend your time can be scary.
  2. This project should be for everybody, but not everybody will embrace it.
  3. While the concept may be debatable, the 10,000 hour rule is something to keep in mind.
  4. You spend your time better when you know where it’s going.

Alright here goes. “Buckets (Part I)”

(Listening to Eshon’s new “Fear of God” album)

Codename: Buckets

Short Project Description: Lightning-quick time tracking mobile app

Problem:

Do you tell your time what to do or does your time tell you what to do? As with money, if you are not controlling your time it will control you. How do you you keep track of where your time goes?

In my research, the current Time Tracking app market is saturated with clunky apps that take too much time to use and are inconvenient at best. You are either starting/stopping a stopwatch or moving from timesheet to timesheet using drop down menus or time wheels to enter time. It is a hassle and nobody wants to do it. Solutions:This app’s focus is to make time tracking as quick as possible with no hassle.

  • One touch time entry for a given task. If you spent 60 minutes working out, you press “workout” icon and slide up till you hit 60 minutes and then release. 60 minutes is recorded.
  • You can record your time whenever you want i.e. you don’t have to start a timer before your task and remember to end it after your task.
  • Not just time tracking. This concept will allow the user to also count up. You could record your 45 minutes it takes you to make dinner and count your 50 push-ups you did in the morning.
  • Personal time tracking AND project/business/team time tracking. This app will have a two-stage approach: simple personal time tracking and team time tracking. But both approaches will use the same interface, but have slightly different features.

Key Features: Each feature should be geared toward the goal of lightning quick time tracking.

  • All time is entered at the home page. No moving to different screens.
  • One touch time entry (no drop down menus, no number wheels, no extra movements)
  • Multiple options available with a swipe of the finger (time entry, stopwatch, count up).
  • Capable of running multiple project with multiple tasks. Quickly cycle through projects with one touch
  • Clean and quick time displays with graphs

Why: At the end of each week, month, year, etc, do you truly know where or how your time is spent? I don’t. How long do I spend making dinners, watching TV, working on hobbies, working out, playing video games, doing projects, etc? Where can I cut back on and get another 4 hours per week to put towards reading a new book? This app will be the tool to shed light on where you can “find” more time. The apps on the market are inconvenient. There is a better way.

The second stage of this app focuses on the team/business side. It will utilize on this simple and quick interface which is just not found in current mobile apps. Plus the typical business solution is packaged with a other pricey software. The business version of this app is specifically geared toward tracking where a team spends their hours. How many hours are spent prototyping, researching, installing, document, etc? With this app, a manager can easily access his or her teams time focus. This data is critical when preparing for future projects. The simplicity of this app with give a user no excuse for not entering their time.

Development History/Status:I got the idea in November of last year and began working out the details. The preliminary visual layouts were created in PowerPoint because it’s quick and easy to create rough layouts and put thoughts down. I have since developed all the preliminary screen layouts. Now all that is needed is the code and the professional graphics.

Team: Currently, I have recruited my brother-in-law Jon and my brother Bryce to develop the code for Android and iPhone, respectively. This process will take some time as both are in the process of learning the ins and outs of mobile applications. My other brother Travis has offered up some graphical concepts and will help with marketing down the road.  Once we have a functional prototype of this app, I plan to submit the graphics design portion of this project to 99designs.com to receive multiply ideas.

To be Continued: Part II will explore some preliminary layouts and software/tools used to make this application happen.

The Where

Here we are. The last installment of The Background series is upon us. This series took longer than expected, but it was nice to get what I had in my head and put it on paper. If anything, I can see myself going back and reading through what I wrote to remind myself what I’m doing and why I’m doing it. A refresher for the days when I need it.
 
Plus, this means the real work is coming up next! Yikes, I hope I’m ready….
 
Spinning the new LP by Mat Kearney. Mat Kearney – “Heartbreak Dreamer”
 
 


The Where
 
The Where is an open ended question. I have a starting place, but as far as the end goal goes or even the halfway goal, I just don’t have the answer. I have dreamt about running a storefront business or driving to a small industrial warehouse that is full of tools and materials that are just waiting to be used. Both are exciting, but honestly they are not goals I need to be setting at this time. I have everything I need to excel right in front of me. I have a computer, a desk, the Internet, and my small little shop in the basement. These locations are the “Where”s.
 
Computer and desk aren’t revolutionary and are pretty much self explanatory. Maybe I’ll go into what I use as for software, but I’ll save that for a later date. I like to sketch sometimes. A desk is good for that. As for the Internet, it’s incredible. It will be critical that I use to effectively. This blog being a part of that. Then there is my workshop.
 
I love my basement. It’s small and awkward. It’s nothing to write home about. But it’s what I like to call my mechanical sanctuary. When my wife and I first moved into our house over 5 years ago, our basement was a weird, weird place. There was a makeshift room enclosed by plywood covered in white paint. Concrete floors, water damaged walls, and 4″x 4″ vent to the outside. The only things inside the room were a pullstring light and a rearview mirror mounted to the western most wall. Futhermore, a single latch for a padlock was mounted on the outside of the door. The very first time I pulled the string to turn on the light, the bulb shattered…. Let’s just say this room was one of the first things to get torn down. (I still have the rearview mirror if you want to borrow it)
 
Today, we have a usable laundry room and more importantly the workshop in the basement.
 
Shop Pano 2 
All my initial work is going to be done here (I give you permission to use the picture like an I Spy book). At least that is the plan. Of course I will have to outsource some things like3D printing (I will get one eventually. It’s inevitable) or welding if it comes to that, but to keep costs down I hope to do my initial testing and prototyping here. 
 
I have slowly accumulated tools as well as built tools during many different projects or hobbies I have worked on. Remodeling our house gave me a good excuse for obtaining general tools like saws and drills, but I’ve also salvaged a few things and turned them into some fun, useful tools. Let’s take a look at a couple of the unique ones:
 IMG_0431
CNC (computer numerical control) Router:
(As pictured I’m replacing a bum z-axis motor)
24″ x 24″ x 4″ work envelope
Can cut woods and plastics
Running Linux CNC
 Oven
Electric Oven:
51″ x 21″ x 32″ Oval envelope
Max temp of 350degF
PID controlled.
Repurposed 250gallon oil tank
Powder coating and composite curing
 
Mini Foundary -(Future) I haven’t made this yet, but it is on my “To Build” list. (I think it was Ryan H. who shared this. Kudos.)
 
Tools. I love tools. There is even a website for cool tools. Oh shoot, I got distracted. Where was I? Oh yes, workshop. The place where I build stuff. 
 
So the “Where”s in summary: computer, desk, Internet, and workshop.
 
 
And now an Epiphany. After writing all of this, I have realized that up until this year The Where has technically been in my mind. My ideas, thoughts, designs, passions (i.e. The What and The Why) also in my head. The time has come to stop dreaming and pull The Where out of my mind and into the physical. And it’s going to happen through this writing (blog), the sharing of ideas/designs and the workshop blood, sweat, and tears (hopefully not from pain)…
 

“The basic difference between an ordinary man and a warrior is that a warrior takes everything as a challenge while an ordinary man takes everything either as a blessing or a curse” – Carlos Casteneda

 
Game on.

 

The Who

Happy Friday everybody. Feels pretty good.  Grab a hot drink. Or a cold drink. Just don’t get a lukewarm one. You will be disappointed.

I’m listening to The Brilliance – “Brother“. What about you? “Pinball Wizard” perhaps 😉
 
Missed the previous posts? Start here: What,  Why, How, and When

The Who
 
The Who is broken down into two parts: Me and “You”. I’m going to start with the Me section, but don’t miss out on the the “You” part. We might be a good fit.
 
So me. Where should I start? Let’s see…. The year was 1984 and day was July 1st. Canada Day if you will. Princess Diana and Carl Lewis were born 23 years earlier so it was definitely a special day…. OK, I’ll stop. Starting with my actual birth day might be too early. In fact, I don’t even want to get into too much of my growing ups. I’m saving it for my crazy memoir. But I will touch on one thing about growing up. My parents were (and still are) amazing. They really taught my siblings and me to pursue our dreams while helping others at all times. Sometimes by words, but always through their actions. My dad’s open arms to anybody and everybody and my mom’s tenacity to always do the right thing. That’s a very tiny snippet, but I wouldn’t have this drive to start something crazy if it wasn’t for them. Thanks Mom and Dad. 
 
OK, time to get a little selfish and talk about myself. Not the easiest thing for me to do. But after all this is my blog about my product development adventure, right? Like I said, I’m going to skip over the part about how homeschooling really taught me how to learn. Or about my time in high school and college where I should have pushed myself outside of my comfort zone. Instead, I’m going to jump right into my engineering career because it’s probably the most relevant to what I’m pursuing.
 
I’m at my 3rd engineering company since graduating college in the summer of 2007. I’ve jumped around a bit. The first company I left after 2 years was due to location (Tacoma > Spokane, and I really like Spokane). Funny thing is that I joined back on with them for a 9 month contract position a year later and commuted between Spokane and Tacoma weekly. Still can’t believe I did that. The 2nd company I worked for is probably where I learned the most about the “business” side of things. Met a lot of great people too. But it really had a poor reward to work ratio and after 3 years I left because I was exhausted from it. And now I currently work as a contract design engineer in the fenestration (windows/doors) industry. Each experience has been quite different (direct chill aluminum casting system design, composite materials manufacturing, and windows/doors manufacturing). Some more stressful than others. Some more interesting than others. But all have been exciting at one point.
 
So what are some of the higher level engineering experiences/accomplishments I’ve gained from these years?
  • International travel to China (x3), South Korea, Germany (x2), and England for design reviews and machine selection
  • Washington State Professional Engineer License in Dec ’13
  • Extensive CAD, some CAM experience
  • Hydraulic, pneumatic, and electric systems knowledge
  • Machine design
  • Welded structure design
  • Carbon Fiber/Fiberglass part design and manufacturing
  • Carbon Fiber prepreg production
  • Injection molding experience
  • Aluminum extrusions and profiles experience
There is a lot more behind these bullet points like learning to problem solve and project manage, building great relationships, and learning to work with difficult people. But perhaps the biggest realization is that I don’t want to work for somebody else’s company when I could be working for my own company. I have the entrepreneurial fire.
 
As mentioned in The When post, all this gained knowledge and experience is considered my Preparation Chapter. The broad engineering background. Learning 3 different business structures and environments. The entrepreneurial fire. This combo why I believe I can be successful.
 
Ok, devil’s advocate time.
 
Let’s be honest. My talents and experience are still limited. There are millions of things I just don’t know. I don’t know programming. I don’t know marketing, I don’t know graphic design, I don’t know law, I don’t know sales. I could go on and on. And I realize more and more that there just isn’t enough time to learn everything I need to be successful. To really accomplish all that I see before me by myself would require multiple lifetimes and then some. Obviously I don’t have that.
 
Let’s not forget the time factor either. There are many things I can do decently but at a slower clip whereas somebody who is a pro could knock it out in a 1/5th of the time. I foresee “first to market” being critical on many of my projects and I must use time wisely.
 
This is where “You” come in. (I’m not sure why I keep putting it in quotations but it just seemed right at the time).
 
As I develop my ideas, I will need help. I will need sales, marketing, programming, lawyering, graphic design, etc at one point or another in my pursuit. What are You excellent at? 
 
The digital age is phenomenal for bringing teams together in the blink of an eye. I could go right now to freelancer.com, elance.com, odesk.com, etc and hire a programmer from Russia or a graphic designer from India. I’m pretty sure I will at one point. I’m already getting ready for some 99designs.com stuff as we speak. At times this will be my You. 
 
So all You readers out there. When I’m working on a project that looks interesting and you have the talent and passion to make the product much better, drop me a line. Let’s grab a coffee and chat about it. If distance is a problem, let’s exchange emails. Maybe we will be a good fit.
 
Don’t be a stranger.
 
Cheers.
 
 
 

 

The When

If I have kept your interest thus far, we probably share similar passions of some sort. That’s good news! I haven’t even posted a project yet! That part is right around the corner. I promise. I just need to close out the background series with The Where, The Who, and The When. They have taking more time up front because I’ve been working on them simultaneously. The positive note is that I should be able to get them all out this week. From there we will roll right into the first project. But first, let’s start with The When

On a side note, I like to listen to music a lot. So here is what I’m listening to right now. Dustin Kensrue – Back to Back

Missed the previous posts? Start here: What,  Why, and How

The When

This post has been a little elusive because I honestly don’t know when everything is going to come together. It’s been about 5 years since I first really started entertaining the ideas of the starting a full time business and I have made some tentative dates in the past. But here I am with nothing really to show. Yet the passion is more real than ever. Every time I think about the prospect of making this business my source of income I clinch my fist with excitement and smirk a bit. Sometimes there’s a squeal. I’m not sure if I learned it from Bryn or if she learned it from me.

 But back to timelines. I’m struggling to put down hard dates. On one hand I think it would help because it would reorganize my priorities. But on the other hand, it seems so arbitrary at this point. There are so many unanswered questions. So instead I going to break things up into chapters.

I have come up with 4:

  • Preparation
  • Transition
  • Start Up
  • Full Speed Ahead

Preparation:

I don’t want to go into too much detail with the Preparation chapter as I will discuss a lot of it in “The Who” post, but I would consider this chapter to be everything I’ve experienced up to now. From Lego contests as a kid, to growing up with amazing friends and family and having a strong foundation in Jesus, to homeschooling and Jesuit high school and studying engineering in College, to a crazy awesome marriage and remodeling our house, to 6 years of mechanical engineering in multiple industries and raising a beautiful daughter, these experiences have been part of my preparation. 30 years worth. I’ve learned an incredible amount and it’s going to be indispensable. I still have tons to learn, but it’s a great start.

Transition:

This blog kicked off the Transition chapter. Quite a bit of juggling is required in this phase. I am currently working full time as a contract mechanical engineer while my wife is back at work as a civil engineer full time. We have a beautiful 4 month old daughter to raise all the while. So sprinkled in all of this is the part where I am gathering all my thoughts and ideas about this business and organizing them. It is critical that during this chapter a few ideas are in development and are close to final products, ready for marketing. Ideally, this phase is short because once I can focus full time on product development I would be able to throw 40+ more hours a week. My gut is telling me that sometime in the summer/fall is where the Start Up chapter could kick in.

Start Up:

This is full time focus on product development. Working in another company will come to an end and this will be my job. Like I mentioned above, many things will need to be progressing from previous chapter so that I can hit the ground running here. The duration is dependent upon finding a stability and consistency. I’m guessing this will be a long chapter, but if my preparation and focus are in line, it could be very successful.

Full Speed Ahead:

I don’t want to spend too much time talking about this chapter because, honestly, I’m not sure what this looks like yet. As things comes more and more into focus, I will come back to hash out this chapter. It’s at least a year or three out.

I know it’s not the most concrete plan, but it’s a start. There will be smaller, more specific timelines when it comes to the individual projects. I will make those known. I will also share my updated thoughts on this overarching timeline as summer gets closer and I work on projects.

 And then there was two. Still to come: Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How

Intermission

LA Sun
                                                                                   In Awe of the Ocean

 

Well, I’m a day late after telling the internet that I was posting every Sunday. Not a good look.

I was in California with family having a great time seeing my brother get married. Welcome to the family Haily!

I am still working on some entries and getting close to a few of them. I will send one out in the next day or so!

Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How

The How

Devastated is an appropriate emotion right now. Dynasty was 1 yd away….The show must go on. Hopefully a little distraction reading will help ease the pain. Read on.

The How:

About a year or so ago, a “work friend” (Eric) wrote down some great insights regarding building a successful business. It went something like this:

  1. Brainstorm Ideas
  2. Design the Product
  3. Prototype
  4. ????
  5. Profit!!!!

I only need to figure out Step 4! Yeah!

…Sounds like one of those infomercial house flipping seminars/books, huh? They will tell you the secrets and you’ll be a millionaire with no money down. Call now!

The thing about Step 4 is that it is probably the most labor intensive and could go in many different directions (manufacture it, outsource it, license it, sell it, etc). It really all depends on the product. Step 4 is going to be the most interesting part of this process because that’s when it gets real. As I had mentioned in a previous post, I see myself focusing on the licensing option (at least to begin). Ideally that direction will require the least amount of time and I can move onto another idea.

But let’s jump back to the first three steps. That’s where this blog needs to go next. After this initial series of background posts, I anticipate blog content to fall under the following topics:

  1. New Idea
    • Focus will be on a product idea that I have been kicking around. It might solve a problem or provide entertainment or whatever. I think there will be a standard format for this type of content (Problem Statement, Description, Drawing/Model, Manufacturing, Marketing, etc….).
  2. Idea Update!
    • As I pursue and develop ideas into a tangible product, I will post updates on where they are in the process and what I’ve had to do to bring them to life or what caused them to fail.
  3. Business Stuff
    • The idea development is the fun part to me, but I will need to have an actual business. I want to share my experience in coming up with a business name, filing for a business, making a business plan, etc….
  4. Patents
    • The process of obtaining patents. Or why a patent might not be appropriate.
    • Did you know that only 7.5% of patents are done by women?(Source: Freakonomics podcast)
  5. Daily Balance
    • Every week is going to be different when it comes to balancing work and family. This type of post could be about how I’m managing (or not managing) my time wisely. Cute daughter pictures.
  6. Off Topic
    • Could be anything. Maybe a joke like “What does a nosey pepper do? Gets jalapeno business!”

This will evolve as I develop my process and learn, but I think this is a good start.

Oh, and as you may have noticed, I have been sending out new content every Sunday night. I’ve been trying to pace myself as well as organize my thoughts into appropriate categories. Currently my blog goal is to post one entry a week.  This will be my minimum. So far it has been good for me. Time allowing, I will also sprinkle in other content throughout the week.

Stay tuned!

The Why

As you may have noticed, I’m slowly working on the website. Learning more and more about WordPress and html. Stay with me….

The Why

I am going to break this section up into two sections: why a business and why the blog.

Why a business?

  1. I love creating things. Why not create a business about creating things?
  2. Independence. My grand scheme is to roll this into full time gig (not necessarily blog writing, but product development). It’s going to take some late nights, but that’s nothing new. Being able to create my own schedule and hours is huge. Ideally, I can stay home with my daughter and still work on this and be successful.
  3. Potential. When you work for another company you are basically trading hours for money. There is unlimited freedom and earning potential as a business owner. You determine your own fate. That excites me greatly.
  4. Legacy.

Why the blog?

  1. I love creating things (echo echo echo). Why not create a blog about creating a business that creates things?
  2. I need a place to record my ideas/thoughts and document the process in which I develop them. I also need to present them in a manner that everybody should understand (as best as possible). This will be an exercise in conciseness. Now I don’t have to do it publically but I need…
  3. Accountability. It’s so easy to stall out or quit something if nobody is watching. With writing a blog you really don’t know who is reading your stuff. Maybe nobody is reading it, but just the thought of somebody viewing my work at any given time motivates me to create consistent and quality work. I guess I would say it’s similar to the Panopticon concept. (Probably the only thing I remember from high school English)
  4. Writing skillz. I want to become a more better writer. And hopefully a more focused writer. I get distracted at the time. (I was going to make a joke about getting distracted and reading an article about the Hawks in the Superbowl Big Game, but I ended up trying to find some new music to listen to first.)

If you know me at all, you know I play devil’s advocate all the time. I always look at both sides even if I don’t necessarily agree with the side I’m arguing. I can’t help it. On the other hand, I can sometimes help it. I guess it just depends on my mood.

But there is a Why Not side that I must understand and fight through it:

  1. Time. It’s going to take a lot of time to get things going. This blog has already taken more time I expected. I will have to sacrifice my guilty pleasures like video games, TV, and family time. (Luckily Bryn can’t read because she probably wouldn’t understand my blatant sarcasm)
  2. Public failure. There is just no way I don’t fail. It’s going to happen. But I have to view it like a poker game. I will lose hands. And when I do lose, the stakes must be small. Fail quickly and move on. It’s how you bounce back from failure that makes the story worthwhile.
  3. Discomfort. Working at a large company has it’s perks. You know your hours, you have good pay and there is job security. It’s basically 0 for 3 with a small business (at least at the start). There is just no certainty. I will just have to minimize the discomfort by doing the groundwork now.

Taking all this into account, I couldn’t be more excited for 2015.

(Ok, I’m going to get completely sidetracked, but why do parenthesis require holding shift while brackets don’t? It would seem to me that parenthesis are much more used than brackets in everyday computer use. Am I off on this?)

The What

That was an incredulous comeback! I am still trying to comprehend what happened this afternoon. The Seattle Seahawks are returning to the Superbowl! Pinch me! I am emotionally drained from that crazy game and just thinking about it makes me tired. So I need to distract myself and write about what is to come with this blog.

With every great story there are questions to be answered. Over the next couple of weeks, I am going to try and answer the 5 W’s: Who, What, When, Where, and Why. I’ll even add the How question. Some entries will be longer than others, but I think it will be beneficial to explain the background with more detail. Without further ado…


 The What

So what is this “product development” biz I mentioned? I’ll sum up the concept in three broad steps:

  1. Have an good idea (your product)
  2. Build it (physical or virtual)
  3. Have customers that buy it

Sounds pretty simple, right? In fact we do this every day.

Let’s take making a dinner for example. You come up with an idea (pizza), you build it (combine ingredients and bake it) and, lastly, have somebody who eats it (if it tastes good).

How does this relate to business? Let’s jump back to the Pizza scenario. Maybe you love making pizza and it’s so tasty that you want to start a business around it. What are some options?

  1. Make the pizza at your house and deliver it to customers around your area.
  2. Purchase a food truck and take it to densely populated areas or events to sell your pizza.
  3. Lease a storefront and create a pizza parlor where you bake the pizzas and serve to the customers.
  4. Sign up customers for Pizza of the Month delivery in which they get fresh ingredients and dough once a month to cook at their house.
  5. Thoroughly document the recipe and process. Obtain a patent (if the process/recipe is novel) or trade secret. Then take the pizza to other restaurants/food places and license your pizza idea/recipe to them to make and sell.

Each venture comes with different time, talent, and money requirements. Some options are better than others. If I had my druthers, number 2 sounds exciting. Driving around to new locations and making pizza for the hungry masses. I’d name the truck Gus and we’d hit up music festivals up and down the coast.

What’s this have to do with my endeavor? Well, I am going to build a business around designing, building, and selling ideas and products. Look back at pizza option number 5 again. It’s probably the least feasible option for the pizza venture, but this option will make sense for many of my ideas. Selling or licensing products can be done in much less time than other options which require manufacturing, marketing, selling, and sustaining.

What’s the goal? It is not to make an As Seen On TV gadget, but if I make one so be it. It is not to invent to next life altering device, but if I stumble across it I won’t complain. It is not to be multimillionaire, but if it happens I’ll be generous. My goal is threefold: independence, family-sustaining, and fun.

Now if you made it this far, you are probably wondering exactly what the ideas are. I’ll tease you with two projects:

  • Codename: “Buckets”
    • Description: The fastest time tracking App on the market
  • Codename: “Layers”
    • Description: Small electronic box system that is fully customizable and professional looking.

In the near future,  we will see what these projects are all about and how they will be developed. Hopefully that answers some of the What questions!

Still to come: Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How

Here We Go

Pretty sweet blog site huh?

Sike! It’s pretty awful right now. But I have purchased this webpage and I have a head full of ideas. (Yes, I paid money for it. No going back now)

“So what’s this blog going to be about?” or “Are you just going to write about your day and post pictures of your cute daughter?” Those kind of questions might be running through your head. Or you could be asking yourself: “What do I want for lunch?” or “Why am I still up at 2am?”. I don’t know what’s in your head and I should probably stop guessing.

…But if you need answers to the previous questions, here they are:

  1. I’m going to develop a business that develops things. A product development LLC. And I’m going to write about it.
  2. I want to write about the journey … while working full time and serving my family. So yes, some of my writing will be about my daily balance. And yes, there will be plenty of cute pictures of my daughter 🙂
  3. Grilled cheese and tomato soup
  4. Go to bed!

I’ve spent the past couple of weeks pondering what exactly to write, how to write, how often, what it will look like, and so on. I’ve written down ideas, thoughts, quotes, and concepts. I’ve watched some WordPress blog customizing videos. So what do I have to show for it? You are looking at it (very little).

But then I thought, “This is a blog about starting a product development business from the ground up. Why not start at the most basic and bring everybody along for the adventure”. Bingo. You, the reader, get to start at the bottom with me. Sorry it’s not as comfortable as I would have liked it to be, but it will get better. Just have some patients patience. (whoops! I’m looking to improve my writing too)

So what is next? The basic outline for the next month is as follows:

  • Develop a decent webpage.
    • You know, cool colors, nice layout, easy on the eyes, etc.
  • Establish the blog infrastructure.
    • The entry tags, the background info, post frequency, etc.
  • Create some interesting content.
    • The motivation, the goals, the ideas, the prototyping, the cute daughter pictures.

This is a marathon not a sprint. With 3 month old and full time job, it’s going to be slow at the start. But stick with me. I will make it worth your while.

Oh, and my beautiful, smart wife is my biggest supporter. So if I start to slack, talk to her. But for now, stay tuned!

Cheers!
Dustin

A.M.D.G