400 minute sprints to a social experience

When I started with 400 minutes almost one and a half year ago, the goal was to do it for a year and see what I got out of it. Well over a year later, I am still doing it and I think I found out what I really did get out of it.

Over a year ago, I thought lets think up as many goofy ideas that I can and see if any of them stick. Truth be told, no idea as of yet really stuck and it’s easy to spot why. They were much to far fetched and lacked commitment. But most of all, I think it’s because it would be my worst nightmare if I suddenly got stuck with an online wake-up call service or a bookstore.

What I always loved and still love most is making things, making things that make peoples lives better. What I really built in this 400 minutes experience is knowledge. I created web apps, mobile apps, websites and learned to work with api’s, developer environments, databases and so much more. Also I got into the whole Lean Startup philosophy and learned a lot about agile and Lean UX. This knowledge is to me of infinite value.

This does not mean at all that 400minutes as a process doesn’t work for product (-or software) development. In fact it works remarkably well. 400 minutes remains a really good timeframe to create something viable, it just isn’t enough to make something sustainable. Much like it only takes a bit of water and time to make a seed sprout and a lot more to make it grow into an adult plant.

Mainly for that reason the latest projects iterated through a few (and sometimes many) 400minutes phases. I am sure that someday I will make a great process image for this process but simply said, it consists of explore, create, validate, build and validate.

Having said that, take a look at the current work in progress, it is right in phase 2: create. For interaction14 I am making a social website where participants can see who else is participating, see the talks, meet up for booze (always a popular topic) and see if they can book rooms together and stuff. It is still superfull of bugs and a lot of 404’s of things I haven’t gotten around to yet but worth a look, the url is http://www.autopeil.nl and yes, I am still in need of a good name and need to graphic design that shit!

For the next update(s) I will see if I can keep this part entertaining, because frankly; looking at the code some interaction design/development/hybrid nerd wrote isn’t very entertaining.

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