Jots is a collection of bits from inspiring pieces.

The biggest lie we tell ourselves is “I dont need to write this down because I will remember it”.

Jot 329 : Kevin Kelly in 103 Bits of Advice I Wish I Had Known, from The Technium.
Jotted on May the 11th 2022, at 11:10.

Given this crucial aspect of scientific production—that early exploration is indispensable but typically has little impact on the wider scientific community—an excessive reliance on citations in the evaluation of scientists effectively punishes the exploration of new ideas.

Jot 328 : Jay Bhattacharya, Mikko Packalen in Stagnation and Scientific Incentives, p. 4, National Bureau of Economic Research, 2020.
Jotted on the 27th of Apr 2022, at 00:00.

For the vast majority of our species’ history, those were the two principal categories of human relations: kin and gods. Those we know who know us, grounded in mutual social interaction, and those we know who don’t know us, grounded in our imaginative powers.

But now consider a third category: people we don’t know and who somehow know us. They pop up in mentions, comments, and replies; on subreddits, message boards, or dating apps.

Jot 327 : Chris Hayes in On the Internet, We’re Always Famous, from The New Yorker.
Jotted on the 26th of Apr 2022, at 23:30.

Finally, the team noticed one user that was particularly flummoxed by the dialog box, who even seemed to be getting a bit angry. The moderator interrupted the test and asked him what the problem was. He replied, “I’m not a dolt, why is the software calling me a dolt?”

Jot 326 : Andy Hertzfeld in Do It, from
Jotted on the 21st of Mar 2022, at 10:30.

It is impossible to test against all the version combinations of all components in the library. Is Button v3.4 compatible with Accordion 1.2 and Modal 5.3? Library maintainers can’t guarantee quality, which means when issues arise consuming teams and maintainers have go on an easter egg hunt to pin down where compatibility problems are occurring.

Jotted on the 22nd of Feb 2022, at 14:10.

A focus on building the solution “right” means you do not let debt you take on stay around for long. You keep it visible and eradicate it fast as you deliver new features. And you do this because you recognize the longer the debt lives on, the more the interest hurts.

Jot 324 : Todd Lankford in Three “Right” Ways to Develop Your Product, from Serious Scrum.
Jotted on the 20th of Dec 2021, at 15:00.

Splitting Product Discovery and Delivery across two teams is a form of a functional silo.

Jot 323 : Todd Lankford in We Need One Complete Product Team, from Serious Scrum.
Jotted on the 20th of Dec 2021, at 14:30.

Instead of thinking of the daily stand-up as a ritual for the people, think of it as a ritual where the Work Items Attend (e.g., User Stories in an Agile context) and the people attend only to speak for the work items… since obviously the work items can’t actually talk.

Jotted on the 17th of Dec 2021, at 18:40.

Discovery work often results in killing ideas. At the end of every test you’ve got a decision to make: build it, kill it, or keep learning. Yes, what I’m really saying here is discovery work can and should result in killing ideas. Not everything goes forward.

Jot 321 : Jeff Patton in Dual Track Development is not Duel Track, from Jeff Patton & Associates.
Jotted on the 17th of Dec 2021, at 18:00.

After all that work, after establishing all that shared understanding I feel like we pull all the leaves off the tree and load them into a leaf bag–then cut down the tree.

That’s what a flat backlog is to me. A bag of context-free mulch.

Jot 320 : Jeff Patton in The New User Story Backlog is a Map, from Jeff Patton & Associates.
Jotted on the 17th of Dec 2021, at 13:30.

The idea is to test as many solutions as possible during discovery and discard all the wrong ones during this phase; this way, only the right solutions are developed during delivery.

Jot 319 : Emanuele Bolognesi in Introducing Dual Track Agile—the theory, from UX Collective.
Jotted on the 16th of Dec 2021, at 10:30.

Playing a videogame for someone is a far more elaborate skill than just playing to win.

Jot 318 : Edwin Evans-Thirlwell in Playing videogames carefully, from Eurogamer.
Jotted on the 11th of Dec 2021, at 22:40.

You’ll want to focus on nouns that might represent objects in your system. If you are having trouble determining if a noun might be object-worthy, remember the acronym SIP and test for: Structure Instances Purpose.

Jot 317 : Sophia V. Prater in How to Sell UX Research with Two Simple Questions, from A List Apart.
Jotted on the 10th of Dec 2021, at 10:20.

When the return sweep does not reach the beginning of the new line (undershoots), it is followed by a small leftward saccade to move back towards the beginning of the line. This is described as a corrective saccade.

Jot 316 : Mary Dyson in Line length revisited: following the research, from Design Regression.
Jotted on the 8th of Dec 2021, at 10:30.

Dependencies suck; dependencies rule. Other people’s code is like getting other people’s work for free. The downside is that it comes with their opinions, hobbies, and hygiene attached. All code comes bundled with a code smell. Usually, there isn’t anything you can do to prevent it from stinking up the place.

Jotted on the 3rd of Nov 2021, at 11:00.

…and even if you have all of that, something being unique does not automatically grant it quality. NFTs operate on the principle that being one-of-a-kind grants something value by default.

Jot 314 : Ed Zitron in The Internet of Grift, from Ed Zitron’s Where”s Your Ed At.
Jotted on the 12th of Oct 2021, at 12:00.

In the classic buildup-climax-resolution structure of drama, the JoJo pose is not the climax. A crucial moment has already happened when characters assume their stances. That’s why I think it’s part of the resolution.

Jot 313 : Ruben Ferdinand in An essay about JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure and queer masculinities, from Ruben Ferdinand’s Medium.
Jotted on the 12th of Oct 2021, at 02:15.

In other words, solutions should only be considered if they help us deliver on one of our target opportunities. If they don’t connect to the tree, they should be considered a distraction.

Jot 312 : Teresa Torres in Assessing Product Opportunities, from Why This Opportunity Solution Tree is Changing the Way Product Teams Work.
Jotted on the 19th of Sep 2021, at 11:00.

But the problem with not doing anything and just jumping right into the product is that it is generally a good idea to look before you leap. The challenge is to do this in a quick, lightweight, yet effective manner.

Jot 311 : Marty Cagan in Assessing Product Opportunities, from Silicon Valley Product Group.
Jotted on the 18th of Sep 2021, at 11:00.

When engineers build ad retargeting platforms, they build something that will continually funnel more content for the things you’ve indicated you’re interested in. On average, that’s the correct thing to do, Seyal said. But these systems don’t factor in when life has been interrupted.

Jotted on the 16th of Sep 2021, at 11:00.

The goal with this step is to exhaust every effort of identifying harms your product could cause. You aren’t worrying about how to prevent the harm yet—that comes in the next step.

Jot 309 : Eva PenzeyMoog in Design for Safety, An Excerpt, from A List Apart.
Jotted on the 15th of Sep 2021, at 11:00.

This is the impact of entertainment on real life. People assume that what they see in movies, tv shows, and social media is real. And they try to mimic it.

Jotted on the 14th of Sep 2021, at 11:40.

Everything is sales also means that everyone is trying to craft an image of who they are. The image helps them sell themselves to others. Some are more aggressive than others, but everyone plays the image game, even if it’s subconscious.

Jot 307 : Morgan Housel in Harder Than It Looks, Not As Fun as It Seems, from Collaborative Fund.
Jotted on the 10th of Aug 2021, at 23:25.

Disabled buttons don’t explain what’s wrong. They communicate that something is off, but very often it’s just not good enough. As a result, too often users are left wondering what’s actually missing, and consequently locked out entirely.

Jot 306 : Vitaly Friedman in Frustrating Design Patterns: Disabled Buttons, from Smashing Magazine.
Jotted on the 6th of Aug 2021, at 14:30.

Should they engage in the journalistic practice of building information around a strong central narrative, leading with a protagonist or an anecdote like the one that began this piece? Or should those hoping to accurately communicate science stick with a drier approach to persuasion, one that’s less likely to use the same rhetorical tricks as misinformation campaigns?

Jotted on the 13th of Jul 2021, at 14:00.

When Catherine the Great, the Empress of Russia, heard of Diderot’s financial troubles she offered to buy his library from him for £1000 GBP, which is approximately $50,000 USD in 2015 dollars. Suddenly, Diderot had money to spare.

Shortly after this lucky sale, Diderot acquired a new scarlet robe. That’s when everything went wrong.

Jotted on the 24th of Jun 2021, at 11:10.

If you want to make sure your application works as expected, is inclusive to as many people as possible, runs efficiently, and is well-designed, then testing needs to be a core part of your workflow, whether it’s automated or manual.

Jot 303 : Evgeny Klimenchenko in Front-End Testing is For Everyone , from CSS Tricks.
Jotted on the 7th of Jun 2021, at 12:25.

When I say em size is absolutely arbitrary and is not related to anything in the font at all, it’s not an exaggeration. It actually is not!

Jot 302 : Nikita Prokopov in Font size is useless; let’s fix it, from Nikita Prokopov’s Site.
Jotted on the 11th of May 2021, at 11:05.

Instead of thinking of design as a procedure, think of it as a toolbox. For different projects, you need different tools. If you’re asked to pound in a nail, grabbing a screwdriver isn’t ideal.

Jot 301 : Jordan Bowman in What No One Explains About the Design Process, from UX Tools.
Jotted on the 18th of Mar 2021, at 10:45.

I make a window bigger when I want to see more information, not the same information presented in a larger size. […] I have no data to back this up, but my intuition says that it’s the amount of available space, not the size of visible content, that people are playing with when they resize windows.

Jot 300 : Elise Hein in Why should type be fluid, anyway?, from UX Collective.
Jotted on the 15th of Mar 2021, at 11:00.

As for the lyrics, I tried to get all the languages I could find and wrote down interesting words in katakana. Then I changed these into words that Japanese people would find cool, so that people could not recognize individual words of any particular language. I had invented my own language.

Jot 299 : Jem Alexander, Tsutomu Kouno in TGS07: Interview with Loco Roco’s Tsutomu Kouno, from Engadget.
Jotted on the 28th of Feb 2021, at 17:00.

Spotify is focused on “capturing the share of time listeners spend elsewhere.” This is why Ek talks about “audio” generically, because it doesn’t matter specifically what those listeners are doing elsewhere, Ek just wants them doing it at Spotify instead.

Jot 298 : Damon Krukowski in A Tale Of Two Ecosystems: On Bandcamp, Spotify And The Wide-Open Future, from NPR: National Public Radio.
Jotted on the 22nd of Feb 2021, at 11:15.

Eradicating these impostor tactics is possible, but it would require tech companies to admit that the design of their systems aids and abets media manipulators.

Jot 297 : Joan Donovan in Trolling for Truth on Social Media, from Scientific American.
Jotted on the 17th of Feb 2021, at 23:15.

Even though your plan is liable to become immediately irrelevant, you still need to invest in writing it up. Why? There are two reasons. The first is to surface disagreements that may otherwise remain hidden. […] The second reason is that it provides a platform from which change can be leveraged.

Jot 296 : Graham Kenny in Strategic Plans Are Less Important than Strategic Planning, from Harvard Business Review.
Jotted on the 16th of Jan 2021, at 23:00.

Any time you break up a story based on functional roles (back-end/front-end, for example), you are diluting the story and creating a dependency management game.

Jot 295 : John Cutler in Where Do We Put The UX Tasks?, from John Cutler’s Medium.
Jotted on the 14th of Dec 2020, at 10:00.

If you’re tasked with writing microcopy, first learn as much as you can about the component you are writing for, particularly its constraints. When you finally sit down to write, don’t worry about getting it right the first time.

Jotted on the 26th of Nov 2020, at 10:30.

[…] think about reiterating significant changes in one-on-ones, group settings, via email, and in passing. Change is scary, but the more people hear about something, the less scary it tends to be.

Jot 293 : Karl Hughes in A Day in the Life of an Engineering Manager, from Karl Hughes’s Site.
Jotted on the 25th of Nov 2020, at 22:20.

It is certainly the mark of the internet: email, chat forums, social media and comment threads have all engendered a culture of multiple exclamation mark usage and abusage. It’s really interesting!!! The more you use them, the more you need to use them!!!!!! The more you need to use them, the more you increasingly make no sense!!!!!!!!!!!

Jot 292 : Philip Cowell in What overusing exclamation marks says about you, from BBC Culture.
Jotted on the 10th of Nov 2020, at 16:30.

(A.) The map could be incorrect without us realizing it; (B.) The map is, by necessity, a reduction of the actual thing, a process in which you lose certain important information; and (C.) A map needs interpretation, a process that can cause major errors.

Jot 291 : Shane Parrish in The Map Is Not the Territory, from Farnam Street.
Jotted on the 26th of Oct 2020, at 11:30.

We can’t be afraid of a tale if no one lives to tell it. More survivors can make something seem more dangerous rather than less dangerous because the volume of stories makes them more memorable.

Jot 290 : Shane Parrish in What Sharks Can Teach Us About Survivorship Bias, from Farnam Street.
Jotted on the 26th of Oct 2020, at 11:20.

Using a custom element from the directory often needs to be preceded by a ritual of npm flugelhorn, import clownshoes, build quux, all completely unapologetically because “here is my truckload of dependencies, yeah, what”. Many steps are even omitted, likely because they are “obvious”.

Jot 289 : Lea Verou in The failed promise of Web Components, from Lea Verou’s Site.
Jotted on the 20th of Oct 2020, at 12:30.

Ads are digital goods. What else are ads? Spiritual goods? They are the digital good. They are what is driving the digital economy in the first place! And, yes, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and so on do have direct transactions built into the apps. And, no, they do not pay any fees to Apple for these in-app transactions.

Jotted on the 3rd of Oct 2020, at 11:50.

An option is something you can do but don’t have to do. All our product ideas are exactly that: options we may exercise in some future cycle—or never.

Jot 287 : Ryan Singer in Options, Not Roadmaps, from Signal v. Noise.
Jotted on the 25th of Sep 2020, at 14:30.

[…] it’s concerning that the Hoover Institute will freely give you Richard Epstein’s infamous article downplaying the threat of coronavirus, but Isaac Chotiner’s interview demolishing Epstein requires a monthly subscription, meaning that the lie is more accessible than its refutation.

Jot 286 : Nathan J. Robinson in The Truth Is Paywalled But The Lies Are Free, from Current Affairs.
Jotted on the 11th of Sep 2020, at 11:05.

The result would be an asynchronous retrospective spread across multiple days in order for the team to collaboratively build off each others ideas and eventually come to an action plan without requiring anyone to wake up in the middle of the night to participate.

Jot 285 : Danny Varner in Distributed Retrospectives with Slack, from Danny Varner’s Site.
Jotted on the 8th of Sep 2020, at 16:00.

While we all hold an opinion on almost everything, how many of us do the work required to have an opinion?

Jot 284 : Shane Parrish in The Work Required to Have an Opinion, from Farnam Street.
Jotted on the 4th of Sep 2020, at 00:00.

Instead, consider a hundred years as a minimum threshold for long-term thinking. This is the current length of a long human lifespan, taking us beyond the ego boundary of our own mortality, so we begin to imagine futures that we can influence but not participate in ourselves.

Jot 283 : Roman Krznaric in Six Ways to Think Long-term: A Cognitive Toolkit for Good Ancestors, from The Long Now Foundation’s Blog.
Jotted on the 1st of Sep 2020, at 12:00.

Can stories reproduce? Well, yeah, not spontaneously, obviously—they tend to need people as vectors; we are the media in which they reproduce; we are their petri dishes—but they can, and they do.

Jot 282 : Neil Gaiman in How Stories Last, from The Long Now Foundation.
Jotted on the 20th of Aug 2020, at 00:30.