Jots is a collection of bits from inspiring pieces.

So, people tend to underestimate two crucial things about content: how much content they need, and how long content takes to write.

Jot 211 : Sophie Dennis in Content Production Planning, from 24 ways.
Jotted on the 21st of Jan 2019, at 12:40.

The starting point is realizing that working long hours makes you a much less productive employee, to the point that your total output will actually decrease […].

Jotted on the 21st of Jan 2019, at 11:05.

If there is a should, there is a way to get out of it. It is an excuse for missing commitment. Real change starts with the burden that I am indeed responsible for the change. If I only believe that I should do it, is not important enough for me. If it would be I would do it. If it would be important for all of us, we would all do it together.

Jot 209 : Tobias Tom in Should we?, from Tobias Tom’s Site.
Jotted on the 21st of Jan 2019, at 11:00.

[…] we look at best practices, analyze the competition, and then, often, we take a copycat approach to building our product. We think that if it’s working for them, it’s got to work for us too. The problem? It frequently doesn’t—at least not the way we think it will.

Jot 208 : Jesse Weaver in Emulation Is Not a Product Strategy, from Medium.
Jotted on the 14th of Jan 2019, at 22:25.

I love how David Allen says that you can do anything you want but you can’t do everything you want. And that is an extremely liberating mindset.

Jot 207 : Shawn Blanc in Regret vs Celebration, from Shawn Blanc’s Site.
Jotted on the 14th of Jan 2019, at 22:10.

Every programmer occasionally, when nobody’s home, turns off the lights, pours a glass of scotch, puts on some light German electronica, and opens up a file on their computer. It’s a different file for every programmer. Sometimes they wrote it, sometimes they found it and knew they had to save it. They read over the lines, and weep at their beauty, then the tears turn bitter as they remember the rest of the files and the inevitable collapse of all that is good and true in the world.

Jot 206 : Peter Welch in Programming Sucks, from Still Drinking.
Jotted on the 7th of Jan 2019, at 11:05.

Metrics are a horrible way to understand customer intent. Great way: customer interviews.

But: we bias our people, when we ask them. Even if we try not to.

Reason: we believe our own bullshit.

Jot 205 : Andreas Klinger in Metrics for early stage startups, from SlideShare.
Jotted on the 4th of Jan 2019, at 15:50.

Being the one poor soul remote in a co-located team is hard… you have “5x” the process needs… People will continuously forget to involve you in discussions or decisions, you will be the person not knowing what is happening why—you will suffer.

Jot 204 : Andreas Klinger in Managing Remote Teams—A Crash Course, from Andreas Klinger’s Site.
Jotted on the 3rd of Jan 2019, at 15:50.

Like many modern workers, I find that only a small percentage of my job is now actually doing my job. The rest is performing a million acts of unpaid micro-labor that can easily add up to a full-time job in itself. Tweeting and sharing and schmoozing and blogging.

Jot 203 : Ruth Whippman in Everything Is for Sale Now. Even Us., from The New York Times.
Jotted on the 2nd of Jan 2019, at 10:55.

When companies just build it, just ship it, iterate on it, and build and ship again, this means that customers are seeing a variety of versions. They are seeing the work in progress and watching the sausage being made. This is often a frustrating and confusing experience requiring customers to keep relearning a system that’s evolving.

Jotted on the 27th of Dec 2018, at 11:15.

One of the most common questions I get from people is why I use [some older technique or tool] over [some newer technique or tool] […]. The technologies, tools, and techniques don’t matter. The answer is always the same.

Because it does what I need and I already know how to use it.

Jot 201 : Chris Ferdinandi in [Go Makes Things] This and that, from [Go Makes Things].
Jotted on the 19th of Dec 2018, at 01:40.

Don’t commit to features. Features are solutions to problems, but they’re seldom the only solution. Instead, commit to solving the underlying problem; if the “not-quite-perfect” result (fewer new features, or none at all) solves the problem, you’ve still succeeded.

Jot 200 : Matthew Ström in We’ll Fix It Later, from Matthew Ström’s Site.
Jotted on the 14th of Dec 2018, at 12:00.

I Google how to do things—sometimes really basic things—every single day.

Jot 199 : Chris Ferdinandi in Prototypes and production , from Go Make Things.
Jotted on the 12th of Dec 2018, at 11:20.

When a prototype is successful, works great, and tests well, there’s a real temptation to use the prototype code as the basis for the final product. Don’t do this! […] Build prototypes to test ideas, designs, interactions, and interfaces …and then throw the code away.

Jot 198 : Jeremy Keith in Prototypes and production , from adaction.
Jotted on the 12th of Dec 2018, at 11:05.

Perhaps if accessibility was considered at the very start of the project, the process of creating, editing and moving blocks would be a lot simpler and thus, not a cognitive overload. The problem now is that accessibility is a fix rather than a core feature.

Jotted on the 11th of Dec 2018, at 11:00.

[…] He and Steve Jobs would often disagree about things, but the way he eventually won Steve over was through dogged persistence in bringing up the topics he cared, not through saying things loudly or dramatically.

Jotted on the 9th of Dec 2018, at 15:30.

Analogical thinking lends itself to incremental product iterations rather than groundbreaking advancements because it promotes a habit of following the footsteps of history.

Jot 195 : Teresa Man in Mental models in product design, from HeyDesigner.
Jotted on the 29th of Nov 2018, at 11:15.

So, I nearly didn’t apply to become a sonar operator since I failed the proxy requirement “has perfect score on generic hearing test”. However, the real requirement was “can learn to classify boats by their sound under water”, and it turns out I was pretty good at that!

Jotted on the 28th of Nov 2018, at 19:15.

A good rule of thumb is: if a problem seems simple to you, you probably don’t fully understand it. You certainly might, but you probably don’t, and therefore, you should treat your critiques as investigations or explorations and not conclusions.

Jot 193 : Mike Davidson in How To Give Helpful Product Design Feedback, from Mike Industries.
Jotted on the 30th of Oct 2018, at 11:15.

Tournaments are a playground for people who practice for growth […]. Once I made that realization, I finally started making continued growth my goal, rather than winning.

Jot 192 : Core-A Gaming in Analysis: Getting Better at Fighting Games, from YouTube.
Jotted on the 29th of Oct 2018, at 19:30.

Trust is not a renewable resource.

Jot 191 : Matthew Green in Why I’m done with Chrome, from A Few Thoughts on Cryptographic Engineering.
Jotted on the 26th of Oct 2018, at 11:05.

The café and the space are great, but something’s missing—something you can barely remember now…. Oh, right! It’s you. You are missing. This amazing space that everyone in the community holds so dear is for everyone but you.

Jotted on the 20th of Oct 2018, at 20:25.

There are certainly many caveats to the above idea of setting a goal around a single metric. A notable one is that you may need to have a counter-metric to help balance short term and long-term trade-offs.

Jot 189 : Julie Zhuo in How do you set metrics?, from Medium.
Jotted on the 18th of Oct 2018, at 11:25.

One of the biggest culprits of unclear user flow is basing the user experience on your company’s understanding of the problem. Companies have their own internal terminology and organizational structures to address these problems internally. Users likely won’t understand any of this and shouldn’t require a glossary of industry terms or internal structures in order to use your website or app.

Jot 188 : Brandon Gregory in Designing for Cognitive Differences, from A List Apart.
Jotted on the 18th of Oct 2018, at 11:20.

Unnecessary motion […] are nothing but a barrier for these users. If the motion is actually accomplishing something, you have to ask if what you’re drawing attention to is worth sacrificing other content on the page in return.

Jot 187 : Brandon Gregory in Designing for Cognitive Differences, from A List Apart.
Jotted on the 18th of Oct 2018, at 11:20.

[…] because essentially, it is a character saying: “Whatever you do, don’t do that”. It tells the audience to associate a certain value with a certain action: crossing the streams = bad.

Jot 186 : Michael Tucker in How Ghostbusters Became Ghostbusters, from Lessons from the Screenplay on YouTube.
Jotted on the 17th of Oct 2018, at 11:00.

That means that complexity in design can lead to complexity in code.

Jot 185 : Jonathan Snook in The Codification of Design, from Jonathan Snook’s Site.
Jotted on the 10th of Oct 2018, at 10:20.

One of the first things you learn as a UX designer is to not let ego drive your decisions regarding design; one of the hardest thing to do as a UX designer is to pass on that knowledge to your client.

Jotted on the 8th of Oct 2018, at 12:45.

When you travel for extended periods of time, you lose your social circle, your sense of belonging, and the everyday routines that keep you grounded and healthy.

You also quickly discover that meeting new people is easy, but making new friends—real friends—is hard, especially if you’re starting from zero.

Jot 183 : Amir Salihefendic in What Most Remote Companies Don’t Tell You About Remote Work, from Doist’s Medium.
Jotted on the 8th of Oct 2018, at 12:10.

If you succeed, if you ship your code, if you release your product, will you be happy? Will all your time and effort be worth it?

And you realize the answer is “no”. And suddenly your work is worthless, your goals are meaningless. You just can’t force yourself to work on something that doesn’t matter.

Jot 182 : Itamar Turner-Trauring in Avoiding burnout: lessons learned from a 19th century philosopher, from Code Without Rules.
Jotted on the 8th of Oct 2018, at 12:10.

The grid example is of two-dimensional layout. Layout in rows and columns at the same time. The Flexbox example is one-dimensional layout.

Jot 181 : Rachel Andrew in Use Cases For Flexbox, from Designer News.
Jotted on the 5th of Oct 2018, at 12:10.

The point is that qualitative and quantitative research serve different purposes. Qualitative is mostly useful for creating hypotheses, while quantitative is great for verifying your hypotheses and solutions.

Jot 180 : Pol Kuijken in How effective are modern UX design methods?, from Designer News.
Jotted on the 4th of Oct 2018, at 12:10.

The earliest decisions of the digital product design process are, at best, based on guesswork. Until a product is in the hands of actual users, everything is theoretical.

Jot 179 : Alexandru Giuseppe Ispas in Ditch MVPs, Adopt Minimum Viable Prototypes (MVPr), from Toptal.
Jotted on the 2nd of Oct 2018, at 11:45.

You have needs and your family has needs and the bills have to be paid. There’s dignity in taking care of those things, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have any creative aspect to your life whatsoever. Set your alarm a half hour early every day and work on that book or that new business idea.

Jot 178 : Elizabeth Gilbert, Dana Rousmaniere in No One Is Too Busy to Be Creative, from Harward Business Review.
Jotted on the 12th of Sep 2018, at 11:50.

I think people perceive the process of creation from the outside to be instantaneous and free and wonderful. In fact, it is work.

Jot 177 : Casey O’Donnel in Developer’s Dilemma, p. 40, The MIT Press, 2014.
Jotted on the 5th of Sep 2018, at 17:20.

To paint a picture, Jobs-to-be-Done, or JTBD for short, follows the idea that customers purchase products or services to get jobs done, not for the products or services themselves.

Jot 176 : Tomasz Tunguz in Jobs-to-be-Done, take two, from Zenkit Blog.
Jotted on the 19th of Aug 2018, at 17:00.

I can’t recall an example of groundbreaking work coming from an environment of stress, anxiety, and fear of failure.

Jot 175 : Julie Zhuo in Good Pressure, Bad Pressure, from Medium.
Jotted on the 16th of Aug 2018, at 18:10.

If you’re here to help others, be patient and welcoming.

Jot 174 : Stack Overflow’s Team in Code of Conduct, from Stack Overflow.
Jotted on the 16th of Aug 2018, at 18:05.

[…] Nintendo said, “pay us a royalty not on sales, but on manufacturing.” Nintendo said, “we will decide what games we’ll allow you to publish,” ostensibly to prevent another crash like that of 1983, but in reality to quash any innovation but their own. Iwata-san said he has the heart of the gamer, and my question is what poor bastard’s chest did he carve it from?

Jot 173 : Greg Costikyan in GDC rant heard ’round the world, from GameSpot.
Jotted on the 16th of Aug 2018, at 17:55.

The main thing I want to know is, Larry: you do realize […] that when you keep our husbands and wives and children in the office for ninety hours a week, sending them home exhausted and numb and frustrated with their lives, it’s not just them you’re hurting, but everyone around them, everyone who loves them?

Jot 172 : ea_spouse in EA: The Human Story, from ea_spouse’s LiveJournal.
Jotted on the 16th of Aug 2018, at 17:35.

[…] The designers are the pegboard though. They set up where everything has a space and how it is going to work together.

Jot 171 : Casey O’Donnel in Developer’s Dilemma, p. 17, The MIT Press, 2014.
Jotted on the 16th of Aug 2018, at 17:20.

There is this huge library, this huge vocabulary of actions built up over the years that people you know don’t really do, but which happened so often in TV and movies that they’re familiar enough to an audience that they become, well, passable for human motivations.

Jot 170 : The Nerdwriter in The Epidemic of Passable Movies, from The Nerdwriter’s YouTube Channel.
Jotted on the 13th of Aug 2018, at 01:00.

Not making it clear from the start that I have a process, and clients taking control of the design process […].

Jotted on the 9th of Aug 2018, at 11:50.

As the landslide of bullshit surges down the mountain, people will increasingly gravitate toward genuinely useful, well-crafted products, services, and experiences that respect them and their time. So we as creators have a decision to make: do we want to be part of the 90% of noise out there, or do we want to be part of the 10% of signal?

Jot 168 : Brad Frost in Death to Bullshit, from Death to Bullshit.
Jotted on the 8th of Aug 2018, at 11:50.

[…] Conversely, don’t link to outside sites that are not credible. Your site becomes less credible by association.

Jot 167 : Stanford Web Credibility Research in Stanford Guidelines for Web Credibility, from Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab.
Jotted on the 6th of Aug 2018, at 12:00.

With all that at play, how can any tool give us a truly accurate picture of unused CSS, to the point that actually removing that CSS isn’t just as dangerous as leaving it alone?

Jot 166 : Chris Coyier in Unused, from CSS-Tricks.
Jotted on the 31st of Jul 2018, at 18:55.

[…] Then management decided that it would “look better” if we went to circular desks where several of us would be sitting with our backs to the hallway, so everyone walking past would be looking at our screen as they passed. It took a minor rebellion that lasted several weeks before management backed down from that horrendous idea.

Jotted on the 31st of Jul 2018, at 18:50.

[…] if you’re investing time and budget to make a prototype and put it in front of people, you’ll want to do some preliminary research first. Only then will you have an informed hypothesis worth testing.

Jotted on the 31st of Jul 2018, at 12:35.