A Startup Perspective to Service and Software Development
Danny Lin Managing Director, PlurkWorkshop on Advanced and Usable Software (WAUS)Dec 14th, 2012 @ Taipei
Danny Lin• Software Developer, Cartoon Company• Movie Screenplay Writer• Product Manager @ various scale of software companies• Columnist @ various magazines for over a decade• Operate a BBS (FidoNet) for more than 8 years• Head of Communication Products, Yahoo• Lead Product Manager, Google• COO, Online Game Company• Managing Director, Plurk
Founded by 3 co-founders in Toronto, Canada in 2008. Officially launched to public on June 2008. Anonymous (virtual identity), horizontal timeline, emoticons, karma/badges We wanna make it funny and easy. It can be your meme It can be discussions It can be chitchat It’s social. 100% using open source software Our team members are also open source contributors We have open source projects: http://opensource.plurk.com
What is a Startup?startup is a company or temporary organizationdesigned to search for a repeatable and scalablebusiness model. my 2 cents: Very limited resources Everyone is multitasking. Scalable. Flexible.
Almost real-time. Tons of requests inEarthquake!!! queue. User experience.
All your metrics are growing in a positive way, and you’re happy with it. A exponential problem.timeline data size Life is good, But hard. number of users
How many money do you have to support the growth? I don’t have so much money. I need to feed my team for the next 12 months. I don’t wanna kill myself or the service. Do you still want your users to feel happy? Off course. I truly do. I hope they feel no big difference if a change is needed.
Spend $$$$ Buy new servers NO. Don’t do that. You’re not Google or Yahoo.
Re-architecture? Rewrite your code to get better performance, handling more requests? GOOD. Not perfect. And it takes time. New changes might screw up everything.
Look at how users are using your service! female (59%) , male (41%) Heavy (10%), Medium (85%) Low (5%) 85% users posted more than 8 new messages, 20 responses, read approx. 30 messages per session. CONCLUSION: They care more about timely responses than getting a huge number of updates.
Don’t wanna spend too much $$$$. Not buying new servers. Make minimal code changes.Users feel no big difference. Limited size of updates list. Satisfy 80% of users’ need.
Limited size of updates = 80+% of user need A linear solution to an exponential problem.timeline data size Life is better, And cool. number of users
control your breath I might quit. well-equipped You need a race “strategy” You need support It takes time to practice and It’s a long journey preparePhoto courtesy of Nordea Riga Marathon, under Creative Commons License.
It’s a quick run. Need to quick react, and be really solid. just do it, no perfect “plan”. just less than 1 mins, and it’s done. Unload unnecessary concerns. A short race at top speed. Better cycle to fix things.Photo courtesy of abby chicken photography, under Creative Commons License.
Grassroots effort - Users are your customers At Plurk, every employee is also a customer care staff. Users are your friends Directly and immediately Users are your collaborator responsive to the needs and Users are the best beta testers wishes of the people involved. What do they get in return? In the end, it’s about sensation. A badge, an official thank, being appeared on your page, something they feel cool, or honored, would be seen as a reward.
TranslatorsContent Moderators You getlanguages translatedfrom the community. 36 the help from users by Plurk users worldwide. TheyThey love to contribute. understand what the community need. They feel honored, in return, get a Plurk translator badge They are real people, not robot. shown on their profile.
Quick React. Fix critical ones first. (what users cares the most) Unload unnecessary features, learn from users and data. Release tiny features frequently, less than 3 at a time. Do something funny and sometimes crazy instead of following the rule. Don’t follow every move your competitor did.
Think Out of the Box No one define rules for you. You rule it yourself. Explore new needs from users and data. Trust your new idea. Do not hesitate to try. Take it easy. Make it simple. Enjoy the complaints. Don’t try to release 100 features at a time. Simplify development processes. Simply your product designs.