All good things...

In 2013, an intrepid group gathered and began building a dream piece of software -- a 3D map based real estate software platform for commercial real estate research.  Meeting daily to scrum and bi-weekly in person, we dreamed of a future where it was easy to research and investigate the potential for any property with all the data in one place. This dream became and by January 2015 we had our first freemium release.  For most of 2015, we explored freemium sales to independent real estate brokers and established ourselves in the market place. Ultimately, realizing that the number of commercial real estate brokers and agents might not be sufficient to fund our enterprise alone we began work on our premium release.  By January 2016, had launched a new premium release.  We held onto a loyal fanbase and attempted to find a foothold selling to existing commercial real estate enterprises. The biggest challenge was quickly evident, selling into the commercial real estate ma

Why scrum? The "how to" of development teams in sync and in tune

As software development agile evolve, daily scrums are the pulse that create great projects. Small daily concurrent communications are a powerful tool for keeping teams in sync. We see this in the ever present use of tools like Slack. But in its most powerful form, daily stand-ups or "scrums" are concise communications following a specific formula. What did I work on yesterday (or this morning)?  What am I working on now?  What will I work on next? Any blockers? At this moment, in stand-ups occurring around the world, developers are alluding to the revelations they have found as they explore their working domains. Because stand-ups are daily, developers are able to concurrently inform teams about their explorations and also their inventive solutions.  As they work, developers are identifying key problems, inventing new solutions, refactoring both ideas and code, and helping each other, until the overall goal is met. The synchronization of the standup, helps to keep the devel

Design, build and invent your way to a startup, Part 1: The Invention Process

Design, build and invent your way to a startup Part 1: The Invention Process The process of designing and building software is an invention process. Like inventors, software designers are striving to solve a problem of consequence in the world. Whether driven by personal passion or economic savvy, s oftware designers may be entrepreneurs, digital designers, or developers. The best entrepreneurial teams include members who can wear one or more of these hats.   Along the way a disciplined software designer researches and refines the problem. We often call this process market research, but that is understating what really needs to happen. The software designer needs to know not only "what the client will buy", but what will drive them to come back to partake in the software again and again. And this is not a question that can be deeply answered in a single focus group. Yes, a focus group is a good starting point, but the problem definition must combine an intimate knowledge o