Issue 3

Slow and bloated software is all around us, and it’s really frustrating to use. I highly recommend an essay by Craig Mod on the value of fast software as a differentiator.

Reading that got me thinking about some of my own experiences with software over the year. Software is most valuable when it can get out of the way and let you do your work.

Quick sketches

I’m a cheerleader for quick sketches when designing software. The above example is a real sketch I scribbled when I had 10 minutes between two meetings and needed to share an idea for how we could solve a problem.

This sketch helped our team bring clarity to a challenging discussion, and saved dozens of development hours in prototyping an unnecessary solution.

Quick notes

If I have an idea I’ll fire up textEdit. It’s fast, and the lack of editing capabilities forces me to just take notes and not think.

Note: Using this command in Terminal, I’m able to open textedit without any save window blocking the writing. This, along with using a keyboard shortcut (command+space) to open spotlight, typing “text”, and pressing enter, means I can go from an idea to typing in two seconds (I timed it).

Quick screen recordings

If I have something I want to record something on my screen, Tapes for Mac has been my favorite app for several years. I can start recording in about 3-5 seconds, instantly create a url of my video, and share that url anywhere.

Screen captures

Cloudup and droplr are my favorite. I can take a screenshot within two seconds and share the url within another two seconds. I can even annotate!