Lab Notes

How we think and what we’re working on.

The Rise of No-Code App Development

April 12, 2019
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My inbox has been flooded with news about startups offering ways to create apps with no-code. Most of them aren’t much more than API connected spreadsheets on steroids, and that’s not an insult. Some are much more than that, offering complex data integrations and sophisticated…

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Avoiding Analysis Paralysis

April 12, 2019
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Have you ever fallen victim to analysis paralysis? I bet you have. Not sure what that is? Here’s an example: You’re on the condiments isle of your local grocer looking at 30 different jars of jelly. Some say organic on the label, while others have…

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Using Hypotheses to Make Better Decisions at Scale

April 5, 2019
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We talk about assumptions and hypotheses a lot when we’re developing product strategy and making decisions on what to build. Whether you’re creating something new or rethinking an existing product, you have to make some bold choices about what include or omit, what to spend…

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Using Exchange Theory to Guide Pricing Decisions

April 5, 2019
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How do you decide whether something is valuable to you? What’s the right price for your product or service? How much is too much? Or too little? Unless you’re in a commodity market where you can use your competition’s prices as a guide (like domain…

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The Difference Between UI and UX

March 29, 2019
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We’re talking about this again? Okay. It’s simple. UI–or User Interface–is like the steering wheel and dashboard in a car. It’s the stuff you use to interact with and control a system. Turn the wheel and the car turns. Move a handle and the blinker…

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An Apple Event Without New Hardware?

March 29, 2019
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You don’t have to go far to find someone talking about Apple’s latest announcements. There are a lot of opinions out there about what this announcement means and how Apple is attempting to transform itself into a media company. Those are knee-jerk reactions. It’s unlikely they’re…

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Design is not that Important

March 22, 2019
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John Maeda, former MIT professor and renown designer, sent shivers down the spines of designers everywhere in his recent Design in Tech Report when he made the bold statement “…in reality, design is not that important.” For years designers have been lobbying for, and getting, more authority…

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Human-centered Design isn’t just for digital businesses

March 22, 2019
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Executives in legacy businesses, particularly those who aren’t digital-first, often ask me how human-centered design can help them when they aren’t shipping digital products. Look no further than the retail fashion chain Zara.  With over 2200 retail locations you might imagine the logistics and supply…

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When Business Goals ≠ User Goals

March 15, 2019
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Twelve years ago at a SXSW afterparty Jeremy Keith, a fellow designer, first told me about “Twitter”. It was just a fledgling text message service at the time. At his encouragement, at 1:28 PM on March 10th 2007 I sent a text message to 40404…

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