week 4 as a startup developer
16 February 2012

Things are still moving very quickly at work. I’m starting to think I might someday get used to the pace, but it won’t be this week, or next week. We just launched Chirpify today, a service that turns Twitter into an e-commerce platform. It’s all about leveraging user-bases, shifting the paradigm, all that stuff. At its simplest functionality it will connect your Twitter and PayPal accounts to enable you to use Twitter to do things like buy and sell items, fundraise and donate, or pay people directly. Pretty powerful stuff.

I’m realizing more and more how much I love my job. I’ve said before that I like the fast pace but I feel this deserves emphasis. It’s not just about how quickly my company expects me to develop, it’s also about how quickly I find myself developing whether I want to or not. Some people have mentioned this thing called The Groove (or sometimes The Zone, or being Wired In) and I’ve definitely been there about twice a day for the past couple weeks. The first time usually occurs mid-morning, when I’m just settling in for the day, and ends when I realize I’m losing steam because my ticket is a little large in scope for me to feel productive, or because it’s lunchtime. The second wave hits later in the afternoon and carries me through closing time or beer-o-clock, whichever comes first (though the two usually coincide).
I imagine it feels a lot like surfing does. Most of the time you’re paddling around trying to figure out what the hell, but occasionally you hit a wave and start going places, during which you’re conflicted between “holy crap I’m surfing!” and “just chill man, I do this all the time, what’s the big deal?”.

There is a downside to this though. One that I didn’t even see coming (though that’s probably for lack of trying to think of downsides). I find myself without a hobby in the evenings. When I was in school my hobby was to write websites. Now that that’s my day job I don’t feel as motivated to work on my personal web projects, which is a shame since I had a couple good ideas floating around. The other night I made up a batch of beer with my brother, and this hobby may resurface soon but I feel as though my approach to brewing and my processes are not where I want them. I’ll have to spend a lot of time thinking about production scale and more “business model” type stuff. I was happy brewing in Pittsburgh as an experiment, a way to hang out with my friends. But if I want to continue I have to take it further. And if, as I dream, I will someday make a career out of brewing I cannot ignore these feelings.

I just watched a very interesting video on principles, and it definitely started a couple wheels turning. Even if you’re not a developer I strongly encourage you to check it out.

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