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Growing Pains: Fixing the Publishing Industry

About the Talk

July 10, 2010 10:40 AM

The Cleaners, Ace Hotel Portland, 403 SW 10th Portland, OR

The Cleaners, Ace Hotel Portland, 403 SW 10th Portland, OR

Six months ago, Wetpaint set out on a mission to fix the broken publishing industry. As an engineering team, our goal was to build a large-scale publishing platform utilizing aggregate content and analytics-driven behavior via open source frameworks. As a prototype and a quick proof of concept, we initially built a simple blog platform without tests or any code reviews (gasp). After collecting data on what worked and what didn't, we built version 2 from the ground-up, without a database, on completely different software. And it was a success. While we broke a lot of what are typically considered best software development practices, by moving quickly and designing the prototype as a throw-away, we were able to establish the core set of features as well as identify those important in the future. This pivot point is vital to any project. Our experiment proved that while iterative development is important, getting over the prototype hump is equally so.

We’ll discuss the mental freedom that comes with abandoning the junk that comes out of the first stages of a product by prototyping first, then rebuilding. Along the way we will share some of the fun anecdotes that came with launching our new product. And of course we’ll talk about the technology. The sweet technology that helped us achieve so much in so little time.

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