design

toothbrush2

Designers on Design

Objectified, a documentary created by the producers of Helvetica, is a trip through various aspects of design activity and they types of objects we produce. Each designer’s personality, history, and perspective leads to their approach and observations about design practice. Dieter Rams is filmed at home, Jony Ive in an Apple manufacturing facility, Marc Newsom in his studio,

product mgmt

User Path

Creating an expertise path for your users

Badass: Making Users Awesome by Kathy Sierra  Once you’ve identified the broader, compelling context within which your product lives, map the expertise path that users must take within that context. There will be a “suck zone” between novices and experts that you will need motivate and help your users navigate. The second half of this book deals with

innovation

other-side-of-innovation

The other side of innovation

Innovation is hard and ideas only get you up one side of the mountain. You still have to go over the other side to reach your goal by executing well. Vijay Govindarajan‘s four books cover different aspects of successful innovation that begins in established organizations (versus startups). In The Other Side of Innovation: Solving the

business

chickenegg

Designing a platform business

Platform Scale by Sangeet Paul Choudary Successful platform design requires a focus on interactions, a clear set of incentives for producers and effective filters for consumers.  Starting a platform business means solving the chicken-or-the-egg problem. All platforms grapple with jump-starting their communities and ensuring long-term value creation. Carefully designing and monitoring interactions to ensure benefit for both sides,

differentiation

Being Different

There are three patterns brands can follow to escape the gravity of hyper-mature categories. Reverse brands, breakaways, and hostile brands can all energize brand loyalty by breaking with the herd. True differentiation is a mindset and a commitment to engage with consumers as real people. In the second half of Different: Escaping the Competitive Herd Youngme Moon provides

chickenegg

Designing a platform business

Platform Scale by Sangeet Paul Choudary Successful platform design requires a focus on interactions, a clear set of incentives for producers and effective filters for consumers.  Starting a platform business means solving the chicken-or-the-egg problem. All platforms grapple with jump-starting their communities and ensuring long-term value creation. Carefully designing and monitoring interactions to ensure benefit for both sides,

business model

Platform Business

The business of interactions

Platform Scale by Sangeet Paul Choudary Business models are evolving from linear product/consumer flows to providing frameworks and environments for joint value creation. The key to successful platform design is focus on the interactions between platform participants. The maker movement, APIs, network effects, and expanded marketplaces are altering the landscape of business. Uber and Airbnb are changing

startup

Zero-to-One

Finding Secrets

Zero to One by Peter Thiel To build a great company, one that solves a new problem, take a contrarian approach to commonly held business wisdom. Seek out secrets to which others are blind. Build a monopoly; direct competition will lead to conformity and erode all profits. Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build

pricing

the price is right

Finding the right price

Pricing with Confidence lists ten rules for pricing strategy success. The first two, replacing the discounting habit with healthy arrogance about your value and understanding the value you provide to your customers, underpin the other eight. Since the first step to finding a solution to any problem is defining the problem, Holden and Burton begin with

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