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  • 99 Problems But a Code Ain't One: How Imaginary Issues Derail Efficient Software Development

99 Problems But a Code Ain't One: How Imaginary Issues Derail Efficient Software Development

PLUS: Solopreneurship $135K/month

Good morning, Recappers!

Today we're serving a fresh brew of insights in the world of product management, entrepreneurship, startups, tech, and venture capital. Grab your cup of coffee and let's dive in!

Here’s what we got for you today:

Read time: 5 minutes


Just read a fascinating piece about how 'imaginary problems' are messing up our software. Here's the deal:

Say you're a podcast host and you need a simple, efficient website for hosting your content and selling merch. Your primary requirements? Fast loading, crash-resistant, user-friendly, with integrated ad services and a link to your Zazzle shop. But when you get the product, it's a nightmare. It's slow, crashes often, and half the features don't work as intended. However, to the developers' eyes, they've created a masterpiece packed with 'exciting' features like a high-tech recommendation system, real-time transcript generators, and an entirely new streaming protocol.

The main issue here is a communication breakdown, with your simple needs getting lost in translation as they're passed down from sales guys to project managers, and then to the developers. What was once a straightforward project turns into a series of 'imaginary problems' they feel are more compelling to solve. And the real kicker? This isn't unique to developers. In many organizations, from management to HR, folks are creating and solving these imaginary problems rather than focusing on the real issues at hand. This usually happens because people want to make their jobs more interesting or illustrate their importance. A prime example mentioned is online banking. Despite being a straightforward process, many developers are constantly trying to 'reinvent the wheel' instead of refining and perfecting the existing system.

The bottom line? A big chunk of the tech world is overrun by the creation and solving of imaginary problems. They've lost sight of their main job: building functional, efficient solutions that meet the users' needs. Talk about losing the plot!


Justin Welsh, a one-man-show pocketing a cool $135K a month! Not a typo, my friend.

Formerly an exec at a hot startup, he swan-dived into a burnout abyss and came out clutching the golden ticket to intentional living. No more panic attacks, just peace and profits. His monthly bread and butter? An email subscription offering plug-and-play templates, side dishes of course sales, coaching, newsletter ads, and affiliate stuff. His workday dances around his rhythm, not the ticking clock.

Solo-preneurship ain't all sunshine, though. Justin admits to missing the office banter. But hey, he wouldn't swap his lunch dates with the wife or the freedom to pivot on a dime for anything. His secret sauce? Being present, taking action, and embracing the 'winging it' ethos we all secretly subscribe to. Despite his dough-making machine, Justin's not eyeing the next Everest. He's about shrinking his world to amplify the joy - less work, same pay, zero babysitting a team.

Justin's tale is less about skyscrapers, more about building a cozy cabin aligned with his happiness blueprint.

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“The customers change. Every new cohort of new customers is different. The new customers you have in the early stages of your product are typically more willing and forgiving customers. And you might nail the onboarding process for them, and then suddenly realize that, "Wait, it's not being as effective anymore. And the reason is because now you're engaging more of those pragmatist customers, those later stage customers who are initially more skeptical, less forgiving, less willing to deal with your friction. And so, you have to reimagine the onboarding process all over again.”

Scott Belsky, Adobe CPO