This post isn’t about a fight between the two. Though that can certainly happen. It’s for describing the difference between the two. [Read more…]
To Go Anywhere, At Least Four Things Are Useful
Any of these four may actually be challenging to acquire.
There’s probably as many ways to do product roadmapping and define feature priorities as there are product managers. Most any skilled product manager with any degree of experience is familiar with both Waterfall and Agile methods, at least in concept. Not everyone has necessarily been formerly trained in either or both. Most often, a true pro will at least seek out self-learning resources to really understand their chosen method. They may choose to diverge from full on formal Work Breakdown Structures, (in the case of Waterful), or may not be using formerly defined Scrum methods, (in the case of Agile).
Regardless of method, in most smaller development efforts some basic ideas have to start somewhere. Whether this is with a defined Product Manager role, a product oriented CEO, the Marketing Department or wherever, you’re still at the very, very early idea stage. Long before an idea even gets to any kind of Sprint planning meeting or a line item in a Project Plan, there’s probably a high level gut check first. In smaller start-up organizations, a lot of times these are first generated in simple spreadsheets; be they Excel or increasingly something shared such as a Google Docs spreadsheet. Of course, there’s been an explosion of tools from the basic idea level through the full development life cycle, but nevertheless, there’s some very basic, simple judgments that are useful first.
You’ve all seen the pages. The endless pages. As you scroll down, the page keeps growing and growing and growing longer and longer; forever. Or at least until you run out of products or the user either finds what they want or becomes bored. We see this becoming more common on Home Pages for a handful of intro pages, but most especially on product listing pages whether they’re in grid or list view.
Why? And is this always a good thing?
The why seems fairly clear. Over time we’ve learned from usability, (both user observations and analytics), that users are OK with scrolling. Sure, the old thoughts still apply regarding having critical initial content “above the fold,” but for certain content types it seems perfectly appropriate to scroll along. (Just for the quick history lesson: “above the fold” originally came from the idea of folding newspapers to read what’s most important at the moment. For web pages or mobile, it’s more simply what a user would see first in the initial top of the viewport without scrolling.)
This method has obviously become a common design pattern. As of this writing, this little web site itself uses similar methods on the Home Page. And with Angular.js seemingly the code flavor of the year, scrolling has become even more common in the other case; which is most often for long lists of things, especially products.
Yes, it’s a long title for an Excel Spreadsheet used to create utm tracking scheme variables for Google Analytics. I’m just doing a tiny bit of keyword stuffing here so the page gets found and people can use the spreadsheet I made if they like.
The Poor Site’s Tracking Method!
Curation is now In
I’m sorry. I’m just having a bad buzzword reaction. So it’ll take a whole post to get it off of me. Didn’t the idea of a curator used to have a feel kind of like a musty museum? When I hear the word, I just flashback right to a 5th grade trip to the Museum of Natural History. Not any more! It’s a cool word now. At least in the realm of nouveau information architects and buzzword compliant Internet marketing folks. The rise of the word Curation reminds me of back when marketing folks started pronouncing the word ‘niche’ as “neeesh” instead of “nitch.” It helped identify the truly clued in vs. the riff-raff of Madison Avenue. I’d love to see a graph of word frequency for Curation over the past 5 or 10 years. That would be interesting. [Read more…]