Archives For Matt’s Grand Ideas

I often get asked by teens and parents for ideas for jobs. I always answer, “you should start a business.” Usually I’ll include suggestions based on what I know about the person who is looking for work. In my opinion, there is no better time in life to start a business than as a teen.

Why? You may ask? Well, here are a few reasons:

  1. No one is as risk tolerant as a teen
  2. Few people are as undervalued
  3. Learning to fail (aka trial and error) is one of the most important lessons you can learn and it’s better to learn it when you are young and the stakes are low
  4. You can make way more than minimum wage and you’ll more likely be doing work you enjoy

I could prattle off a few more reasons, but let’s dig into these. Continue Reading…

One of my coworkers did a presentation in our team meeting on a topic he’s passionate about, usability testing. It is also something I’m fascinated by as well.

If you’ve ever done user testing you’ve definitely observed all or most of these issues. I’m very familiar with them but until now didn’t know the terms to describe them.

So here are my notes from the short presentation by Simon Whatley on 9 Usability Testing Biases (which was adapted from Jeff Sauro’s 9 Biases in Usability Testing): Continue Reading…

I should know better than to read the news right before bed. I know I’m not going to be able to sleep tonight without mentioning this. Daring Fireball author John Gruber posted a link to an article on MSNBC.com that studied 36 years of polling data and came to the conclusion that conservatives’ confidence in science as an institution has steadily declined in America. He’s right, it is a shame, but it would have helped if the “news” article wasn’t actually written as a PR stunt to sell a book by Chris Mooney. Continue Reading…

I just want to remind everyone in the USA that this is a special time in our political process. Election season is beginning soon, and furthermore, there is an incumbent in office. Therefore the opposing party’s #1 goal is to show that the existing president is doing a poor job. It is their only chance.

What this means is that every little mistake and unpopular decision, and believe me, everyone in authority makes mistakes and/or unpopular decisions, will be magnified as much as possible. Continue Reading…

Some people, maybe you, consider the Bible to be a source of good advice. However, there are also plenty of examples of bad decision-making. For the class I teach we covered a few good examples and how we can learn from them.

In each of the cases below, the underlying premise is that God is the source of all wisdom and distancing ourselves from His council increases the chances of big mistakes. As a bonus, I’m including the notes from the follow-up class where we covered a few good examples to compliment the bad. Continue Reading…

Today Apple is supposed to make a big announcement. I don’t know yet what that will be but many people think it’s related to a Tablet PC. Apple’s success in the iPhone and App Store business has reminded me of one of the web’s biggest mistakes and we seem on track to repeat it. I’m stunned because it really hasn’t been that long. How can we be doing it again so soon?

Continue Reading...