Coming back from a rut

Today was a mixed bag for me: the mornings exam felt weird, then I felt pretty empty at home until I started building Fields’ marketing banners. Then again in the evening, I was hit with the same empty feeling, until I managed to put out the new YouTube video and this post.

Twice in a day

So I realised I had been hit by the same force twice in one day. It was all about not being sure what to do, and what has the most value for my future. It is a dangerous hole as overthinking your actions compound and you only continue to feel worse. But today I managed to get out of it. Twice. And key for that? Start doing. Sounds simple, is not. But actually, once you start, it is simple, it’s just overcoming the rut that really challenges you.

So whenever you feel unsure what to do, count to 1, 2, 3 and on third you decide to get on with one task and compound from there. Once you have started, rest is a lot easier. As you do stuff you automatically start to find the most valuable things and drop the non-essentials away.

The Takeaway

Overly thinking and planning slows you down way more than starting to just do and adjusting along the way.

Feeling great about what you currently do

Couple of past weeks have been a bit more unstructured (No daily coding) than normal, so I have constantly felt like I was doing the wrong thing and spending too much time doing them. Overall, not being happy what I was doing.

Let’s take yesterday evening as an example. I was meant to hit football trainings at five and after that finish implementing a feature to my app followed by a new youtube video and medium post. But the feature implementation ended up taking me 4 hours and I couldn’t do those posts anymore (Need sleep right) so I was starting to feel bad about not getting the things done.

How I attacked this

Usually this really pushes me down, gets me unmotivated and I start scrolling through my phone, losing focus and scrambling all the plans. This time though I decided to put my phone away and sit there till the implementation was done and suppress all the thoughts about not using my time as I intended. It worked great. I ended up working for two straight hours, getting the implementation done. So key to this? Focus. Giving 100% to the thing you are doing, pushing all the distractions away. Overall, having a really clear plan for what you should be doing.

What happens if you don’t have a plan is that after you get one job done, it’s hard to move to the next thing efficiently, leaving this “in between” sloppy time where you are most probably scrolling through your phone.

The Takeaway

Have a clear daily goal based on your big goal. Make the transition from one task to another clean and quick. When you are devoted to a task, give it your 100%.

Making Your First YouTube Video

Real short for today. And for good reason. I just published my first video on YouTube, the Startup Day-series 1. And I had so much fun making it. Even though I had never used a video editor before, I quickly picked up and made a pretty decent video! It’s all about showing the daily life of a tech startup (so on the same lines as all the other posts from Fields on other Social Networks).

First day was all about making the search functionality of Fields better, doing quite a bit of schoolwork and learning video editing. Good times!🤙

Startup Day One

Going to make these on a daily basis to document the journey to the top of the tech world! Join the squad and leave your thoughts

Till tomorrow, peace, -OT

How to enjoy your work more – Startup Day 2

I had a weird feeling for the first half of today. I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to doing. For the past six months it has been 24/7 work of building my app ready. But now my app is ready. For android at least. What should I do?

The Problem

I actually knew what I should be doing. Spreading the word about my app. But since the iOS version is not launched yet I couldn’t go 100% in on that. So I had decided and planned to use this time as learning new things and spreading to new social platforms. But this is a real challenge and can feel very hard to do, start from 0 engagement. So I was feeling lost, not knowing where to start.

How I attacked it

In the moment as I realised I was getting overwhelmed by all this stuff, I took the dead-simple approach. Get one thing done at the time and don’t overthink it. So I created my Facebook posts and with the confidence of that being done I moved to Instagram and Twitter. And soon I had it all in my hands.

All this “big unclear mess” ended up just being my mindset about the problem. And by changing that and getting started, I solved through the problems in a breeze!

The Short Takeaway

  • Don’t overthink your tasks and goals, just do them one at a time and it all will be clear
  • Enjoy the feeling of progressing and getting stuff done, don’t just wait for the end goal
  • Have goals set that you feel empowered about

Little shorter and more compact story for startup day 2. I’ll get back to you tomorrow using the new version of Fields that launched today! -OT, Fields

What it costs (theoretically) to run your app – The Startup Day 1

I’m stingy with my money. I want to use it wisely. That’s why creating my own app Fields I made sure to get everything out of the money I spent. Here’s how it goes.

What costs Fields has
The only thing that costs money in Fields is the database, Firebase service called Cloud Firestore. Over there I save all the data users generate: Users, Fields, Teams, Events and Friends. Saving data here is butter smooth and building the app by just simply fetching data from the database every time users need it, would make things 1000x more simple. But this service comes with a price, ~0.10$ per 100k fetches. This really is an awesome pricing, but scaling the app up and these fetches really start compounding.

Fields is currently in the very beginning state of an app, launched on Google Play couple of days back and coming to iOS in couple of weeks, so I don’t have any real world usage data, but here’s how much I calculated the database to cost and how big profit margins I (theoretically) expect and also how exactly I make the app more database-efficient.

Saving database usage
The main fetch-saving method is saving the data to users device and updating it only when required. If user for example opens the field search screen, there is a list of all the nearest fields. Let’s say there’s 20 fields, so every time user opens the screen, 20 fetches are used. Not optimal. What I do instead is save the 20 near fields to users device, and when opening the search screen, 0 fetches are required as everything is coming from the users device. For free.

Implementing this strategy to multiple places across my 30-screen app, I calculated that during users normal day of use the app required around 50 fetches. Divide the free usage quota of Cloud Firestore (90 000 fetches) with 50 and rounding down for more realistic picture (Things usually take more than you calculate) I can expect to sustain ~1000 users daily for free. Without the optimisation this number would have been tenfold smaller.

Again this is all my no-real-world-data assumptions, but I’m eager to see how these play out. I offer a monthly subscription for 3$, after Google/Apple taking their 30% I get 2.1$. Expecting that 1% of Fields’ users have this subscription, I would generate 21$/month without any costs.

After going to the paid side (0.10$ for 100k fetches) i can expect to sustain 2000 daily users for a daily sum of 0.10$, or for 2.58$/month. From 2000 users calculating that 20 users have a subscription, it would generate 42$/month. So 16:1 profit rates. Good in theory, more exciting to see it in real world. Thats why I don’t give too much value for these numbers, but what I can see is that this can be profitable when done right.

Time to get back to Fields, we see tomorrow, — OT, Fields