Under the Radar

Under the Radar 61: Back to Work


00:00:00   welcome to under the radar a show about

00:00:01   independent iOS app development I'm

00:00:03   Marco Arment and I'm David Smith under

00:00:06   the radar is never longer than 30

00:00:07   minutes so let's get started

00:00:09   happy new year everybody happy new year

00:00:12   we decided to talk about what it's like

00:00:15   to get back into work after a break like

00:00:17   the New Year's break you know just the

00:00:19   kind of getting your brain back into

00:00:21   that space into like the pace of work

00:00:23   and then once you finally get there how

00:00:27   do you decide even what to tackle

00:00:29   because chances are you know after a big

00:00:31   vacation or after the holiday break

00:00:33   holidays are especially bad at it but

00:00:35   but after these things we tend to have a

00:00:37   lot of stuff piled up a lot of things

00:00:39   that we need to address work that

00:00:41   accumulated while we were gone things

00:00:43   that we should probably get going on and

00:00:45   so there's a bit of a tricky question

00:00:47   but how do you prioritize those things

00:00:49   and then once you get going with working

00:00:51   like how do you like how do you get

00:00:53   going how do you begin work and then

00:00:57   after that I think we want to talk a

00:00:59   little bit about how do we plan kind of

00:01:02   the first few months of the year you

00:01:04   know that in the case of a New Year's

00:01:06   break like this you know we have there's

00:01:09   a lot of things about the corporate

00:01:10   world that that go by years things like

00:01:13   you know ad budgets PR and everything

00:01:15   else we talked before about seasonality

00:01:16   and so the first three months of the

00:01:18   year is an interesting time to plan for

00:01:21   to get things done to consider you know

00:01:23   what to work on whether to release

00:01:25   things and everything else we're gonna

00:01:27   get into all of that David are you back

00:01:30   to work yet yes only just I think I've

00:01:34   essentially did I mean and it's kind of

00:01:37   a strange end of the year because I was

00:01:39   launching a new app which I usually

00:01:41   don't like to do that time of year but

00:01:44   for this particular time like I'd hoped

00:01:46   originally to launch workouts plus plus

00:01:48   in probably November or something but it

00:01:51   just didn't end up working out like if

00:01:52   the project took longer than I'd

00:01:54   originally expected and so it was you

00:01:56   know launched I think it was December

00:01:57   21st or something which is not not

00:02:00   advisable and be especially because you

00:02:02   kind of go through the process of

00:02:04   launching something you get it out and

00:02:06   then all of a sudden you have a lot of

00:02:09   you know delightful but just sort of

00:02:12   distracting family

00:02:13   and things such that you know I really

00:02:16   put myself so most like I just took this

00:02:18   took this app through it or threw it

00:02:20   over a wall into the world and they just

00:02:21   like ran away for a couple days which is

00:02:25   not exactly what you want you know I did

00:02:27   my best like I checked into the support

00:02:28   thing every now and then and you know I

00:02:30   hadn't there are a few little out sir a

00:02:32   few little initial bug fixes that you

00:02:34   inevitably have I was able to get those

00:02:36   put together and they're you know

00:02:38   they're currently waiting interview but

00:02:40   then you're just gonna fall off the map

00:02:41   in a in a good way and like I think it's

00:02:43   probably also good to start up this

00:02:44   discussion off by saying that like

00:02:46   taking breaks and having periods of time

00:02:49   when you're not working is desirable is

00:02:52   a good thing like it's a bit of a

00:02:54   problem that we're kind of looking at it

00:02:56   from the perspective now of how do you

00:02:58   deal with that when you come back to

00:02:59   work but there's certainly an advantage

00:03:02   to having that that separation to take

00:03:04   some time away both in terms of your

00:03:07   just mental health and overall

00:03:08   well-being and also probably just to

00:03:11   build a little bit of perspective to me

00:03:12   to come back to things and be like what

00:03:14   do I actually want to work on what was I

00:03:16   doing before that I was just doing out

00:03:18   of inertia rather than out of desire but

00:03:21   for me yeah now I'm back working again

00:03:24   and kind of it's especially weird for me

00:03:26   right now cuz I'm coming back to edit

00:03:28   after essentially skewing all work on my

00:03:32   side project all my other apps except

00:03:33   for workouts plus plus for the last like

00:03:35   2 or 3 months so I gotten all those apps

00:03:38   into a pretty good state roughly with

00:03:42   the launch of iOS 10 like I'd done you

00:03:44   nice like I did a big update and then a

00:03:46   bug-fix update for most of my apps

00:03:48   around Iowa's ten they were all in a

00:03:50   good place and I go off and work on

00:03:52   workouts plus plus for a couple of

00:03:53   months and now I'm in a place where I

00:03:55   have to look at all my work and say like

00:03:59   what do I actually want to work on next

00:04:01   what should I work on next and I do find

00:04:04   it really awkward and like tricky when

00:04:07   you end up this kind of it's the paradox

00:04:09   of choice I think it's called or just

00:04:11   being overwhelmed more simply where you

00:04:14   look at all of the universe of things

00:04:16   that you could do and have to having to

00:04:18   try and understand what the right thing

00:04:21   to do and especially when you have to

00:04:24   deal with these weird tensions between

00:04:25   like what do I think is the

00:04:27   best thing financially for my business

00:04:29   for me to do well the thing what I enjoy

00:04:32   most working on a thing do I think my

00:04:34   customers are most expecting what you

00:04:38   know where should I go in terms of what

00:04:40   what project I think I would learn the

00:04:41   most from like there's lots of different

00:04:43   reasons and I like my first day back

00:04:45   which I think goes on I guess the day

00:04:48   after New Year's Day whatever that is

00:04:50   January 2nd January 3rd looking at I

00:04:53   just sat down and have like opened up

00:04:56   the omnia focus for the first time in a

00:04:57   long time because when I'm gonna period

00:05:00   when I'm working on an app like

00:05:01   warehouse plus like been a pretty

00:05:02   focused manner if I could Afeni if I

00:05:04   come across any things in my other apps

00:05:06   or I get feature requests or things that

00:05:08   sound good I just kind of throw them all

00:05:09   into there which i think is you know a

00:05:11   sane system to just kind of rather than

00:05:13   thinking about them and trying to manage

00:05:14   them as you go just postpone that until

00:05:17   you until it's time that meant that you

00:05:20   know this week I've been having to sit

00:05:21   down and be like you know filter through

00:05:23   just page after page of ideas of

00:05:26   thoughts of things and in general I

00:05:30   think my approach to this kind of thing

00:05:31   is I just tend to latch on to one or two

00:05:36   things that I think I can reasonably

00:05:38   make progress with and in some ways this

00:05:41   kind of makes me think of like I used to

00:05:43   run track in high school and it sort of

00:05:45   looks like the warm-up lap it's the

00:05:46   before you actually can start working

00:05:48   properly you have to go out and do a

00:05:52   little bit of work but not really hard

00:05:54   work just a little bit of something to

00:05:55   get you back into this into the flow of

00:05:57   things and so like today I've been

00:05:59   working on a little you know it's like a

00:06:00   minor feature and pedometer plus plus

00:06:02   that I think is useful and good and

00:06:05   isn't a particularly high stress or high

00:06:07   risk feature but it's something that I

00:06:09   think would be useful and I can kind of

00:06:10   go through the process of working on

00:06:12   something again get you know sort of get

00:06:15   back in the flow and then once I finish

00:06:17   this little once I finished my warm-up

00:06:19   lap I expect to then dive into me some

00:06:21   of the bigger features and some of the

00:06:22   bigger tasks that I think are going to

00:06:25   take more of my mental energy take more

00:06:28   of my focus and you the kind of things

00:06:31   that I don't really want to do Cole's

00:06:32   after you know spending a week or two

00:06:34   with very little work one of the

00:06:37   challenges I face in getting warmed up

00:06:40   you know as you put the warm-up lap was

00:06:42   great one of the big challenges I face

00:06:44   is that when you've been away from a

00:06:47   project for a while whether that's just

00:06:49   like you know a five-day weekend and

00:06:51   we're yury your mind totally somewhere

00:06:53   else or whether it's you know something

00:06:55   something like a big break where you're

00:06:57   working on something else for a little

00:06:58   while and you got a like sideline

00:06:59   something else one of the big challenges

00:07:01   I have is knowing where to even start

00:07:04   because this is the kind of problem

00:07:06   where like you know people people like

00:07:08   us who are indie developers who don't

00:07:10   really work with other people we're

00:07:12   basically the the job of everything

00:07:14   falls on us it's very easy to get lazy

00:07:17   with your organizational system about

00:07:19   things like your your to-do list your

00:07:22   your you know tracking of what you have

00:07:24   to do next and and also like

00:07:27   documentation of things like your code

00:07:29   and your app and what these things do

00:07:31   what these different parts do it's very

00:07:34   easy to fall into the trap of well it's

00:07:36   all in my head as I'm working on it and

00:07:38   I could just remember these things so I

00:07:40   don't need to write this down I don't

00:07:41   need to document this code I don't need

00:07:44   to to manage a to-do list because I know

00:07:46   what I have to do you know and I am

00:07:49   guilty of this worse than anybody else

00:07:51   like I hardly ever write anything down I

00:07:53   keep only a very basic to-do list in

00:07:57   task paper of like you know things I

00:07:59   need I want to do for this version and

00:08:01   like like the entire like overcast 3.0

00:08:03   to-do list is something like twenty

00:08:05   lines long it's not this is not like a

00:08:07   very granular thing to do move to the

00:08:10   time and you know towards the end I'll

00:08:13   have like a bug punch list basically

00:08:14   that's a little bit more granular but

00:08:16   otherwise you know most of the time I'm

00:08:18   working on something I don't have

00:08:19   anything like that it's just kind of all

00:08:20   in my head so when I'm facing the

00:08:22   problem my biggest challenge is just

00:08:23   like I know what I have to do I have to

00:08:26   keep things more documented I have to

00:08:28   keep my - duze more organized but I

00:08:30   don't usually do it or or I do it to a

00:08:33   very half hardier degree and it's it's

00:08:35   more of a challenge of personal

00:08:36   discipline than anything else I'm just

00:08:38   like you know when you're when you're

00:08:40   solo it's it's so easy to to not do

00:08:44   things the way that you have to like it

00:08:45   when you work in a job with other people

00:08:48   you kind of always have to be writing

00:08:50   things down and coordinating to dues and

00:08:52   having a road map because it's kind of

00:08:54   possible to work with the people without

00:08:55   having some degree of that and they're

00:08:57   also usually like a well working place

00:09:00   should usually be at least somewhat

00:09:02   prepared for somebody leaving or

00:09:04   quitting or getting fired at any time

00:09:05   and some and other people being able to

00:09:08   pick up their work where they left off

00:09:09   and when you're when you're a solo

00:09:11   developer like like us it's so easy to

00:09:13   not have those kind of safeguards

00:09:15   because you think you don't need them

00:09:16   but when whenever you have to take any

00:09:18   kind of a break or juggle multiple

00:09:19   projects you really do need to think

00:09:21   about those exact same strategies yeah I

00:09:24   mean and I actually was bit by exactly

00:09:26   that the last day or so where in this

00:09:30   work that I've been doing on pedometer

00:09:31   plus applies so I haven't worked on the

00:09:33   app for probably since October I think

00:09:35   so like two or three months and I sit

00:09:37   down and I start using it I noticed

00:09:39   something weird going on in my data

00:09:41   system where a certainly iOS API call

00:09:44   wasn't returning the values that I

00:09:46   expected it to and as I started looking

00:09:48   into this and this is really weird like

00:09:50   it's a very one of these weird edge case

00:09:52   bugs where if I give a certain value to

00:09:55   healthkit API I get no data back but if

00:09:59   I do a lots you know sort of other

00:10:00   things it works fine which is really

00:10:02   weird bug like man this is strange and I

00:10:04   spent about a half a day working on this

00:10:06   bug seeing if I can come you know find a

00:10:07   workaround if I can avoid it in the end

00:10:10   I found like I found no solution and I

00:10:13   was like alright well I should probably

00:10:14   use for file a file at radar about this

00:10:16   just to make sure that Apple knows that

00:10:18   this is a bug and I go open up bug

00:10:20   report at AFRICOM you know go into my

00:10:24   little account and one of the the top

00:10:26   radars in there was me reporting this

00:10:28   exact bug in August of last year which I

00:10:33   was reporting it against like beta 2 or

00:10:35   beta 3 in iOS 10 clearly I had

00:10:39   completely forgotten that I'd done this

00:10:43   exact process before but this is a great

00:10:46   example though of this like I just

00:10:47   wasted half a day trying to track this

00:10:49   thing down that a few months ago I did

00:10:51   exactly the same thing and I suppose

00:10:54   it's it is such a tricky thing though to

00:10:56   want to document in great detail all the

00:11:00   varies these kinds of things because it

00:11:02   is so easy to rely on your own memory

00:11:04   and like I think in many ways I find

00:11:06   really like one of the

00:11:07   core skills of development is memory

00:11:11   wear like I am at my most effective

00:11:14   programming the more of an application I

00:11:18   can sort of hold in my head at once

00:11:20   where I know where all the features are

00:11:22   I know how they all interconnect and

00:11:24   having that kind of like loading that at

00:11:26   loading all that information into my

00:11:27   brain is like where it gets really

00:11:28   efficient and helpful where I don't I'm

00:11:30   not like sick constantly you know

00:11:32   command effing all over the whole

00:11:34   project trying to find the various

00:11:36   things like I just know where they are

00:11:37   but if you take a few months off and you

00:11:41   come back to a project you can find

00:11:42   yourself in these situations where like

00:11:45   you just forgot that you've solved this

00:11:47   problem or you've gone through the all

00:11:48   of the work to determine that no

00:11:49   solution exists and like in this case

00:11:52   like what I really should have done when

00:11:54   I could solve this the first time I ran

00:11:55   into this problem the first time is I

00:11:57   should have just had a little comment in

00:11:59   my code that said you know this this API

00:12:02   fails in this way you know radar filed

00:12:04   here's the radar number you know for my

00:12:06   own reference just so that you know it's

00:12:08   like when I could this morning when I

00:12:10   ran into this I could thank passed south

00:12:12   you know pest Dave for going back there

00:12:14   reporting this short-circuiting this

00:12:16   whole thing and knowing that like okay

00:12:18   yeah it's a bug is filed Apple hasn't

00:12:20   fix it yet but you know I can move on

00:12:22   and don't need to worry about it or at

00:12:25   least I already did worried about it but

00:12:27   that disciplined about that is I think

00:12:29   really hard because yeah it doesn't feel

00:12:32   like I think it's really difficult to

00:12:35   judge how far into the future you're

00:12:38   going to need to know where you are and

00:12:40   on the flip side obviously you could

00:12:42   take the other extreme and get really

00:12:44   carried away and be documenting

00:12:46   everything and all of your everything is

00:12:48   like super detailed and you end up in

00:12:49   like a proper like a formal like

00:12:51   software model where you have like the

00:12:53   requirements and you have the

00:12:54   development and you have the testing

00:12:55   documents and like you can go way

00:12:57   overblown as well but there is

00:13:00   definitely something that experiences

00:13:02   like I had today definitely reinforces

00:13:04   for me where like I need to be a little

00:13:05   bit more and honestly it's probably the

00:13:07   kind of thing where just being like 10%

00:13:10   more descriptive in my gig commits in my

00:13:13   comments would have a disproportionate

00:13:17   impact in my ability to come back to

00:13:19   work

00:13:19   and to feel that I understand what's

00:13:22   going on is it's almost like a like a

00:13:25   hierarchy of caches you know it's like a

00:13:27   terminology it's like you know we all

00:13:29   know that you know as you said like when

00:13:31   when you have a whole bunch of the

00:13:32   program in your head you are way more

00:13:34   effective that's what we refer to when

00:13:37   we're talking about being in the zone

00:13:38   and as programmers like it's basically

00:13:40   having a whole bunch of the program in

00:13:42   your head which is like the highest

00:13:43   level cache like the l1 cache or the

00:13:46   registers and then as as things like you

00:13:49   know get evicted from either time or or

00:13:52   crowdedness hey you have to start you

00:13:56   know relying on other on other things to

00:13:58   to keep the stuff in your head or to or

00:14:01   to refer to other resources to get it

00:14:04   back in your head and you know a quick

00:14:07   little Doc comment in the code or good

00:14:10   documentation of like the architecture

00:14:12   of the code is way more effective at

00:14:15   like when you when you have a cache miss

00:14:17   in your brain and you have to go fetch

00:14:18   it from this external resource that's

00:14:20   way faster than like having to repeat

00:14:23   eight hours of coding only to make the

00:14:26   same mistakes over and over again only

00:14:28   to discover the same eventual truth at

00:14:30   the end that you could have discovered

00:14:31   with what you know a quick little

00:14:33   comment on in the code and it's in too

00:14:35   many ways it reminds me of a some advice

00:14:37   I remember hearing once about when

00:14:39   you're like writing a little - duze for

00:14:41   yourself like if you're capturing those

00:14:43   kinds of thoughts of the importance of

00:14:44   capturing complete thoughts not things

00:14:48   that just would just make sense at the

00:14:50   time you know so like if I record a

00:14:52   little to do that says you know it's

00:14:54   like table view height adjustment like

00:14:57   at them at that moment I may know

00:14:59   exactly what that means and it sounds

00:15:02   completely silly to behive a show you

00:15:03   feel like fully expanded out like table

00:15:06   view height adjustment in stat screen of

00:15:08   pedometer plus plus like that if I don't

00:15:12   include all those other nouns I'm gonna

00:15:14   come back to that later and be like what

00:15:16   does this mean like it becomes just

00:15:17   complete gibberish and garbage even

00:15:19   though at the time it feels like

00:15:21   completely unnecessary because I know I

00:15:23   understand entirely the context and so

00:15:26   the thing in the same way it's like when

00:15:27   you're ready to do is it's important and

00:15:29   then use in something similarly with you

00:15:31   in your

00:15:32   in your code or your internal

00:15:33   documentation and I mean obviously we

00:15:35   have the benefit though I will say of we

00:15:37   just have to write things that make

00:15:38   sense to us that we know ourselves

00:15:41   better it's not like we're trying to

00:15:43   write something that anybody with any

00:15:46   level of sophistication or understanding

00:15:48   would be of the project or of

00:15:49   programming in general we'll be able to

00:15:51   pick up like we know ourselves we know

00:15:52   what you know like what short hands and

00:15:55   what terms and things we can just use

00:15:57   but I think it's very important to have

00:16:00   that kind of perspective of like how can

00:16:01   I be kind to my future self in my

00:16:04   current self rather than just assuming

00:16:07   that my future self will like kind of

00:16:08   work it out oh yeah because like

00:16:10   especially like you know as as the

00:16:12   amount of time extends you know if

00:16:15   you're writing something for your future

00:16:16   self of four days from now that's very

00:16:18   different from your future self of four

00:16:20   months from now or four years from now

00:16:22   and as like I think it very quickly gets

00:16:26   to a point that the this is this is not

00:16:28   like a slow progression I think even

00:16:30   after a few weeks or a few months of not

00:16:32   working on something you approach it

00:16:35   almost as if a stranger would approach

00:16:37   it like you're your future self is way

00:16:41   less familiar with what you're working

00:16:43   on right now then your present self

00:16:45   might realize and if you could if you

00:16:47   can kind of get that into your head and

00:16:48   internalize that and start remembering

00:16:50   that as you're doing this kind of

00:16:52   documentation or prep work or or

00:16:55   anything like that

00:16:56   you can really save your future self a

00:16:59   lot of hassle because your future self

00:17:00   is going to look at your current code

00:17:02   and projects almost as if a stranger

00:17:05   we're looking at them anyway or sponsor

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00:19:02   checkout thank you so much to Linode for

00:19:05   supporting this show so I think it's

00:19:07   also probably fair and now that we've

00:19:08   kind of come back into our work to

00:19:11   discuss and work through a little bit of

00:19:13   what makes sense to plan out for the

00:19:16   first part of the year because maybe we

00:19:18   talked about it before with like iOS

00:19:19   development has a schedule and a cadence

00:19:23   kind of dictated to it's somewhat

00:19:25   externally we're you know starting

00:19:27   around June 1st or so you know we get

00:19:30   into the new stuff cycle we're from June

00:19:33   until about September we'll have new iOS

00:19:35   betas new devices new what Evers that

00:19:38   are going to be announced the fall is

00:19:41   the kind of fall out from that period

00:19:43   where we start to you know all these

00:19:47   things actually go out into the wild and

00:19:48   they get to see how that you get used in

00:19:50   practice and then we kind of get into

00:19:52   this next phase which i think is in some

00:19:54   ways my most enjoyable part of this

00:19:57   go where you know from roughly now

00:19:59   you've gotten through Christmas and New

00:20:01   Year's so from now until June we have

00:20:04   about six months to just work on

00:20:07   whatever we want in a lot of ways and I

00:20:09   tend to like this time of year for

00:20:12   polishing doing a lot of like point one

00:20:15   point two releases working on a lot of

00:20:18   things that you know didn't make sense

00:20:21   to try and squeeze in with a major iOS

00:20:25   update the things like that where I can

00:20:27   sit down and I can spend you know it's

00:20:29   you know a significant amount of time

00:20:31   without quite the same time pressure as

00:20:34   I would if I was doing it over the

00:20:35   summer or in the fall you know where now

00:20:37   I can kind of if I take stupid ends up

00:20:39   taking an extra couple weeks it's fine

00:20:41   there's no there's no external

00:20:42   constraints or things that I'm trying to

00:20:44   fight around and so I tend to look at it

00:20:47   and that's kind of like my planning

00:20:48   right now for all of my apps you know

00:20:50   it's like I century I'm just gonna be

00:20:51   sitting there making out these kind of

00:20:53   big point releases for all my apps do

00:20:56   you know I have taken these kind of nice

00:20:57   features that I think are value-adds

00:21:00   and honestly even a lot of what ends up

00:21:02   happening with me is I as I have so many

00:21:05   apps but they're all kind of related you

00:21:07   know all my plus plus apps are health

00:21:09   and fitness

00:21:10   oriented and so what I've started what

00:21:12   I've started to do too is I'll end up

00:21:14   doing something in one of them that I

00:21:15   feel like will make sense to kind of

00:21:18   incorporate back into the other ones and

00:21:20   so I expect to be doing a lot of that

00:21:22   this sure if I guess what we're gonna

00:21:24   call this period like in the new year

00:21:26   / - through the spring where I can go

00:21:29   through and kind of just get everything

00:21:31   in a nice solid robust kind of like

00:21:34   making these features a little bit

00:21:36   deeper like maybe that's right I could

00:21:38   way to think of it - like in this summer

00:21:39   and in the summer and fall I tend to

00:21:42   think of it as kind of widening the apps

00:21:44   making them incorporate these new

00:21:46   features incorporating these new

00:21:48   platforms whatever makes sense and then

00:21:50   you know sort of the first half of the

00:21:52   year is more about taking those things

00:21:54   and kind of digging them deeper and

00:21:55   adding at all those little touches that

00:21:58   make the app that richer that you didn't

00:22:01   quite I wasn't quite a didn't quite have

00:22:03   time to do in the first place yeah

00:22:06   because you know the fall is you know we

00:22:07   spend so much of the fall just and the

00:22:10   summer even just like

00:22:11   adapting new things or adopting new

00:22:13   things and keeping up with all that

00:22:16   bells new stuff and you know from from

00:22:18   January through June apples pretty quiet

00:22:19   usually and so yeah we it's it's a great

00:22:22   time you know as you said like to work

00:22:24   on you know quality to broaden your

00:22:27   feature base I would say it's a great

00:22:29   time to address things like user

00:22:31   requests like feature feature requests

00:22:33   from people they're very common like

00:22:34   because you don't have anything else for

00:22:36   the most part competing with this time

00:22:38   most of the rest of the year you have

00:22:40   like external pressure of things you

00:22:43   need to be keeping up with or doing or

00:22:44   planning for right now

00:22:45   this part of the year is basically like

00:22:47   work on the core make the app better

00:22:50   make your stuff better try you know if

00:22:52   you want to start experimenting with

00:22:54   with brand new features or start

00:22:57   planning what your next big release

00:22:58   might be this is a good time for that of

00:23:01   course I'm following on this advice

00:23:02   myself I'm actually of course preparing

00:23:04   to launch my 3.0 now but that's not

00:23:06   because it was planned this way it's

00:23:07   because it took too long was a long shit

00:23:09   in the fall and I just didn't but but

00:23:12   you know this is and honestly this is

00:23:15   not a bad time to release a big point

00:23:16   your a big point o update because

00:23:19   there's not a lot else going on and

00:23:22   there there is some concern there that

00:23:24   you know you need to be aware of things

00:23:26   like the PR seasons and calendar and

00:23:29   advertising and everything everything

00:23:31   like that one of the good things is that

00:23:33   well a good thing if you're if you're

00:23:37   looking to buy ads or you know things

00:23:40   like a store search ads you know or ads

00:23:42   on people's podcasts or ads on websites

00:23:43   or whatever else Facebook ads usually ad

00:23:46   inventory is is pretty low in January

00:23:50   and February and this is a terrible

00:23:52   thing if you make your money via ads as

00:23:55   you taught me and you were right that

00:23:57   basically your ad revenue tends to drop

00:24:00   pretty sharply in you know in the first

00:24:02   few days of January compared to the year

00:24:04   before and you know compared to the week

00:24:06   before even like in December and and

00:24:09   sometimes it takes like big corporate ad

00:24:11   budgets a little while to get organized

00:24:13   and start buying things for the new year

00:24:15   and so if you are an indie making money

00:24:18   via ads you know I think it's important

00:24:20   not to freak out too much about that

00:24:21   because it's temporary and if you are

00:24:23   buying ads

00:24:24   this is kind of an awesome time to buy

00:24:26   hats if you're indie because you don't

00:24:28   have to work on the annual corporate

00:24:29   budget and get approval from a bunch of

00:24:30   in departments you can just buy the ads

00:24:32   right now and so you actually might be

00:24:34   able to get a pretty pretty good deal on

00:24:36   an inventory where things are a little

00:24:38   bit cheaper than they normally would be

00:24:39   so this is that's also worth considering

00:24:41   but for the most part I think you mainly

00:24:43   have to have to be aware of like you

00:24:46   know not releasing things too close to a

00:24:49   holiday or a slow time or a slow weekend

00:24:52   but I think we're mostly past that now

00:24:53   you know as we talk about those it's a

00:24:55   January 4th probably coming out on the

00:24:57   5th so you know we're past New Year's

00:24:59   Day and and like the day or two after I

00:25:02   think pretty much any time now

00:25:04   from now forward is ok to release things

00:25:05   without too much trouble yeah and it's

00:25:08   just a good like in some ways I it's a

00:25:11   good is just a good time to get back to

00:25:14   work like in a good way like I always

00:25:16   find that the the fall just feels just

00:25:19   so disjointed for me like it's really

00:25:23   hard to really get stuck into things

00:25:25   because there's just so many things

00:25:26   going on yes certainly both

00:25:28   professionally as well as personally

00:25:30   that I kind of like the thought of like

00:25:33   nothing's really gonna happen for the

00:25:36   next couple of months and so getting

00:25:38   into a normal rhythm getting into about

00:25:40   in you know kind of starting some new

00:25:42   habits not necessarily like you know

00:25:43   like have New Year's resolutions

00:25:44   perspective or just by benefit of there

00:25:47   not being things that are going to be

00:25:48   messing with your schedule you know it's

00:25:51   kind of a nice time to be able to to

00:25:53   look at that and to hopefully like I

00:25:55   really enjoyed this process of sitting

00:25:58   down and eating like what do I want to

00:26:00   work on you know what what is actually

00:26:01   going to be an interesting thing to

00:26:04   build when I'm listing or what about

00:26:05   would I enjoy in that and so it's a good

00:26:08   time to be thoughtful about that and to

00:26:10   kind of think that you know what is

00:26:11   something that's maybe like the level of

00:26:14   difficulty might be a little higher you

00:26:16   know this is a good time to maybe to try

00:26:18   and fail it's true you try something

00:26:20   that's a bit risky that might work out

00:26:22   like it's a better time to do that now

00:26:24   then you know later in the year or when

00:26:28   things are a bit more high pressure you

00:26:30   know like though I've I think we're

00:26:32   three Christmases ago back when the

00:26:34   Christmas bump was just drew

00:26:37   like I remember never late isn't the

00:26:39   AppStore I would you know the Christmas

00:26:41   stay and the day after Christmas were

00:26:43   something like 8% 10% of my yearly

00:26:46   revenue like he was huge and dramatic oh

00:26:48   yeah

00:26:49   thankfully that's kind of settled down a

00:26:50   bit like I was as cool as it was to make

00:26:52   that much money like was it bit

00:26:53   terrifying because I remember a couple

00:26:55   years ago I had a bug in my main app

00:26:59   that I released like I think about five

00:27:03   six days before Christmas I hate it and

00:27:06   it turned out the bug like the app works

00:27:09   completely fine except for all of the

00:27:11   in-app purchase didn't only have

00:27:13   purchases didn't work it worked fine so

00:27:16   I couldn't make any money exactly so

00:27:18   that was a bit terrifying and I you know

00:27:20   did the book it was one of these like

00:27:22   trivial things there's a bit of debug

00:27:24   logic that I had to flip over and then

00:27:26   you know resubmitted to Apple did the

00:27:28   expedited request and in the end it was

00:27:31   fine like the app was you know working

00:27:33   in a functional way on Christmas Day

00:27:35   which was super important but I loved

00:27:38   that one who sort of sort of passed some

00:27:40   of these things where you have that high

00:27:42   stakes that high stress that if that app

00:27:44   had been broken on Christmas day it

00:27:46   would have had a dramatic impact and so

00:27:47   I in love this kind of time of the year

00:27:49   where if something gets if something

00:27:51   gets busted if something gets broken

00:27:52   like the stakes are much lower like it's

00:27:55   still impactful it's not like that I

00:27:56   want to just be cavalier about things

00:27:58   but it's nice to kind of have that

00:27:59   pressure taken off a little bit and to

00:28:02   be able to kind of really dive into some

00:28:04   bigger projects in that way oh yeah I

00:28:06   mean and you said earlier main it like

00:28:08   about how this is such a great work time

00:28:10   because like there's no interruptions

00:28:12   like I love this time of year I mean I

00:28:14   hate winter in general because I can't

00:28:15   go outside because the outside world is

00:28:17   just just hates me but I'm a huge fan of

00:28:20   the amount of work I can get done during

00:28:22   this time because yeah there's no

00:28:24   holidays there's no well there's fear a

00:28:26   few holidays there there's no like

00:28:27   family needs really it's just a solid

00:28:30   like couple of months really where

00:28:32   there's nothing else to do but work and

00:28:34   I kind of like it so anyway thank you

00:28:38   everybody for listening good luck

00:28:39   getting back to work yourselves and

00:28:41   we'll talk to you next week bye