Looking through my ‘project ideas’ page, I see that many of them rather ambitious - plans that would really require a minimum of a year of full time effort before seeing anything. They’re all really good ideas, but the chance of me actually doing any of them short of winning large amounts of money in a lottery is fairly slim.
I’ve been reading The Lean Startup recently, and one of the things that struck me is the importance of getting things in front of people quickly. It argues this from the importance of learning and appropriately acting in an uncertain environment, but perhaps even more important is in terms of your own motivation and focus.
So I set myself a challenge. Could I create a game and put it on the android market in less than a day?
It’s designed to be played on a tablet, and you drag your green circle around while at the same time shooting at the yellow circles. It’s pretty simple, but reasonably fun.
I certainly learnt a lot, and one of the best things that came out of it was that it inspired me to spend a week learning and writing other things that came from it. I think that perhaps the biggest benefit setting myself a ’1 day’ challenge is the effect it has on larger projects too.