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Let's measure

I’m guilty of undermeasuring. With the next side project I want to change that, and see if I can do better. Basically I want to use my abilities to program, to help my everyday routines. It’s mainly about integrating all the great tools already known and finding a different approach to use them.

For now I want to leave out the details of the implementation, but to give you a glimpse of what the starting point looks like. I've already established a foundational setup that allows me to configure commands similar to the following example:

  - name: hello-world
    description: >
      Greet a planet
      type: shell
      command: echo "Hello ${planet}!"
      - name: planet
        description: The planet you want to greet.
        type: string
          - Earth
          - Pluto
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Building something like this is really fun, but you can easily get off track. I think the best way to guardrail my efforts is to define what I want to achieve and measure the outcomes. It might be difficult to find, but I’m sure it’s possible.

All important decision makers could benefit from learning that anything they really need to know is measurable. [How to measure anything : finding the value of “intangibles” in business. Douglas W. Hubbard. – 2nd ed.]

So let’s find out what we want to measure.

  1. Is Usage Success?
    I go with a definite maybe. First self deception is a thing, so an easy way to rate the commands used, will hopefully add quality as a dimension. Something cli rate-last [1-5], will help me capture my emotion in the moment, even if I only rate exceptional usage.
    Secondly, success is more than just usage. I want to track the projects I use my app with and evaluate the success of the project (failing and learning is fine) and the impact of the app.

  2. Integrating as focus
    Third party software and services are so integral to my work and a major part of the vision. That’s why I want to track it besides the general success. The app might have integrations backed in, but it’s not its main purpose. So all software and services which are triggered, used or configured with my app, should be tracked.

I’m aiming at the following:

  • Reaching 200 calls per week of the app within the two months,
  • no more than 20/100 bad calls,
  • 10 integrations

I’ll follow-up on how I collect the data.

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