I’m currently designing a tool to help me keep memorable ideas from articles and books I read, extract them into my notes system, so I can review and refine them later. I have so many ideas of what I want that tool to do and how, and it’s hard to prioritize what is most effective. Naturally, what I want is feedback. Ideally from people that look at this without bias.
For that I need prototypes. I’m familiar with the various kinds of low-effort prototypes and the design thinking methodology behind it, and I’m looking forward to unleashing that on my poor friends who’ll be my first victims when the time comes.
However, I’m looking for something applicable much earlier in the process. So I came up with this:
For a few days now I augment my regular process for reading articles and books and taking notes with writing a separate meta-note. I create notes for the content like I usually would (I’m not using Roam, but think of the process to be very Roam-like), but at the same time I also write down observations about the process itself, like:
- Why did I write this down?
- Is there a pattern here? What is it?
- How would this work better?
- What do I wish I had / could do that I don’t have / can’t do right now?
It’s a little shocking to realize how well that works for me. Sure, I’m much slower at the actual task, but I notice things that I would never come up with if somebody asked me about my process or I would just reflect about it later.
Is anybody else doing this or something similar?
How do you do this? What questions do you ask yourself?
What other techniques do you use in early product development to make sure you’re attacking the right problems?