Making A Simple App Takes A Serious Commitment

Even since I started working with Rails, I’ve been looking to build “simple” apps that would only take me a week or even a weekend to finish. The problem is that an app is never truly finished. And it is much easier to start an app than to actually finish it.

Sure, you can build an MVP (minimum viable product) pretty fast with Rails, but who wants just an MVP?! When I build an MVP, I imagine all kinds of must-have and fun add-on future features that I truly want to add in the future.

Take, for example, something fun I was building this weekend. I was learning Backbone.js, so I wanted to build something simple using Backbone.js and Rails. I decided on a hacker news / reddit for Backbone.js resources. Here is what I have so far. As you can see, I have A LOT more work to do – adding voting, karma calculation, user login, commenting, etc.


Suddenly, what was a small simple app turns into a giant project I don’t want to commit all my free time to. After all, there is always a more fun-sounding project right around the corner!

I hate the feeling of having a ton of unfinished projects I’m not happy with and don’t want to continue building. So it is time to move on to something big, long-term, that will take a while but will be beautiful and a lot more satisfying.

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