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Interesting Stuff Club

Our monthly catch up of what people are working on in their own time and where we share anything interesting we’ve learned. The first Interesting Stuff Club in our new office meant that we got to sit outside, which was nice.


James

James

Frontend Developer

“I’m still working on my finance app, but making slow progress. I did have a new idea for a startup this week though. I recently moved house and the letting agency I used charged me a fortune, but seemed to do very little. I was thinking of some sort of app that allows landlords to liaise directly with tenants with no need for the [expensive] middle man. I’ve also been thinking lately that I’d like to bring back one of my uni projects to make it better. It’s a Christmas tree finder that’ll tell you where you can buy a real tree, based on your location. I love Christmas!”



Alvaro

Alvaro

Digital Desiger

“I’ve just begun a personal project that’s more of a life project, as opposed to a tech project. I’d like to make myself more cultured and knowledgeable, so on my commute, I read one or two wikipedia articles. I started off reading about the history of London, so then I choose the next article by clicking a link of interest in the one I’m reading. I’m really enjoying it and I already feel like I’ve learned a lot about the history of London.”



Ryan

Ryan

Frontend Developer

“I recently watched a conference talk by Jared Spool on All You Can Learn where he explains why it’s a good time to be an experience designer. People are buying into companies that can differentiate themselves on experience; people are buying into talent, not products. You don’t need to invent something new to be talented, you just need to rejig certain elements. The example Jared used was Apple’s returns system. The usual method is to turn up to a shop, join a queue, not knowing how long you will have to wait to be seen. Apple brought in the ticketing system, where customers book a slot. As they know when they can expect to be seen, customers are likely to turn up a little early, and spend the time waiting for their appointment shopping. This is a prime example of mapping a user journey, highlighting any pain points, and working on a way to fix them.”



Kirsten

Kirsten

Director

“So, we’re statistically 200% more likely to die in a car accident than a plane crash. This means that the most dangerous part of our holiday is the drive to the airport. In the 80’s accidents caused by pilots were massively decreased due to two reasons. The first was the invention of flight simulators which meant that pilots could practice flying in a safe environment, before then, all learning was done from a blackboard and the first time putting the skills into practice was in the air. Simulators allow pilots to react to any dangers or errors in a safe environment. This means that decision making becomes second nature rather than having to remember what you learned, and mistakes can be made without the risk of harming people.

The second reason came from NASA research and the implementation of CRM, Cockpit Resource Management. Traditional cockpits had a hierarchy meaning that the pilot was responsible for all decision making. In 1978 one pilot became too focussed on an error light on the dashboard and failed to notice a fuel warning, the plane crashed and hundreds of people died. The CRM system means that anyone in the cockpit can input / make decisions. In the USA, the CRM system was introduced into cardio surgery and the percentage of operations reported to be going completely problem free rose from around 20% to 60%.”



Eddy

Eddy

Developer

“I’ve been doing some discovery for my personal project around Google Cloud Messaging, which enables push notifications for Chrome apps. It wasn’t easy as Google’s docs are so out of date, but I got there in the end and I can now send messages to users, which is really rewarding. The app doesn’t have to be launched, it can just run in the background. 

Yesterday I was looking into curl_multi which allows you to send requests in parallel which will be good for us when testing race conditions in Limpid Markets.”

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