Finding my team, building what I know, doing what I love

Steve Jobs said he looked in the mirror every day and asked himself –
    If I were to die today, would I want to be doing what I am doing today?
If the answer was No too many times in a row, he knew it was time for change.

Almost a year ago, after a year of struggling at Expedia, I finally decided it was time for a change. I could have found a job working for a different large software company, but, I am convinced it is not for me. I still love creating software, just not the politics that comes with corporate america.

So, with the support of my husband, I have been trying to launch my own projects for the last year

  1. – was a website for exchanging or selling plants from home.
  2. – was a website for sharing what’s happening hyper-locally.
  3. LocalByUs app – was the supporting app for reading or writing posts.

Each of the above projects have now failed and I have shut them down. and cost $200/mo to keep the servers running, and yielded about $5/mo in ad revenue. The local by us app had all of 21 downloads, only 6 of them active after 3 months of being on the market. The graph belows shows it clearly.

My fourth project is building educational apps for kids. The idea was my husband’s. He was looking for fun and educational app for our 5 year old, and he couldn’t find much that was suitable. Many of the apps required internet connection and access to your private information. He wanted to build one that was honest, but, working full-time supporting us, he couldn’t find the time.

In the meantime, I attended an android app hackathon. My main purpose in being there was to promote LocalByUs app that I had created. The hackathon required us to create something during the 8 hours of the hackathon. I decided to use my husband’s idea and create a simple maze for the kids to play. That maze later became the numbers maze in Kindergarten Math.

My daughter loved the maze I had created. She asked me to create some more. And I did. Along with counting, sequence, addition and subtraction exercises for her to play. In the meantime, I got a software development contract offer that, not having earned for a few months, I could not refuse. I published Kindergarten Math Free before starting work.

Unlike the projects I did before, I built Kindergarten Math for my kids. I wanted to share my love of math and logic with my daughters. In creating Kindergarten Math, I found the team I work best with – my family. I used to worry that my kids were not developing the fundamentals that help them enjoy math and logic. Now, I know I can keep building apps that they enjoy and learn from.

6 thoughts on “Finding my team, building what I know, doing what I love

  1. Thanks for your story. As an independent software developer, I get more satisfaction creating great software than maintaining a kludgy one that can’t be redesigned due to legacy bureaucracy, even if the latter would pay better. Good luck in your future endeavors. I currently create iOS apps. If you have an iPad or iPhone or iPod Touch, check out my free apps at — I think you’ll like TaoOfWisdom and your kids will enjoy iDetectiveLT (if they’re old enough to understand logic story games).

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