Theresa O’Connor

Building Google Calendar

Rakesh Agrawal posted his notes from a talk that Carl Sjogreen gave about how his team went about building Google Calendar. Some choice bits:

  • First thing’s first — go talk to "real" customers
  • sounds cliche but it’s amazing how little it’s really done
  • focused on getting interactions and user model right before thinking about scale (a significant challenge for us)
  • Save the pixel pushing (fine alignment on the user interface) for when you know you have it right
  • Always have an eye on the minimum useful feature set that most people will use
  • focus on what the web can do that paper can’t
  • Timing launch properly
    • launch early and often is the mantra of web companies
    • it IS a fundamental structural differences that sets web companies apart from packaged software
    • However the old adage of "you can only launch once" still applies