Skip to content

Instantly share code, notes, and snippets.

Last active March 29, 2021 03:37
Show Gist options
  • Save michellebakels/e015cfa0ebfcb637f31064b515ce01ac to your computer and use it in GitHub Desktop.
Save michellebakels/e015cfa0ebfcb637f31064b515ce01ac to your computer and use it in GitHub Desktop.
Coding with Curiosity

Coding with Curiosity

Coming Soon

Officially on the other side of the South Florida Entrepreneur Club’s 10 x 10 stretch! However today I don’t have a deployed project to show, not because I didn’t write one, but because I can’t show it… yet.

This morning a group of 1909 members and staff came together for a mini co-lab day. For those unfamiliar, 1909 is a community of entrepreneurs and creators that helps members achieve their goals and find success. A co-lab is essentially a gathering of people with the intention of knocking out a daunting task together in a marathon stretch. Today the mission was to lay the framework and foundation for a task exchange program where members can trade services. This is meant to be especially beneficial for new/early-stage entrepreneurs who may not have the funds established to propel their businesses and organizations.

When You Know, You Know

So how exactly does this fit into the 10 x 10? Well, today’s challenge was Coding with Curiosity and last night while driving home from Boca Code with my sister, I still had no idea what I was going to build. As I drove, she read me article after article about what it means to be curious and how to promote curiosity in hopes of inspiring an idea. Curiosity is an intrinsic element in software development and pushes innovation forward, so it’s not that it was difficult to be curious, but it was difficult to demonstrate being curious. In any case, we came up with a small application that unenthusiastically checked all the boxes

Knowing that I was going to 1909 today to work on the co-lab I was desperately hoping something more inspiring would arise from our conversations that I would be more excited to build and show... and in a way got what I was looking for. Not in the sense that I now have a tiny curiosity to share, but in the sense that I will soon have a large curiosity that will be adopted by the organization and used by hundreds of emerging South Florida entrepreneurs. It was a sign that I wasn’t meant to think of something else for today’s program because as the conversation unfolded, and before I offered to code anything, the word curiosity must have been mentioned at least three times. After an hour it was obvious, I was building this thing. Today.

Deja Vu

This may seem like an insane amount of work to casually take on, but the concept technically is quite simple. In fact, I’ve built something incredibly similar for a coding competition. So many programmers have. I see almost this same application being developed in one form or another at every hackathon I attend. The challenge with an application like this (and most applications for that matter) is not writing the code, but attracting and engaging the users, and that is where curiosity comes into play. How do we hack human behavior to make people want to help each other? How do we show members that what is viewed as “free work” can actually have an exponential ROI over simply charging a fixed rate?

To tackle these big questions we took the divide and conquer approach. Once the groups were split, I worked with Danielle Casey and Jared Fishman on mapping out the fundamental use cases. For me this was like a dream come true. I’ve known and worked tangentially to Danielle and Jared for nearly five years now, but never directly together. If you’re unfamiliar with the two of them, they are a couple of the masterminds behind organizations such as 1909, Elizabeth Avenue Station, and the growth of the start-up industry in West Palm Beach. It sounds kind of strange, but hashing out scenarios with them and listening to how they approach problem solving was honestly really fun.

Coming back as a group at the end of the day, we glued our pieces together, engaged in a little debate, but ultimately landed on an initial implementation strategy. At this point the frontend, backend, and database are up and configured with a few forms already built and a development plan laid out. I’m so thankful for my experiences today, the community at 1909, and the fact that I couldn’t for the life of me come up with an app to build for today’s challenge. In the end I think that was all for a greater reason… how curious. (SORRY! I couldn’t help myself… :[ )

Copy link

So perfect, glad it all worked out!

Copy link

xrodz commented Mar 28, 2021

you are amazing michelle!!

Copy link

What a great idea -- Looking forward to exploring the code and trying it !!! -- dgs

Sign up for free to join this conversation on GitHub. Already have an account? Sign in to comment