My initial plan to write a blogpost every week took a turn for the worse after week #2 when I realized that writing a blogpost isn’t as easy as it looks. It takes a lot of time to selecting the things worth mentioning, and leaving out the things which aren’t. This is the reason why I wrote this Halfway through blogpost instead of Week #2.
A lot happened the past two weeks, things like Andreas’ markers which arrived and Arjan’s beard which grew an inch more!
Every week starts off with a group call in which Elie and Andreas go over who works on which project and things that should be done. I found this to be a really nice thing within madewithlove. The majority of the team communicates mostly by chat because they live so remotely from each other, these group calls are a moment where keyboards are replaced by people’s voice which is a really nice thing to do because these group calls could also easily be replaced by a simple text.
Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of week #2, I worked together with Henri on designing clean, new graphs for the Addapp user-interface, showing information to users which is easy to read and understand so that they better understand the insights they’re getting within the app.
Henri is specialized in data-science and also doing an internship, his knowledge combined with my graphic- and information-design experience, made a good team. After focussing three full days on designing a graph and making a mockup for each different insight, we were happy when Andreas was pleased with the result. The headaches were worth it!
On Thursday there was a pretty big meeting about weholi and their website. Andreas proposed me to join them, which turned out to be a very good learning experience since I finally got to see how it feels like to consult a client about their infrastructure and more. We discussed some problems and how to solve them, the meeting mostly was about bringing structure in the weholi website.
User cases come in handy when wanting to solve problems and forgetting what the big picture looks like.
Andreas talked about the server setup for weholi while Dieter Vanden Eynde made clear how easy user cases, patterns or flowcharts are for developers since they sometimes lose the user’s perspective on what they’re building.
The meeting took place in one of De Hoorn’s meeting rooms. The meeting rooms are build up in the former silos as you can see, a metal grid is used for the flooring while the doorways consist of holes cut in the silo covered by a glass door.
Keys and other small things are strongly advised to be put on the table because things tend to fall through the small holes of the grid flooring.
Fridays are, actually as any other day, fun at madewithlove! #innovationfriday is time allocated for everyone in the team to work on his/her own project. Got an idea for a nice fun program? Build it on innovationfriday! That’s the concept.
Last Friday, while we were lunching in De Hoorn’s restaurant, we were talking about YouTube videos and how funny it would be when you could call someone and if this person picks up the phone, a YouTube video starts playing. Andreas is a man of action and rather than just talking about an idea, he started to build this right away, lunch couldn’t be over fast enough!
The challenge was on and after less than 10 minutes, the core of the program was build.
Extra features, like recording the reaction of our victims, were added 5 minutes afterwards. After setting up a server, which was really slow and time-consuming, and a thorough test on Elie (see Andreas’ reaction below), the whole project was ready under one hour.
I prank-called a lot of my friends and even my mom, their reactions were priceless.
I’ve learned a lot the past weeks. I’m really glad I picked madewithlove to do my internship. I didn’t know too much about programming, network-related stuff or never really understood the dark side of Github. Although the team of madewithlove has always been very helpful when I had questions or didn’t understand something.
Something we don’t learn at school is to think about the cost of a design. We’re always free to use the sources we want and don’t let money be something which prevents us from designing the best you can.
But less is true, money does matter. Programming things like custom form-fields cost more time to program and thus more money. This is something vital which wasn’t taught at school but the team of madewithlove explained it to me. The book I had to read: Getting Real from 37Signals, writes about this too.
It’s about finding the right balance between nice, custom design and it not costing loads of money to program it.
Designing something that looks good and is relatively cheaper to program if you don’t know a thing about code is not easy, that’s one of the reasons why I run an internship at madewithlove.