Author Archive

Week 3: Reviewing Business Plan

One interesting thing I learned from writing the report was the levels of formality. Having writing in third person was a surprise to me. As for receiving feedback it helped in confirming the points I needed to improve. An example being the lengths of my paragraphs. I had one extremely long one and was almost sure that it was too long but was tempted just to leave it in because it was detailed. I changed my mind after my partner noted one of the biggest things needing changing was that exact paragraph. As for reviewing other work I picked up a lot of things that I could improve in my own such as consistency, formatting and conciseness.

One successful business was a startup that created LIFX, a long lasting, color changeable light bulb that could be programmed. It was successful because it introduced a new idea to how we thought about such an old product. It also followed the ‘internet of things’ trend which can be spotted in products that just have ‘smart’ tacked on the front of its name. Ignoring the fact that this was successful Kickstarted I personally think it would’ve been invested in either way. It was such an innovative and practical idea that a lot of other companies have already tried copying the idea.

Week 3: User Testing

The two methods for research are the primary and secondary methods. The primary methods are done by the company themselves and includes things such surveys, experimentation and interviews. Secondary methods are done by someone else. This includes things such as public and commercial sources as well as educational institutions. User testing helps get practical feedback on your product that you wouldn’t be able to figure out by yourself. It also helps lower the risk of your product failing both technically and financially. As for the surveys they were incredibly helpful in finding out the estimated price people would be willing to buy our products for. They also helped in figuring out that the detailed patterns weren’t needed as much as we thought. This is important because the majority of the laser cutting costs came from the time taken making them.

In general I find game development kits to be designed pretty badly. Things like UDK are made specifically for the team that used it and are barely changed when released and it really shows when someone else tries to use. The things that can be done in the kits are redistricted heavily based on the kind of game they were trying to build making it hard to do anything without using work-arounds and fighting the program. That being said this doesn’t effect the success of the game they’re coupled with at all since they’re usually free. If anything by just giving players the option to make games similar to what their playing it actually has a positive effect.

Week 1: Development of Business

Idea development is pretty hard when it comes to making one purely for money. If it was an idea for a game I’d probably have an easier time coming up with one (I can hear Emma laughing at me) but when it comes to business other factors come to play. One of the biggest problems is that I have little to no business experience so I barely know what those factors are until I bump into them through trial and error. The two biggest things I’ve seen come up in our group is cost efficiency and viability of the product itself.

A good idea would be a well researched one. By doing both past and present research one could know problems older companies faced as well as what their going to face presently. For example if one were to just do past research he wouldn’t know about any current trends occurring like business opportunities on the web. On the other hand, if someone were to just do present research he might make mistakes older companies made. Another advantage to present research is knowing what your competition is. If you were able to read that a current trend was profitable then it wouldn’t be strange that another company has already been made with a similar idea. You can of course try to compete with the company but your product would have have to been generally more well received through various means such as higher quality and better advertising. That puts a lot more work if your company is just a start-up. This is also why having a unique idea is important.

One business that I find interesting is Oculus with their Rift. I’m of course more interested in the product itself but it turned out to be so well researched that it took off well as a business. The founder keeps holding off the release of a commercial product because he’s activiley trying to avoid past mistakes older VR products made by releasing a product that doesn’t completely captivate customers at a reasonable price. I don’t think their making much profit with the Rifts themselves but their definitely making enough money to make progress towards their collective goal in virtual reality.

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