168 : Our new mindfulness app

September 5th, 2014 by buscada | No Comments

Today is the first day of publicly sharing a new Buscada project that we have been working on for a while. It is the first in a series of project ideas, and I’d love to hear your thoughts.

The project is called 168 and it helps you balance how you spend your most precious asset, your time. It gives you a quick and simple way to track your time and a unique tool to analyze how you spend your time each week.

It’s a thinking tool: it helps you look at what you did but also helps you question why you focused your time in the way you did.

If you have an iPhone or iPod running iOS7 please check it out and let me know what you think. If you like it, please share it with your friends and networks and maybe even share a review of the app. Download from the Apple App Store

Our aim with this project is not to make people more efficient with their time (although that may be an outcome) but to make them more mindful of how we all use this incredibly precious asset.

Thanks and we hope you enjoy using the app.

Find out more about 168

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Playing by your own rules

February 16th, 2011 by Kaushik1000 | 2 Comments

It is hard to win when you are playing by someone else’s rules or, worse still, do not entirely understand the rules. By redefining the “meaning” of your project you become an expert in the rules of the game, and one of the people defining those very rules.

The Meaning to Tasks model uses the idea of a “project meaning”.

It supports a practice for teams and individuals to create fundamentally new meanings for projects, products and services. By working in this way the meaning of everyday projects are changed, and projects created are differentiated from the rest of the market through innovatively integrated strategies, rather than solely through feature-level improvements.

To read this article in full, click here to download the PDF.

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From vision to tasks : Making design decisions clearer

December 17th, 2009 by Kaushik1000 | No Comments

(Click the image to see a larger version)

This conceptual model addresses the interrelationship between several layers of a design process – from broad vision to specific goals to strategic approaches to actionable tactics, and finally to essentialized tasks.

Using this kind of conceptual model for a project allows for a number of desirable outcomes:

1. It acts as validation process for new ideas that may be created through the design process.
2. It is inclusive of user and business goals and allows the two concepts to exist in a common holistic project structure.
3. It allows for the questioning, iteration and/or reshaping of the vision and goals for a project.

The important question to ask as this structure is created is how does each successive step support the ones above it?  This question can lead to two conclusions:
– the goal, strategy, tactic or task does not support the next node in the tree
– the next node in the tree needs to be modified to make it work with the new creative thought that has been created

Like all processes I advocate for, there is no “right way” to start this process:

– If you have many specific ideas, list them out and start grouping them into concepts to see what strategies emerge. Then, work your way up the nodes of the tree.
– If you have burning vision for a project or product, start at the top of the tree and lay out all the nodes in the tree that will support this vision.
[Diagram : Example concept map.]

(Click the image to see a larger version)

Here is a simplified example of this concept model as mapped out for a company that aggregates content, such as a search engine or blogs etc.

This strategic tool is useful for validating new ideas in a process. Running a new idea through the exercise of asking “what strategy or goals does the idea support?” clearly shows its pros and cons.

Crucially, a team that has created this tree structure, and agreed that the points on the tree make sense, has a baseline starting point when new nodes are introduced the team. This is important because no matter where the idea comes from – CEO or intern – the idea must support the team’s agreed upon structure. If the new idea does not support this structure, either the current structure is wrong (possible though less likely after fully following this process) or the idea has flaws that are exposed by running it through this process.

– Kaushik

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