This one’s special since it’s a subject that’s resonated with me for a while: non-duality.
Some context on the app: The Tao Te Ching is a collection of verses that were written over 2500 years ago by Lao Tzu, a Chinese sage. Its message resonates so deeply that it’s now one of the most translated texts of all time.
However, many first-time readers often find the verses confusing, and so I wanted to build a medium where you can consume a bit at a time, and be nudged through regular reminders.
Things Expo was amazing for:
- Fast setup: I didn’t have to spend any time on setup & configuration – it just worked
- Push notifications: Super easy to implement via Expo
- Over the air updates: No waiting on the app store for smaller updates
- Release channels are ah-mazing!: My plan is to build a series of similar apps to target different niches. With a combination of release channels & varying app.json config files, I can now ship a different app a day!
Product & Engineering lessons learnt:
- Good: Everything is doable if you’re stubborn enough
- Good: Product decisions are much better when you bridge disciplines
- Good: The increased ownership & skill-bridging reflects in the final product quality
- Good: When the feedback loop kicks in (customers paying money, appreciation), it’s amazing!
- Good: The tech abstractions are adding up, and it’s easier today to build things with small teams than ever before (the stack I used: Expo, React Native, AWS Amplify, AWS Lambda, AWS Cloudwatch, Pinpoint; Airtable for the backend)
- Bad: Build where demand exists. It’s easier than getting demand to come to you
- Bad: Check & test distribution before building (the lesson sinks in much better by doing than by reading theory.)
- Bad: Prices tend to go to zero in markets with zero-marginal-cost of product creation & equal access to distribution
Other variants: The Ramana Maharishi app