Hold back features and ship!

Cachet has grown by a considerable amount over the last month as evidenced by the whopping number of stars on the project; 1339 people like Cachet and to me, that is a huge number for a beta product.

A couple of weeks back I was ill which meant that our ideal release date for V1 would be pushed back. Joe and I had been aiming for early February but that wasn't able to happen. I'd been ill and hadn't been in a position to work on Cachet during my free time.

We held a long Skype call and went through everything we had assigned to the V1 milestone. Going through each item, we were able to decide what we felt could wait to the next version.

For now, nothing is being treated as being added in a minor version, we'll re-evaluate once V1 is released. This gives us a lot of freedom in our decisions.

Ship it Squirrel

What makes a feature droppable?

For us, we pushed anything back that met two simple criteria:

  1. Hadn't been requested by users as much as other things has.
  2. Was a nicety and wouldn't affect Cachet as a usable product.

This didn't hold true for one major feature: the update system but we made the decision to keep this because it'll make updates for the less-technically minded much easier.

Get over nice features and ship.

I know that a lot of product builders only want to release a product once it's nice and complete. Unfortunately this isn't ever going to happen. There is always something you can improve and do better with.

In our case, we pushed back the ability to upload custom favicons. Sure, it's real nice to have that level of personalisation, but you know what? It's not a show stopper. It doesn't break anything and if we lose some market share from it, then we'll get over that too. It's a small feature, but it'd hold us back and since we're not working on Cachet full-time, it's not worth those few spare hours we have each week - yet.

It's open source.

We're lucky in that Cachet is open source. Just because we're not going to be doing something, doesn't mean that someone else won't contribute to it.

It probably helps to have a roadmap because people may feel more inclined to contribute knowing where a product is heading. We're not in a position to release a roadmap yet, that's something we'll focus on once V1 is released.

Check out Cachet and on GitHub.


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