The Power of The Critical Eye

One reason why I visit the Bay Area frequently is because of the many critical eyes here. Questioning absolutely everything your about your product is absolutely necessary.

It bugs me when I show someone my product, and they end their commentary with “Wow, great job, keep up the awesome work.” This type of observation doesn’t build great products. And unfortunately I get this type of feedback frequently outside of the Bay Area because most people are exclusively consumers.

On the contrary, most of the best builders I know live in the Bay Area and they’re open to challenging everything they observe. It’s this type of thinking that eventually allows you to iterateĀ and improve. Questions such as: “Why is the installation button on the right instead of left?”, “Why did you choose this headline?”, “What is the purpose of this page?”, “This section is confusing, it needs to be eliminated.”, “Why would you charge x dollars when your competitor is y dollars?”, “This element is not helping you achieve the goal of this page.”, “This is nice, but it would be even better if…”.

Eventually after enough iteration, you end up with a dead-simple product that is clear to your target user. The critical eye brings simplicity to your product.


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John Marbach

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09 2012