My greatest feature yet

The pain and glory of the solopreneur life

5m Read

3/24/2022

A blog for developers, designers, product builders, musicians, and content creators.

For the past 3 months

I've been designing, architecting and developing the most complex feature I've ever built.

The feature is complex for 4 reasons.

1. It involves lower level sound APIs from apple (AudioEngine)

2. It required me to refactor a decent chunk of existing code (~10000 lines of code changed)

3. There was always a chance that syncing the inherit delay between recorded and playback audio was simply too difficult to implement without significant time costs.

4. There were several dead end problems I couldn't solve ahead of time without confronting the issues directly. This increased the risk of the feature being abandoned completely which was mentally and emotionally taxing.

The feature is awesome for 4 reasons.

1. Now, musicians don't need to open their daw to record all the essential elements of their next song.

2. There are no mobile apps (that I could find) in the app store that supports multi-track recording.

3. It paves the way for the next big feature for the Light Bulb app: Collaboration.

4. I envisioned this feature over a year ago and decided not to build it (thankfully). It's incredible to see it come to life.

There is a unique feeling

when your vision becomes reality that can only be defined as other-worldly.

I think creators of all domains know this feeling, at least subconsciously.

I'm writing about multi-track to share my journey but also to remind myself that I did this.

There were more than enough road blocks to give up at any time. I'm ultra proud of myself for pushing through.

This experience makes me think about entrepreneurship and the de facto full-time job life.

As a solopreneur - I can do anything.

Including give up and quit.

That's the catch of true autonomy. When you're running your own product, business and life no one tells you when you're on the right or wrong track.

Not knowing if you're moving any closer to your goals after months of effort can be a crippling feeling.

You must learn to identify the signals yourself and hold yourself accountable.

I think this is the second largest reason most people work for someone else (the first is group think and culture).

We all like guidelines and rules. We want to know if we're doing well (or not).

It's easier to listen than it is to think.

In a society where everyone is graded on their performance, there's no surprise people desire rules and guidelines.

Rules, guidelines and grading systems have been programmed into us from the moment we start learning.

Connected to this idea, I think people seek predictability over everything else.

A full time job offers predictability and predictability provides comfort.

In exchange, you hand over your greatest skills and most important asset (time).

Honestly, full-time work makes sense for most of us. Especially now, I understand that entrepreneurship isn't easy (solopreneurship even less easy).

You have to want this bad. You have to think ahead. You have to think differently. You have to be consistent. You have to be okay being uncomfortable. You have to hold yourself accountable.

These are not skills they teach in school.

These are not skills that adhere to simple rules, guidelines and grades.

These are skills that are derived from a burning desire to truly own and use one's own skills, time and energy.

Thanks to the multi-track feature I'm more confident this lifestyle is for me. The life of the entrepreneur / solopreneur.

I thank the experiences and decisions that led me to this door.

The door that unlocks true autonomy.

Now in order to open this door I must build valuable and worthwhile experiences for others before I run out of capitol.

Success is never final.

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