Firstly I have not been diligent in blogging for both CS3216 and for my own blog. CS3216 is coming to an end and it is time for a blog post that wraps up everything.
This is probably the only course in NUS that teaches soft skills although you learnt a lot of other stuff.
Of all the lessons, the classes that I enjoyed the most were the Facebook Application Seminar and the plenary session with local entrepreneurs.
For the seminar, I though the presentation style of all the groups were worth learning from. It was an enjoyable class to attend because one can just sit back and let your classmates entertain you with their presentation.
For the plenary session, it was enjoyable because it struck a personal note with me. What I really got out of that session was sales/getting someone to pay you. It is still something I have to remember and improve on.
Review of my goals
This is what I wrote for my personal statement when I applied for the course.
1. I have a strong interest in web technologies as I want to learn how to work with API. I intend to build both use APIs and also create an API for my final year project.
Although I have a strong understanding of Facebook’s API, I haven’t had the chance to actually implement my own API. I am pretty sure that I will need the skill set 6 months down the road though so there will be a focus on that.
2. I also want to have a better understanding of user acquisition via social media platforms like Facebook.
Hmm…Throughout the course I didn’t have time to focus on user acquisition. In part because I was doing the development side and in initial stages of a project, the development needs to be done before sales can start. Before the course, I thought I would have a chance to actually try out A/B testing for user acquisition but once we got into the projects, getting the product right and out the door overshadowed user acquisition.
3. I also want to take this chance to expand my Final Year Project into the existing social media space.
Social media has really gotten onto the radar over the last 6 months. I am not sure why but people + newspapers + companies are becoming interested. I wanted to use Facebook to expand my FYP but given the change of direction, that will have to be delayed.
Looking at this, I think I have reached none of the 3 goals. My FYP was very strongly involved in the first and last goal. However a change of direction had led me away from my wanting to build an API. But nonetheless, if everything went according to what I wanted, then the class would not have been fun.
2 main things I have learnt
From the class: A Team = People (mix of talents) who can work well together
From the project: Product Development = Making a product someone wants in the way that fulfils his goal = ask for feedback and iterate again & again
From the entrepreneurs: Sales and getting someone to pay you is really important for product validation
One Last thing: Thanks to Prof Ben for conducting this class. It was a really enjoyable class. Nothing like a lot of work to make you learn. Also thanks for pointing out my “problem” of not being focused enough on my projects. Now that school is coming to an end, I believe I have found my focus(2359media)(nothing like having investors and co-founders kicking your butt to keep a focus)