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Austin, TX 78703

A place to share prose and photography not in a spirit of hubris or sense of it being worthy--but as a discipline to keep me constantly improving.


The idea is only the first 1%

Evan Baehr

In my short time as an entrepreneur so far, I have been amazed by the reality that ideas don't actually matter that much; it's all about the execution.  

A false view of the world holds that companies launch with a "big idea," raise money, build a team, roll out stages of that product, and begin marketing and gaining traction.  

Right thinking holds that ideas are commonplace and their execution requires millions of combinations of dozens of factors until there is a fit--between founders, investors, product, and customers.  That fit is something I have run toward but failed to find.  However, little moments of traction along that sprint at least gave me the taste of what fit--traction--alignment--even shalom--can feel like.  That alignment begins with an idea but must align the next 4,999 things on top of it. This is entrepreneurship. 

Consider these wise words from Steve Job's--a passage dear to my friend and cofounder Will Davis. 

You know, one of the things that really hurt Apple was after I left John Sculley got a very serious disease. It’s the disease of thinking that a really great idea is 90% of the work. And if you just tell all these other people “here’s this great idea,” then of course they can go off and make it happen.

And the problem with that is that there’s just a tremendous amount of craftsmanship in between a great idea and a great product. And as you evolve that great idea, it changes and grows. It never comes out like it starts because you learn a lot more as you get into the subtleties of it. And you also find there are tremendous tradeoffs that you have to make. There are just certain things you can’t make electrons do. There are certain things you can’t make plastic do. Or glass do. Or factories do. Or robots do.

Designing a product is keeping five thousand things in your brain and fitting them all together in new and different ways to get what you want. And every day you discover something new that is a new problem or a new opportunity to fit these things together a little differently. And it’s that process that is the magic.