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Erik Trautman

Technical entrepreneurship, business strategy and product development

It's All About the Little Things

I've spent the past week or so more or less getting back into a coding routine. I've finally managed to bite off a good chunk of my blog project and I feel like I am hitting my stride with PHP and SQL after scratching my head and dealing with stupid errors for a frustrating couple of days. It feels really good to have momentum building again after all the moving and traveling.

The blog project (to produce the production version of this blog) comes both from a desire to have full creative control of my website and as a way to practice building a web application from the ground up. It's a front-to-back journey through creating something from nothing and it has been incredibly useful as a learning tool.

In order to really milk the experience for all the learning I can get, I am doing as much of it from scratch as possible. Often that is a license to take a few hours aside and learn a new skill or function because it came up in a YouTube video I was referencing or was mentioned in a Stack Overflow help article. Yesterday, though, that meant I spent the entire day working only on the code for pagination.

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My $100 Million Idea

I love catching the wave of a new idea. It's happened to me many many times in the past few months and each one is somewhat akin to a religious experience. I think every entrepreneur in the world knows the feeling I'm talking about. In fact, one of those idea waves at the beginning of the year was what finally convinced me to pursue entrepreneurship for real. This is not the story of that idea. That particular gem, a user-generated brand advocacy platform, didn't make it far out of the gate.

Some of my big ideas hit me in the morning and I can't even sit down for breakfast without first tearing through four pages of frantic notes. It is sudden and intense. The idea I'll get into here, though, actually resulted from many little discouragements along the way as I tried to follow up on those other bursts of AM inspiration.

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