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How Do I Build This? A Podcast Player

Why do I want a new podcast player?

I have started listening to many podcasts every day since last summer, and I feel like Google Podcasts is missing some things that I really needed. Things that would have save me quite a lot of time every day and things that I think should be built into a podcast player. Let me explain.

Moving latest added episodes to the top of the play queue

This is a bad habit of mine. I have a bunch of episodes sit in my play queue, and I just can’t help keep adding more day by day. Among all these interesting episodes, I will finish some of them from some particular shows prior to others first every day, and then choose from the rest based on what I am interested in at the moment. Here’s how it looks like.

I add a fresh new episode of My First Million to the play queue, and scroll all the way down to the bottom to find it, and then drag it all the way up back to the top of the queue. And I do it again for This week in startups. And I do it again for Tech Crunch. And I do it again for 科技島讀. And I do it again for some interesting pods that I learn while listening to another podcast. And I keep doing these many times a day, and each of them takes 30 seconds just like this

Fave a great episode

You keep nodding your head while listening to this awesome episode, and you just want to save it somewhere even though you’re probably not going to listen to it again. But you just can’t find the heart shape icon anywhere!

All those valuable stuffs mentioned in the pod

Wait!
What was that book the guest mentioned?
What is that guy’s twitter handle?
What was that episode the host just referenced?
Well said! But I can’t remember the exact words…

Yes, the host said it will be put into the show notes, but it’s not there. And not every thing you find valuable is to the producing team. You just hope someone could note that for you…

How will I do this “How do I build this” stuff?

I am going to roll out weekly updates (hopefully) on the stuff I am building. I will build one thing at a time, and it will be related to software at least to some extent. And each stuff will be split into 3+ series containing the following parts

  1. The problem
  2. Design
  3. Build
  4. Launch
  5. Iterate

The problem – This is the hardest part, as a true problem likely will not just come to you, you have to dig it out. Anything I build should be a solution to solve a problem, just like how I lay out the problems that I have for a podcast player in the previous section. The problem should always comes first, and then figure out a solution to solve it. It should not be done in the opposite way, where you make something, and then define what problems it could solve, as Kevin Hale referred to as “Solution In Search of a Problem” in How to Evaluate Startup Ideas.

Design – Too often we skip the design part, and head straight for building the thing. Because it feels so good to just do it. And then we almost always bump into some trivial but cumbersome-to-fix flaws. However, it does not mean we need a thorough 500-page plan. I will present the solution to the problem in this part, and the right fit of technology stack and tools for it.

Build – I will then build it as a minimum viable product, which means to focus on just solving the problem.

Launch – Release it on to the internet. Might be a website, or on to those app stores. But other than that, more importantly, I should take actions to spread the word out. This is my weak spot, and I would be learning by doing it.

Iterate – The above work should not take months and years. It should be short sprints, and I will make improvements on user feedback.

Okay, so the problems I have for the podcast player I’m using right now is there already. Leave your email to receive the next update.

Why do I want to build a podcast player my self?

Because it’s fun. It’s always fun to see what is behind the scenes, and it is my strength to demystify how things work.

Also because I am a Android user, I don’t have access to Apple Podcast. And I want to keep my Spotify account to just music, and back at the time I started listen to podcasts, Spotify did not support changing playback speed. And I don’t really want to try out all those podcast player out there.

Above all, I am on my journey seeking for startup ideas. I have stumbled over the last eight months, and I figured out that I should make it a long run. I am using this series to build audiences, and consistency.

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