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Transcript of Deconstructing Evernote
“About a year and half ago, we began to fundamentally shift our product thinking. We moved from focusing purely on features to becoming obsessive about the design and experience of everything we build. We’re on the right track, but there’s still tons of work left to do. ~ Andrew Sinkov
The design philosophy embraces the value of developing platform differentiated apps, therefore rejecting the lowest common denominator technology like HTML 5. "If you make consistency a goal, you achieve it through mediocrity. You achieve consistency by making everything equally crappy." ~ Libin
Growth, not profitability is the focus now. "We try to only make money when people really love our product and want to pay us for the (premium features)". ~ Libin
The goal is to foster and support a global community of tens of thousands of developers. Evernote will work closely with these individuals to build third party apps, products, and services that expand and complement our products and make up the Evernote Life. ~ Libin
The Future of Evernote
What is Evernote?
So you want to work at Evernote?
It's all about the User Experience...
Today's Design Environment:
Today's Design Inspiration
You have to look for inspiration in as many different places as you can. It comes from books, movies, my family, other designers’ work, a song, daydreaming, research, sketching, people, relationships, and from understanding what peoples’ needs are and then trying to find a solution for that. Probably the biggest thing that influences my work is really understanding what the problem is. If you are having a tough time finding a solution, then maybe you just don’t truly understand the original problem. Joshua Taylor, UI Designer for Evernote http:/blog.invisionapp.com/designspaces-evernote-joshua-taylor/
pioneer in former Soviet tech industry
led the development of the handwriting recognition software used in the Apple Newton
computer engineer and serial entrepreneur (co-founded two other companies before joining Evernote)
left Boston University four credits shy of a degree in Computer Science
"Our goal at Evernote is to help the world remember everything, communicate effectively and get things done. From saving thoughts and ideas to preserving experiences to working efficiently with others, Evernote’s collection of apps make it easy to stay organized and productive."
"As our reach and impact continues to grow,
we force ourselves to rapidly evolve our thinking and take calculated risks to help people live and work better.
Designers at Evernote play a vital role inside and outside
our organization. We are tasked with working collaboratively with product teams to launch new products and evolve existing ones. " ~ Evernote Careers http://evernote.com/careers
WHERE DOES YOUR INSPIRATION COME FROM?
Evenote: Fast-paced, Evolutionary, Innovative, Thoughtful, Responsive, Collaborative...
Passion, Pride, Excitement, Impact:
"At Evernote, we are on a mission to change the world. Come join us if you want to work really hard to make a difference" ~ Libin on Evernote Careers
Keep the creation nimble- it should be about how quickly you can make decisions and how relentlessly you battle encroaching corporate stupidity and bureaucracy... ~ Libin
There is a method to Evernote's madness, one that ... lands at the intersection of technology and design. The apps look sharp, work exactly like you'd expect, and are fast enough to be totally painless.
~ Matthew Guay
"Evernote consists of independent teams that compete with each other to make the best version for each platform. Designers learn from each other's achievements ensuring the teams continually leapfrog each other" Teams are deliberately no bigger than the number of people one might invite for dinner, insuring that everyone makes a impact and is vested in the success of the team project. ~ Libin
"We are a dynamic team w/ a start-up feel. We have open collaborative offices in Redwood City, CA and Austin, TX. ... we promote an entrepreneurial spirit and perspective and engage a management style that encourages the free exchange of new ideas and rewards self-motivation." ~ Evernote Careers, http://evernote.com/careers/
For the new HQ, Studio O+A created a space with an industrial, yet a clean and modern finish. Modern, informal space that promotes collaboration and constant interaction between employees.
Requires ability to collaborate, develop visual design and ensure that engineering teams implement designs at high level of quality. Responsible for creating great user experiences by seeing a project through from initial design to supporting the engineering effort. Must be able to achieve good results on a tight deadline.
Passion for designing great consumer products or experiences, from conceptual to tactical, and functional design, Must be able to create broad appeal, eye-catching, modern and inviting designs with the highest visual standards that inspire users to use them again and again with a focus on speed of use. Requires input and collaboration with designers, developers and stakeholders… Must be able to distill key issues from usability tests and to implement practical solutions. Requires agility and flexibility to iterate or change design direction based on external feedback
Responsible for being the thoughtful voice for our users, constantly thinking about new and improved use cases and features that will appeal to our users. Must be able to define innovative user experiences that result in improved user productivity. Requires ability to be nimble and to think about a problem from a multitude of angles in order to come up with the best design. Requires a unique drive to keep pushing forward and innovating with the design process.
"Evernote should be everywhere: It needs to be ubiquitous because we are going to build you a second brain - the idea is, eventually, its just a part of you." ~ Libin
Original Designers and Inspiration
The basic idea was really simple. We figured that no one is really fully satisfied with our normal brains, with our normal memory. Everyone wants a better brain. And a few years ago, it looked like technology was finally at a point where it would be viable to try to build a service to be your secondary brain - your external brain.
Winner of 2013 Apple Design Award for apps that are well-designed, state of the art, and innovative. These apps are not only engaging, intuitive, and compelling but they also take advantage of the latest hardware, OS releases, and technologies to offer rich functionality, high performance, and extensive system integration.
$1 billion valuation elite club in Silicon Valley
Competitiors: Microsoft OneNote, Springpad, Catch
Co-branding with the establishment: Moleskin, Samsung ...
Only eight applications from The New York Times, Facebook, Twitter, Path, Evernote, CNN, Tumblr and Elle magazine have been approved for use on the first edition of this groundbreaking project.
Evernote needs to offer a way for users to control what happens to their online memories after both their death and, potentially, Evernote's demise.
"It ensures the availability of your data for 100 years and it gives you a way to designate who should have access to it and how. The question is how do you make it economically viable for somebody to still care about keeping your data accessible... even if Evernote the corporate entity is no longer in business. I don't think it's a problem that's been answered before, but if we're saying this is your lifetime memory, I think it's part of our charter to figure this out."
~ Phil Lipin
"A public offering will happen, but not now. We don't want it to distract from the design process." ~ Libin
Finanical Considerations ...
Longevity... Evernote Centurey, the first 100-year startup
Interview with Phil Libin: http://tcrn.ch/19O17JP
Interview with Stepan Pachikov: http://tcrn.ch/JNsbpX
Today's Design Space
By: Mary Fraser and Kim Bushman