4 Mistakes New Product Managers Make

Matt Schnitt

Starting out as a product manager, you constantly oscillate between feelings of total elation and complete dejection - occasionally, multiple times a day. Over time, you learn to manage the ups and downs of releasing a highly requested feature and being burried under a mountain of bugs, but that feeling never completely goes away. Truthfully, I would never want to lose it completely because I've learned more from it than I could from anything else. The work also teaches you a tremendous amount about humility, agility and persistance.

Customer-Driven Product Development: 6 Steps to Using Live Chat For User Testing

Matt Bilotti

The use case for live chat on a website seems obvious at first glance. It’s a support tool that allows users to more quickly and painlessly get help from your team, rather than having to fill out a ticket or call. Here at the Signals team, however, we use live chat for one other very distinct use case: user testing.

The beauty of live chat is that it creates an avenue for you to speak with users when they’re in the thick of their experience with your product. As I explained in my previous post, it helps you get to the real problem. In addition, you can actually use it for gathering both qualitative and quantitative -- if executed under the right circumstances.

Why live chat for user testing?

Failure Testing Made Easy

Eric Abbott

An interesting task I undertook recently was hardening our memcached infrastructure. We're an SOA shop with hundreds of deployables, most of which will interact in some way with our memcached clusters. I thought I'd take the opportunity to break down the testing process into a basic tutorial that could be repurposed for other external resources.

Customer-Driven Product Development: Understanding the real problem

Matt Bilotti

Every user of your product has valuable insight to offer your team. That’s why it’s imperative that every user who fills out a support ticket gets a thoughtful, human response that goes beyond simply answering their original question.

support

In my last post I argued that all engineers should do their own support. When engineers are answering support tickets, interactions with customers act as a compass to guide product quality improvements and new feature development. In the early stages of product development, users with something to say are your most crucial lens on the world because they’re the ones who will get you to product-market fit.

HBase tutorial: 5 tips for running on low memory EC2

Bryan Beaudreault

When running on EC2, you often can't win when it comes to instance types. One of the more cost-effective types available is the c1.xlarge. It has enough CPU to handle compactions, a decent amount of disk, and high network I/O. However, we've found that the relatively low memory of 7GB on the c1.xlarge often leads to stability issues in highly concurrent HBase clusters. While there are other more expensive options, this HBase tutorial will help you make the most of your c1.xlarge RegionServers.

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Mesos, HubSpot, and the Singularity

Thomas Petr

Apache Mesos is one of the core pieces of infrastructure that helps HubSpot developers deploy 300 times a day. In this talk, Tom Petr (@tpetr) explains HubSpot's deployment infrastructure and the benefits that Mesos provides. Specifically, he showcases two open source projects: Singularity, a home-grown Mesos framework, and Baragon, an API for manipulating load balancers.