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A collection of thoughts, things I've learnt and things I want to remember

Weeknote #10

  • url: /notes/weeknote/weeknote-20022023/ created: 2023/02/20 updated: 2023/02/26

This week was a short week for me. I only worked 3 days and spent 2 days off-grid, chilling with Vanessa.

Clearing things up for a handover

The data platform is being handed over to a team from TPXImpact to beef up and operate. That is great news.

But a lot of work is needed to prepare for that.

This week we’ve been trying to tidy a few things up around the model - the underlying structure that defines how it should work.

It has been an interesting but challenging task. 4 years’ worth of decisions have been made, and it feels like we’ve been trying to remember why each one was made.

We’ve been stepping through the model, piece by piece and I’ve been attempting to make sense of it all by mapping it out on Miro.

Screenshot of the Miro board where we've been mapping out the digital land data model

I was pleased with the progress we made and we were able to simplify a couple of parts, but the board is still littered with unanswered questions.

Design debt stacks up

We talk a lot about how tech debt accumulates over time, but the same happens with design debt. Especially in the early stages of projects (I’m think discoveries, alpha, private beta).

In the early stages of projects, we often try to demonstrate how we can do things differently. It can be more important to go wide and create something end-to-end than to go deep on just a couple of parts. This leaves behind a lot of half baked ideas, some good, some not so good, as well as plenty of aspects that need iterating.

This was definitely the case with digital land.

And it is another thing we need to hand over in a meaningful way.


A couple of weeks ago I mentioned being happy seeing the NRW folk continuing to publish weeknotes. This week, when I was having a read I noticed the URL was different to the one we set up during the LearnByMaking labs.

It is now at nrw-digital. And I am chuffed they have just gone and moved it themselves. It is great!

Paying for features is OK

This week Meta announced they would start charging for verification and there was a fair bit of criticism sent their way. I’m usually one of the people criticising Facebook but not so much this time.

Platforms and services should be able to charge for features. It’s not necessarily a bad thing. Maybe one day companies will do more of this and fewer ads 😵‍💫

(The ongoing charge seems a bit much - surely verification is a one off activity).

Overriding thought

I’ve been thinking about ChatGPT a lot recently. And when I say ChatGPT I mean generative AI and conversation based interfaces.

As of yet, I haven’t played with it as much as I would have liked but I have followed along with the conversations - the hype and the fear! It is all interesting stuff but we are still a long way from knowing definitively how this all plays out.

But the thought I can’t get out of my head is

If you think the disinformation machine is bad now just imagine what it’ll be like with generative AI

It’s worrying.