Archimedes asked only for a lever and a place to stand, and promised he could move the earth. Maybe he was only playing 200 BC hype man for his mathematical musings on levers, but it's a point worth taking: work smarter and accomplish great things.
A lever, the simplest of machines, enables an incredibly amplified output. Even in the days when Hannibal wasn’t on primetime TV, but rather crossing the alps, technology was moving the world.
But if there is one thing technology junkies love even more than the idea of changing the world, it's doing it with less work. We only want to do the minimal amount of work it takes to accomplish our goal, and that’s not a bad thing.When Larry Wall, author of the Perl programming language, spouted the Three Virtues of a Programmer, "laziness" took the lead spot. And while he was certainly playing coy (the other two are “impatience” and “hubris”), he was simply reiterating Archimedes larger argument: work efficiently.
Now find the right tool ... that's the hard part.
The ocean of web development that I wade through daily is full of purported tools. Some remind me of this ridiculous breakfast sandwich maker. The picture on the box looks fantastic, but there’s no possible way operating that contraption is more efficient than just making an egg sandwich. Rare others are simple and beautiful, and genuinely amplify my output.
That’s what we're working on every day at Moovweb: being the tool that allows businesses to leverage their existing desktop sites, to create the mobile experiences that they need. We amplify the features, content, and business logic by extending their business beyond the constraints of the desktop, to phones and tablets.
Like Archimedes’ equation for the mechanical advantage of a lever, the code behind how Moovweb works is complicated. But like the lever, its application is simple, yet powerful.
But how do you find those levers?
Examine how much you have to put into using a tool, and contrast that with what you get out. Does it work? Is your output amplified? Is it allowing you to be sufficiently lazy?
If it doesn’t, toss it aside onto the heap of failed tools, from Flash pages to the Thighmaster.
And if it does - if it multiplies your efforts - then go move the earth.