Taming Monkey Number Three – Done

It’s the last day of March, so it’s time for the monthly report about this month monkey. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, go read the introductory post about taming monkeys. Which is basically my new approach to yearly resolutions.

The March monkey was supposed to be related to an outside thing, a consultancy gig. It was a project delayed far more than the initial expectations (at least my expectations) and I needed a way to speed this up. So I turned it into a monkey, which means that during the entire March that project only should have been my main focus.

But, surprise, after I came back from New Zealand, around March 1st, I had a very short discussion with my partners and they informed me about something both exhilarating and baffling. They decided to take over the project themselves, instead of having me running it. It was exhilarating because I always felt this project like a drag (lack of communication, continuous change in timelines, payment delays and so on). And it was baffling because, believe it or not, I was on the verge of proposing them the same thing. Sometimes, the Universe has strange ways to respond to your wishes. 🙂

A Pack Of Monkeys

Anyway, back to my monkeys. Shortly after this talk I realized that my March didn’t have a monkey anymore. I had to come up with one.

So, I started to redo the iAdd iPad app. I wasn’t quite satisfied with the user interface and there were also a few workflow things that I wasn’t happy about. To be honest, I was a little bit ashamed about the iPad version. It was working, but it was far from what I could deliver.

Apart from this iAdd remake, I also wanted to see how can I self-publish on iBookStore. And on Kindle store. It was one of the things I postponed for at least 6 months. So, iAdd remake, self-publish on iBookStore and on Kindle Amazon. Well, that’s almost three monkeys, right?

So, basically, because my initial monkey let me down, I pretty much came with an entire pack. And it went pretty well. As I write this, the iAdd app version 1.3 is almost ready to be uploaded to AppStore. There are tons of bugfixes and features. The most important feature being, of course, an entirely rewritten app for iPad.

And I also have one of my ebooks published on iBookStore and on Kindle (and the rest of them are either in the process of being approved, or ready to be submitted). Let’s take those monkeys one at a time.

iAdd Version 1.3

For those of you who don’t know, I code iPhone apps. iAdd is one of them and it’s also my own tool for managing time and tasks. In short here’s what’s new and important in version 1.3 (should be available in AppStore in about two weeks from now):

  • completely redesigned iPad interface, using split views (like the Mail app).
  • improved syncing with Dropbox
  • improved interface on iPhone (easier date selection, realm tabs available on all views, improved adding workflow, sync button available on top realm controllers, reordering tasks in Assess for projects and ideas, and many, many more).

Have a look at the screenshots (click on the image to enlarge):

iAdd v 1.3 - Assess
iAdd v 1.3 - decide
iAdd v 1.3 - do
iAdd v 1.3 - Assess
iAdd v 1.3 - decide
iAdd v 1.3 - do

As of now, iAdd is on sale for 2.99 USD, usually selling for 3.99. This version really makes me wonder if I should raise the price to 4.99 once it’s going to be live. Anyway, once the version 1.3 is live, I will at least revert to the original price of 3.99. One more reason to get it now, while it’s still hot.

Self-Publishing on iBookStore And Kindle

As anything Apple, publishing on iBookStore proved to be incredibly difficult. It’s like Apple deliberately creates obstacles, just to motivate you to overcome them. For a while, this may be fun. But after being an Apple developer for more than one year now, I’m kinda bored. I think it’s time for them to make things easier for anyone using their platform. Because somebody is starting to breathe pretty close from their back, and that’s Amazon, of course.

In short, here are two screenshots of my ebook, 100 Ways To Live A Better Life, first one in iBookStore and second one in Kindle (both pictures made using an iPad).

iBookStore - 100 Ways To Live A Better Life
Kindle - 100 Ways To Live A Better Life

In iBookStore the ebook is selling for 3.99 and in Kindle for 6.89. There are also important differences based on your country. For instance, the Kindle version is cheaper on Great Britain. I won’t go into details, but apparently Kindle is controlling the price of ebooks based on their printed prices. And since I already published this book on Amazon a year ago, and it’s still on sale, they didn’t allow me to have a lower price.

Anyway, the ebook version you can get from my site is still 6.99 so if you want to buy it, getting it from iBookStore or Kindle it’s a much better alternative.

The Next Monkey: iAdd Desktop

There are only a few hours left from March. My next month monkey would be the desktop version of iAdd. I know it’s a pretty ambitious monkey but I also know I can do this. Much of the base code is already written and it will be just a matter of coding the user interface. I also know that if something sounds way simpler than you believed, it’s probably not. 😉 Anyway, we’ll see how it went next month.

Blog Silence

One of the most important aspects of this year long experiment I’m doing – taming monkeys, that is, instead of yearly resolutions – is that I’m slowly shifting from a goal oriented life to an experience oriented life. I know that “experience oriented life” sounds strange, but let me explain. In the last few years I’ve been a fool for goals. Financial, personal, diet, physical, you name it, everything was on my plate. I did a lot. I was raw vegan for 9 months, I created a company in New Zealand, I flew around the world and so on.

But I never felt so much joy and balance like I felt during the last 3 months. And I mean it. Yes, I’m not as committed as I used to be, but I still get things done. I’m not as tense as I used to be also. And I don’t write as much as I used to. But that doesn’t mean the blog is going down. As surprising as it may seem, March was one of the best months in terms of traffic in the last 15 months. Weird…

Who knows, this taming monkeys thing might actually work… 😉

8 thoughts on “Taming Monkey Number Three – Done”

  1. Tried to follow your link to the Apple Store for “100 Ways To Live A Better Life” but I get a message, “The item you’ve requested is not currently available in the US store.” Is this one of the hurdles you mention?

    • The link is working for me. From where are you trying to access it? And yes, apparently this seem to be one of the hurdles 🙂

  2. I love the way you continue to stay down to Earth and lay it all out with such honesty. I thought the post where you told about your life’s rough patch and laid out your “Taming monkeys” strategy was superb. Really good stuff. Maybe it IS paying off for you – in a bigger way than you even thought possible!

    Even though I’ve read every post on your blog and you’re a fixture in my reader, I just bought your “100 Ways” eBook for Kindle – and it was only $3.99! Maybe you found a way to lower the price at Amazon since you wrote the post. Great price for your material either way.

    Keep up the great work, Dragos!

    • Hey Mike,

      Thanks for buying my book, appreciate it. And as I said, Kindle seems to have a mind of its own, changing and adjusting prices as it sees fit. In this case, it did right 🙂

      And thanks for the nice words, feels good 🙂


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