August 8, 2016

Pride, Work and Necessity of Side Projects: Jodi Mack’s Rock-Climbing App

What are you working on—on the side?

My side project is a digital guidebook for a rock climbing crag near Seattle. My goal for this app is to take advantage of features that exist in the digital world in order to create an uncomplicated, intimate, and valuable experience for intermediate to advanced climbers. You can read more about my process.

How do you manage to work
on your side project(s)?

This particular side project was something I did between jobs, but I do come back to it periodically to take notes and brainstorm on how it can be better.

A little over a year ago, I got rejected for a job because “my interaction design skills needed to be stronger.” Using that feedback as an opportunity to grow, I ended up starting this side project that I, myself, would use if it already existed. Not only did I flesh out my interaction skills during the process, but I also discovered real-life challenges that aren't currently being addressed.

Side note: I’m still looking for an app developer who’s interested in building this with me. ;-)

Why have a side project?

Having a side project is a great excuse to stay current on things specific to the problem(s) you’re trying to solve. Our day jobs may not always give us the opportunity to explore trends and topics we're interested in, but a side project gives you full freedom to do so. On a personal level, side projects can be a reminder to yourself that you are independent, marketable and adaptable.

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Images courtesy of Jodi Mack.

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Read more about the joy of side projects.

This series, devoted to side projects, is delivered in association with Chicago creative agency 50,000feet—dedicated to helping brands and businesses soar.

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