September 19, 2020

Who are you?

Daniel K. @DanielK_CZ

It started. I've finally launched a preliminary version of the app that allows creating a user profile and then shows a screen with a counter of how many people are on board. I want to reach number 100 before I uncover the main functionality.

As of today, about 40 people did go through the registration process. That's a fairly good number for 14 days run. There is also a good ratio of almost 50% for genders and the average age is about 40. I have probably expected a lower number, but it's totally fine.

However, I did a terrible mistake. In my naive way of thinking, I did expect that remembering a person within a browser is good enough. I wanted to keep it as anonymous as possible. I am sure many people liked it to see something that's not a too nosy right of the start.

People are not always using the same browser. Some might do it from the work, others could be using incognito mode just to keep privacy in check. Or someone could just use a desktop browser only to later visit it from the mobile.

This is an obvious problem as I can't really recognize these cases one from another. Chances are that the same person has created a few different profiles. I might guess based on their preferences, but (gender, languages, age), but that's hardly bullet proof.

So I had to quickly opt into a scenario where I will require at least email address, but promise to keep it only to myself. I had to deal not only with new accounts but with those returning back and not having an email address set yet. It's not too annoying as I am not asking for any password or something they would have to remember. When the time is right, I will simply send them an email with unique link that will tie them to their profile. Eventually, it will be the main way of signing in by sending email with a link.

I managed to publish this change after about 30 people went through the registration. I don't really know how many "real" people is there and what or duplicates. But I guess it's still early enough to fix this mistake. It will be a great success if I can launch with at least 50 active people.

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