May 9, 2013

Not fond of rules

The Loop > Magazine > Issue 1

By Michael Simmons

For as long as I can remember, I’ve viewed the world differently. When I was younger, in elementary school, I would get into trouble for “disturbing the class.” My mother would be called down to the school and be told that I was “distracting” and “disruptive.” She would, like the very good mother she was, defend me. She would also communicate that it was the teacher’s responsibility to educate me and since I was disrupting the class, perhaps I was not being challenged enough. Thanks to my mother’s support and defence, I got through those years. Thinking back to those years it’s pretty clear that how I am and what I do today is no different.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that I need to be disruptive, it means that I don’t accept the norm. When I look around the world and see those who do accept the norm, I always wonder if they are doing so consciously because they believe that going along with the rest of the crowd is the best way to be. Since you’re reading a story written by me, rather than make predictions about what others think or believe, I’ll tell you in certainty what I think. I believe that going against the norm and speaking out is hard for most people. It requires much more than simply opening your mouth. It requires a plan. It requires a lot of thought. It requires action. If you don’t have a solution to the problem, you’re part of the problem.

Solving problems is one of the most important things in my life. Whether I’m creating an app that makes people’s lives better or managing my finances to ensure I can provide for my family, solving problems is incredibly rewarding. A problem is something that you need to find a solution for and finding the solution is a rewarding journey.

Let’s expound on one of my journeys with hope that you can see why it is so rewarding to me. Fantastical is a calendar app that I designed with versions for the Mac and iPhone. The Mac version was designed first, and more importantly, it was well received. It received some prestigious awards including the Macworld Editors’ Choice award. It was featured by Apple on the Mac App Store multiple times and currently has 4½ stars from users who purchased it on the Mac App Store. These accolades and good reviews are confirmations that Fantastical for Mac turned out to be a good app so I hope you won’t think I’m biased.

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