Things move fast, so fast. If you are trying to keep up with the latest and greatest the field of startups & entrepreneurship I'd wager that either you are on the bleeding edge or not.
Let me clarify that.
The amount of information that one has to process is becoming more and more ridiculous. New technologies, frameworks, languages … the endless stream seems to have no end. Very often I read on someone's blog that you should slow down, think it through, don't be too hasty. Whether you are working on a project or thinking of a concept : Slow the pace! It does sound very Zen, I have to admit.
So far, so good I get all that.
Then I continue reading about the latest and greatest, next up on the list of advice is that you should create an MVP, iterate fast, improve. Don't wait forever to make the perfect product because lets face it – that's not happening any time soon.
And now a problem emerges, a conflict so to speak, between those to very often given pieces of advice. Both good in their own right, but never addressed at the same time.
A possible solution
Naturally, the best solution would lie in the Golden Mean, but this solution, as obvious as it is, is the hardest to achieve. Can you really change speeds that fast ? I know I can't. At least not in the span of one day (or even a few). I agree that things should be thought out thoroughly, but when you get that momentum going, killing it seems a really bad idea.
Beginning slow and accelerating seems to me the best idea. The pacing might be the crucial element if applied correctly.
Now, what does this have to do with the information overflow that we are in now ? I think it has to do a lot. With a single string attached. (so to speak) You "have" to be on the bleeding edge. It is my belief that you are either on the bleeding edge or oblivious. I know it sounds harsh, but that's how I've experienced it.
I see information as fuel for the brain. Having my own ideas for different things to build (for example), the incoming information starts to fill the missing gaps, links start to emerge.
After passing a certain point of information input the benefits become even greater, a synergy between the different links emerges that was not possible before.
What happens if you don't pass that point, you just read a lot of things that seem to be of no real use to you. Sure, finding a useful technology once in a while will have its positives, but more often than not you find yourself reinventing the wheel (which has learning benefits sure, but that was not the point).
If you want to have all of the benefits you have to be on the bleeding edge, there is no way around it. Otherwise you just think you are in the know, but opportunities pass you by.
And therein lies the problem – how can you slow down if you want to be on the bleeding edge?
A day would kill it for me.
Something I've tried a few times and seems to work, is to sit down for an hour and think things through. We could call it Meditation, though, I'm not sure that exactly describes it. Having an input device (pen & paper, tablet, laptop) is crucial, because once the brain kicks into high gear again things get blown away fast! After you're done jotting down ideas and concepts, back to the regular pace.
Oddly enough this way of operating does not present any problems while working.
With a grain of salt
I am by no means saying that this is the best way to do things, that it is superior to any other and will bring success, riches & glory :) . To build something and for it to be successful is quite the complex problem. I find men with "simple steps to success" dangerous or really lucky.
Also you don't need the latest and greatest technology to build successful products, that is a given. The point was that if you do want to use the hot stuff, you have to go full in to get the most benefits.