Every company does things a little differently. Some rush the product out, features-be-damned. Others wait, and wait, and wait, until its “perfect”. Some companies are secretive. Others open. And so on.
Certainly there is no set recipe for success (or failure). But there are a number of easy-to-avoid traps when building and presenting a product. Likewise, there are a number of “crowd pleaser” features that always get positive comments.
Michael Arrington has an interesting post over at TechCrunch titled Don’t blow your beta. While good advice for startups it applies equally to established organisations. Part of Google’s success is attributable to the fact that it gained popular acceptance of its beta products and services. Perpetual beta will start to become more the norm than the exception as organisations adapt to accommodate producers and users co-creating products, services and experiences in realtime. We are already starting to see the concept of beta adoption within established organisations such as Reuters who recently launched Reuters Labs. Interesting times ahead.
UPDATE : Brendan Koerner with Wired News on the Lego Mindstorms project