Industry Analysis Outline
This has been an incredibly interesting assignment. Writing the outline is not easy since there has to be a bit of research upfront. However, it has forced me to sit back and reflect on the industry I want to work for, and what kind of job I want in it. I am already a software engineer, and I’m tangentially doing what I want. But this assignment has put a lot of things in perspective as far as how I see my job and what I want to do in the future.
I originally wanted to be a game developer. I love video games and that has been my goal for a long time. After doing more research on it, I find the service side of gaming far more interesting. Not only because the problems are more oriented towards my interests, but because they have a much lager impact in the community as a whole. For instance, both industries have similar challenges on how they monetize individuals, but their approaches are drastically different. Traditional gaming needs to survive on the cycles of retail and launch of a games can make or break an studio. On the other hand, mobile has faster development cycles, and much longer lifespans than triple-A titles. Mobile also relies heavily on micro transactions as the free-to-play models has taken over the market. But game services do not follow either model and rather use crowdsourcing, donations or subscription base services. All those are far less aggressive and the users do not feel use. The sentiment towards this services is far more positive than micro transactions in games.
Working on this industry primarily has given me a particular insight into how people behave and why targeting for monetization is so important. It is something I do strongly believe has value, and I want to keep applying towards other industries. The paper has helped me put this into perspective not only to the value of what I want to do in the future, but also what I already know, and more importantly what it will take to get there.
I picked Twitch because for a couple of reasons. It’s a company that is currently growing and that means there are a lot of opportunities to learn and carve a path. I also have a lot of love for what they do as a company for gamers. Twitch has made it possible for gamers everywhere to make a career doing what they love and sharing it with others. That is a feeling that resonates with me as software engineer. Last but not least, Twitch has to maintain a large number of systems. It needs to deal with video streaming, chat services, monetization, recommendation engines, third party integration, and open development APIs amongst many others. That means the company is facing issues from scalability, to caching and storage, to machine learning on a daily basis. Very few platforms face that many components in a single product. Although it’s likely each component is its own service, it’s clear they all have to work and orchestrate together to make the end user experience seamless and enjoyable.
Get to know the team and the School
The team had already met the previous week. This was our first official meeting as a team. Overall, we have a good dynamics and communication. I was originally a little scared of how working with a group and online was going to go, but we as a team have been putting a lot of work even in this first week to help each other succeed. Even just discussing the assignment helped clarified a number of issues with it, and passing it around to the other members for review means we got to catch each others mistakes. It also is encouraging to be able to get someone to keep you motivated even if it’s just to get their feedback or not let them down.
Weekly Study Time
This week is also the first week I’m officially working on my weekly schedule. I have tried to stick very strictly to it and successfully completed the first week. I already had to tweak it to fit next week’s events, but sticking through it has been key on the success of my previous assignments. Scheduling and blocking the time, and sticking to it has made it easier to form the habit. I do realize at this time the schedule is a bit rough, but I have made sure to allocate enough time to also properly unwind and get enough rest each day.