Goodbye Forever (Alexandria #040)

The best content related to design, psychology, and productivity.
Sent sporadically.

Adam Sadowski
3 min readJan 17, 2023

Hello faithful readers,

I’m afraid this will be the final issue of Alexandria.

Revue, the platform that this is hosted on, is shutting down after being purchased by Twitter (F*ck you, Elon). Truthfully, I already had one and a half feet out the door anyway.

The intention of this project was to share articles and resources that added a little something to my life, with the hope that it could be of benefit to you. It’s a little nutty that I sent the first issue 3 years ago. Wowza!

Anyways, I’m not going to get all sappy or beat you over the head with any lessons learned blah blah blah. Maybe you enjoyed some of the articles, maybe you didn’t. In any case, thanks for sticking around.

Here are a few more before we part ways.

~ Adam

Featured Article

“That’s where the challenge of building quality products starts to creep in. The constant tension of shipping faster versus shipping better. Falling into a cycle of “Ship, then iterate” is a trap. It ends up being more shiterate. Things happen and that “fast-follow” V1.1 release or V2.0 you had imagined probably won’t. There’s always a new shiny initiative, re-org or new leadership hire that throws a wrench into things and changes all plans. Don’t rely on a future release to clean up today’s mess…”

More Amazing Reads

How to Be Great? Just Be Good, Repeatably

“Over the years, we’ve all encountered our fair share of successes and failures. As I’ve acquired more of both under my name, I’ve started to contemplate which experiences were truly “great” and why.

Interestingly enough, I realized that it was not the sporadic highs that were exceptional, but instead the long hauls; the sequences of events that seemed minimal at each juncture but compounded into major gains. This led me to think further about what greatness truly means. I’ve come to learn that it’s not about overnight successes or flashes of excellence, but periods of repeatable habits.”

How to Prioritize (When Everything’s a Priority)

“The famed Eisenhower was supposed to be the panacea for all of our prioritization problems. With its handy quadrants, it was meant to be a beacon of clarity and focus. I mean, if you chopped off anything deemed “not important” (i.e. the bottom half) life would be much less… stressful. But here’s the rub. Raise your hand if a scatter plot of your to-do list has most things in the “Do” section?

That client proposal? Due in 4 hours. The offer letter? The candidate needs it by EOD. The new onboarding program? Crap, that was due last week… It turns out that when everything is important AND urgent, the Eisenhower Matrix stops working. So how do you prioritize, when everything is a priority?”

Fundamental Elements of Effective User Personas

“Thinking about your users in terms of the specific roles they assume helps better delineate your personas and avoids incorrectly describing a persona as a single, whole person. Throughout each day, each of us wears different hats. With each hat, we endeavor to achieve different objectives and bring varying degrees of knowledge to the task.

Describing a persona as a whole person incorrectly assumes that just because a persona is an expert at one task, they are, therefore, an expert at all related tasks. Instead of looking at your users as a single person, describe them more specifically by the roles they assume when performing within separate task domains.”

Why Designers Quit

“Another interesting thing about designer generalists is that that they get recruited more often. 22 percent of them chose the answer “I was recruited by another company” as their main reason for quitting, compared to 7 percent for intermediate, 5 for senior, and 10 for junior designers. It’s something that definitely sticks out and may be another thing indicative of the trend I mentioned in the beginning of this post. Are design generalists getting more desirable? I think that may be the case but let’s wait and see what the next years will bring.”