Alpha Reveal: developer feedback summary

A few weeks ago, we released the Alpha reveal for The Next Milestone, the very first glimpse into New Golem.

Alpha Reveal: developer feedback summary

A few weeks ago, we released the Alpha reveal for The Next Milestone, the very first glimpse into New Golem. Even though the release is still an ugly duckling that needs a bit of work, for us it was important to get the product in the hands of developers as soon as possible, in order to get early feedback and iterate to make it the most comfortable and easy to use platform.

As we have mentioned several times, New Golem is built under the premise "developer first", that is, delivering the best developer experience ever. So our feedback loop needs to be constant to feed the product build and adjust the platform to the needs of our target users.

New Golem (whose MVP we dubbed The Next Milestone) will have big UX improvements in comparison to Clay Golem:

  • No more port forwarding needed,
  • Gasless payments,
  • Lower transaction fees,

... just to name a few.

If you want to learn more about the new architecture and the new platform head over to the blogposts.

Part I

Part II

Learning about our users is key to our product building approach

We needed to know how people interact with Golem, therefore we chose to prepare a series of Gitcoin incentive programs for developers. The first program has just ended, and it has already helped us gather valuable data and feedback - we look forward to the upcoming bounties!

For starters, we gave users a simple task: install Golem and try out our quick tutorial which will guide them in the computation of a task on our Devnet. Then, users needed to record their interaction and fill out a survey that would help us understand the hurdles they might have encountered.

We set simple tasks, that did not require much effort from the users, however, at the same time these ended up providing valuable insights for our dev team. The future Gitcoin bounties will be more advanced and the difficulty of tasks will increase as the platform matures. For the time being, we want to share with our community the conclusions we got so far from the first Gitcoin bounty program.

As a first step, we wanted to know who are the people that are interacting with the Alpha release in the overall Golem context. As you may see in the graphs below, most of the bounty hunters were new users that had no previous interaction with earlier versions of Golem. Therefore, we can assume that they are not biased and have no particular expectations based on their past experiences.

Also, the people who have already knew Golem, were using it mostly via the GUI, so their interaction with Alpha via the CLI (command line) was also a new workflow. Luckily, most of our respondents had CLI knowledge and used it on a daily basis. We've also asked the respondents to mark their level of Docker knowledge - only half of them felt comfortable with it.

Moving to main question of the survey - How easy it was to install the Alpha Reveal of The Next Milestone?

We can proudly say that there is a huge qualitative improvement in this area. Previously, when collecting feedback regarding Clay Golem we got responses stating that, for a vast group of users, the installation process was hard due to port forwarding problems. Some simply were not able to do it and because of that were unable to complete the installation. Let it be noted that this sometimes has little to do with developer expertise. Your Internet Service Provider might get in the way and port forwarding might not be possible at all.

Apart from questions devoted to getting to know our users, and getting feedback regarding installation of the Alpha Reveal we also wanted to know what do the respondents thought about our newly prepared documentation. So, how helpful was it?

It seems that the SDK team has done their homework very well, and the documentation they've prepared fulfils its role and provides all the needed support for the users and is fully comprehensive. This is an excellent base for its future iterations aimed at developers.

Last, but not least, we asked the important question whether people were able to complete their tasks and compute a Blender scenes on TNM, or not.

All in all, the results we got look very promising and are satisfying to us. Especially taking under consideration, we're talking about an early Alpha version, which will get much improvement over time. However, it is important to note that the purpose of setting this bounty was not to collect praise and pat ourselves on the backs. We wanted to LEARN what are the problematic issues that people have when it comes to their experience with Golem, and what we need to fix before the upcoming releases.

So the conclusions from this first round are:

  • Make our documentation even better with an ELI5 approach;
  • Provide an explanation for the possible errors we included in the documentation;
  • Work on our logs and make them more human readable

All the work we mentioned here, including this summary that you've just read, is all aimed at making our product better. As already mentioned - the future iterations will be more developer-centric, as almost 80% of the responders have already declared their interest and willingness to build some apps on New Golem. So, if you're also interested in creating an app on New Golem remember to follow our Twitter not miss any updated regarding our Gitcoin bounties!

For more information about Golem, head over to our website

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