For lack of a better term, “tinkering” to me is the practice of working or “playing around” with new ideas or technologies in business. The concept of “tinkering” is a very important aspect of how I look at technology and the software business.
There are always many things to do and projects to complete in any given week. The work is always going to be there. For sure. However, it is important that every week I spend a little time researching new concepts or ideas that are out there. For example, for one of my products I am “tinkering” with facial recognition technology. I have tried many times to add this technology to one of my products but I have not been successful in doing so. There is one particular facial recognition solution (or API): Kairos that I have been “tinkering” with for weeks. I continuously try to find ways to make this technology more accurate so I can use it in my own products. The point is that every week I search for a new way (or new angle) to enhance every piece of software I am working on. The process of “tinkering” ignites creative thought and keeps the business innovative and fresh. I had a friend tell me in college that “if your not working to get better, you are getting worse.” This quote I believe sums up the concept of “tinkering”.
In summary, in business and in life I think this concept is very important. If you are not constantly trying to push the envelope or staying in front of your industry, you will be like everyone else. Don’t you agree?