The Art of Darkness

The Cult of Done

March 5th, 2009 by Cobwebs

Bre Pettis and Kio Stark wrote this brilliant manifesto for rapid prototyping. I think the same ideas apply to many types of projects, including the things I like to ramble about here.

The Cult of Done Manifesto

  1. There are three states of being. Not knowing, action and completion.
  2. Accept that everything is a draft. It helps to get it done.
  3. There is no editing stage.
  4. Pretending you know what you’re doing is almost the same as knowing what you are doing, so just accept that you know what you’re doing even if you don’t and do it.
  5. Banish procrastination. If you wait more than a week to get an idea done, abandon it.
  6. The point of being done is not to finish but to get other things done.
  7. Once you’re done you can throw it away.
  8. Laugh at perfection. It’s boring and keeps you from being done.
  9. People without dirty hands are wrong. Doing something makes you right.
  10. Failure counts as done. So do mistakes.
  11. Destruction is a variant of done.
  12. If you have an idea and publish it on the internet, that counts as a ghost of done.
  13. Done is the engine of more.

This is an excellent way to approach learning a new skill or tackling any project that you suspect might be difficult. Dive in. Forge ahead. If you screw it up, what’s the harm?

It’s entertaining to read the comments on the original post from people whose heads are all asplody over the notion that “done” doesn’t have to equal “perfect.” True, you wouldn’t want to build a 747 using these rules, but they’d be an excellent way to start designing a 747. As they’re stated, I think the rules pretty clearly apply to new ventures rather than routine manufacturing.

So print out this manifesto, stick it on the wall above your desk or workbench, and start doing things!

(via BoingBoing)

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