Opinionated configurability

Opinionated configurability
This image was created with the assistance of DALLĀ·E 2 - A swimming pool in the middle of a kitchen

Opinionated configurability - this is how I describe to our team what we aim to achieve with Ambiki.

We are creating opinionated software. Our team boasts deep expertise and comprehensive industry knowledge. Plus, we have wonderful customers from whom we learn daily. However, being too opinionated can be counterproductive. As we've discovered, every practice has its own unique approach. Our challenge is to support these variations while preserving a streamlined user experience.

The trickiest part is discerning when to be opinionated and when to offer configurability. It's also about knowing when to decline a request.

Consider this analogy: A customer requests a swimming pool in the kitchen. While swimming pools are delightful, we believe they don't fit in a kitchen. But let's delve into the deeper reason behind such a request. Does this person get overheated when cooking? Or perhaps they wish to relax while waiting for water to boil?

This is where innovation and empathetic listening come into play. Instead of fixating on the literal request of a "swimming pool in the kitchen," we need to focus on the underlying need: staying cool while cooking. By doing so, we can ideate alternative solutions that address the core issue without compromising the design or functionality of the kitchen.

For instance, maybe it's about integrating a cooling system into the kitchen or ensuring better ventilation to maintain an optimal temperature. Or it could be as simple as designing a resting space with cooling elements for someone to relax while their food is getting prepared.

The essence of opinionated configurability is not just to decline or accept requests, but to interpret them in a way that aligns with our vision and the genuine requirements of our users. By looking beyond the obvious, we can offer innovative solutions that truly cater to the heart of our customers' needs without losing sight of our foundational principles.