Mastery is underrated

In any sufficiently crowded market, there is always the opportunity to be the absolute best at your thing.

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There are many developer blogs, and Josh Comeau writes on topics that are sufficiently covered by them, but with a care and detail far beyond the average.

There are a number of CSS frameworks, Tailwind CSS is just more obsessed than any other with being the best

There are plenty of developer educators, but Aaron Francis and Steve Tenuto are taking the medium so far beyond anyone else to elevate the medium to a new level.

I wear two watches. My Apple Watch has many useful features that it would be hard to give up. But Apple is never, ever going to care so deeply about tracking exercise activities that it is better than a piece of hardware that is dedicated to only that. So my Coros Vertix 2 plays that role on the other wrist. (It also has a battery that lasts a month, which Apple’s never going to give me.)

In any sufficiently crowded market, there is always the opportunity to be the absolute best at your thing. No matter how many times it’s been done before, or how well it’s been done, you can – right now – open up a blank document, create, and eventually publish the new and absolute best take on that thing.


Admittedly, with my background in agency work – which is akin to spinning plates – I’ve not always had the opportunity to be like this. Outside of one web project, built on WordPress for art galleries to post their collections. I must’ve worked on that website every week for two years.

It was – by far – the fastest, most refined, best performing and unique project I’ve ever worked on. It was also incredibly challenging – and looking at the same UI so regularly can lose its spark. But I look back fondly overall on an opportunity to truly refine and master … something.


In late 2022 at Sanity I was asked to run an in-person workshop for an agency partner. It would be both the first workshop I facilitated and attended.

I put together a quick presentation based on a lot of sales and demo slides that we regularly used. As well as some "course material" for the day which was just one long Notion document with what I thought were the best things to teach in a short amount of time.

It was scrappy. It reviewed really well. It was also version 1.

Over the next 18 months I went on to build an application to hold this course material. This was useful as all future workshops as they were done remotely. I added features for user login, progress tracking, video and more. I designed and redesigned the front end – and gladly conceded defeat once our designers were able to lend their expertise and bring it in line with the wider brand.

Eventually, this internally developed "Training App" would become Sanity's official Learning platform, and my actual role change from Solution Engineer that did education on the side – to Educator.

The name of that first workshop was Day One with Sanity Studio. That's still the introductory course, but it has been written, rewritten, recorded and rerecorded multiple times.

Learn officially launched just yesterday – 8 May 2024. In my mind, even after ~18 months of development, it's still version 1. It's better than it was, there's room for improvement. I'm looking forward to what it will continue to become.

Refine, publish, repeat

None of the examples listed at the top of this blog post were the first piece of content any of those people produced.

Your first take is never your best.

The version of this blog post you're reading isn't the first one I published.

Striving for perfection gets in the way of shipping that ... something. It’s better to get “reps” in publishing less-than-perfect work sooner, than to delay something until you consider it ready. Regularly writing, recording, and releasing is how you get better, and closer to perfect.

Nothing beats momentum. Publish, refine, and publish again.