And what’s next, sort of

After 2,5 years I will leave Blendle by the end of February. It’s been a crazy and adventurous ride. The company grew from 20 to 80 people and our service has over a million users.

It wasn’t always easy. But that’s when you know you’re growing. We always kept talking and improved our process and came out stronger than before.

Blendle is an awesome place to work at. I won’t say it’s perfect but they’re very close, and improving. I really liked the open and straight-forward culture.

I’m quite proud of what we achieved. I think we made one of…

4 things I learned from hiring at a rapidly growing startup.

I’m a designer and responsible for Blendle’s iOS and Android apps. You might think that I should just worry about design. But, working at an early stage startup gives you a lot of different responsibilities. As they say at Facebook: ‘Nothing is someone else’s problem’.

If we want to build the best news app we had to find more people. Hiring is something far more difficult than I expected.

Here are some lessons I learned by just doing, talking with my colleagues and ask them how they ended up here:

1. Most people at our company came in through referrals

70% of our developers and designers came through referrals. …

This method will help you make better decisions

Every now and then you have to make some hard decisions. For example: what project do you want to take? What job is best for you? What do you want to focus on? What do you want to learn?

A few weeks ago I came to a realization that I’m not feeling challenged enough. I’d like to learn more and keep developing myself in different areas.

Maybe I should start learning Ruby, join another startup, do more freelancing or something else.

That being said I really don’t want to leave Blendle: the company I’m working at (part-time). …

I’m a fan of El Capitan’s auto hide menu bar setting and wanted to hide my dock as well. However, by default it takes too much time for the dock to come up.

Fortunately, there are a couple of Terminal commands to fix this. Open Terminal and paste the following lines one by one and press enter.

defaults write autohide-delay -float 0

defaults write autohide-time-modifier -float 0.5

killall Dock

You can play around with the values and see what you like best.


By the way: you can also speed up the Mission Control and Exposé animations by using this command

defaults write expose-animation-duration -float 0.15

For the last year I’ve been working as Blendle’s Mobile Product Designer. We at Blendle are trying to make the world’s best journalism available to everyone. You can buy and read articles from (almost) every Dutch newspaper and magazine without needing a subscription. Currently we have over 400.000 users and will launch in Germany very soon.

Back in the early days, we positioned the Blendle app very differently from the website. …

A little over a year ago I joined a startup for the very first time. I’ve been freelancing for over 6 years. I also have some working-at-an-agency-experience.

After a year of working at a startup I think I would always want to work on something for a longer period and keep improving for many reasons. I’ll try to explain some of my main reasons.

1. Colleagues

Everyone at a startup is by far more motivated to build something great. Your colleagues could probably be working anywhere, yet they chose to work where they are right now. Try to imagine what this means…

Smartwatches are okay as long as you’re not touching them

I’m a designer and I’ve been designing apps — mostly on iOS — for a couple of years now.

I’ve been very sceptic about the Apple Watch and smartwatches in general. I just couldn’t think of that many great use cases.

You can do a lot of things that you can do on your phone, but on your wrist. Though most of these things aren’t that useful.

However, I decided to buy one anyway. The Watch might be one of those products you have to experience in everyday life before drawing conclusions. …

Eight months ago I joined Blendle — a startup which aims to be the iTunes of journalism. I was really looking forward to be able to work on a project where there’s time for incredible amount of details. In Blendle Trending you’ll find a curated selection of the 10–15 best pieces every day. You only pay for the articles you actually read. And if you don’t like the article you can get a refund.

1. Opening the app

Opening the app for the first time we build up the entire screen.

I’m a jerk. And you, designer, might be one too.

I’m a 24-year-old self-taught designer. I’ve been freelancing for 6 years. I’ve always combined freelancing with building my own products. I love designing and executing my own ideas. My side projects— mostly iOS apps — have been featured on The Next Web, The Verge, Product Hunt, Lifehacker, Mashable, TechCrunch and many more.

I joined a startup called Blendle about six months ago and finally I no longer get frustrated when someone says: “It should be more orange.” I discovered that I’m an arrogant designer and that I underestimated the value of working in a team at a startup. …

I’m a 23 year-old self-taught product designer. Just like you, I always walk around thinking about the next big thing. I find so much joy in building things and being responsible for every single bit of a project.

Two years ago I was chatting with Jelle, who was eighteen at the time. We met over Twitter and we were talking about car kits. We wondered why there wasn’t something similar for our Macs. “Wouldn’t it be awesome to make calls on your Mac by connecting your phone over bluetooth?”

Jelle, who knew little about writing code, started reading Apple’s bluetooth…

Emiel Janson

Freelance Designer. Want to write a better bio but running out of ti…

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