Fast Projects

Patrick Collison is building a fascinating list of “examples of people quickly accomplishing ambitious things together”, or put another way, some of the fastest projects in history.

A couple of examples from the growing list:

Apollo 8. On August 9 1968, NASA decided that Apollo 8 should go to the moon. It launched on December 21 1968, 134 days later. Source: Apollo Spacecraft Chronology.

Disneyland. Walt Disney’s conception of “The Happiest Place on Earth” was brought to life in 366 days. Source: Under Construction: A look inside Walt Disney’s Disneyland.

iPod. Tony Fadell was hired to create the iPod in late January 2001. Steve Jobs greenlit the project in March 2001. They hired a contract manufacturer in April 2001, announced the product in October 2001, and shipped the first production iPod to customers in November 2001, around 290 days after getting started. Source: Tony Fadell.

What drives a fast project?

Is it people? Scope? Tools?

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