Thanks Hansel, very appreciated.
I initially wrote a lengthy response, then the tab crashed.. Bummer ;-)
We did define different backlogs/milestones early-on: MUST, SHOULD, COULD, LATER. The focus was on delivery the "MUST" version to our first customers.
Until around mid 2020, we believed that our first customers were already secured. Our co-founder works in various executive-level committees and could convince those to buy us. Unfortunately that's a lot more uncertain now with Covid; most don't have time for us now.
We were really confident in that fact because our co-founder created her own tool and those committees all rely on it (100+ users); it's even integrated with their intranet. That tool can actually be considered as our prototype, and it is already in production, even if it's not monetized (bummer).
So, we thought that we needed to at least match the feature-set of that tool so that those users would even consider the transition.
But we lost a lot of time, as I explained in the article; for many reasons. One is the bar that I've set way too high regarding quality & security. Coming from the banking sector and having worked in infrastructure, enterprise frameworks & a security council, with large teams, huge budgets, etc, I was used to vastly different constraints.
And I didn't adjust to our own capacity. Both working half-time, having to handle everything from back to front, infra & tooling.
Context switching is hard; working on CouchDB queries on a Friday, forgetting everything over the week-end; then coming back to it on the next Wednesday, etc. Then switching back to CSS & Tailwind to fiddle with UI details, hehe.
I was too optimistic and probably way too attached to details. Yesterday, after reading through the comments on HackerNews, I went through the backlog and pushed back tons of technical tasks that I had planned to do next like upgrading to Storybook 6, updating node and npm, ditching deprecated Gitlab CI features, and whatnot. Stuff that can actually wait. After doing so, the target date of the MVP MUST version went from mid-march to the end of this month. So there's hope ;-)
So it's also a question of priorities, and choosing the most impactful work to be doing. It feels clearer now, but we all have inner demons to fight against ^_^