Our Values

Our Values

Dominic Zijlstra
Dominic Zijlstra
Publish date

Search for Deeper Truth

"Science is a way of thinking much more than it is a body of knowledge." - Carl Sagan
Traverse was born out of Dom’s quest of finding a method that worked to learn Chinese. He’d set out on a quest to find the truth about learning.
On his way, he found a lot of fake news, and dangerous half-truths that seemed appealing but ultimately were a dead end.
It was only by going really deep that he hit on the essence of what makes good learning.
Ever since that, we are not satisfied anymore with catchphrases, hyped tech, ‘best practices’ or quick shortcuts.
We want to find out the truth, and we know that we will be rewarded exploring our curiosity.
We want to truly learn, not memorize a bunch of facts just enough to pass the next test.
Science for us is the way we think. It’s not following the latest rage and presenting it as the full truth. The truth is much more interesting. It is the best of ancient wisdom and cutting-edge research.

Simple is Beautiful

Once this truth is distilled, the next challenge is turning it into something useful. That can be an app. Or it can be a blog article. Or an email.
Whatever the form, the guiding principle is always the same:
Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. - Albert Einstein
Notice how both parts of that sentence are equally important!
It should be made simple, so anyone can understand, and other people don’t need to do the same hard work that we did in our research.
Or in the app, it should be simple to use, to provide a delightful experience and keep users focused on the essence.
But equally important is to make things not simpler than they are. By doing that, we’d be contributing to the noise of hypes and half-truths that we do our best to avoid.
And judging by the beautiful maps Traverse users create, beauty and simplicity truly go hand in hand.

Creativity is Intelligence having Fun

The title is yet another quote by Albert Einstein. We humans are curiosity-driven animals. And that is exactly what learning is: the fun of exploring your curiosity.
The AHA and WOW moments you get when doing that are the surest signs of learning. Contrast that with the boredom you get when reviewing meaningless facts over and over again.
It is by discovering and adding meaning that we can make learning any topic fun. That is the true joy of learning. And that is why we’ve set out to build the app that Einstein would have used ;)

Connect as Humans

We are small team. In fact, it started as just me, Dom. It was my own money that I put on the line to build Traverse. It’s my skin in the game.
For me, connecting with customers on a personal level is the most rewarding part of building Traverse. It also makes sure that customers are heard, so that we can help you become successful in your quest for learning excellence.
In big corporations, this personal connection is quickly lost, and making customers happy is replaced by metrics and numbers. We’ve consciously chosen not to accept venture capital investment, so that we can keep operating as a small but extremely focused team.
So that, if you decide to pay us, you are sure that that money gets into the hands of those who really care (and we’ll gladly re-invest it to make you even happier).
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