Kid bad at math? Here’s your magic wand

My brilliant niece, Samantha, has a term for it: yes-butter. Read to the end for why yes-butter is the death of so much new technology.


I’m sure you’ve had yes-butter spread thickly on you as well. You know what I’m talking about – the people who, when they have a problem, the conversation goes like this:

Them: My child does poorly in math.

Me: We make games that teach math. You can play Spirit Lake on your Mac or Windows computer.


Them: Yes, but it is only multiplication and division. My child needs help with fractions.

Me: No, problem, we make a game that teaches fractions, too. Fish Lake.

Them: Yes, but it doesn’t run on Chromebooks and I don’t know how to install a game on my computer and your game costs almost $10 !

Me: We’ve got you covered. Forgotten Trail runs on Chromebooks, Mac or Windows, requires no installation, runs on the web and costs less than $5. It teaches fractions and basic statistics.


Them: Yes, but I’m waiting for an app I can install on an iPad, and I really don’t pay for games.

Me: (getting tired out) Well, here you go, Making Camp. Runs on an iPad. Teaches math (multiplication and division) plus Native American history. Not just drill and repeat but also teaches math concepts. Did I mention it is free?

Get Making Camp for iPad!

Get Making Camp for iPad!

So, did they download it? No.

Fine! Below is your magic wand. Print it out and put it under your child’s pillow.


No, of course it won’t work but it’s not like you were going to do that either so let’s just both pretend you did and call it a day.

What does this teach us about new technology?

Just this – don’t get covered in the yes-butter. No matter what you make, people will tell that ,

“Yes, I want to use it but …”

Some of those are very legitimate reasons, and they really would buy your product if it ran on a Mac / Windows/ Chromebook/ iPad/ Android tablet/ papyrus scroll.

Others are just excuses for the biggest obstacle to technology adoption – inertia. I laugh to myself (okay, sometimes out loud, I’m not that polite) when people tell me that their product has no competition.

Keep this in mind when you get covered with yes-butter. SOME of those people really mean it but your product ALWAYS has competition and the biggest competitor of all is that the English translation of yes-butter is:

I’m busy watching cat videos on youtube and I want to keep my money.

As someone who wanted to remain nameless commented at lunch,

“The title of this post should be ‘Your kids are screwed.’ “

For the rest of you, click on a link above and check out any of our games. Making Camp is even free. Or, print out the magic wand. Hey, at least it’s doing something!

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