February 5, 2004 at 1:44 am #21589
As many of you know, the software running this site is meant to handle more than just this site.
To give you a bit of background: I’ve been working on software which will allow anyone to build a website. My goal has been to create something simple enough for anyone to use, but with the kind of high-end features that are only found in websites costing 10’s to 100’s of thousands of dollars – and, deliver all this for $50 to $200 per year.
This is not a sales pitch. I’m six months or more from having a product to sell. And, to be honest, I don’t ever plan on being in sales mode, in the traditional sense
This is a hobby for me. It’s something fun to do, that grew out of trying to think up a fun project for one of my sons to take over (neither is interested as it turns out). My goal for this is to someday cover my costs, and to never let it get big enough that it becomes a job or needs employees. If I can do something that people find fun to use, and which provides far more value than it costs – then it’s a win-win for everyone. If I can’t, then that’s still ok. I’m having fun building it.
What I need most is an army of people to start building websites using my product. This will give people who are evaluating my system something to look at as they evaluate it for their own purposes.
This isn’t a slick sales pitch. I’m not going to sneak up on you later and ask for money. Trust me. I’m not in this for the money. Actually, this is a chance for you to make a tiny amount of money. I was originally going to do a contest and offer prizes for people who design cool websites — but, as I started thinking about contest rules, it started getting complicated. So, instead, my current plan is to just pay anyone who comes up with a cool site $100 – to reward them for letting me use it as a demonstration of my software. Roberta and I will make the decision as to which sites I want to use for demos. Personally, I’d like to get 20-30 great sites out of this. If you decide to do this, do it because it’s fun to participate in building some (hopefully) cool new software – not for the money – because it’s not much money, and it’s not clear how I’m going to decide who gets it, or even when.
If you try to build a website, and decide it’s too much work – that’s ok. If you decide the whole idea is silly and don’t want to participate – that’s also ok. My hope is that a group of you will think it’s kind of fun, and build some cool sites. Everyone who builds a site will be welcome to keep their site online free for a year.
I’m hoping that I get lots of different kinds of websites built. My software is flexible enough to handle most any kind of website: restaurants, family photo galleries, church groups, owners groups (boats, condos, home), photo studios, fan clubs, genealogy sites, real estate offices, small hotels, product marketing sites, etc. etc. etc. At least, that’s what I have convinced myself is true. This project will help me know. Build a site that you think is interesting. Pick a hobby of yours. If you own a small business, try to build a site for it. If you belong to a club, try to build a site for your club. Pick anything – I’m looking for a wide variety of sites to be built.
Would you like to try your hand as a website builder? You (hopefully) don’t need to know anything about website design, and don’t need to be an artist, musician, or even a car dealer (I’m none of those things, and more!). All you need is an interest in doing something creative, and some free time.
Please consider participation. Regardless of if you build a wonderful site or not, you should have fun trying. If you would like to build a site, just go to the following website: http://www.talkspot.com On the site, it talks about a 90 day free trial. Ignore all that. The software is not finished, and I’m not charging anyone anything anytime soon. Just click the “Try It!” link, and start building. It’s that easy.
I’m confident that you will find bugs as you work on your sites – and, find things that are confusing. As this happens, just email me – and, I’ll do what I can to get you going again. Also: the documentation and help files are just getting started. A lot isn’t documented. Once again – just email – or, post a message on the talkspot.com site – and, I’ll answer you as fast as I can.
Good luck, and enjoy!
February 4, 2004
February 5, 2004 at 1:46 pm #21590
(Something fun to do. Build website Win $100)
This is an excellent opportunity, thank you Ken! The website I’m working on is in Dutch, so I don’t think it’ll be a candidate for the contest. 🙂 What I think your site really needs is the possibility to create custom appearances. You’ve made some very nice ones yourself, but I’d still prefer to be able to use my own design. I am familiar with HTML design, so you wouldn’t have to bother about making this more advanced option easy to use, I guess. 🙂
February 6, 2004 at 12:58 am #21591
(Something fun to do. Build website Win $100) Martjin:
I saw your Dutch website – cool! Good luck with it. I have no idea what it says – but, it looks great to me.
I agree with you – I need to add a feature where people who know how to build their own custom layouts (appearances) can do so. It will be in the next release. Also, I’m adding a feature (which will be there sometime soon) that allows you to customize a layout.
It’s always depressing to me to see my own product. I have sooo many good ideas for where to take it — but, there is soooo much work still to be done. I miss the Sierra days where products like Phantasmagoria had nearly 100 people involved. On my website project (
) there is JUST me. Lots of work, and only one lazy programmmer (me)
Thanks for giving it a try!
February 6, 2004 at 8:03 am #21592
(Something fun to do. Build website Win $100)
Thank you Ken. I will be looking forward to the next release. The site on Talkspot I made is actually an adaption of my church’s website of which I am the webmaster. I figured it would be a good idea to test your web-system, since it allows others to upload pages and content without knowing how to code HTML. You can find the original site at http://www.gerefkerkhia.nl – it would be great if I could adopt the lay-out.
February 6, 2004 at 4:31 pm #21593
(Something fun to do. Build website Win $100) Guess this would be a good opportunity to revamp my 3DL/Eccentric webpage. Last year, I designed a pretty nifty little language interpreter to help teach middle school kids how 3D games are created. It didn’t do 1/10th of what I wanted it to do, but most of that was because I was on a very tight schedule…I’m not sure I even slept that week. XD But it was fun, and I’m still updating the project between classes. If anyone’s interested, I think it’s still available for download. Course, I suck at HTML. But maybe I can get something that looks decent with this software. XD Thanks for the opportunity at least.
February 14, 2004 at 4:55 pm #21594
(re: Something fun to do. Build website Win $100)
I put up a quick demo site (it’s my online portfolio) at http://tschirgi.talkspot.com, but I have a question for Ken:
My main site (which I recently changed the layout for) is over at this location (http://tschirgi.20m.com). Is there a way for me to transfer the HTML to a Talkspot location? The layout was programmed by me in HTML using a lot of tables, so I’m not too sure how to do it with Talkspot’s interface.
Still, I like Talkspot’s easy-to-use interface for simpler web pages. It has the functionality of MS Word with easy to understand icons and a decent tutorial.
Good luck with Talkspot!
February 14, 2004 at 6:39 pm #21595
(re: re: Something fun to do. Build website Win $100) Mathew:
Thank you! I saw the site, and it’s looking great.
If you click the little icon, in the lower left corner of the edit window, it will show you an HTML window. Just copy, and paste, your HTML into the edit window. I do it all the time.
February 14, 2004 at 7:22 pm #21596
(re: re: re: Something fun to do. Build website Win $100)
Thanks for the tip with the HTML pasting… I’ll try that out.