Sometimes I wish I had a linklog where I could post links and small bits of commentary, but because I don’t my 3 readers will have to suffer through this mishmash of the latest tech news in a regular blog entry 🙂
Rockstar Matt Linderman (aka Matt Ruby) from 37signals wrote a great post talking about how 37s methodology and advice is simply just advice, and not meant to be a straight-up guide to running your business. I’m not sure how people are getting confused and taking everything they say at face-value; oh well, that’s the “value” of the internet.
Jigga Fried kills it in his critique of web 2.0 applications cum businesses working with no business plan:
“Itâ€™s about value â€” something the new web set seems afraid to 1. create, and 2. charge for. I donâ€™t know why people are afraid to charge for their services, but here are a few ideas: 1. they donâ€™t think theyâ€™re good enough, 2. they are afraid to offend some people, 3. they think profit and idealism donâ€™t mix, and 4. peer pressure (â€œcome on, man, everyoneâ€™s doing the freeâ€). What are the other reasons?”
Exactly, don’t be afraid to actually charge money for something you worked hard on. I don’t care how loud the “everything free” mantra of “web 2.0” is sung from the Valley, a company that doesn’t figure out how to draw revenues from the onset is dead in the water. 9rules has been making money for awhile, and while some are awaiting our master revenue plan, we’ve been plugging along with ad space that easily pays the bills while we work on the other 95% of the pie. Build it and they will come 😉
“But letâ€™s think of some of the popular new site launches latelyâ€¦ web chat and IM comes to mind. WTF is the business? All those Map mashups out there? WTF is the business? Calendaring and Ajax desktops? WTF is the business? Theyâ€™re just FEATURES built on top of other companyâ€™s APIs, adding very little real value, and not making a dime of profit.”
Exactly. Yes, building an online calendar is a cool and a worthwhile effort, but in the long-term where is the true value and the true revenue? If one calendar company starts charging for their calendar, some bushy-tailed 16-year old Ruby on Rails genius is going to two-step that company and build his own calendar — but his will be free and 5x faster. Colin and I could build a damn online calendar this weekend considering there are no barriers to enter the market. Whatever, as soon as Google drops their calendar in a week or so, all bets are off and VCs are going to start sweating like a dog in a chinese restaurant.
“If edgeio was only for educated taggers I think I would share your scepticism, but donâ€™t confuse the initial positioning with the product vision. We made a decision to focus on bloggers who tag for the first 30 days or so. After that we will release tools for Bloggers who do not tag. Follwed by tools for non-bloggers.”
I’m psyched, I think that’s a great move. I’m always a sucker for companies who target people who don’t know their WordPress from their TextPattern, and I think Arrington and his Edgeio crew are doing just that. Another exciting launch that should be coming any day now is my friend Clarence Wooten’s CollectiveX group-centric communication platform. He said that we 9rules folk would get a sneak peek for usage with our 130+ members, so I’m sure that’ll be a blast. I’ve seen the initial design prototypes and they look fly, I’m excited to check them out for real.
Tomorrow Apple Computer is announcing some cool new products. My bet is on an iPod boombox (iPod Hi-Fi?), updated MacBooks to replace the aging iBook, and maybe even some type of iPod-looking touch screen thingie to coincide with all their new UI patents.
The guys and I at 9rules have been laying low the past week or so, and when that happens you can usually guess that something big is coming soon 🙂 Our Network has an extremely high concentration of great web designers and developers, so when we all put our minds together we can come up with some cool stuff. Soon we’ll be launching a few new applications/services that will reside outside the 9rules.com website, with our members at their helm. These will be the first of a few member collaborations that have been in the works for awhile now, so we’re psyched to finally move forward. Hint: 9____.com and 9_________.org 🙂