hacker news with inline top comments    .. more ..    13 Feb 2011 Ask
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Ask HN: What are the best books on startups?
10 points by hammock 2 hours ago   5 comments top 4
1 point by mindcrime 44 minutes ago 0 replies      
Hmm... a few that jump to mind for me would be:

The Art of the Start - Guy Kawasaki http://www.amazon.com/Art-Start-Time-Tested-Battle-Hardened-...

Outside Innovation - Patricia Seybold http://www.amazon.com/Outside-Innovation-Customers-Co-Design...

Unleashing the Killer App - Larry Downes & Chunka Mui http://www.amazon.com/Unleashing-Killer-App-Strategies-Domin...

Wellsprings of Knowledge - Dorothy Leonard Barton http://www.amazon.com/Wellsprings-Knowledge-Building-Sustain...

The Innovators Dilemma - Clayton Christensen http://www.amazon.com/Innovators-Dilemma-Revolutionary-Busin...

Crossing the Chasm - Geoffrey A. Moore http://www.amazon.com/Crossing-Chasm-Geoffrey-Moore/dp/00605...

The Startup Game: Inside the Partnership between Venture Capitalists and Entrepreneurs - William H. Draper http://www.amazon.com/Startup-Game-Partnership-Capitalists-E...

Some of these aren't necessarily about startups, but I think they all have something valuable to offer. YMMV.

2 points by idiotb 2 hours ago 1 reply      
1 point by jayzee 1 hour ago 0 replies      
The Origin and Evolution of New Businesses - Amar Bhide
Ask HN: Selling B2B Software to a Chinese company
4 points by jayzee 2 hours ago   discuss
Tell PG: The username field in the login uses auto capitalization on phones
6 points by solipsist 3 hours ago   6 comments top 2
6 points by pg 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Sure, if someone can tell me authoritatively what to do.
3 points by grinich 1 hour ago 0 replies      
If you're reading HN on an iPhone, I built an app with a better experience:


Ask HN: Self-marketing?
39 points by yuvadam 11 hours ago   18 comments top 14
6 points by patio11 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I spend a wee bit too much time on the Internet, and much of that is sort of dual use for my personal enjoyment and marketing. I have participated in HN and a few other forums for about fivish years now, and that has been a great opportunity to meet people. I try to get out to conferences and meet ups to meet folks outside of the massive Ogaki tech mafia. I also have a blog which has been fairly popular.

The most important thing I do for marketing is helping people, frequently. It opens a lot of doors. It also means there are a couple of... thousand, maybe? (crikey) ... people who will say nice things about me even when I'm not in the room. That has lead directly to consulting work (and business opportunities) in the past.

Can I say one heretical thing? Contribution to OSS is not by itself marketing. It is a fairly low ROI way to reach decision makers unless you are identified with a popular project. (You can easily spend many hours on a commit that no one but you or the mainainer will ever know you wrote. Spend the same amount of time directly solving a problem for someone and you have a fan for life.)

P.S. I truly love Github, but would not host my OSS on it, because it encourages use patterns which are extraordinarily suboptimal for marketing oneself. YMMV.

5 points by DanI-S 10 hours ago 0 replies      
This is a great question. I've been spending a lot of time recently building a personal landing page, getting more established on public social media, etc. It's incredibly time consuming and I feel really torn - I'd much rather be learning new tools and languages. However, I've definitely gotten the impression that if I can't somehow advertise the tools and languages that I already know, I may as well not bother. Offline presence is also really important - but I recently turned up to a meetup without any business cards to swap and won't ever make that mistake again.

I moved from an academic background in the UK to the startup world in California, so I feel like I've been born naked into a new world. I didn't even use my Twitter account until recently. I'd like to hear from some "veterans" about this - who has gotten a real impact as a result of their self-marketing efforts?

7 points by steveklabnik 9 hours ago 0 replies      

The key is this: realize that everything you do is marketing yourself. Any time you interact with someone else, it's marketing yourself. Every time you post to HN, every time you tweet, every time you blog... it's all marketing.

Now, that doesn't mean 'be dishonest,' or anything like that. Reputations are incredibly important. Just be aware that you're doing it all the time, even if you don't know you are.

5 points by kylebragger 9 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm a developer, and to be honest, not a ton. For better or for worse, I spend the majority of my time building cool[1] stuff. Some things, like Forrst, have taken off and garnered me some nice exposure. Other things have ended up being duds. Other than that, I do blog[2], albeit infrequently, but I'd like to change that; I think it is important to speak up if you feel you have something thoughtful/insightful to add to your community/industry. However, I've found that I much more enjoy the passive recognition that comes as a result of creating neat stuff, because it feels much more "real" than trying to promote myself for the sake of it. I really don't care /that/ much about my reputation[3] insofar as I'm not out to be the #1 anything; I'd rather build amazing things than worry about what top 10 list I'll (never) end up in.

[1] at least to me

[2] http://kylewritescode.com/

[3] that's not to say I don't care about it generally speaking; I do strive to be thoughtful, helpful, and someone that people respect.

3 points by jarin 9 hours ago 0 replies      
That's a pretty good question. I spend most of my time doing client work, so my self-marketing is mostly limited to:

1) Posting code and rants on my blog whenever I feel like it

2) Contributing code to open-source projects that I use

3) Chatting with people at the bar or going to tech mixers (also at the bar)

4) Posting on various websites like HN

I get about 70% of my client work from #3, 25% or so from word of mouth (friends, family, or past clients), and 5% or so from posting online. #1 is mostly just vanity and #2 is out of necessity, but they probably help too without me directly seeing the effects. I've never advertised or gone trolling for clients since I started freelancing.

Also, my company website is terrible and hasn't been updated in about 4 years, but it doesn't seem to matter. I'll get around to it eventually :)

Edit: I forgot to mention giving talks at Ruby groups and Ignite and things like that. I've gotten a couple of clients from that but it's mostly just challenging and fun.

2 points by lsc 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm a SysAdmin, not a dev, so things are somewhat different; still, the marketing is probably pretty similar.

I wrote a book about some of the things I more commonly SysAdmin. By far, this was the best marketing I've ever done. (It's also the most expensive marketing I've ever done. No-starch paid to have it printed, but god damn, that was a lot of work to write.)

Now, as for an online presence, in my field, being visible on mailing lists and the like is pretty important. A nice website? much less so. Of course, if you are a frontend dev, the opposite probably applies.

Eh, I do think that contributing patches back is pretty important. Good decision makers consult good technical people before making such a decision, and having some patches on public mailing lists shows that you know /something/ (which is usually good enough for a SysAdmin. Nobody expects me to be able to re-write apache, but I am expected to sometimes make some small change to mod_auth_*)

Still, writing a book (and having it published by an established publisher) might not be the cheapest way to reach decision makers, but it's one of the more effective ways to do so, I think.

1 point by mrj 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Personally, I've found it difficult to get much attention online. I guess I've just been off doing weird stuff for too long to interest most programmers.

Every time I hear stories of so-and-so making a website that caught on like wildfire overnight, it's often times attributable to a good network of contacts who already knew that person and all tweeted for him.

I think having contacts is very important, and those people who can conquer that fear of sharing too much are the ones who'll build the best relationships, and by doing so, have more frequent successes.

3 points by RiderOfGiraffes 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Although it garnered no comments, I posted something about this subject a couple of weeks ago:


Direct link:


1 point by ecaradec 9 hours ago 0 replies      
It's something I've been trying to fix lately. It's not only about your online reputation, you should care of your offline reputation as well. I don't mean it in a tricky way, by deceiving people : You should try to provide value for others via your blog, etc... Do some projects, talk about them.

It's important because, as a developer, you usually don't make a lot of connections with others. If you don't do anything your only connections will be your peers and little bit a variety is better. Even if you and I would like to be valued on our technical knowledge, it won't bring you very far. If you don't talk, nobody is gonna to know you.

I use my blog more like a platform to share stuff I made, or thought, or to clear my mind about some idea. It's also something I can point potential employers to when I'll need it. It doesn't really matter if you don't have readers, it'll put your resume apart in most interviews.

Also I added many local folks in my twitter, and it leads me to some meet up that gives connections with new peoples around me. I live in a medium city in the south of france, if I can met people there, you can probably too.

1 point by motters 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I've had a web site since 1995 and a blog since 2005. I never really thought of it as marketing, but of course it is. Online presence has some importance in terms of finding out who your peer group are and acting as a starting point for discussions. Probably most of the jobs I've held though have had no connection to what I've published online, although in many (but by no means all) cases employers tend to view personal open source projects positively.
1 point by gaustin 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Not as much as I should.

Yes and yes. But I don't spend any/enough effort on them.

Very. I live in a pretty remote low-population part of the USA. The people I want to work with will probably only ever get to know me online, until I move somewhere more in line with my goals. Offline presence is important, too, but there's not much opportunity for that here outside of the 3 or 4 possible programmer workplaces.

1 point by spiralganglion 9 hours ago 0 replies      
My startup hasn't launched a website yet (we've very, very young). When we do, there will be a blog where we post the nastiest challenges our team has faced, and the solutions we devised. The work we're doing is highly technical, but there's also a strong artistic component, so we'll have a broad range of topics that should be accessible to many. Ideally, by exposing our struggles and how we've overcome them, we'll be benefitting others who face similar woes, and opening up the discussion to include their solutions. Ultimately, I feel that the best promotion will come from creating value for others, especially if we can get our blog's readers to offer value of their own.

On a personal level, I engage in other projects in other industries (music, web comics, computer animation) and use my communities there to cultivate interest in my startup.

1 point by anm8tr 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I spend a lot of time at it, though hopefully not too much. Maybe 5-10% of my working day.

You absolutely must start with a blog or a website for your home base. Then you go to YComb, LinkedIn, Stackoverflow, and ask and answer questions. Be sure to use the same user name for as many sites as you can so you become recognizable. First initial, last name is actually preferable - when dealing with your field you don't want to hide behind an anonymous user name (like AnM8tR - groan....). You can use fancy user name for movie sites.

I use http://clubajax.org to write my blogs, and while they are informative blogs, I learn an incredible amount; because I do research before hand to ensure that I'm giving correct advice.

2 points by jhuckestein 10 hours ago 1 reply      
IMO your offline presence is more important than your online presence, but maybe I'm just old fashioned :)
The Joy of Coding
34 points by jfc 12 hours ago   16 comments top 9
16 points by RiderOfGiraffes 12 hours ago 2 replies      

  > P.P.S. I've built over 30% of my app at this point.

The other 130% will take 50 times as long ... <grin>

1 point by wallflower 9 hours ago 1 reply      
The more you code, especially in mobile, the more you realize that there is a better way of doing things. It's ok to throw away old code and start over. That's part of the fun. Otherwise, we'd be copy and paste monkeys. I've personally gone through six or seven iterations of how to deal with UITableViews.

Watch the WWDC sessions. Or if you do Android, watch the Google I/O sessions and study their methods. It's fascinating and interesting to learn from people whose main passion (and day job) is making app code more efficient, more responsive, or a better user experience.

WWDC10 session #104 "Designing Apps with Scroll Views" is an amazing look into how Apple's own Application Engineers make iOS apps. You may not ever work for Apple (most people aspire but probably won't) but engineering code like they do will be a subtle way to differentiate your product from the unwashed apps out there.

The more you learn about design, the more valuable you will be. The best coder I know is a better designer. And that is saying something. Strive to be a better designer than coder and eventually things will balance out. Anyone can code - that is a commodity - but being able to code and craft a beautiful user experience - that is something quite rare.

Good luck and keep going, do it for the journey not for the paycheck! Even if you don't get paid, it's an investment that will pay off.

2 points by stevenbrianhall 12 hours ago 1 reply      
I've been at this for about 10 years now, off-and-on.

These past two weeks I've been stuck in the grind with a mountain of projects, just growing tired of clients and growing scope and blah, blah blah.

Seeing your enthusiasm is helpful to me. It reminds me why I started in the first place. I do love what we get to do, and I hope you file what you've written away and look back on it from time-to-time to remind yourself why you're doing what you do.

Merlin Mann and Dan Benjamin have a great podcast out called "Back to Work" (http://5by5.tv/b2w), and Merlin had a great part around 20 minutes of episode 4 where he talks about getting bummed by deadlines, and by how much work he has to do, and how hard it is, and then he says:

"Then I caught myself and said 'waaitaminute', I dick around on the internet for a living and write about whatever I want. Oh my God, I am so not allowed to be that sad about this. If I can't figure out how to be happy doing what I'm doing, I might as well give up."

Good reminders. Thanks for posting, and for your enthusiasm. :)

1 point by jefe78 6 hours ago 0 replies      
If you love the language you're coding in, the honeymoon may never fade. Get me working on some old school C or Python and I'll have the same problem. "Crap, its 3am...did I eat?"

Keep at it! I hope you keep enjoying it.

1 point by raintrees 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I agree. I run a service business, but am constantly learning new languages, recently using Python to script access between Endicia (US postage app) and Fishbowl (inventory/ordering app).

And unlike surfing, a crowded field can be useful, so no need for a "coding sucks, don't try it" bumper sticker.

1 point by pavel_lishin 6 hours ago 0 replies      
PHP is the gateway drug. Welcome aboard!
1 point by JoshCole 11 hours ago 1 reply      
One thing I like about coding is the projects that are hard that you actually finish. I struggle with these, not understanding, fighting bugs, and just going slow in general. But I keep at it. At some point I look back and I see I've actually coded something that very nearly works like I wanted it too. That is very satisfying.
3 points by cicatrix_manet 10 hours ago 0 replies      
congrats, dude.

its turtles all the way down from here.

1 point by Cockbrand 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Which of the books you read for learning iOS would you recommend?
Ask HN: How do I sell my (M)MORPG?
31 points by K-Zodron 13 hours ago   13 comments top 7
6 points by JeffL 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Just curious, how have you marketed it so far?

I see 75 people online right now, how many total players in month do you have?

Monetization is free to play with an item mall?

5 points by RiderOfGiraffes 12 hours ago 0 replies      
8 points by _exec 12 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm interested. How can I get in touch with you?
3 points by coryl 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Flippa.com sounds about right.
2 points by jmonegro 11 hours ago 1 reply      
That looks an awful lot like Tibia.
1 point by evanhanson 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Question: why is everything greyed out on the site except for a Facebook "recommend" button?
-4 points by Zolomon 11 hours ago 0 replies      
This looks awfully like a 90% rip-off of Tibia.

Link: http://www.tibia.com/mmorpg/free-multiplayer-online-role-pla...

Ask HN: Evaluating a pre-seed funding offer
3 points by adsf 2 hours ago   2 comments top 2
1 point by jayzee 1 hour ago 0 replies      
- Is the investor a high net-worth individual?

- I would not get a friend attorney even if he has experience with start-ups. Talk the the established law firms and they may be able to defer fees. That way you can be sure that you got the 'gotcha's'

- Follow up with portfolio companies that the investor recommends but also others whom he invested in but did not recommend. you might learn more in the later case

1 point by Jsarokin 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I don't know the answer to your question, but it may be worthwhile to post it on Quora as well.

Good luck finding your answer, and congrats on the funding offer.

Show HN: How I stole my computer back from an NYC cabbie.
5 points by rgbrgb 4 hours ago   discuss
[Ask HN]: Really testing out my website..
3 points by jason_slack 3 hours ago   1 comment top
1 point by jph 33 minutes ago 0 replies      
You could try searching for software like this:

Load testing software -- can do things like download many video streams at once, to show you how well your server handles it. An open source example is Apache JMeter at http://jakarta.apache.org/jmeter/

Split testing software -- can compare and contrast different approaches to a web site, typically by creating two versions of a resource like web page A and web page B, then tracking which is most successful by whatever metric you want. Look at Bingo Card Creator by HackerNews user "paraschopra" at http://www.bingocardcreator.com/abingo/resources

System monitoring software -- can do things like graph your RAM and CPU over time, as well as let you script more sophisticated tracking like average CPU spike per connection. An open source example is Nagios at http://nagios.org/

Browser simulation testing -- can do automate click testing on your site, for example to create a test that pretends to be a user clicking on your links which run your javascript changes. An open source example is Selenium at http://seleniumhq.org/

Ask HN: What type of splash page works better?
7 points by ch00ey 5 hours ago   4 comments top 3
1 point by GBond 46 minutes ago 1 reply      
Don't guess or make assumptions. A/B test both and make a decision based on hard numbers.
1 point by bobfunk 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Co-founder of Webpop here. Honored to see our landing as one of your examples :)

We actually had exactly this discussion internally when we created our landing. We even had at least one prototype of the more mysterious kind with little more than a signup form.

I think both can work well, but for our beta we felt it was quite important that our users had an idea about what they signed up for. We're not doing a consumer product, and it wouldn't help us much getting lots of emails from people who would be completely lost when given access to a tool for professional web designers.

I suspect that being more mysterious would work well for sites with more of a social networking or entertainment focus.

Ask HN: SF startup meet up / happy hour tonight
6 points by Johngibb 6 hours ago   1 comment top
1 point by Johngibb 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Let's plan one here. I'll start by suggesting a time: 8pm tonight. Anyone interested in coming?
Ask HN: What should I ask Dr. David Ferrucci, the leader of IBM's Watson project
4 points by georgi0u 5 hours ago   4 comments top 3
1 point by kenjackson 10 minutes ago 0 replies      
Could you ask him what is the single most important thing that makes Watson possible, whereas Watson would not be possible five years ago? Was there an advancement in querying unstructured data? Or was it simply disks got big enough to hold a lot of data?
1 point by solipsist 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Ask him what he thinks the various applications of the Watson project are (if he can disclose some of them). I heard they were going to use it for medical purposes (let Watson answer people's questions and help diagnose them), but I'm sure they have a lot more in mind. It'd also be interesting to have him compare this feat to Deep Blue.

Let us know the question you end up asking him and his answer, if you can! Thanks!

1 point by dandrews 4 hours ago 1 reply      
You're his nephew's roommate? Ask him "May I send you my resumé?"

Seriously, I presume that his budget was large, but not inexhaustible. Ask him what he could have accomplished if he'd thrown more hardware/people at the problem.

Ask HN: How do you interact with HN?
6 points by JoelMcCracken 11 hours ago   2 comments top 2
1 point by mrlase 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I pull up HN every few hours on the weekends, check the front page, ask, and new. Usually during the week it gets checked when I have a bit of down time between things I'm doing (Android of course makes this easy). I also idle on IRC, popping in every now and then throughout the day to see if there's anything interesting being discussed.
2 points by spiralganglion 11 hours ago 0 replies      
I check it passively throughout the day, from the web (no reader or system of any sort). It's a bit of a time vampire, but I have a lot of free time ‚Ä" probably one of the lucky few here who do.
Ask HN: What Did You Learn At Your First Start-up?
8 points by kmccarth 11 hours ago   4 comments top 3
2 points by badkins 10 hours ago 1 reply      
In my first startup now. The biggest thing I have learned is the roughness of the emotional rollercoaster. When things are going well, it is an amazing rush. Bur when things are going wrong, the lows can be absolutely brutal. You NEED someone to provide support in these times. The best trait to have in a startup is persistence, because without it, you will want to give up during these times.
1 point by spiralganglion 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm in my first startup right now, and we're but a few weeks old. I can say with absolute certainty that I'm constantly engaged in the act of learning. I seized this opportunity exactly to have a career where I must learn constantly about myriad topics in order to prosper.
2 points by us 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Sounds interesting. Maybe we can start a group for this with Skype handles instead
Ask HN: How do you find stuff to do in your city?
9 points by martinshen 12 hours ago   15 comments top 7
1 point by staunch 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I hate to say it but I really want a Groupon for Activities (ONLY).

Horseback riding, trap shooting, skiing, fishing, and that kind of thing. A site that gives me something to do on the weekends when I'm in the mood for an activity.

1 point by matdwyer 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Cool landing page (I like how the pictures are localized)

I have a few ways, they are pretty specific to Toronto but I'll mention them anyway so you get the idea.

1) Redflagdeals.com - this is my primary source as it is the largest forum in Canada (with a huge center around Toronto). Basically it is a "deals" forum like slickdeals or fatwallet in the states, but there is a TON of talk about things to do in Toronto, great restaurants, and of course, deals on stuff. For me I browse this often and if I find something I like then I'll check it out. For example, I found out about "O'Noir" here, which was a restaurant where you eat in pitch black, and all the waiters are blind.

2) Local blogs - things like blogto.com show me a lot of the independent type stuff around (festivals, smaller shops, bands, etc.). Torontoist is another one. For example I just learned they are opening a Ping Pong bar in downtown Toronto from here.

3) Deal sites (like groupon, living social, etc). Basically it isn't just about buying the deal (as I only buy maybe 1 per week) but I keep an eye out for the new things to do that they feature - I might find a paintball place and keep it in mind even if I don't buy the deal, or some sort of trade show/exhibition, etc.

For things like a) sports and b) music I'd basically either know that it was coming (I'm a huge sports fan with seasons tickets to baseball and basically never miss a leafs game) so I don't really have to search out that info.

I try to be pretty frugal with what I do so that is certainly a bias - If I'm going to a new city the first thing I do is save the Wikitravel page to my iPad, then I'll check out some of the past groupons there, etc. I'll then check out some of the online coupon places (for example I got coupons for 2-4-1 mini-golf & bowling in Florida, etc). Last resort when I get there I'll check out the rack cards at tourist type places (in Florida I found out about a pirate tour boat, lol).

If I were you I'd be skimming forums as your best bet for crowd sourcing data, there are two different opinions for "things to do" one being a local and one being a tourist, but usually locals don't do enough tourist stuff, and tourists don't do enough local stuff... so there is an interesting middle you could find there (for example, I've never been to the Royal Ontario Museum, or the Bata Shoe Museum after living in Toronto for 5 years - these would be done by 75% of tourists). Of course you could skim foursquare data too but it seems to be done already.

Good luck

1 point by djb_hackernews 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I've been working on a similar but different solution at http://impromptudo.com. I'm currently focusing on quantity and breadth, saving quality and depth for later.

Edit: checked out your project, looks very similar to http://usehipster.com, which was recently acquired (?) and it hasn't even launched. So, theres confirmation of the idea.

1 point by speakeasy 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I started ThisCity.com in Calgary, AB. We have a new version launching next month. If you want lessons from being in the biz and potentially to link up, email me.


1 point by T-hawk 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Incredibly low tech, but printed newspapers. I'm in NYC so there's an abundance. amNY (the free one) and Newsday are pretty consistent with a small section listing concerts and comedy and other performers, usually in the Friday editions.
1 point by topcat31 11 hours ago 0 replies      
For music last.fm does a wonderful "gigs in your city" RSS feed.
1 point by ig1 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Ask HN: In what scenarios use of node.js can be useful?
19 points by anujkk 14 hours ago   21 comments top 12
5 points by jdub 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm building a streaming HTML5 Twitter client called Denby: http://www.hellodenby.com/

(Although the hosted version is currently in closed alpha, you can check out progress on GitHub.)

If you want something more Tweetie than TweetDeck, check out Streamie: http://streamie.org/

2 points by chaosmachine 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I use node.js to power my domain name generator:


It runs queries against a pool of lookup servers and aggregates/returns the results in real time. I'm also using it as a fast, low footprint HTTP server.

2 points by hasenj 13 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm using node for all my new web development.

It has an awesome community, and by that I mean: awesome package manager, awesome packages/libraries, actively maintained and developed.

1 point by chapel 13 hours ago 1 reply      
The great thing about node.js is the flexibility it provides. It isn't what Rails is to Ruby or Django is to Python, really it is a way for Javascript to interact with the OS outside of the browser, e.g. on servers. This versatility leads to a ton of options, which many don't even focus on the web. With that in mind, know that using node.js is more than building a web app, it has given us slick tools to do things that in other languages or options would be painful or annoying.

Here is a good list of things that should be done: http://blog.nodejitsu.com/ten-node-apps-that-need-to-exist

I personally have made simple tools with it, like a desktop image uploader, or a cli gist (github) maker. I enjoy how easy it is to connect many different technologies together with very little effort.

3 points by rjrodger 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Use node for anything that has a HTML(5) front end. The big win is that you no cognitive disconnect between the client-side and server-side code. The productivity increase is significant.

All the async event goodness (which is great for streaming of course) is just icing on the cake.

2 points by jammus 12 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm using node.js for a personal project: http://boxsocial.fm

The site reads and writes to last.fm in the background and pushes updates to client's browsers while doing so.

I'm sure it would have been possible to write it using some other technology but node.js just made it so easy. Also, writing the entirety of the app in just one language was an additional bonus.

I'm excited about building something bigger with it soon.

2 points by karterk 13 hours ago 0 replies      
The biggest advantage I see from my experience with node.js is that you can code in just one language from the client side to server side. Of course, server side JavaScript is _not_ exactly the same as in client side - but for most part, that does not get in the way and the language basics remain the same.

It also helps that it scales well for the traditional web apps, and currently there is a huge momentum behind it, and an active community working on it.

2 points by kordless 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Loggly uses it for handling large amounts of web POSTs and translating them into syslog like TCP packers which are sent to our indexers.

Basically it can be treated like a big ol' expensive load balancer, except its not expensive.

2 points by zwadia 12 hours ago 1 reply      
A little chat, a little soundcloud, a little ge.tt, sophisticated privacy management... and you get http://secretsocial.com ... a node project.
1 point by kmccarth 11 hours ago 0 replies      
I just asked a few folks on how they were using node.js, check it out here:


1 point by s_m 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I used node.js to make a drum machine that multiple people can play with at once: http://jambox.us requires Safari/Chrome
Ask HN: New Startup in Bay area looking to make friends
6 points by adamkaye 8 hours ago   discuss
Ask HN: What do startups use for customer support?
10 points by micah63 1 day ago   7 comments top 7
1 point by talbina 2 hours ago 0 replies      
1 point by hajrice 12 hours ago 0 replies      
I use Olark...but I like to think it's more of a sales tool. Then again, some of you will argue that support can be used as a sales process; I don't care how big/small of a company you run, customer service is probably the single most important factor (from a consumers standpoint) next to the product.

I've tried Zendesk and while they're great in parts like ticketing and assigning tasks to individual support members, I think they fail at recognizing at the bases of customer support. THERE IS NOTHING MORE THAT I HATE when I have to register twice. I already have an account at xyz.com, why do I have to create one to fill out a support request? It's very confusing, especially when they tune the design to be pretty similar.

LiveChat rocks, the guys at Olark are doing it really well..snapengage is pretty badass for that automatic messaging(sending a msg like: Hey, hwo are you liking the site? <-- typo put on purpose) can really start engagements as I don't really want to send the same message every time a new visitor comes to my site.

Btw, I'm building a support system which is targeted at sites which have customers, which is really meant to cut down support(VisaulWebsiteOptimizer is expecting to cut theirs down by more than 50%), and provide a natural interface(both for your startup and customers) which basically creates a powerful help page(and no, unlike zendesk, you dont have to rehire your designer to spend a week triming it to fit your company's brand). In case you're interested send me an email at hajrice@gmail.com and I'll make sure to include you in the private beta.

1 point by smackjer 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I've used http://www.zendesk.com before. Using http://tenderapp.com now and liking it.
1 point by jeffepp 15 hours ago 0 replies      
1 point by Thomaschaaf 19 hours ago 0 replies      
We are currently building support software because we thought that the options did not fit our needs. We'd love to get some more beta testers. http://suplify.me
1 point by Jsarokin 1 day ago 0 replies      
1 point by limebomb 20 hours ago 0 replies      
Ask HN: Apple is featuring one of my apps. Should I drop the price to $0.99?
6 points by albertogh 13 hours ago   12 comments top 7
4 points by rick_2047 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Hey people bought it for 2.99 right? What makes you think that more people won't pay that price? It has a nice ranking and all, why not just take nickythegreek's advice and add a upcoming features list.

You may also put a lite version out there which will cost .99. Just saying, not an experienced person here.

1 point by nika 11 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm experienced with the appstore, including having an app that sells for the same price and leveraging short term exposure by lowering the price.

Absolutely lower your price to $0.99. The goal here is not to maximize revenue for the short period apple is featureing you, but to maximize momentum for the next week or two.

If you have viral features, such as sharing, etc, then you have a chance of sparking a lot of further growth by having new people introduced who then share it.

Never once had anyone complain about the price being lowered.

1 point by bretpiatt 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Users that paid $2.99 shouldn't be upset. When making a purchase decision they decided it was worth that to them. The future lower price could have saved them $2.00 but it isn't a reason to get upset. If you spend time all of your life being bitter by the fact you could have gotten a better deal if you just waited... well this is how bubbles happen.
1 point by sambeau 4 hours ago 0 replies      
So I see you did it. How did it go? Did it make a difference?
1 point by brudgers 11 hours ago 1 reply      
2 points by nickythegreek 12 hours ago 0 replies      
You could split the difference, with $1.99. People who already paid wont be so irk'ed, and others will be more likely to find value in your app at the new pricepoint.
1 point by nickythegreek 12 hours ago 2 replies      
When an app is more then 99 cents, one of the key things I look for in the Description field is upcoming features. It makes me find more value in the app, because I believe the developers are actively working on updates and I will be more likely to purchase the app knowing that its feature set will be increasing.
Ask HN: Failed to Bootstrap, Now What?
7 points by timmorgan 14 hours ago   14 comments top 5
2 points by robfitz 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Pivot the product toward something less social that provides immediate value to church staff/leaders

I would go with this one, if you still care about the space. You probably have a lot of customer understanding and a good network.

Remember, though, that pivoting doesn't just mean tweaking the features. Sometimes it means throwing the thing out entirely and going after a totally different customer/problem with new focus.

What would you do if you poured every spare hour into something for an Internet eon, and came to the realization that what you're doing isn't going to pay off?

Speaking entirely personally, I would toss the product and build something new on top of what I've learned about customer needs. Keep the old site around long enough to cross-sell and upsell existing audience into the new offering which is solving a problem they [presumably] have and reveals its value quicker than the current product. Then you're only losing your development time, but you've been able to keep all of your sales, conversation, and strategy time.

2 points by Mz 14 hours ago 1 reply      
...and maybe there's an option I'm overlooking...

Since you know exactly what the issue is (assuming your analysis is correct), maybe you could work on resolving that and see if it takes off. Here is the issue you identified:

It turns out that getting churches to initially part with their money isn't nearly as hard as convincing them that the investment of TIME is worth it for them and their members. Building an online community takes effort on the part of the church to promote it, and most give up within months. It's not unlike a forum or Facebook group; just sticking something out there doesn't draw in anyone.

Every time I see something like this, I wish I could figure out how to capitalize on (ie monetize) my ability to get conversation going and keep conversation going in online forums. My ability to do that is ironic since I actually suck at starting conversations of my own (see my submissions on HN for an example of how lame I am at that). Yet, I know how to respond to other people and shape the forum culture to make it warm and welcoming and encourage people to open up. I have had repeated experiences where I joined some existing list or forum which had very little traffic in spite of significant membership and within a few months of joining traffic and membership increased significantly. Typically, the owner then says something along the lines of "I have no idea what happened but all of a sudden we are growing". I know exactly what happened and never get credit for it.

Anyway, my only point is that it is possible to intentionally make community happen and increase traffic, usefulness, etc. Teaching members how to do that would make this stickier. And probably would take less time and energy than the three years you have already sunk into this.

Peace and good luck.

2 points by michaeldwp 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I would suggest that you:

(1) Talk with / survey your customers to find out what's actually going on. Based on your description, it doesn't seem like you've actually talked with them. You should find out why they're not spending the required time on the site, and / or why they're not renewing their subscriptions.

Figure out why they initially used the site, and what value they thought they'd get; and also why they don't feel that they're getting that value any more.

Base your questions on the one found at http://survey.io .

(2) Figure out the root of the problems that are causing these support requests, and fix them. (E.g. could you clarify the wording on some pages? Are people not using the site properly?). This way, you don't have to spend so much time on support.

But I do agree with some of the others, a pivot of some sort sounds like it could help. Otherwise, if _after_ you've talked with your customers, you don't feel that you should keep this going, move onto something else.

Edit: Also, remember that the growth really comes down to the marketing. Have you been in touch with bloggers? How are you advertising it? Doing any SEO? Or is it purely word of mouth? And if it's word of mouth, do you have any viral components in there to help people spread the word?

2 points by acrum 14 hours ago 2 replies      
Well, you are competing with a behemoth with Zondervan publishing and The City (http://www.onthecity.org), and your pricing seems to be only marginally better (for hosting.. I just now noticed the part at the bottom about being able to host it yourself for free). Do you know how many people are using it for free vs. paying for it? You may want to re-think the open source model, though I can't imagine there are TOO many churches that would want to bother hosting it themselves.

You may be better served finding a smaller niche and doing it really well, rather than having such a huge feature set that may be overwhelming to people on their first visit. You don't necessarily have to pivot to something less social, but I'm sure you can do some research and find out something that you already provide that church staff think could be much easier, and make that an emphasis.

1 point by brudgers 11 hours ago 1 reply      
>"walled online directory and social network for their members."

Maybe a walled online directory is a good idea. A walled social network is stillborn - you might as well do a private list-serve and save people the trouble of logging in.

Ask HN: how's that CR-48 notebook working out for you?
8 points by petervandijck 16 hours ago   7 comments top 6
1 point by mikecarlucci 11 hours ago 0 replies      
I've found it to be a mixed bag, which really, as beta software and limited hardware shouldn't be unexpected.

The good:

First, it helps if you were already a big user of the Google services. After losing all my work when my laptop got soaked in college I was prepared for the next go round. I've taken all my notes in Evernote (not the greatest writing interface - fabulous for other things and importing docs) or Google Docs. I exclusively use the Cr-48 for school except for writing papers because footnotes and legal writing guidelines are just easier in Word.

All of my extensions synced over upon signing in, like on an Android phone. LastPass worked right away without any hassles. Ditto for bookmarks.

There are a number of extensions/applications/webapps that can duplicate the traditional desktop experience. Some, like the New York Times are really nice. Simplenote in Chrome is just like any other browser. Some "webapps" are just bookmarks. Like Mint. TweetDeck is nice and runs well but I never was a big fan of it in general.

The free 100mb of 3G courtesy of Verizon has been a lifesaver because honestly, either the software or hardware will drop WiFi and require turning the machine off and on to get it back. And without the Internet, the experience isn't so hot.

The mediocre:

Having been spoiled with a Macbook the trackpad on the Cr-48 isn't very responsive and doesn't even handle two fingered scroll well. I don't fault Google on that - it's a free laptop with minimal hardware, it's just a frustration, not a ChromeOS issue. (likewise the screen isn't the best, but again, hardware not software. the real devices should be better)

Sometimes I really want to have an application separate and even opening a new window doesn't make it feel that way. You have to remember it's just a browser. The clock app is a large box that pops up similar to a Gmail notification. I think a little more start menu/taskbar like behavior as part of the Chrome interface would be nice.

The filesystem is a pain. You don't usually need to access it, but when you do it feels like you are in the wrong place. Integrating say, Dropbox would be fantastic. Sync a few files to the SSD but most stay in the cloud. And the user wouldn't ever have to see Unix style folder structures.

The bad:
The Cr-48 looks like a laptop. It has a webcam, a full keyboard, USB and even VGA. But unless rooted it is not a laptop. It is just a web browser.

Trying to keep in mind that the Cr-48 is not the hardware ChromeOS will always use is tricky. Had I loaded it onto my laptop I probably would have quit using it after a day or so. I honestly really like having a small, light, fast browser in that form factor that can also do serious typing.

I don't consider, even after months of use, the iPad to be good for long periods of typing. Even with a bluetooth keyboard it is an awkward experience. The Cr-48 doesn't have that issue. It feels like any other laptop while typing.

The problem with the Cr-48 is that I can't imagine when I would purchase a device similar to it. Not as a second laptop. And I wouldn't make it my primary machine supported by an iPad or other tablet and a smartphone to divide my computing time.

Google TV is running Android right? And it has Chrome in top of that. Why not do the same thing here? Why have ChromeOS and not just Android running Chrome with the webapp store? People will get used to webapps without having a cloud-only computer. If Honeycomb had Chrome instead of the standard Android browser I don't see why Google couldn't toss it into something with a keyboard that looked like a laptop but was really just tablet/smartphone guts without a touchscreen. Even dualcore capable Gingerbread would be more than enough to replace the Cr-48 in execution.

1 point by BasicObject 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I love the cr-48. The only thing I wish I could have is a full emacs install for use in a tab. I'll be completely satisfied once I figure that out. I have a personal "cloud" at home so it's the perfect complement.

Hardware wise its great. I've had a 14 inch laptop and a 7 inch netbook and this is the sweetspot. It can also run my 23 inch monitor.

The keyboard is similar to my Apple aluminum keyboard (the only Apple product I own and admittedly love). But to my surprise it's more quiet than the Apple keyboard.

The laptop's outer appearance is exactly what I've always dreamed of.

When more mSATA SSD's hit the market I will be upgrading it. I'd like to dual boot chrome OS and a linux distro of my choice.

2 points by HardyLeung 16 hours ago 1 reply      
I tried, but was underwhelmed. Too slow. Too many restrictions (CR-48 requires a complete migration to online with no exception, not that I wasn't aware of it at the beginning).
1 point by neuen 12 hours ago 0 replies      
I've enjoyed using it - I was already checking my mail online, using Google Docs and Calendar to manage my documents and time so the transition was pretty smooth. It's become my daily browsing, bookmarking and emailing machine. As for using it for any type of development, well - I can say I tried haha.
3 points by reustle 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I would tell you if I got one :(
1 point by mvidal01 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I wanted to like laptop. It's too slow and clunky for getting work done. Just surfing it's ok but I prefer a bigger screen.
Ask HN: Hackers falling in love
106 points by rmundo 1 day ago   68 comments top 34
55 points by patio11 1 day ago 5 replies      
I was at dinner with a young lady who is now my girlfriend a few months ago, and she asked me my plans for the next morning (Saturday). I told her that I was going to be programming (it was during the last week or two prior to AR's launch).

She said: Of course, after all you are a businessman. The job comes first.

I said: No. Not first. Not second, either, unless first is "all the things I love in life."

I had a really really awful no-good bad day today, buisnesswise. It was easily my worst ever on that score. But you know, in the greater scheme of things, if the code fails and the disk dies and my database goes to meet the great truncate in the sky, it will be very stressful for a few weeks, but I'll still have my family, my friends, my girlfriend, my faith, my health, etc.

We've got a lot of pressure and responsibility running companies, but at the end of thhe day, it is a job. You don't live to work, you work to live.

113 points by al3x 1 day ago 0 replies      
A good relationship will help you through the stress of a startup.

A bad one will make it much, much worse.

Either way, it's out of your control. If you're in love, you're in love. Make the most of it.

20 points by Locke 1 day ago 3 replies      
This is not so much a possibility as an inevitability. Chances are you will fall in love and it will disrupt your life whether you're starting up or doing something else entirely. If you're fortunate, you're new significant other will be a disruptive, yet motivating force. Moving you towards new heights that you had not imagined. But, it's more likely to be a struggle to balance your life's goals with your desire for this new person. Ultimately, you're startup hopes might be replaced by new goals: a family and all that entails.

These things are not mutually exclusive. If you take an all or nothing view, you're being naive. You can have some percentage of a solid relationship and career (whether a startup or something else).

Life is messy. You'll have to decide if your relationship allows you enough time to meet your personal goals and if that even matters. Only you can make this determination.

As for me, I've been with my wife for over 10 years (most of it dating), and... honestly? I think this relationship has had an adverse effect on my goals. I, kind of, think I'd be much more rich and successful had I never met my wife. On the other hand, when she's gone for a weekend, I always think, "I'll get so much done when she's gone"... but, I often end up mired in the "blahs" until she returns. And, honestly...

I think I've slowed down a lot as I've gotten older. I think back on things I accomplished in 3 week coding marathons when I was in college and, while I think I'm a better programmer now... well, I don't repeat those accomplishments. I get more done in less time, but I'm not able to sustain a marathon for multiple weeks. You may be different, or that might be part of getting older.

Ultimately, I've been moderately successful (my business represents the bulk of our income), but not wildly successful. I've come to think less is more... and, I'm happy with that. I doubt I'd be happier single with a larger business and more money.

But that's me...

7 points by dkarl 1 day ago 1 reply      
A muse helps so much.

I know I am supposed to be naturally deeply passionate about every single thing in my life all the time -- that is apparently now standard for educated people, nobody ever feels blasé about anything; feeling blasé is for poor people and stupid people -- but (gasp, horror of horrors) passion is sometimes hard to come by for me. Loving someone gives everything a special glow. Loving someone makes my accomplishments meaningful. Loving someone gives me a reason to rewrite something that was good enough the first time. Loving someone gives me a reason to stay late doing something that will make an impact but won't translate into pay or advancement.

A muse brings everything into sharp relief and makes everything feel more vital and dramatic. It doesn't have anything to do with sex -- a muse can have this effect even if you can't have her, and sleeping with girls you aren't so excited about has the opposite effect, flattening everything out so that accomplishment and slacking off feel exactly the same.

It may even work better in the short run when your muse is inaccessible. In that case you have freedom to manage your side of the "relationship" without worrying about the consequences for her. A muse who loves you back has staying power, though.

40 points by noonespecial 1 day ago 1 reply      
Falling in love is not one of life's distractions, its one of life's points. Time well spent.
14 points by marcamillion 1 day ago 0 replies      
I am fairly young - 27, been married about 5 years, have two kids (both under 3) and am madly in love with my wife.

She doesn't work, and building my startup full-time is VERY stressful - especially since I am bootstrapping, more or less.

As al3x pointed out though, a good mate can really make it MUCH better. I am blessed to have a wife that is understanding and doesn't NEED to go shopping and is high maintenance. Of course, every girl likes to be pampered - but she is very laid back and supportive of what I am doing.

That makes the tough days when everybody else is suggesting that maybe I should 'get a real job' much easier to handle and brush off.

I actually think it is easier to do a startup with an understanding wife, because it adds balance and sanity to your life.

But if you get a bad match...yikes...run!

27 points by Oblivia 1 day ago 3 replies      
As a woman who sees these young entrepreneurs in their twenties who routinely put work before relationships, I am sometimes dismayed. I've wondered more than once if their growth as men is being stunted. I suspect the stories of sacrificing love on the altar of your startup and the pain involved in doing so are just the stories you don't hear.

New love and startups have about the same failure rate. No?

5 points by ibejoeb 1 day ago 0 replies      
Sorry; I can't tell if you're just back down to earth and you're in a steady relationship now or if it's over. In case it's the former, here's my two cents. This comes from a place a little further down the road, and therefore it is a little OT, but I'll mention it because I wish I would have heard the same.

You might find that your professional success--perhaps your emotional investment in your business--gives rise to turmoil in your relationship. Many of us strive to get big, go public, get acquired, acquire others, merge, etc. These events are typically wins, but the downsides are loss of control, loss of interest, and perhaps even a bit of depression as a result.

I hope you're successful. If you feel a little off in the course of things, don't let it poison your relationship. Recognize it, act on it, but don't react.

7 points by hartror 1 day ago 0 replies      
As long as the feelings are mutual and are able to grow beyond the initial smitten stage then nothing wrong with falling head over heels in love.

I've done it, and come through the other side with the love of my life. ^_^

8 points by iuguy 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm reminded of the best personal advice ever given by a Physiscist:

"Dear Mrs. Chown, Ignore your son's attempts to teach you physics. Physics isn't the most important thing. Love is. Best wishes, Richard Feynman."

34 points by impendia 1 day ago 0 replies      
You seem to regard having fallen head over heels as a bad thing.

Be grateful as hell. It doesn't happen to everybody.

8 points by georgieporgie 1 day ago 0 replies      
In my experience, money is much easier to find than limerence. Also, limerence is generally relatively short-lived. For the sake of living life, I recommend to young people that they take a 'gap year' of sorts, and that they pursue limerence or 'love'.
9 points by mixmax 1 day ago 1 reply      
Choose love over money.


2 points by quan 1 day ago 0 replies      
I had to check to make sure I didn't sleepwalk and submit this because almost the exact same thing happens to me. I quitted my job 8 months ago to travel and work on my ideas. 2 months in, I fall in love with my current girlfriend. After a few months of long distance relationship as I traveled around the world, we now live together in the most romantic city in the world, Paris.

During the day when she goes to school, I work on my project. At times when I can't stand the loneliness, I get out and just hop on a random metro to read or observe people. At night, we cook, talk, and watch movies together. I'm having the best time of my life even though the future is a little scary to think about. I hope you enjoy yours as well, best of luck to your startup.

5 points by ambiate 1 day ago 0 replies      
My experience is a real relationship seems to constrict me. A girl I love and think about all the time, but never know her name... that will make me a deity in production and development.
4 points by bluethunder 1 day ago 0 replies      
You have your whole life for startups. Indulgence in love is mostly limited to your 20s. I would suggest enjoy the chemistry till it lasts - startups can wait. The chemistry will bring you more happiness then any amount of big company building would.

Destinations are always pointless, its always the journey. Think of this as a detour from your startup life. In the longer run, detours will give you valuable perspective and make your journeys more meaningful.

1 point by JonnieCache 1 day ago 2 replies      
>molecular chemistry is a tough adversary

I hope you're sure the other party doesn't see this. Can't imagine that would go down too well.

That's all I am to you? Amino acid chains?

If obsession with love can be reduced to chemistry, then obsession with business must necessarily be understood similarly, and with a similar inward scepticism.

But yeah. However much you enjoy your work, it's not going to benefit it long term to let it give you tunnel vision. However fulfilling it is, you cannot live a one dimensional life and still be happy forever.

3 points by jules 1 day ago 0 replies      
Personally falling in love motivates me to do stuff more than anything else. Even if it didn't, I would still want to fall in love more than work on a startup. Why work on a startup now, so that you can fall in love and be happy later?
6 points by ericmsimons 1 day ago 0 replies      
Happened to me too, girl wasn't worth the time though. Dev is now at full pace...my personal belief is that no love life is a better startup life. Others have pulled it off though!
5 points by engilancer 1 day ago 0 replies      
The time you've invested in building the relationship will come back as support in the form of a partner telling you to keep pushing even though everyone else thinks you're crazy. No matter how much discipline and confidence you have, it's always great to have the person you love tell you they believe in you.
2 points by _corbett 1 day ago 0 replies      
Working hard and long hours is a part of my life‚Ä"so if a partner doesn't mesh with that they don't mesh with me. I luckily tend to only be attracted to similarly driven people, so it usually works out for me. The few times I've strayed personality types there have been problems.

All and all, I do consider the force that makes me obsessed with a project to the point I can't get up for hours on end the same one as the one that makes me neglect the project a week later to experience a wonderful new and intense experience and I'm grateful for it. I'm lucky that I have the freedom to wander wherever my passion is at the moment.

2 points by sayemm 1 day ago 0 replies      
I can't speak from personal experience, but in this interview Max Levchin mentions how his girlfriend was key in pushing him forward and giving him the strength to not quit during the days before Paypal - http://gigaom.com/2010/11/08/in-his-own-words-the-story-of-m...
4 points by antirez 1 day ago 0 replies      
There is just one life...
1 point by mattchew 1 day ago 0 replies      
> But I wonder if I could have done things differently,

Well, sure. Should you have? I doubt it.

You'll be able to hack and do startups the rest of your life. Most likely you'll only have a few chances to fall in love. I recommend making the most of them. (This goes double if you want to get married and have a family.)

3 points by wavewash 1 day ago 0 replies      
I love startups and the thrill of success. But there is nothing that a successful startup can bring you that is anywhere near the feeling of having the love of your life tell you that she loves you back.
2 points by erikj54 1 day ago 0 replies      
I think you have all the advice you need here. Life is messy, it's not always the dream you watched in movies growing up. There is a reason musicians and poets alike have written so much about it. People talk on HN about start-ups being life, as with anything in life that gives you great reward there is a great risk. Love is no different. For you to find happiness you need to enjoy the risk of both. How you do this and manage these different aspects of your life depends on how you tell your stories.
2 points by forkrulassail 1 day ago 0 replies      
Support structure, focus and continued encouragement is all I get. In small, daily and consistent doses. I'm diving in full time in March, and can't see myself doing it without the other.
2 points by hippich 1 day ago 0 replies      
I had only one real love so far and it actually helped me advance. It keeps me being motivated.
3 points by ulisesroche 1 day ago 0 replies      
"...but the project seems to be on the right track again, slowly building momentum"

Enjoy it! Looks to me like it's helping.

1 point by kaerast 1 day ago 0 replies      
Its all about getting the right balance and progressing in all areas of your life, not just one. Think about your ideal situation and work towards that. It's often helpful to think about your priorities using a four quadrant model - Self, Work/Money, Family, Community.
1 point by kadavy 1 day ago 0 replies      
If you are, indeed, in mutual love, then you should be very thankful.

I personally can be more focused while I'm working when I am in a relationship, so I would see it as a benefit. When I'm not in a relationship, there often seems to be this extra "to-do" item that is never done :)

Some people, they fall in love, and that becomes the thing that guides their decisions in their life.

Other people don't - they love their work so much that they put it before anything else. Or, they just don't meet someone, and instead put their energy toward their work.

But it's still possible to use that support as fuel to motivate you. It's just a matter of prioritizing, and making sure you don't neglect either of these important elements in your life.

1 point by seltzered 1 day ago 0 replies      
Wish i could find it, but there's an HN'er who bootstrapped a business and during the same timeframe met someone and got married, and wrote a nice blog post about it recently. He seemed to pull it off just fine.
2 points by Platos_cave 1 day ago 0 replies      
I think Shakespeare puts it best...

'poor and content is rich, and rich enough'

If we base our self esteem and judge our success by the work we do, then we'll always be found wanting. The ultimate goal of life is happiness in ourselves or others (which in turn often brings us happiness). While a successful start up may bring us satisfaction/money, it is ultimately only a cornerstone in our lives.

0 points by rogerjew 1 day ago 0 replies      
Boston: Subsidized Ruby on Rails Training
6 points by amrith 15 hours ago   1 comment top
1 point by PonyGumbo 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Thanks for passing this along.
Ask HN: Is unobtrusive javascript/gracefully degradation important anymore?
11 points by ashchristopher 1 day ago   8 comments top 4
9 points by CPops 1 day ago 2 replies      
Devoting such a significant percentage of your time and resources to what likely amounts to less than 1% of your users doesn't sound like a wise business decision in most circumstances.
3 points by blahedo 1 day ago 0 replies      
Yes it's important, no it's not a waste of time. Aside from the people who intentionally turn off JS in their browser, there are people with readers or other interfaces that don't support JS (or, not well), and most bots trying to crawl and find and possibly link to your content are going to behave, at best, unpredictably in the face of a JS-heavy site.
1 point by bmelton 1 day ago 0 replies      
I suppose I'm in the minority here, but at least the way I build applications, I build in the 'vanilla' way first and foremost.

Submissions go to another page, as do clicks and all that jazz. It's quicker for me to get the MVP up and running first, and then later add the JS niceties.

Obviously, there are use cases where this is flipped around -- mapping, for example, and I'm sure many others -- but at least for me, I don't understand why it's even a hardship to make it work for nonJS users, as that's what I always build first.

Workflow aside, you're probably right, at least for end users. Almost every device worth supporting out there is 'modern' enough that they support jQuery, Dojo, et al.

The real trick is of course the other important devices that aren't users. Search engines. Crawlers aren't necessarily capable of following your application flow without graceful degradation, and in this day and age, that likely matters as much or nearly as much as actual users.

5 points by grok2 1 day ago 2 replies      
I think, yes, for content oriented sites (seo benefit, helps to allow people to continue to view content, etc), but if it's an app/utility site, I think there is no point in adding to your workload...
Ask HN: I Predict the End of Email in 5 Years, What Do You Think?
4 points by epynonymous 19 hours ago   18 comments top 6
5 points by mooism2 18 hours ago 1 reply      
Can you define what you mean by "the end of email" please. Do you literally mean no use of protocols like smtp, imap and pop? Or do you figuratively mean no use, so a 90%/95%/99% reduction in legitimate (non-spam) use?

It's worth noting that mailing lists could have been replaced by blogs and web-based forums a decade ago, but they were not. Before that, usenet was arguably superior to mailing lists, but it was usenet that died out{1} and mailing lists survived and thrived.

It's worth noting too that though newspapers are being killed off by the internet+tv+radio, they are still around, and will continue to be around for much more than a decade, despite repeated predictions of their imminent demise.

So, even if you can persuade me that e-mail will die out (you haven't), I will remain sceptical that it will happen within 10 years. Certainly not within 5.

{1}: Usenet is still around. Apparently.

P.S. "Email's a standard dating back to the 1970's, but amazingly continues to be widely used..." AM radio dates back even further and continues to be widely used also, despite the long-available superior technology of FM radio.

3 points by PonyGumbo 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Personal communications ("Hey, how are you doing? / Are you busy tonight?") are increasingly drifting to text and social apps, but there are some significant barriers (IMHO) to businesses adopting any existing social platform for communication (namely, loss of control). However, I think it's very likely that mail clients will more closely resemble social apps. Google Wave was a step in that direction, but it wasn't quite ready for prime time.
3 points by niccolop 18 hours ago 1 reply      
A recent report by Comscore stated that: email usage declined among those aged between 12 and 17 by 59%. (http://bit.ly/eSiT93) - perhaps social media will be the answer?

There is of course a function question here as well, i.e. younger people are simply communicating with each other socially (as you note), and so it makes sense to go via facebook.

I think in the work place, email is still needed, as you say it's the only 'anonymous' method of communication. Unless collaborative tools such as group chat, instant messenger, or others, become so ubiquitous that there is no need to have a simple form of direct communication.

2 points by deffibaugh 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I don't think any Social App will be able to replace email unless it is just as distributed and private as email is. Maybe if the Social App ran entirely on the users machine or they could run their own servers then it would have a chance to overtake email. Maybe something like Diaspora? The fact is, people send IMPORTANT emails. People who send these emails aren't going to have their correspondence in the cloud being raked through to squeeze advertising money out.
1 point by mike-cardwell 16 hours ago 1 reply      
Do you have any evidence that email use is declining? Email isn't just the end user application, email is a massively distributed and open messaging infrastructure
1 point by jay_kyburz 18 hours ago 2 replies      
Nobody I know interleves their response when replying. How about an email client that doesn't allow this, like facebook.
Thoughts on using .co domain for a startup?
5 points by Dramatize 17 hours ago   5 comments top 4
7 points by Sargis 17 hours ago 1 reply      
There was someone on HN a few days ago who owned a .co website and said that he received a lot of emails from people telling him that his logo was missing an 'm' after '.co'

That's why I think a lot of people would append an 'm' to links to your website, assuming that you made a mistake when typing the link.

1 point by profitbaron 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Whilst .co is rising in popularity (and Godaddy are starting to throw their weight behind it), I'd still avoid using it mainly because consumers are so used to the .com extension.

However, if you really want the .co extension then you could purchase all 3 suggestions you mentioned above - XXX.co, getXXX.com and XXXapp.com and then redirect the other 2 domains to one of them (most likely being getXXX.com)

6 points by petervandijck 16 hours ago 0 replies      
I think it's better to use getXXX.com than XXX.co
3 points by maze 15 hours ago 0 replies      
get all three, and redirect them to getXXX.com
Ask HN: Why so much hate towards Microsoft-Nokia deal?
14 points by desigooner 1 day ago   8 comments top 6
5 points by rst 23 hours ago 0 replies      
Here's one take:

Look at Samsung, LG, and HTC. All of them are making both Windows Phone 7 devices and Android ones; if Windows Phone 7 takes off, they're in the race, but if it doesn't, they'll have other stuff that's working for them.

Now look at Nokia. The difference isn't what Nokia will be doing --- making Windows Phone 7 devices; it's what they won't be doing --- making Android phones. They've taken a big, risky bet, which they could have hedged, and haven't. And the platform they've bet on is one which allows manufacturers less freedom to customize and differentiate themselves than the one they've shunned. Heck, if they just shipped stock Android, that would differentiate them from most of the phones on the market. (Contrast to Windows Phone 7, where Microsoft is being very restrictive in what manufacturers can dink. Nokia may get more freedom than some as part of this deal, but not nearly as much as the HTC Sense experience for Android.) And you could try to say that they don't have resources to handle multiple platforms --- but if that's the issue, why are they still talking about shipping Maemo?

In short, this is still different from what other manufacturers are doing, but based on the announced terms of the deal, it's not really clear why it's better, and it is pretty clear why it might be worse. There might be unannounced terms of the deal that change that calculus, but for now, people can only judge from what they can see.

3 points by chamakits 23 hours ago 0 replies      
Well, the thing is (my own opinion though, so I could be wrong) Nokia has invested in the past a lot of their time and money on their developers and on creating a great platform for them. The had the Symbian OS which was very popular as far as smart phones go, and they had more recently acquired QT, which played nicely with the Symbian OS.

Now, it's worthy to note, that the smartphone market today and the one before are quite different. Smartphones were way more expensive, and development for them wasn't quite as easy. However, those that invested in having one, and in developing for them found a great deep appreciation for their phones. These smartphones had no restrictions whatever. You bought it, you own it. If you can compile something that runs on it, go ahead! This is something that fans of the Symbian OS praised, and followed them religiously because of it. So, although Nokia's platform took a lot longer to spread in fame than say iOS, they had existed for so long that they had built quite a large following of dedicated and loyal users/developers. So loyal that even though their smartphones are quite a bit more expensive than the competitors, they still believe (and probably rightfully so) that the investment is worth it.

How did Nokia achieve all this? Again, they invested a lot of money and resources on it. Nokia is a huge company. As a result, they are a huge part of the Finnish economy as well. Their business is based around these investments and the large user base that they have built because of them. Not only that, but they were also in collaboration with other companies in building MeeGo. MeeGo was meant to be a Linux based OS that would bring the gap between PC and cellphones even closer, since it was meant more as a Linux distro (like say Redhat, Ubuntu or Suse) rather than a derivate of Linux (like Android and OpenMoko).

Now, taking all of this into account, they announce that they will be focusing on Windows phones. Their huge user based is feeling betrayed because essentially all the hard work they may have put into the Symbian ecosystem (which I haven't personally experienced, but have heard it has quite a learning curve) will go to waste, the MeeGo platform may not come to full fruition because of conflict of interests, and surely a lot of layoffs are bound to happen since it seems they are going to let the majority of their software division die out. Not only that, but they had always been pro open source and open platforms, and they are now announcing the will probably go with the company that many see as a rival to these ideals. Is the user base biased against Microsoft? Probably, but that isn't it either. I'm almost certain had they announced that they were going with Android, there still would have been a major backlash. Maybe less so of one because Android is an open platform, perhaps facilitating porting efforts and the move to another OS, but I'm almost certain there still would be a lot of people in uproar.

In conclusion, I think the problem here isn't that Nokia is investing in Microsoft. Thats not it at all. Its that its not investing in itself and its loyal user base. Thats what seems to be the problem....at least from what I can interpret.

3 points by gojomo 20 hours ago 1 reply      
Lots of Apple/iOS fans. Lots of Android/'open' fans. Lots of europhiles unhappy to see their continental champion cede platform leadership to Redmond, WA, USA. Lots of plain old MSFT-hate. A perfect storm of armchair antipathy!
2 points by endtime 22 hours ago 0 replies      
I think a lot of it is indeed "M$ bad herp derp" - I've seen about 30 separate comments all making variations on the burning platform/sinking ship would-be witticism, which is clearly not justified if you take an objective look at MSFT since Vista.

Personally, I'm pleased by the news. I want WP7 to be competitive - that can only help consumers.

1 point by papaf 21 hours ago 1 reply      
Those that ignore history are doomed to repeat it.

I can't think of a single high profile company that has done well out of a deal with Microsoft. However the the road through computing history is littered with the burnt out wrecks of companies that did do deals with Microsoft.

1 point by TigerArnold 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Nokia keeps on changing their strategies.
Canadians win the Internet back
12 points by gotrythis 1 day ago   1 comment top
1 point by olegious 22 hours ago 0 replies      
Power to the people! ;)
Ask HN: Re: $150K conv. debt for YC - what if company raises no more money?
14 points by yakto 1 day ago   2 comments top 2
3 points by bkrausz 1 day ago 0 replies      
A blogger somewhere saw the terms of the note and commented on it (don't remember what site). Basically if the note converts for any reason other than an equity round it does so at a $5M cap.

Even more interesting: that $5M cap also applies if the terms of the future equity round don't allow for re-upping. So basically, if StartFund can't re-invest in the next round, they get better terms on the note. Really smart.

2 points by minalecs 1 day ago 0 replies      
I really don't know the answer to this question but my best guesses

a) At some point you would do a real valuation on your company and debt would be converted to shares or some type of equity. Investors would hope that you become profitable and investors could sell shares on secondary market or company would eventually buy back shares.

b) If no cash you would eventually close shop, and I imagine if you dissolve your corporation nothing happens. Like going bankrupt and if you have no money theres nothing to collect on and nothing happens. I guess its possible to sell what assets are available.

Thats why investment is a risk.

       cached 13 February 2011 05:02:01 GMT