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1
Tell HN: You said not to. So I quit my job and started. 5 mos later: OpenPhoto
208 points by jmathai  9 hours ago   116 comments top 38
1
physcab 7 hours ago 4 replies      
You should try A/B testing your copy.

I don't understand the concept of openness and liberation as it applies to photos. To me, those are political concepts, not technological ones. Maybe I'm not in your target market, but to me it makes much more sense to tie "sync" and "share" to your copy more so than "open" and "liberation".

For example, if the name of your service was PhotoSync, and then if I went to the front page and saw a comparison between your service, Facebook, Flickr, and ICloud, I'd be very curious to see what you could offer over the options available to me.

Best to ride the coattails of those companies that have invested orders of magnitude more money to educate the market than to educate them yourselves.

2
tsunamifury 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Have you considered that professional media organizations currently pay north of 15-20k dollars a year for cloud photo storage apps that merely read and organize the metadata?

In fact I have someone at NPR right now looking for this exact service, but made whitelable/private for internal use.

Not saying thats a direction, but just an FYI

3
viraptor 4 hours ago 3 replies      
> curl https://... | /bin/bash

Really? At least it's https, but how about building a proper package nightly, or commit-ly? You already assume ubuntu and apache, so this could be just a static, easily uninstallable deb. The script makes loads of dangerous assumptions.

"apt-get upgrade --assume-yes --quiet" - please don't assume stuff about other people's systems.

"apt-get install loads_of_stuff" - this effectively makes it impossible to remove all unneeded deps later on.

"ifconfig eth0 | grep 'inet addr:' | cut -d: -f2 | awk '{ print $1}'" - that's bound to fail in many cases - either return just 0.0.0.0, or try to find the actual default interface:

    DEV=$(ip r l match 0 | grep -Po '(?<=dev )\S+')
IP=$(ip a s dev $DEV | grep -Po '(?<=inet )[^/]+')

Otherwise - I like the idea :)

4
joebadmo 7 hours ago 1 reply      
This makes me kind of tingly inside. It feels like the beginning of a viable 'personal cloud.'

http://blog.byjoemoon.com/post/6277876911/the-personal-cloud

I can't seem to find anything about access control, though, (who can see which photos). Is anything like this in the works?

Anyway, this looks awesome, and I'm excited to get started when I get home from work tonight!

5
wasd 8 hours ago 5 replies      
If I could make one suggestion, please make it more clear what your website and service does. The front page mentions that I have total "photo liberation" but that's just sort of buzz. I clicked on "overview" (not sure how many people would make it that far) and the headline is "Like WordPress for Photos" but if I wasn't tech savvy, I would have no idea what WordPress does. I spent about 2 minutes on the website (much longer than any consumer) and I still didn't quite get it.

Also, on the see the difference page it might help to compare yourself to Flickr and other photo services.

I don't mean any disrespect or offense, I just don't think your website is immediately clear.

6
angdis 6 hours ago 2 replies      
This is an extremely compelling idea for users who run their own websites. However, it is not clear what the pricing trade-offs are for a consumer (for example flickr) user.

I would want to transfer my stuff out of flickr right away if there was a non-painful way to determine how much I'd be paying to amazon for s3 storage of my photos. I have thousands of photos, but haven't actually counted them. Is there an easy way from within flickr to compute the total storage I'd need?

Flickr-pro has been a very good deal at $25/year (for virtually unlimited storage with some annoying terms/conditions). What will OpenPhoto be priced at?

7
yllus 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I'll join the others in saying congratulations and good work. I'm interested in using OpenPhoto myself, but like a few others who commented I'm a little unsure of what I get out of it.

If you don't mind a bit of hopefully helpful criticism, perhaps change the three-item rotator at the top of http://theopenphotoproject.org/ to the following:

- A gorgeous web album to show off your photos (getting across that a Flickr-like interface to view photos comes with the product)

- Free mobile app for iOS and Android (getting across that a mobile app interface to view photos comes with the product)

- Take back your photos (change the long description here to state more clearly that you have full file-level access to your photos, hosted on a server you "own")

- Free, open and easy to use (perfect as it is)

- Flexible API & apps (perfect as it is)

That initial point-form section should get across everything you need to know, and I don't think it currently does. Lastly, I'd love an invite if you wouldn't mind sending one to sully AT yllus DOT com.

8
libraryatnight 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I was one who donated to your Kickstarter for early access, and I am pleased with your results so far. I just wanted to comment and thank you for your hard work.
9
jmathai 9 hours ago 0 replies      
10
ljlolel 2 hours ago 1 reply      
This is a brilliant idea. Screw diaspora, this is a trend toward the first viable open source Facebook killer. Disruptive innovation in a product with not enough features redefining the game.
11
EvanYou 2 hours ago 1 reply      
You really need to think about how to make your website more consumer friendly. I read through the entire front page and couldn't figure out what exactly this product is and how it works to achieve all the liberation you're talking about. If your front page fail to pinpoint the core value to a non tech-savvy customer, it's unlikely to be picked up by mainstream attention.
12
a3camero 8 hours ago 1 reply      
You're living the HN dream by quitting your job to do your own thing, so how's it going? Are you better off doing this than working at Yahoo?

I'm sure other people are curious too.

13
dazbradbury 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I find it strange you suggest web users should no longer trust services like flickr/facebook/picasa to stay around and keep hold of your precious photos, but you're aiming at consumers and guiding them to services such as S3/Dropbox...

Why is S3/Dropbox more likely to stick around than anything else?

I get that you offer hosting on essentially any filesystem, but the main message is somewhat mixed, don't you think?

14
richardkmichael 1 hour ago 1 reply      
This is very inspiring and congratulations! The overall site design is quite nice, and others have commented on the amount of text on the Overview page.

Could you discuss 1/ your business model (is it just paid premium features on the hosted version?) ; 2/ how you decided $25k would be good to start with on Kickstarter ; and (unrelated) 3/ what happened to thescholarapp.com (ad-parked now - whatever was there is gone)?

Excited to see where you go with OpenPhoto!

15
ashr 1 hour ago 1 reply      
This is a nice idea executed well. Don't stop here.
16
ark15 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Great start! +1 to the fact that you got something out.

In one of the comments you say "You should use this if you care about having a central repository of all your photos, owning and controlling them and want some level of choice."

Sounds nice except that I still don't understand what it exactly means.

If you take some typical photo management workflow/use cases of typical people-who-take-photos-of-their-family-and/or-pets, and then explain how openphoto improves it, it will help.

My typical use case -
-Photos (& videos) are dumped into a folder on a computer. (Usually sub folder in the format YYYY-MM-OptionalOccasion)
-Use Picasa to upload to, er, picasa (paid picasa user)
-Selectively share albums with friends and family
-Done.
-(Separate backup process backups everything on computer including these photos)

If you can tell me how openphoto will improve this part of my life, I am willing to listen and maybe even open my wallet.

17
tmcw 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Hooray! When this becomes generally available, I'll be totally in. Love the concept.
18
tgrass 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Screen capture.
Your heading elements are off (javascript issue?) - Chrome

http://www.diigo.com/item/image/15sdb/njh2

19
thom 5 hours ago 1 reply      
It seems like every year a product comes along that "changes everything", just when I'm getting the hang of everything. :(
20
perssontm 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Really nice, I've been waiting for this and checking it out from time to time during the autumn.

A few screenshots of a real gallery would have been nice, or a feature list. Its really technical as of now.
The oneline installer looks really cool, but a bit scary, the script looked safe though, so I might try that.

Great work, will try it out in the near future. :)

21
samstave 5 hours ago 2 replies      
I NEED THIS!!!!

Can you please send me an invite code? sam [at] sstave.com

Seriously - I MUST have this. I have wanted this for years.

Please email me an invite.

22
mikegreenberg 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I haven't had an opportunity to delve into the technicalities of your value prop, but why not dovetail your efforts with projects like LockerProject or ThinkUp which are also open source. They have a vision very much in-line with yours (at first glance) and have an established userbase which is growing as well. Wouldn't some consensus between these data-liberation projects benefit the userbase more than having a separate photo-liberation app?

These are honest, sincere questions and not intentionally poopoo-ing on your well-earned success.

23
viggity 6 hours ago 1 reply      
this looks like an awesome project, I'll definitely sign up, but how are you going to make any money? Sure, the $25K from kickstarter was nice, but how are you going to continue to make money?
24
juiceandjuice 2 hours ago 1 reply      
A Django plugin would be rad.
25
ednc 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Like the concept, and have been looking for something like this for all the baby photos.

Feedback:
- The checkboxes for DropBox vs S3 should be radio buttons.
- The hover text for Dropbox vs S3 should also work on the selection control (not just the text). It was not obvious how to find it. A little (info) icon on the end would be even better.

Add some more invite codes, and I'll get in there and send more feedback. :-)

26
urza 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Is it possible to store the photos on my own sever instead of Amazon or Dropbox etc?

How are the photos and tags stored on the filesystem layer?

27
angryasian 7 hours ago 1 reply      
at this time is this basically just a prettier s3 console/dropbox, interface ?

edit: honest question cause I can't use the service.

28
epikur 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I would just suggest more screenshots of the interface, on openphoto.me and theopenphotoproject, because that lets me understand it much faster than reading copy.
29
carlsverre 8 hours ago 1 reply      
More invites would be awesome! This looks great! :)
30
chintan 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Great project. Any special reason why you chose PHP? Was it to attract WP-devs?
31
AznHisoka 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Sounds like Diaspora for photos...
32
adib 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Do you make more (as in the money that you keep for yourself) from OpenPhoto than what Yahoo paid you?
33
salimmadjd 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Congrats for the move and much success!
34
organico 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Hey, congratulations on not taking the advice of others, and going with your heart - The project looks fantastic, and I'm really excited to migrate my photos!
35
tait 9 hours ago 2 replies      
Congratulations! Looks interesting; what are some use cases?
36
kposehn 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Glad to see another success on here as well :)
37
lforrest 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Great update! It's exciting to have you in the Mozilla WebFWD program.
38
mapster 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Why should I use this anyway? (btw - useless invite codes)
2
Who's Hiring Interns (Summer 2012)?
25 points by alexhaefner  7 hours ago   2 comments top 2
1
nostromo 14 minutes ago 0 replies      
We're hiring paid interns in Seattle, WA. Right now we'd love a front-end person familiar with jquery -- but anyone smart and talented should feel free to contact me. juliuss@shopobot.com.
2
hammalock 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Big Nerd Ranch, based in Atlanta, does training and contract programming on iOS, Mac, Android, and Web development. jobs@bignerdranch.com
3
Are there any high quality freelance project boards?
3 points by marcamillion  1 hour ago   discuss
5
Ask HN: C++ graphics, first steps
6 points by samhart  5 hours ago   2 comments top 2
1
pnathan 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I would recommend examining OGRE.
2
rumdz 3 hours ago 0 replies      
"Learning Modern 3D Graphics Programming"
http://www.arcsynthesis.org/gltut/index.html
6
Ask HN: How are you replacing IndexTank?
6 points by nostromo  8 hours ago   6 comments top 5
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mthreat 1 hour ago 0 replies      
We are working on a drop-in replacement for IndexTank users -- same REST API, fast search, same features and pricing, and we will aim to provide the same awesome support that IndexTank provided. We're (so far) a few guys who are passionate about search, and have worked together in search for 4+ years. If you're interested, you can email us at indexstack a.t. gmail.com.
2
ryanfitz 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I have yet to migrate off of IndexTank, but I've heard good things about elasticsearch and am going to be giving it a try once time permits.

Has it been officially stated that indextank will be shutdown anytime soon?

3
ethnomusicolog 5 hours ago 1 reply      
A company that feels a need with an amazing product is getting bought and there is no altenative (i.e. no competitors), I don't get it. can someone give me a hint.
4
cookingrobot 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Time's running out on this decision since it looks like the old service is going offline in March. What's reddit moving to?
5
hornbaker 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Curious about this as well. Are there any SaaS replacements, or does it mean moving to Solr or Sphinx?
7
Ask HN: LinkedIn Ads
3 points by robryan  6 hours ago   discuss
8
Ask HN: Review my startup (tool for social network power users)
3 points by bozho  9 hours ago   1 comment top
1
rgbrgb 9 hours ago 0 replies      
9
Ask HN: How many of you built a profitable startup while having a day job?
272 points by iworkforthem  4 days ago   188 comments top 54
1
jasonkester 4 days ago 3 replies      
I have two profitable SaaS products that were built while I was theoretically working full time on something else. I was a bit fortunate that my "something else" was Consulting, which you can ramp down by exactly as many hours per week as you'd like to devote to your side project.

The thing is, if you use the term "Startup" here to describe anything other than a zero-profit 80hr/week scramble for VC funding and eventual acquisition, you're going to get people popping up and claiming that what you're doing is not startuppy enough to count. So for the benefit of that crowd, you might want to rephrase your question in terms of building a product that brings in enough revenue to quit your job.

If that's what you want to build, then yes. It's absolutely possible, and there are dozens of people here who have done so.

2
a5seo 4 days ago 3 replies      
I built review site ten years ago and sold it.

It was profitable within 6 months off organic traffic and lead gen. Approximate revenue by year: $10k, 40k, 70k, 100k, 150k, 250k, 500k, 750k, 1.5M, 2.5M.

Built entirely while working for another startup (unrelated), first 3 years I was in graduate school, year 4 I was a product manager for another startup. Year 5 I finally took the leap to run it full-time.

I was the sole owner, never had more than 7 employees, and I sold it for a bit over $10M (ttm revenue was around $700k at the time).

Leading up to launch, I typically worked 10-7 at my day job, then wrote my code from 8p-1a M-F (20 hrs) and all day on the weekends (20 hrs), so 40 hrs per week. During school, my wife handled the sales part-time (16 hrs/wk), and I probably spent 8 hrs a week on it fixing bugs, implementing ad deals etc. In Year 4, I spent ~16 hrs a week on it outside of my day job (misc. tech upkeep, link building, PR, etc.).

It's definitely doable, but your SO needs to be on-board because you'll be taking the time away from them. Or do it before you have a SO to worry about.

3
bradleyland 4 days ago 0 replies      
I found it incredibly difficult to provide the value I'd expect out of an employee at a "day job" while building my business on the side. Ultimately, I took a different route. Note that this plan works best for young, single folks. This is also not a "get rich quick" scheme. Positioning myself took about three years on its own, much less getting going on a start-up. Keep in mind that this was my plan. It is not the only (or best) plan, but it worked for me.

* Position yourself for minimum cash outflow. Minimizing your cash needs means you can take bigger risks. I found a decent 500 sq ft apartment and drove a cheap car. Without a family, all my other expenses were dirt cheap.

* Save up a three month buffer and strike out on your own gig, but not your start-up yet. I chose consulting because the income potential is so high and it provided a great networking opportunity. I doubled my annual income (from my old salary) within a year, but far more importantly, I was able to accomplish a few transitional steps in getting my start-up going:

- I built a relationship with a great developer by feeding him work from consulting clients.

- I built relationships with other business owners and took a lot of time to understand their business.

- Ultimately, I met the person who would connect me with the greatest team I've ever worked with.

By the time I found the right team and opportunity, I had a year's worth of expenses saved up, and a small amount of money to contribute to the operational expenses of the company. Coming to the table with cash in-hand gained me a lot of respect from other team members. Because everyone came to the table with their own income streams, we were able to bootstrap and now, 100% of our equity is founder owned. That's a pretty exciting reality for us.

4
whirlycott1 4 days ago 4 replies      
I started StyleFeeder in January, 2005, built it into a profitable company of 8 people and sold it to Time Inc in January 2010.

From January, 2005 through May, 2006, I worked on StyleFeeder on the side - while I had a pretty demanding day job, mind you - as I built up the basic business... until I had invested so much time and effort into it that I was maxed out and needed to find a way to work on it full time with the help of others.

I don't see any plausible way that I could have made it into anything significant while at the same time working a day job. I think some people can do it with some businesses, but I think it would have been impossible in my case.

But the bootstrapping phase, yes, I think you can do that while working a day job. That's very common.

More details here:

http://www.whirlycott.com/phil/2011/08/05/stylefeeder-histor...

5
pitdesi 4 days ago 1 reply      
I started a couple of profitable small businesses while working a ton of hours management consulting, including a headphone website where I used all my vacation to travel to China to get my products manufactured cheaper. I was hoping to do a few things on the side until it made sense to quit my day job, but I found it never made sense to quit my day job.

More incredibly to me is FeeFighters (http://feefighters.com) CEO Sean was

1) Raising a VC round

2) Having his first kid

and 3) Working full-time at BCG

All at the same time (May 2010)
Any one of those are enough to make you go crazy, but he managed all 3. (note: FeeFighters is not profitable)

He also previously started http://tss-radio.com and bootstrapped it to a spot on the inc 500 list, all on the side while working at a VC firm (Longworth) and then while at BCG (management consulting).

6
Jun8 4 days ago 4 replies      
I wanted to do this so jumped in and read the comments to this post to try to get some ideas on how to do this. They made me a bit depressed: Most people achieved this while working as a consultant (i.e. flexible hours, etc.), not as a big company employee, like me. Also from what I gather, many data points come from young people, unencumbered with a family life and kid(s).

So, my more specific question is: Has anybody done this while picking up your kid from daycare at 5pm, having family business until 8:30pm and working at a day job. Id this impossible?

I think the viable alternatives in this case are trying to earn money from blogs and mobile apps.

7
ry0ohki 4 days ago 4 replies      
I'm not sure if they are considered startups per say, but I've started two profitable companies while working a day job (to the point where I could quit my day job!) http://www.AUsedCar.com and http://www.BudgetSimple.com . I should say I also created a failed startup during that time. The biggest difference between the successes and the failure were that the successes did not require me to answer phone calls, make sales etc... In other words, completely passive income businesses are the easiest to do with a day job.
8
paraschopra 4 days ago 1 reply      
I built Visual Website Optimizer during weekends and during evenings after work (while I was working full time at another day job). Initial prototypes and first beta version took about 6-8 months. Beta remained for about 4 months, had thousands of beta users by then, quit my day job, polished beta for 2 more months and then launched paid plans. Today we are a team of 8 people (and hiring more) and many happy customers.

To be honest, I think the time constraints posed by day job (you got only 2-3 hours of working on your startup) really made you focus on important stuff (such as working on user feedback and iterating). Plus, the comfort of having a salary provided let you invest in site design, marketing, AdWords, etc. without having you unnecessarily worry about "funding" or borrowing from parents/friends.

9
lsc 4 days ago 0 replies      
I've been running side businesses while having dayjobs most of my working life. One of those side projects, my xen vps hosting company, is now my dayjob. Of course, you might not call it a startup; I'm not really looking to sell (I mean, I would if someone wanted to give me a 10x revenue valuation or something silly like that, but I doubt that will happen.) and it's north of six years old, but revenue is doubling every year or so, and it pays my rent and covers another full-time employee (plus contractors)

Having a well-paying dayjob changes things. You will want to hire your first employee long before you would if you were working full-time at the startup. You will want to spend money rather than do work more often than you would otherwise. Assuming you have a high paying dayjob and you are willing to live cheap, your runway is now measured only in terms of your motivation.

Note, you will not be performing 100% at the dayjob. I got asked to choose between the dayjob and my business only once, though, and that was near the beginning, before I really learned to compartmentalize, and when I was most focused on my business.

My style of work is and always has been very burst-y, which works out well. When I wasn't that focused on the business, I'd get a regular dayjob and top off my COBRA and rent money. When I was focused on the business, I'd either focus on the business completely or work contract gigs for extra money. It's interesting; if you contract through a body shop for non-expert work? (e.g. if they rent you out as a normal programmer/sysadmin?) it pays only slightly better than doing the same job as a direct employee (sometimes a little worse if the benefits for the direct employee are good) but the expectations for your work are much lower. I mean, think about it; if they are paying about the same for a contract as for a full-time with benefits job, do you think they are going to get good people? The lowered expectations along with the ability to spend pre-tax dollars on company equipment made that a pretty good deal for me.

Especially during the money-losing phase (and this /will/ be longer than it would have been if you were full time.) the taxes are complex and can make a huge difference. get a good accountant, and listen to him or her. Small bullshit changes can make the difference between spending pre tax money buying servers and spending post-tax money on those servers.

10
nathanbarry 4 days ago 1 reply      
I did. My iPad app was at $19,000 in profit before I quit my job to focus on it. The details are here:

http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3238834

11
forcer 4 days ago 1 reply      
I started doing affiliate marketing and building websites on the side for about two years before handing my notice. I could have quit after few months where my revenues from the side job exceeded what I had in my day job as a software developer. Nevertheless it took about 2 years because I was scared, I should have quit much sooner. Now 4 years later we are doing 7-figures a year.

I think its the best way to start a company because you are only risking sweat-equity. The danger is that your day job holds you from growing your startup more.

12
dazzla 4 days ago 1 reply      
In the last couple of years I have built up Deal Drop (http://www.getdealdrop.com) to be $3,000/month in revenue as an antidote to the abusive relationship with my day job while helping raise my daughter of the same age. I hoped by now that I could quit and work full time on the side project but I settled for a less abusive day job instead.

This week I took a trip to the ER in an ambulance because I had a seizure at my new day job after one too many late nights working on the side project.

Be careful and know your limits better than I do.

13
fotoblur 4 days ago 0 replies      
Yes. For 4 years now...2 hrs in the morning 2-4 hrs at night + bigger chunks on the weekends.

When I look at my day job I only ever get 4 hrs of real work done anyway...with wasted time for meetings, bureaucracy, and being blocked by others. So even though I'm at work for 8+ hours, on my free time, I'm able to work on a similar sized project putting in less hours because there is usually no waste in that time. I've also got 2 kids and train 4 times a week at the gym or jiu jitsu. It can be done!

After reading a few more comments I want to add something. Work hard at your day job, do your best work, and make them dependent on you. Here is why...if you ever come in late, or leave early because there is a crisis on you side project your employer usually won't care. Your the superstar so that's expected. However, you've got to keep your day job really, really happy to walk this fine line between pursuing your own interests and meeting the needs of your day job. Plus when you have a successful side project (that maybe can't support you just yet) and you're out job hunting people will see you as a golden ticket, a diamond in the rough. Usually when I interview people I often ask what they're working on on the side. That indicates to me this person has drive and determination.

14
nhangen 2 days ago 0 replies      
I do this now.

I was doing client work, and to be frank, got tired of working from home and dealing with low-grade clients all day. So instead of worrying about finding better clients, I took a day job to support myself and my family (wife and kids) while I worked on side projects with my co-founder.

To date, we've built a fun iOS game, Santa Strike, a crowdfunding plugin for WordPress, IgnitionDeck, and a few yet to be launched iOS apps, among other simple software utilities like Iconswitch.me and GameDesignTemplate.com

I drive to and from work an hour a day, which kills me, but we're very close to being profitable enough so I can quit my day job.

We're not zillionaires yet, but I do think it's possible to do what you're asking. However, it's very very difficult, especially when you have a spouse and/or kids.

I work on my stuff from 7-8 am, drive to work, try to fend off the thought of being an unproductive employee so I don't get fired (I'm actually the only developer they have, and I'm in a very good position because my predecessors set the bar so very low), but do spend some time at work handling side-project stuff, get home at 6:30, hang out, work more, go to bed, rinse, repeat.

My wife is stressed because my mind is elsewhere, but she understands. We spend time on the weekends going out and doing family stuff, but not as much as we'd like.

When we ship new versions of software, I field customer inquiries and complaints on the go, which isn't ideal, but is what it is.

In other words, I have very little personal time, it's very stressful for the entire family, and it's a lot of hard work over a long period of time. It's not for the faint of heart.

15
swalberg 4 days ago 0 replies      
I built an online payroll service for Canadian families who hire staff like nannies or home care workers, or small businesses that wanted a very simple payroll solution. At the same time I had a day job.

I wasn't raking in money but I had customers and my revenues exceeded my small expenses.

Over the summer I sold the company and went to work for the acquiring company. In retrospect, this was probably the best move for me (I had considered taking investment to move to it full time.)

Like one of the answers above, I don't think I could have grown the business significantly without spending more time on it, and for me (day job, 3 young kids) this was the only way I could have done it.

16
nischalshetty 4 days ago 1 reply      
I started http://www.justunfollow.com as a way to learn Google Appengine. Sent a tip to TechCrunch, @arrington seemed to like it and profiled it. It started making profits but I did not quit. I finally had to quit after about 1 year of this product going live because it started making me more money in 2 months than my day job was paying me for an entire year!

I quit my job around 9 months ago. Finding too much of time on hand I subsequently started work on a new app, got my friend to join me and we got into Start-up Chile. It's been a great journey but I'm so glad that I did not quit the moment we were profitable. It has taught me the most important thing you need to learn while starting up, being efficient.

I always suggest everyone who has a product to not quit until it is virtually impossible to keep up with a day job. You then become a time management champ and know how to do more with less :)

17
jv22222 4 days ago 1 reply      
I have built Pluggio.com that has $3500/month profit on the side. It's been built in approx. 2 hours a day during the past two years.
18
DougN7 4 days ago 1 reply      
It took me 10 years of working on a few apps on the side, but today they are a $600K/year business and my full time job. Not the shoot-for-the-moon social apps everyone wants to do, but I'm quite happy.
19
spodek 4 days ago 1 reply      
I co-founded Submedia in 1999 while finishing my PhD in physics at Columbia. By then the other we worked on the project three years developing the technology, writing patents and business plans, etc.

I defended my thesis around that time too.

I consider conserving cash fundamental. The stipend for a PhD candidate was under $30k/year for living in Manhattan. I wasn't in subsidized housing and had no savings or other source of income.

20
acangiano 4 days ago 1 reply      
My technical blogs, while not technically a startup, do have the habit of making me mid-four figures per month with very few hours per month investment.
21
davidhansen 4 days ago 0 replies      
raises hand

My current company started out as a side project. I decided to make it a fulltime project after about three years. We are quite profitable.

Today, we operate a few "premium" domain name businesses, but we started with a rather obscure one, and did well enough to purchase more properties from cash flow.

22
benedwards 4 days ago 0 replies      
I have built, launched, and run Swappa http://swappa.com while having a day job. Revenues won't support me quitting yet (or anytime soon), but Swappa is profitable.
23
dbrannan 4 days ago 1 reply      
I have a start up in the black since 2006. All three partners contribute to the code, help debug, and provide customer support. All of us work at other jobs, or independently.

Currently we use profits to pay anyone willing to work on the code and add features. It is self-sustaining, at least.

See: http://www.examprofessor.com

Comments, ideas, suggestions are welcome.

24
thenduks 4 days ago 0 replies      
I started working on a bug tracker (who hasn't at some point, right? :)) because we were using Bugzilla at work and I absolutely hated it and didn't think it fit with our workflow at all.

About a year later I brought it to the team and we decided to switch to it. A few months of light iteration and polish after that and we launched it as it's own product (https://bugrocket.com) for $20/month.

Pretty happy with how it's going, too. It hasn't really interfered with the 'day job' at all besides the occasional email to answer or tweet to reply to. We have really flexible hours here so I shift my day around sometimes to accomodate both projects. Totally do-able.

edit: Seems there is some interest in the 'family situation' of these success stories. I'm married (with kittens, no kids) and it generally hasn't been too difficult to keep a balance. It's helped me a lot having some people working with me (especially on non-technical bits), and not just alone as a single founder. It's hard to say how much time I actually put in because it's kind of a 'here and there' whenever there's the opportunity kind of thing. I'd probably estimate 3-5 hours during the week and then either a lot (8+ hours) or nothing on the weekends, depending on else is happening.

25
stevoski 4 days ago 0 replies      
I started Poker Copilot mostly while doing full-time consulting. I was able to scale down my consulting work gradually as Poker Copilot sales increased, until after 15 months it became my main income source.
26
raju 4 days ago 0 replies      
There was a similar discussion (on side-projects) on HN a while back - Perhaps it will help the discussion?

http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2795760

27
listrophy 4 days ago 0 replies      
I started a Ruby on Rails consulting business with another dev while at my day job, I was an aerospace engineer. His day job was freelance Rails consulting.

After 2.5 months of 80 hour weeks, we quit our day jobs and went full time with the consulting business: Bendyworks. Now, almost 3 years into the biz, we're at 10 people and having a freaking blast.

28
nopal 4 days ago 0 replies      
I built a service for monitoring SSL certificates (https://www.certician.com/) in my free time, although it's not yet profitable. I'm hoping it will be someday soon.

The feeling when a new customer from across the country signs up is a pretty good one!

29
digitalengineer 4 days ago 0 replies      
I'm doing that right now. My startup is selling you, your kids and the girl next door. Heck, I can even sell your grandmother!

Advertising agency's (my day job) can rent them for a fixed price. Royalties included.

(I'm not spamming. You're not my targets and only Dutch people can read it anyway). But have a look at the several hundred people that signed up if you're interested: http://royaltyfreemodels.nl/zoeken/page:11

(It's run on CakePHP for the interested).

30
kin 4 days ago 0 replies      
Geez, you all inspire me so much. I'm trying to do the same and have switched to smaller and smaller side projects so I could get SOMETHING out there. Currently I've been distracted by time with friends/family/SO/and the current barrage of amazing fall video games all which pushed my project to the point of is it even possible?

Apparently I'm the only thing in the way. Thanks for the inspiration everyone! You guys are all amazing.

31
cullenking 4 days ago 0 replies      
School and part-time student programming work took up 40-60 hours a week, and I put in another 20 on our business on top of that. Got barely ramen profitable by graduation, which let me keep from getting a job for 8 months while it ramped up enough to start actually supporting me.
32
dylangs1030 4 days ago 0 replies      
I think this depends entirely on the nature of the startup.

If your startup requires consistently high turnover for new features, then it's going to occupy easily 40 hours per week on just that project.

However, if what you build doesn't need to be updated for months at a time (like some mobile apps or other software) you can probably get away with doing this. An entire company? I don't think so. A particular type of website, or app? Sure, if all you're doing consistently is maintenance.

33
tatonkathomas 4 days ago 1 reply      
I started InkedPlaymats.com a month ago. I work full time as a purchasing manager, have 3 kids under the age of 5, and take online courses full time. I am way over my head and sleeping 4 hours a night, but I am making it work. I am getting a 4.0 and just after a month open my business is starting to boom. I get up early and make breakfast and get orders ready to ship. I spend my lunch break shipping items and answering emails. I come home from work and spend 2 hours having dinner and playing with the kids. I then spend the next few hours doing schoolwork and printing out mats. My wife supports this knowing I am in a growing period. School ends this week, so I am looking forward to that. Anyways, I think it can be done, but is not ideal. And your family has to support you 100% of you will be lost.
34
tcarnell 4 days ago 1 reply      
I built Femtoo.com in my 'spare' time. It was built whilst working at a day job over the course of a year or so.

It brings in a small amount of money each month and it pretty much requires no maintenance. However I would not say that it is profitable (yet), there is a fair way to go before it brings in enough money to have justified the time.

I would spend more time implementing new features if I thought it would result in a significant increase in paying users.

...not sure what to do with it now really!?!? Suggestions welcome!!!

35
mendicant 4 days ago 0 replies      
I spent nearly a year building a SaaS application for Oil and Gas companies here in Calgary. My partner had the idea after he got tired of phoning/emailing/talking to every contact in his book in order to find partners/buyers in land deals.

So after a year of weekends and evenings, my partner started to pound the pavement. We were profitable in our very first year after launch, and continue to be. Our biggest expense is advertising, which is very targeted. I think about 80-85% of our pre-tax revenue ends up being profit, which is great.

I still have my day job, and for the 30 hours/week between us that we still put in, we've been _very_ successful.

36
brackin 4 days ago 0 replies      
I've achieved this in school if that counts. GetDealy which runs flash sales for designers and geeks has 35,000+ users and 2.3 million credits earned, which is our rewards system.

http://getdealy.com

37
amdev 4 days ago 0 replies      
My partner and I started return7 with $800 (mostly design, Apple dev fee, etc.) in 2008 when the App Store opened up. BillMinder, our main app, is profitable.
38
soho33 4 days ago 0 replies      
i have built a startup on the side while working full time still. due to the fact that we are 3 partners, the money is not enough to quit my day job but it's getting there. we have grown from $0 to $200K in 2 and a half years while all 3 of us do this part time. i did all the development and sysadmin work and the other partners took care of the marketing and business side of things.
39
iconfinder 4 days ago 1 reply      
I have built Iconfinder into a profitable service while having a day and studying at business school.

I still do some work next to the startup, but it is basically paying for servers etc. plus a salary for me.

40
landonhowell 4 days ago 1 reply      
I built an online news service in 2002/2003 with zero coding knowledge, $100, and a bootleg version of Adobe Illustrator.

I put every spare moment I had into it, skipping lunches and dinners and sleep (though I never skipped church) all for the sake of keeping it lean before keeping it lean was cool.

5 years later I sold it for a paltry sum, mainly because I didn't add enough people fast enough.

41
vaksel 4 days ago 2 replies      
Doing a startup is 90% waiting, and 10% doing. It's perfectly possible to do one on the weekend.

Especially since coding is a tiny iota of actually doing one, most of it boils down to marketing anyways

42
kellysutton 4 days ago 0 replies      
I just put in my two weeks to pursue LayerVault full time. It's all up and to the right from here.
43
veyron 4 days ago 0 replies      
What do you mean by built? I ask because some people have noncompete or other contractual obligations that prevent launching a startup.
44
mitko 4 days ago 0 replies      
If you are building something on the side in which cases your day job company owns it?
45
paulhauggis 4 days ago 0 replies      
It can work, but you can easily burn yourself out.

Rather than working 8-10 hours on your startup and having some free time. You work 8 hours and spend all of your free time on your startup.

I prefer getting some capital saved and then quitting your day job.

46
iamandrus 4 days ago 0 replies      
I'm actually working on a startup while in school (not technically a day job, but similar). I think my idea has a ton of potential in the market I'm aiming for, so I've been working on it for almost a year now.
47
guscost 4 days ago 0 replies      
I did this with a collaborator, and intend to do it again soon. The way of the future...
48
lmauri 4 days ago 0 replies      
I and 2 cofounders are near to launching our iphone app and we have our daily job.

I'm the backend and frontend developer(rest-full api needed for our iphone app), the other two are the creative guys,
and I've to admit that it has been hard to think, design, and do a product in a spare time(especially if you have a wife and a child).

And there are other aspects of the launching such as the site, the company to found and many things that require a lot of time.

I hope the app and the business I want to build around succeded so I will quit my current profitable job.

49
bluesmoon 4 days ago 0 replies      
Ask me again in 6-8 months. We haven't launched yet. Both me and my co-founder have day jobs.
50
hndl 4 days ago 1 reply      
I'm curious to know what the typical day of a person in this setting is like? As in, what were ones' day-job hours and hours for project work?
51
svisstack 4 days ago 0 replies      
I started www.pokertablestats.com while working in day job and now i'm working on 2 other startup's after work hours.
52
iguanayou 4 days ago 1 reply      
I have a (barely) profitable SaaS app that I wrote while having a full time job. The advantage I have is that my day job is teaching, which gives me chunks of time off during the summer and winter. I think that if I had a job coding all day, the last thing I'd want to do is come home and do more coding.
53
daliusd 4 days ago 1 reply      
What's the point of this question? There are people who did that and that's possible. patio11 is one example and I must say very good one.

I am example of person who has not managed to do that in 3 years but I have learned a lot and my trial contributed to my well-being in many positive ways. Some of those are like salary growing faster than planned and some are small but pleasant things like Nokia N950.

54
Maro 4 days ago 6 replies      
You mean "profitable side-project"?

"Startup" usually means a company that fulfills a few of the below:

  - something the founders do full-time
- less than 3 years old
- in a bootstrap phase or burning VC money
- in search of a business model (not yet profitable)
- has the potential to grow

10
An Obscure Competitor is Giving Away My Product
5 points by kellyreid  1 day ago   16 comments top 7
1
otoburb 23 hours ago 1 reply      
How do you know he's progressing faster? With your base of paying customers, you should be able to iterate faster than your competition. If you can't, and if you feel it's that much of a serious technical threat, then you may want to consider hiring a technical professional of your own.

At the same time, your business co-founder (presumably you're the one responsible for the technical side of the house while your partner is responsible for sales, marketing and biz dev) should seriously investigate if there is any merit to the competition's revenue model, and whether it's in your best interest to adopt a freemium model of your own (it may not be).

Given that you claim to have a working paywall model (something that I think many media companies and media brokers would kill for), your content must be a niche of some type.

Attack this problem from as many simultaneous angles as possible (technical/feature-parity, pricing and marketing). If you can learn faster than your competition (that doesn't necessarily mean release features faster -- "learn" is the keyword here) from your paying customers, then you should be in a much better position to stay ahead.

The fact that you said that the "[...] products will be functionally identical once both are deployed and out of beta" is a red-flag to me that you either haven't done enough analysis of the competition's feature set, or if you have, then you need to increase the tempo of customer feedback to incorporate into your product.

Perhaps you will say that as soon as you deploy new features based on your customer learnings, your competition will copy you. If that's the case, then (from a marketing angle) you will always be first to deliver features and should be able to please your customers faster, hopefully resulting in greater adoption (until you saturate your market).

I smell a lot of fear from your post. It may help to reframe your situation in a more positive light, since imitation is usually the highest form of flattery, while competition is sometimes used as a signalling mechanism (to yourself and others) that you picked a potentially profitable addressable market.

tl;dr

1) Congratulations! You're validating your business model and market with actual paying customers and (now) competition.

2) Figure out how long each of you can last if one of you gave the content away for free. Consider freemium for your own offering (teaser content?).

3) Increase, analyze and act on feedback from your customers faster.

4) Hire better technical talent.

Sorry I didn't answer your original question of "What do you do to push through it?" Hopefully the suggestions above will help to combat the dejection and loss of motivation.

2
helen842000 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I try and remind myself there will always be competitors selling the same thing cheap enough to put you both out of business.

You have your users AND they are paying. How sustainable is a business where he absorbs all the costs and doesn't bring any revenue in? How much support can he continue provide to free users? Especially if they get into the large numbers.

You are treating it like a business, he is treating it like a project that he can drop at any time.

In my eyes, he is collecting your future customers for you. When he spends to the bottom of his pockets and folds, his customers will have to choose between your service or no service.

Hold on, keep focused on your lovely customers. Give them amazing service. Go above and beyond for them. Stir up a little press of your own (make your stake on first to market a little early)

Don't get caught up in looking over your shoulder.

3
teyc 23 hours ago 1 reply      
$100/mo is nothing for a business user. If it is important to their business, it is not an issue. In fact, emphasize that paid support means you will be around to answer their questions.

Work on other forms of stickiness. If historical data can be presented in a useful form, then people will less likely to leave because it means leaving their old data behind.

Another form of stickiness is friends or social aspects.

4
milaniliev 18 hours ago 0 replies      
If short-term technical issues, such as performance problems, are preventing your launch, why not just bring in an experienced developer for a few weeks as a consultant? You wouldn't have to pay them that much, I don't think. It might also be possible to defer payment partially if you are truly cash-strapped.

I don't know if this helps, but for business users, paid, stable, reliable-support, above-board businesses are worth real money. Red Hat makes essentially all their money offering support on a product they themselves make available for free.

Also: your competitor is not copying your content, is he? Is he able to code-up the platform AND pay for content creation on a free product?

5
heelhook 23 hours ago 2 replies      
If the products are identical as you said, then, even if the other developer is building at faster speed than you are I would say you still have the upper hand because of your greater visibility.

That said, if I were you I would launch a beta, even if its only a private beta, just to get the word out there, that way you can preempt his launch by getting the word out there. See every feature that its not completely necessary to the minimal viable product, cut those and launch.

Bests of luck!

6
heelhook 23 hours ago 1 reply      
37s' rework has a great chapter, "underdo your competition", I think its really applicable to your case.
7
mapster 22 hours ago 1 reply      
He may be positioning himself to be bought out of the market by you. Keep your nose to the grindstone and get market share by making customers very happy they are with you.
11
Ask HN: Why Verdana?
6 points by hmart  2 days ago   11 comments top 4
1
makecheck 1 day ago 1 reply      
I think the better question is, why specify fonts at all?

I set fonts in my browser. When browsing any site that simply leaves fonts alone, everything looks the way I want it to! When sites tinker with the font used by most text, it is unnecessarily hard to fix (e.g. my style sheet has to list all kinds of HTML tags where text may appear and include lots of "!important" flags).

I can understand setting a fancy font for the odd title or something, but all the text on the page? Why?

For what it's worth, this is my entire override stylesheet for HN, including some tweaks to the home page that I think make it substantially more readable. I recommend trying it. :)

  html {
overflow-y: scroll;
}

body, p, table, th, td, a, .comment {
font-family: "Helvetica Neue" !important;
font-size: normal;
padding: 0.2em;
}

.subtext {
width: 100%;

padding-left: 40%;

padding-bottom: 0.6em;
border-bottom: solid #ccc 0.1em !important;
}

2
Todd 1 day ago 1 reply      
This is a pretty simple fix in CSS using font face fallbacks. Here's a typical example:

  font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif

Maybe pg or friends will update it.

3
tux1968 2 days ago 1 reply      
Your fontconfig install should really take care of this for you locally without HN needing to change anything. You shouldn't need to install mscorefonts either since there are reasonable free alternatives.
4
DiabloD3 2 days ago 1 reply      
I've been using "DejaVu Sans", "Bitstream Vera Sans", "Verdana", Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif as my list. Seems to do what I want.
13
Ask HN: Why was the article "Don't Just Ask" killed?
32 points by RyanMcGreal  4 days ago   13 comments top 6
1
Mz 3 days ago 1 reply      
Hi RyanMcGreal.

I have been kind of wondering if my remarks were part of why it got flagged to death. Of the 103 comments, I made 11 of them. I actually made a couple more that I then deleted but which were up long enough they could have been read by someone. I was having a really bad night and deleted those two remarks because I concluded I was too fried and they were probably on the inflammatory side without meaning to be. I have a long history of really upsetting people on certain topics. I usually try to be pretty restrained when posting on such topics. However, short of sleep and having just gotten an eviction notice, combined with not getting ugly replies to my remarks, I was far less restrained than I typically try to be on such topics. I find such topics fascinating and tend to not have much outlet for really discussing them in a satisfactory manner. Gender issues tend to be touchy issues where both sides get really defensive, which tends to not support meaty discussion.

I have hesitated to wonder out loud about this. I'm not interested in taking all the blame or something like that. But it is a thought that has crossed my mind and I thought it might be meaningful to you as an individual. A great deal of what goes on in any forum is driven by social aspects like pecking order, who is friends with whom (that you might not be aware of), emotional reactivity of some members and so on. I have a very serious medical condition which often leaves me in pain and feverish, so I am prone to foot in mouth disease. I was molested as a child and being willing to tell my story is what saved me, so I tend to be very "out of the closet" so to speak and prone to being very comfortable discussing topics that other people are typically far less comfortable discussing. My story makes me a sympathetic figure which means people are sometimes tolerant of "bad behavior" on my part that they wouldn't be so tolerant of from just anyone (not that I think expressing my opinions on gender topics constitutes bad behavior, but I realize it tends to be disruptive or disturbing behavior, which is much the same in the eyes of many people). For that and other reasons, at times I seem to be a perfect storm of how to push everyone's hot buttons.

I actually started an anonymous blog to give myself a place to talk about things like that without stirring up so much trouble on forums I belong to. I think I generally do better these days at "behaving" myself (ie restraining my big fat mouth on topics where I know I make others really uncomfortable). But I wonder if perhaps it was killed in part due to the combo of my lack of sleep and eviction notice leading me to share my views perhaps too generously on a topic where it is generally wise to tread more lightly in public. I also wonder if this post is recreating the same error. I still don't know where I will go on January first and, though I've slept better this morning, I'm hardly caught up on sleep. I like analyzing such things but it tends to make other people really, really uncomfortable and tends to put excess focus on me in a way that often leads to trouble. Given the level of financial trouble I am in currently, I'm not sure it matters much in the grand scheme of things how this one post gets taken.

It's offered as food for thought, in case that helps you (or anyone) figure out better ways to deal with some of the issues on the forum that you would like to see improved.

Peace.

2
malandrew 4 days ago 0 replies      
IMHO: It was logically weak and largely anecdotal. It made reference to a study where the name was changed from a woman's name to a man's name. We don't know when the study was published. We don't know if that was just one example out of many that conveniently illustrated her point.

All the rest of the article was based on her own experience (sample size: 1 woman) and nothing else. This makes it very different from the anonymous post on Reddit recently about salary negotiation. In the case of the Reddit post, the author had hired hundreds of people and probably was talking about a statistically significant sample size.

Very weak article overall. I would have commented on the Atlantic about it, but there's no comments section.

The correct rebuttal to the OP on Reddit would be a double-blind study where women and men with the same résumés were interviewed for the same position with subjects given the same HR instructions as the OP. The men and women are each broken up into two groups (for a total of four), each employing the salary negotiation tactics described by the OP.

3
JoachimSchipper 4 days ago 0 replies      
I'm surprised. The article was pretty informative and the comments page was actually pretty good, so the usual reasons for flagging stories like that do not apply.
4
accountoftheday 4 days ago 0 replies      
my guess: YC batches being almost exclusively sausage fests pg's posse prefers to avoid subjecting itself to potential criticism wrt gender discrimination, thus the topic is best not raised.

personally i found the article quite illuminating that the topic one worthy of HN debate.

5
llambda 4 days ago 1 reply      
Possibly it reached a flag threshold? (Blind guess.)
6
xiaoma 4 days ago 1 reply      
It was political. There are many other forums online already dominated by discussion of sexism, racism, class inequities, etc...
14
The Art of Minimalism shown at HN
10 points by tzury  3 days ago   3 comments top 2
1
irrumator 3 days ago 1 reply      
Hardly, there is a lot of arc that you are not seeing that really powers the voting and other features of the site like spam detection and voting ring detection. It's similar to the code at http://ycombinator.com/arc/arc3.tar but there are significant modifications as well.
2
abcd_f 3 days ago 0 replies      
On the other hand the HTML markup is not that minimalistic at all. A bit of CSS would've gone a long way in lightening it up.
15
Ask HN: Best launch strategies for a weekend project? And what I did till now.
2 points by 1p1e1  1 day ago   1 comment top
1
Jun8 1 day ago 0 replies      
The easiest (and, considering the context, best I think) way is to post a "Show HN", together with some installation codes so that people can try and give feedback. If the thing is good, you'll get great buzz. If it's not ready, you'll get great feedback.
16
Ask HN: Finishing science program - should I switch to programming?
4 points by tmp_git_111204  2 days ago   4 comments top 4
1
thejteam 2 days ago 0 replies      
Perhaps instead of asking whether or not you want to do programming, ask what industry interests you. A general science background should do you a lot of good, especially if you can also write and speak intelligently. Being able to write software is an added bonus that should make you more effective.

I personally can't stand web programming either. Although most startups you read about here are web companies, the world is much larger than that. I write simulation software. Other people do business applications. Some people work in finance and some work in defense.

If you are concerned that your skills do not directly translate to an industry or you are having a hard time getting hired, try finding the smaller(not necessarily startup) companies in your industry. I have found that it is much easier for somebody with more general technical skills to get hired at a smaller place.

Hope this helps and good luck.

2
hendrix 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm in a rather similar situation (23/m/just finished Molecular Biology/Business degree). Personally, I'm still interested in the life sciences, but the flexibility and salary of for-profit business is much more attractive than the academic career. So I started teaching myself C++/Java/perl while looking for jobs.

There are many applications of CS, have you thought about Finance (quant or operations/bioinformatics/defense industry (if you are a usa citizen)....

3
TheRealmccoy 1 day ago 0 replies      
Whatever you do in future,but learning to program is a very good plan.

After 10.5 years in Sales and at 34 years of age, I am learning it now.

Trust me, you would never regret this decision of yours.

Good luck!!!

4
mapster 2 days ago 0 replies      
Take a wait and see attitude for now. Work in your field and get a sense of the opportunities. In ecology one runs into programming (models, data analysis, etc.) quite often.
17
60% of .edu websites are hacked by turkish "hackers"
62 points by zeynalov  11 days ago   35 comments top 9
1
Matt_Cutts 11 days ago 2 replies      
Blackhat spammers will do almost anything to earn money, including illegal stuff like hacking tons of websites. Google is able to detect and disregard the vast majority of hacked links; you're looking at raw links but you don't see which of those links we trust and how much weight we give them.

We try to go a little further and warn many websites that they've been hacked, but there's definitely a lot of unpatched web servers out there, as you could guess from http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3277514 a few hours ago.

2
ebiester 11 days ago 2 replies      
Here's the problem... Turkey has a lot of underutilized developer talent. There's tremendous potential there, but most of it ends up in Germany or France. It also ends up in underhanded schemes.

For those that stay, the IT culture seems rather conservative and moving jobs is culturally difficult. The talent is there (like it is in Russia) but they are a long way off from being an innovation capitol.

3
jpadvo 11 days ago 2 replies      
Interesting find! About Google, I'm pretty sure they have methods to detect hidden content that simply exists as SEO spam.
4
parfe 11 days ago 0 replies      
Just checked and the university I work for has a few spam links.

I figure the hundreds of independently maintained public facing servers make universities particularly vulnerable.

5
shareme 11 days ago 0 replies      
about 18 months ago you use to see a lot of craigslist ads for access to edu sites..

18 months later no ads whatsoever..so it must have all been outsourced to places like Turkey etc..

6
nvictor 11 days ago 1 reply      
50-60%? really?
7
presson83 7 days ago 0 replies      
I have a site using modx.com's latest version that is continually hit with these "display:none" links. I've changed all passwords about a dozen times with no luck. Anyone have any thoughts on how to prevent this hack from continually happening?
8
switz 11 days ago 0 replies      
That's wild. I guess since it's not exactly malicious hacking, the site owners never realize it. I know plenty of .edu websites that are terribly coded in terms of security. It's good that you reported it. Hopefully Matt sees this.
9
cluboholic 11 days ago 1 reply      
Turkey shows its aggressive nature in every way..
18
Ask HN : Any ideas to reduce spam on HN?
2 points by chris_dcosta  1 day ago   4 comments top 2
1
mooism2 1 day ago 2 replies      
Was the link on /newest or on the front page?

I think it would be helpful if usernames on the new page appeared in green not when they were created within the last week, but when they had never submitted a link that was subsequently upvoted past a threshold.

I don't know whether HN does e-mail--style spam filtering on submitted pages, but it seems like an obvious thing to try if not.

2
narad 1 day ago 0 replies      
Usually some posts are marked as NSFW, if it contains objectionable content. In my experience, bad links never got to the first page at all.
24
Ask HN: Etiquette on resubmitting a link (that died on the vine)
7 points by jerrya  6 days ago   2 comments top
1
JoachimSchipper 5 days ago 1 reply      
Technically, you can bypass the filter by tweaking the URL a bit - adding or subtracting a /, ? or # will usually work.

But please don't resubmit. There are already too many stories on the 'new' page relative to the number of people looking at it; if people would regularly resubmit stories, that problem would get even worse.

       cached 7 December 2011 05:05:01 GMT