Category Archives: start-up

Sculptor’s Log

There was once a log, ready to have a meeting with the Sculptor, getting ready for the grind!
Casually it approached the scene, not knowing what is to happen to it next,
Waiting to see who/what is the Sculptor is and what can he do for it?
Seeing a couple of wasted logs around the scene, it could not resist but ask their state!
They said in chorus – “One word, Do as the sculptor says” as they were tossed out of the view.
“Ahh, What could the Sculptor ask me to do” was the only thought pacing up and down the log’s mind!

Log being chiseled!

And the moment of the log’s meeting arrived…
Placed in the hands of the Sculptor, the log could not giggle profusely!
And then.. Bam! Sculptor’s chisel tore apart a big chunk from the log.
And the log screamed to the Sculptor, “What are you doing, please stop”
The Sculptor stopped, and asked whether the this log did not have a chatter with other logs?
The log said, “They said only-to listen to you,they did not tell you’ll make me undergo this chisel”
The Sculptor looked clueless, and the log asked itself to be excused.

After some time of pondering…
The log thought of going through the process as one strike a day…
And the deal was made…
Days,Weeks,Months passed and the log took the blow daily and frowned and complained..
And then one fine day, the Sculptor said to the log, I’m done with you.
And then the sculpted-log was moved to a different place — not knowing where and for what, it cooperated!

Being sculpted

A few days later…
The log was placed at a higher platform, and then by chance it got to see itself in a mirror!
And it could not believe what it could see — A beautiful deity crossed its sight.
Not believing that was It, the log waited for another such day and then the belief was confirmed.

Outcome of fore-bearing the chiseling

The log had a good after thought..
All the suffering, the chiseling, was given to it for its shaping.
Had it complained and not gone through the grind, it might have become another wasted log…
Thanking the Sculptor, (and the wasted logs for the advice), for his efforts, it just smiled.

(This post is inspired from a story over-heard — all images are googled, no claim on ownership)

Questions to ask to a VC

Incase you stumble upon a VC, here is a list of questions that can help you use their knowledge/expertise/insight for your products long term vision and validation!

1/Does your experience tell you [your-product-name] is a unique solution?

2/Do you think the idea will be accepted?(a)by people b)by investors?)

3/Are you convinced by the idea and ready to risk loosing your investment? 🙂

4/What are the areas that [your-product-name] needs to specifically work on?

5/What is the suggested milestones/checkpoints you recommend that are
important post launch/before/beyond?

6/Do you think [your-idea-name] needs investment/funding/backing?

7/Does [your-product-name] need to rush the idea to the market?

8/Is it ok to go for an [country-location-name] only launch for now?

After this form of scrutinizing is over, ask the VC to take off their hat and give feedback about your product as a normal user(if they have the capacity to be your products consumer).

Hope this is helpful to anyone reading it 🙂

Social Media Marketing of things!

 

As the year 2015 comes to end, high time to board the social marketing bandwagon!(Better late than never!).

With BA out of the woods, and desperately looking for people to start using it! :-/, @ideapreneur suggested to try the FB thing and get the app to be downloaded via FB advt!(superb idea!) :-), On With The Implementation!!

So we had 3 contenders: FB/Google/Twitter as usual, as max footfall is via these 3 mediums! I will be sharing how I felt while using these mediums to reach out the potential audiences for the app!

1/Audience filtering:

Winner: FB

Tw: Had exactly 300 people interested in biking, This made Tw go out of the competetion way too early!

Gg: No way to find the potential audience, and there is no concept called interest, only keywords(way too year 2000 style)

FB: yay! tune your parameters location/interest/demographics and you get a potential reach! Way cool feature — actually won right stragihtaway there!

2/Ease of usage

Winner: None(maybe Gg)

FB: It took 3 weeks to get a hang of their systems! Their weird terminology of campaign/adverts/adverts set(yuck!) had me stuck unnecessarily for 3 days, as an advert in an advert set was OFF! Also their constraint that an image cannot have more than 20% text also had me waste 3 days getting them to approve/disapprove my advts. Oh and they pulled away 2k bucks in a day for an app install campaign! :-/

Gg: For a new comer not getting footfall on google, seems like their system was broken! That was a problem!Their system is perfectly reflecting how a mainframe of advts should look like! :-D(ha ha!). One super feature was me giving them a link to my site and they creating an advt out of it!WOW Take a look what they did here. This made them win by a small margain!

 

3/Footfall

Winner: FB

Gg: Well maybe the websites are going out of fashion! A great reach but people not interested in the advt at all! more than 50% CPC as compared to FB, and the number seemed small!

FB: Does this need an explanation? Most of the virtual world still visits FB. Plain. Simple.Get it.

 

So, this feat is captured, WHY AREN’T PEOPLE USING THE APP STILL? 😛

 

2 CAME, PIZZA HUT SAW, GANG-STIR CONQUERED

Well, the title might sound a bit off track, there’s some story behind it. As all “Gang-Stirs” following this blog have read RK’s earlier post Somethings cooking! (stir-ring) me and RK met at Pizza Hut @ CP today (that explains 2 CAME, PIZZA HUT SAW part) and had a meeting of sorts (that explains GANG-STIR CONQUERED part). Without much further ado, I hereby put the minutes of the meeting (or discussion whatever one would love to call it):

Three broad points were on our agenda as outlined below:

  1. WHAT DO WE HAVE TO DO?

One of the important points is what are we going to do as a team if we become one. The discussion was centered around:

  • Get or identify guys from varied backgrounds and technologies together. Already few “Gang-Stirs” have been identified for ownership of various tracks:
      • Mobile: GG
      • JAVA (ranging from middleware to front-end): JC/RK/NA/HKA
      • Rails: SD
      • Database/Backend: AP

 

  • Find/search for ideas that click. You can think about anything under the sun, but the implementation of the same should be possible for you and other “Gang-Stirs” to implement.
  • A website has to be put up containing a small description of our work/ideas. RK is driving this effort and will update once done.
  • Search for a hosting solution that supports JAVA/J2EE and we badly need this to be in place to proceed further.
  • Ruby hosting solution has been found. Check out justhost.com for more info.
  • Finally, need UI experts to design nice layouts for our ideas. I know most of “Gang-Stirs” (if not all) struggle at it.
  • R&D was also discussed, but it’s more of an individual rather than collective effort.

2. WHAT WE HAVE BEEN THINKING OF DOING?

The second which we discussed about. Few ideas which came out:

  • BIKE-ASSIST: Kind of a GPS/navigation system which would assist bikers/motorists find next option in case of breakdown. For starters, might be implemented on mobile/web platform. More info would be available once we actually start on this.
  • A RUBY PROJECT: Something similar to National UID started by Govt. of India under Mr. Nilekani. But the difference would be the identity of the person would not be based on data like ration card or gas connection etc. rather it would be on his own individual identity. SD can work on this.
  • E-Commerce Engine: I have been thinking about this for long, but it involves lots of effort and R&D from initial plan to final product. Hopefully, would start on this and come up with more details.
  • Work on improving and contributing to open-source projects under Apache preferably. This can vary from developing eclipse plugins to working on actual source code. Apache Maven has been identified for starters to work on the same.

3. THE PREREQUISITES BEFORE WE START WORKING

I think this is the most important part one needs to focus on before doing actual work. Few prerequisites have been identified for starters:

  • Complete ownership of the identified track is a must. Apart from doing the actual coding this would include mentoring the new guys, taking additional roles/responsibilites etc.
  • Each track would be responsible for their deliverable. By deliverable we mean a final product which we just need to deploy or copy and it would work without much additional rework. Apart from the deliverable, each track should have an extensive documentation on wiki or any documentation platform explaining features/known issues or bugs related to their respective deliverable.
  • Most importantly, need to stick to best practices and standards while going about our job/passion.

Well, that’s the whole summary of our discussions. Please feel free to comment and suggest further so that we might have a better perspective while going about our passion.