Side Projects

Updates for my many side projects...

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Motivations vary from project to project, sometimes to learn a new tool or technique, sometimes to test working with someone new, sometimes to make a little extra money.

November 15, 2020 Reached 50 hours of One Hour SaaS

Today I'm working on hour 50 of One Hour SaaS. This is about half the time I thought I would need to see if I can build a successful SaaS business in one hour per day.

Although Podcast Ping, my main product is available for users to uses, I'm trying some side project marketing, so today I'm launching: PodcastHosting.Review.

I'm continuing to reach out to potential customer for Podcast Ping before doing the official launch, so this side project which is very relevant to Podcast Ping is a good way to start spreading the word, without official launching.

As usual I'll be doing a launch day twitter thread, so share how it goes 🤞

Would love for you to leave your feedback on the Product Hunt launch:
https://www.producthunt.com/posts/podcast-hosting-review

You can continue to follow my journey building a SaaS business in one hour a day at:
https://onehoursaas.com/

Mubs

November 1, 2020 Launching How Many People Have Voted?

Yesterday morning I decided to build a quick project to answer a question that was on mind, and will be on my mind for the next few days.

The US election is almost here, and the early voting has been off the charts, but I wondered just how many people are voting.

I've seen the numbers on the TV, but wanted to dig a little deeper and get the information whenever I wanted it.

Turned out the data was available on The United States Elections Project, but it was buried a little deep. So I decided to use the data to provide the information in an quick and easy way to see:

https://howmanypeoplevoted.com/

You'll see the total number, along with the total from 2016.

However since the Electoral college is a such a large factor in who is the next President, I added a break down on the voter turnout in each state.

Would love to know what you think!

If you'd like to know more about how I built the project (in just a few hours), you can find more details here:
https://practicalmvp.com/blog/how-many-people-have-voted

October 20, 2020 Podcast Ping Soft Launch

After 37 hours of work that I documented on the one hour saas youtube channel, I'm calling the MVP ready to soft launch.

I was aiming for around the 30 hour mark to get to this point, so I got in the ball park.

Feels strange to build an MVP in 5-6 weeks, most times I try and time box it to two weeks, but in terms of actual time, it would translate to less than a week of full time work.

The bad news? Building in one hour a day is hard! Some tasks are hard to fit into one hour, and effectively managing your time into chunks of work you can make progress in is very important.

If you fail to manage your time affectively, your progress will grind to halt and that can be very demotivating, however...

The good news? Building in one hour a day forces you to make progress every day, seeing that progress can be motivating (in the long term).

If like me you're building in public, the one hour makes it very easy to consistently share your progress. At each stage you have the opportunity to connect with potential users (or fans) and get feedback, and on some days the motivational boost you need to keep going.

From here I'm going to turn my attention to getting some early adopters, for feedback on the MVP and who might help with the roadmap for future features.

MVP

Would love for you to checkout the MVP and let me know what you think:
https://podcastping.com

October 15, 2020 Launching Hacker News Day

I actually built this nearly a year ago, and I've using it regularly ever since, figured it was time to officially launch it.

I'm a big fan of Hacker News, I would visit it many times a day, but these days I'm too busy to visit that often.

I tried to keep up with what was posted, what was popular between my visits, but the ever changing leaderboard made that very difficult.

So I came up with the idea of a daily leaderboard, inspired by the leaderboards like you see on Product Hunt.

Would love to know what you think:
https://hackernewsday.com

Quick intro video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8l4rmQyLz3k

October 2, 2020 Officially launching indiehackers.tv

Today I decided to officially launch indiehackers.tv.

A side project I built a few weeks ago, that makes it easier to find the video content posted on here Indie Hackers.

Things have been running pretty smoothly since the soft launch, with about 600 users visiting the website and browsing videos.

I've made a few minor changes to how videos are extracted from Indie Hackers, but otherwise things are pretty much the same.

I've posted indiehackers.tv on Product Hunt, would love if you could leave a review:
https://www.producthunt.com/posts/indiehackers-tv

If you missed my original launch post you can find it here.

September 22, 2020 Reached 100 YouTube Channel Subscribers

There are a few targets I had in mind when I started posting updates for my one hour saas challenge.

Some of them are dictated by YouTube itself. 100 subscribers so you can change the URL of your channel. 1000 subscribers so you can start monetizing the channel videos (if you want).

My personals targets had to do with posting videos, I wanted to post videos consistently. Hoping to get 100 videos in 100 days. I may or may not get there.

After 13 videos I can see the process has already started to get easier for me. I'm thinking less about the process of recording the video and more about the things I want to talk about.

Obviously life can get in the way, and I may not achieve my goal, but having got this far, I'm confident that now even if I miss a day I'm going to be able to pick things up and continue to my 100 video goal.

Even after the challenge is officially over I expect to post regular updates about Podcast ping and building SaaS applications in general.

September 10, 2020 one hours saas #001

Yesterday I started the one hour saas challenge.

I did a deepish dive into 4 ideas I had in my idea notebook that I had thought would be a good fit for the challenge.

I considered the market interest for the ideas, likely hood of finding customers (easily) for those ideas. How easy the product would be to build (on my own), and my general excitement on the idea.

With a couple of these ideas I might normally have spent more time talking to prospective customers to see if it was a good idea, but given the time constraints I decided to go with my gut feeling.

I don't think any of the 4 ideas would have been bad to move forward with, but some were better than others.

I talked more about the ideas in my video update:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-CmYG_VMcsA

If I had the time I'd love to build all these ideas, but I probably won't and they are now public if you want to pursue them feel free!

August 23, 2020 Building a SaaS business in hour per day

Around this time of the year I like to think I about one more big sIde project that I’ll do before the end of the year.

As I started to think about what to build, I focused on how I would build it.

I’ve seen many people here on IH and on Twitter talk about the lack of time to build projects. They have a full time job, they have family obligations and other commitments.

What if your time is really limited and you can only spare 1 hour per day to work on a project. Is it possible to build a (successful) SaaS business in hour per day?

I posted on Twitter to see if people would be interested in following me as I tried this:

The response has been great. A few people responded they did something close to this in building their businesses. Many people responded they would be Interested in seeing how I would tackle a challenge Ike this.

Given the response to the tweet I accept the challenge.

I will start my 1 hour per day in the middle of September, and document what I do thru the end of the year, and perhaps beyond. Will see what the state of challenge is at that point.

This will definitely be a new way of working for me, but I’m excited to see what impact It has on what and how I build things.

Until I setup something specifically for this you can get updates by following me on Twitter. I’ll likely be posting weekly updates as milestones here.

If you have any thoughts on doing something like this, would love to read your comments.

May 19, 2020 Launching: Branded Background

I always enjoy working with "first time" makers, and this time was no exception.

I've known Adam Marx for many years, and this was our first opportunity to work together on a project.

Like everyone else it seems we've been thrown into to Pandemic fueled Zoom calls. On one of these Zoom calls we discussed how some people started to create custom virtual backgrounds that included their company logo, so their brand could be displayed during their business calls.

Not everyone is able to create these custom images, and we started to wonder if it would be possible to create a tool that anyone could use to create their own virtual background with just a few clicks.

This lead to Branded Background:
https://brandedbackground.com

The whole project took a couple of weekends, and after some early testing from friends we are ready to launch it to the world.

We're on ProductHunt today and hope to get feedback as we work to build on our MVP:
https://www.producthunt.com/posts/branded-background

May 4, 2020 Sold a Side Project

Last week I agreed to the sale of a side project I built last year during a hackathon.

For Sale By Maker is a free site that allows users to post products featured on Product Hunt for sale on the marketplace, was acquired by Micro Acquire.

The bulk of the negotiation happened over Twitter, and a Zoom call all on a rainy (for me) Sunday morning.

Spent time this past week doing the transfer to the new owner to complete the sale.

An interesting aspect was that I never monetized For Sale By Maker, and had never planned too (fortunately Micro Acquire also has no plan to do so!)

This made coming up with a price to sell for interesting, and I came up with a novel approach of selling for the price of a new laptop.

I published more details of the process on my blog:
For Sale By Maker: Sold By Maker

Happy to answer any questions...

Motivations vary from project to project, sometimes to learn a new tool or technique, sometimes to test working with someone new, sometimes to make a little extra money.