Open forum: Who are you, anyway?


So Paul is out for a few days… the guy just made the big leap and got married. Rather than leave this space blank, I’m going to step in to rock the mic.

Just out of curiosity sake, I’d love it if you’d jump in the comments of this post and leave a comment with who you are, what you’re working on, why you read The Startup Foundry, and any other info you think we should know. We know you’re out there, so we might as well start talking one-to-another.

I’ll go first… check the comments.

  • So I’m Randall Bennett. I’m 27, currently living in Ogden, Utah.

    I recently moved to Ogden from San Francisco. I thought I’d come work on my Master’s Degree, which was among the dumbest ideas I’ve had to date. Turns out I can’t stand school.

    My focus has traditionally been audio and video production. My career goals are mainly to push web video into a data driven medium, rather than a rendered video medium. (Long story… I’ll be writing more about it later.)

    I have two sites you might want to check out… one is http://vidplusplus.com where I talk about all things video, and the other is http://vidpresso.com/, a product I’m working on that aims to sync slides and video together. (Among other things…)

    I started reading TSF mainly because I saw it pop up on HN, and read some insightful posts from some smart folks. Since then, I’ve started writing my own little notes here and there, and hope to help people out more and more.

  • Hey Randall ūüôā

    I’m Nick Sergeant, and I’m working on (among many other things) Auto Swatch: http://autoswatch.com. I want to change the way people research and find cars online.

  • Hello! I am Jack, a 17-year-old from the UK.

    Whilst I’m currently a student, I’m not going to be for much longer. At the end of this year I am quitting school to focus full-time on a web development job I have – project-managing, designing, and developing sites for an entrepreneur who owns about several different businesses.¬†

    Outside of work, I launched http://howcode.com last year. Sadly the project has been slightly neglected lately – the designer recently got his startup funded by 500Startups, so we haven’t had much time for it. Back in 2009 I sold my first website which kick-started my love to web design and startups.

    Recently I have launched http://littlepsd.com and am currently working on launching a new internet advertising platform, planned to go live during August. 

    It’s hard staying in touch with the startup scene from the UK. I’m not in London either which doesn’t help. However my ultimate goal is to get to America some day to launch a startup/seek funding over there, where I feel it’s really happening.

    I read TSF as it keeps me in touch with what’s going on in the startup world. Even though I’m only 17 and not even in America, I feel it’s really important to keep up to date with what’s going on, as ultimately one day I might be able to join the fun across the pond.

    Jack

  • Anandp

    I’m Anand Patel. I’m 25, based out of Atlanta, GA.

    I launched TalkHotels (http://www.talkhotels.com) in April; it’s a professional and social network for hospitality professionals. I launched RoomSailor (http://www.roomsailor.com) in June; it’s an iPhone app that let’s you book a room based on your current location. We donate to a charity you pick each time you book through RoomSailor.

    One thing that sets my stuff apart is that I’m big on incorporating ‘giving back’ into my ideas. For TalkHotels, we plant a tree for each invite that’s requested. For RoomSailor, we let the user pick a cause and we’ll donate on their behalf each time they book through RoomSailor.

    I read TSF to keep up with what’s going on the world of startups. I especially love the interviews because it gives me insight into what other folks are going through.

  • I’m Corey, 34, Brooklyn, NY.

    I have two products right now. One is project management for event planners, called http://cueapp.com. My new free pet project is the Birdy – http://thebirdy.com – for tracking cash. I’d love to get people’s feedback on the Birdy in particular. It’s free, and I need help brainstorming ideas to make it more useful.

    I love the Startup Foundry for the diversity of topics covered, the people involved, and the great writing. I read a lot of “entreporn” and you consistently come through with stuff that I’m interested and can learn something from, rather than just reporting on the millions in funding some startup just got.

  • Steven

    Steven here, co founder of Swuni “stuff” when u need it, http://www.swuni.com.¬† We are a customer service based start up for women.¬† We have been working on this project for almost 10 months and come this Friday, we will be going live.¬†

    Swuni.com is currently hosting a LaunchRock viral coming soon page. This page allows you to see a sneak peak of our home page, there you can sign up for email alerts! 
    After reading the article Paul did on LaunchRock I thought it would be a great way to generate buzz and also to show potential customers what we were all about.

    Why did two guys decide to do this?
    Sitting at dinner one night, my friend and co founder David had the idea for what he called tampads.  After working on a successful container project for his college SIFE team, he tried to apply that same model and idea to something else relevant.

    I emailed him a couple weeks later and told him we needed to brain storm more… we got together, talked about it in depth and polished the idea.¬† We came up with name Swuni, for it is an acronym for “stuff” when u need it.

    This is the abridged version and we are working on a press release that we hope to have in weeks to come so places like this, The Start Up Foundry can tell our story.  

    Thanks for reading!

     

    • Steven

      All the above post and all the ones below… that is why I visit this site everyday.¬† To see young entrepreneurs trying to change the world for the better is an inspiration to me.¬† The TSF is in my tool bar sandwiched between linkedin and twitter… I check it every day, several times a day. I wish Paul did a new post every 24 hours.

    • Mekus

      This is great! Could you explain a little more about how the site will work ? 

      • Steven

        Thanks for thinking it is awesome! Check out this blog post, they have a great description of how it works!!
         www.alovelylittleblog.blogspot.com/2011/07/swuni.html

  • I’m Justin, 30, in Los Angeles, CA.¬†

    I co-founded Menuism (http://www.menuism.com) more than 5 years ago and continue to operate it today. ¬†It’s an online dining community where foodies can review restaurants and the dishes. ¬†¬†

    I also co-founded The Wedding Lens (http://ww.theweddinglens.com) after I got married 3+ years ago. ¬†It’s an group photo sharing service geared at couples getting married. ¬†Basically, the couple sets up a private online album so their guests can upload all the photos to a single place. ¬†The newlyweds can then download all the full-resolution photos.¬†

    One other smaller site we started is PickFu (http://pickfu.com).  Cheap and instant a/b testing.  50 answers for $5. 

    I read TSF to hear entrepreneurial stories that don’t get covered in the mainstream tech/startup blogs. ¬†More about entrepreneurs doing things as opposed to high profile people getting funding and free publicity from their friends.¬†

  • Talmai Oliveira, 31, married :). Enthusiastic software engineer and manager with many years of experience in software development and management of small start-up teams. Passionate about practical solutions to complex problems. B.Sc. in CS, M.Sc. in Mechatronics and currently completing Ph.D. in CS and Engineering. Pushing 2 products right now: http://www.voiciit.com and http://www.flangaroo.com. The first explains itself on the website, the 2nd is a WIP for an online travel agency with a unique perspective. Like to keep updated on news related to startups.

  • I’m Kasra Kyanzadeh, an 18-year-old living in Toronto, Canada. Next year I’ll be headed to the University of Toronto for Computer Science. This summer I’m working on an iOS game. In the past I’ve launched a couple of websites, the most successful of which was ProgrammerMeetDesigner in 2006.¬†

    http://kasrak.com is my personal site. 

    Looking forward to your posts Randall!

  • I’m Chris Kenst, 28, living just north of Los Angeles, CA. I’m¬†a¬†Software Tester at¬†a small software company and also¬†run a technology blog at http://www.mytechfetish.com.¬†You can check my personal site at http://www.chriskenst.com.

    I read TSF to learn¬†what entrepreneurs are doing, stay up-to-date on new and interesting¬† startups,¬†learn about technologies they’re applying and for inspiration as I try and decide what type of company I want to start. I’m particularly interested in companies that get going by bootstrapping but I enjoy most everyting TSF does.

  • Dean Barrow

    Hello, I’m Dean, 24, from England.

    I’m currently working in my spare time on Affililink (http://affililink.com). It’s a way for site owners to monetise their content by converting external links (where possible) into affiliate links. This gives users a way to earn money without having to ruin the look with adverts. I’ve only just launched the site and am in the final ‘tweaking’ stage before widely advertising.

    I also blog on various things I get up to on my personal site, http://deanbarrow.co.uk

    I’ve been reading TSF since the beginning, you cover a lot of very interesting topics and I really enjoy reading/watching the interviews you do.

    Dean

  • Hey all, I’m Jon, 21, at BetterWorks–we’re a 6mo old Santa Monica-based startup that’s just beginning it’s attack outwards on the rest of the country. It is the best of times.
    I’ve been reading TSF since a coworker turned me onto the Noah Kagan video and marketing plan. I just hopped on the site again to click the “get covered” link and saw that we’re all introducing each other here: hi guys, nice to meet you all.

    BetterWorks’ mission is to make work rewarding for employees while saving their employers money. We have pre-negotiated corporate rates with hundreds of vendors such as restaurants, fitness centers, dry cleaners etc. Employers can sign up for our cloud-based system to rewards and engage their valued employees. If that thrills you, check out our website or blog (where I write most of the content).

    I’m going to go on and click the “get covered” button now–hopefully you all will be hearing again from us soon.

    Regards – js
    jschoonhoven@betterworks.com

  • Whoa whoa! Congrats to Paul and his wife!

    I’m working on my startup http://getdateideas.com and launching this week (July 13th, 2011)… found about Startup Foundry through HackerNews.

    I love Startup Foundry’s thorough analysis in their articles that are friggin’ useful. ¬†Also, the profiles of bootstrapped and funded startups is fun to read about as well.

    I contributed an article a few weeks back on LaunchRock ūüôā

    Would be cool if you got breaking news as well.. but y’all gotta start somewhere, right?

  • Anonymous

    Hi all! I am Aaron. I am 23 and I am a healthcare¬†entrepreneur. I am based out of Dallas. I led my firm’s R&D group for a year.¬†

    I recently joined ¬†http://www.simplee.com. ¬†Simplee’s goal is to make your healthcare¬†expenses¬†managable and understandable. Healthcare is flooded with¬†unnecessary¬†paperwork and hardly understandable bills. We are the easiest way for you to understand healthcare and manage your healthcare expenses. We call ourselves the “Mint for healthcare”. We are currently in beta and are expanding our technology all across the United States states. ¬†

    I started http://www.techfraternity.com . Its goal is to create a vibrant community of web entrepreneurs. I wanted to create an amazing community of doers and creators. We are going to be one of the first industry groups for technology. We currently have members all over the world. 

    I also write here http://ginnanator.com . It is my personal blog.

  • Hey all,
    My name is James F. and I am an addicted serial entrepreneur/UI design guy.

    * All together now “Hello James” *

    My current project is http://www.freelanceful.com – A social way to outsource and be better than Elance/oDesk.

    I am out in Nashville, TN and I also have a started a meetup group for Hacker entrepreneurs called GrowNashville.com

    I read TSF because I relate to 95% of the stories.

    – James F.

  • Hi ,

    I am Rohit.  I am working on a digital promotions platform for small business called AdNuance (http://www.adnuance.com).  What we do in simple words as below:

    “AdNuance is creating a simple ,easy to use digital promotions platform that allows businesses to create, distribute and track promotions. We empower businesses to create these promotions and distribute it across all digital channels on the go; backed by detailed metrics and market insights. The idea is to enable online to offline business”

    I read TSF cos it has a lot of heart and soul in it than the likes of TC. It in itself is a start up and I support that. The content here has been very good especially the interview posts! I wish you guys continue the good work and not just be another funding news reporter :).  

    Give the struggling start ups a chance by covering them too!

  • Sadiq Okocha

    Salut,

    I am Sadiq and we’re working on web app for organzing potlucks effectively. It’s great for get togethers, church potlucks, high school reunions, and feeding the homeless. It’s also a great way to see what everyone else is bringing so there is variety. It’s no fun when 3 different people bring the same dish, or when nobody brings any dessert.

    We’re looking to launch on August 1st, stay tuned. http://www.potluck.li

  • Hello

    My name is Mark Collins and I created http://inspiredBeta.com a few months back. 

    TSF is very insightful and is at the top of my things to read.  Keep pushing in the same direction.

    Best,
    Mark

  • Jaime Zollars

    Hi! ¬†I’m a strange breed here, a female with no technical background (wishing she had some), who just enjoys reading the content here, so you’ll probably be throwing out my data in your market research. I’m an artist who draws pictures for books, magazines, and gallery walls. http://www.jaimezollars.com . I’m also an adjunct professor of art at MICA in Baltimore.

    I’m one of those misplaced freelance creatives who prefers a team, realizing that I can use my creativity and art to make bigger things than pictures on paper, and think I’ll someday find myself in a creative group working towards bigger ideas. I like to read about folks who start things they believe in, and find this blog relevant to anyone who has an idea.

  • Hi all,

    My name is Dan, and I have always been interested in startups. I recently graduated from Davidson College and have since been developing my first startup, Amzini (http://www.amzini.com). We aim to be a resource and community to help you get the most of social networking for your particular needs/interests.

    Now that the site is getting going, we’re making some changes to create a more active and discussion-oriented environment… I’d love to hear some feedback from the startup community on how Amzini can better help you with your social media needs/interests!

  • Martin

    Hi all! I’m Martin, from Argentina. I’m working on a webapp to help small and medium sized argentinian businesses handle their taxes and accounting (it’s not live yet).

    I also have a side project to monitor twitter followers: http://twollof.com

    I like TSF because it has short, but very well focused and insightful articles.

  • I am Khurram from Pakistan. I am a telecommunication engineer by academics and CEO at a web design and development studio by profession! We help clients worldwide to get their products up and running and have a few ideas of my own too!

  • I’m Matthew Guay, and I’m the editor of Envato’s http://web.appstorm.net/ site, as well as a tech documentation¬†specialist¬†for CoSupport. Most tech documentation, unfortunately, is very complicated and hard for normal users to understand. I strive to break down the complex concepts, and make it easy for anyone to understand. That’s my goal on my own site, http://techinch.com/, and on the other sites I work for.

    Additionally, I’m an American in the small town of Tak, Thailand, but thanks to the internet, we can all be connected to the startup scene. I love the interviews and content you guys have been producing, and think TSF is a great example of how great online journalism can be. Thanks, and keep up the great work!

  • Amanda Drury

    I’m Amanda Drury and while I don’t have any technological training, I’ve found a lot of leadership lessons cross over in the academic world where I work.

  • Hey guys,

    As per the Disqus account, my name’s Jeffrey Effendi, and I’m the Founder of http://www.esfeed.com. When I’m not working in the office, I’m managing Esfeed and prepping for its launch in the near future.¬†

    The majority of news on the Internet either consists of large publications like CNN, “breaking news” 140-character tweets from Twitter or regurgitated content from social news sites such as Digg. There shouldn’t be a gap between a “breaking tweet” from Twitter to a corroborated story a few days later on CNN. Esfeed aims to be that bridge where people can collaborate on the story as it develops in real time.

    I lurk on Startup Foundry to read and learn. I follow TSF on Twitter, so every time you guys post something, chances are, I’ll click and read it. Being involved in a startup, I think it’s so important to consume as much knowledge as you can. TSF provides just that. The headlines are fresh, original and are exactly the editorial content I’d like to read from a startup blog.

    Keep ’em coming.

  • Anonymous

    I’m James Marshall, co-founder of http://tiptrades.com. ¬†

    TipTrades provides simplified investment data tools. We allow you to make quicker and smarter investment decisions so you don’t waste time on research.

    Our current focus is insider trading alerts, but we plan to expand  to other tools soon.

    Thanks for TSF. I find it to be a great information resource!

  • Hi Jamie… what plans do you have in mind ? I also have another friend who wants to go further than canvas and paper… Get together with me on Skype on mr.skype87 or catch me on fB. Let’s discuss. C ya.

  • Hi,

    I’m Tom, I am the Founder of skinnyo.com. I’m sure not unlike many of the startup foundry’s followers skinnyo is a website on the verge of becoming a business but not quite there yet.

    Skinnyo is currently a site which makes it easy for ordinary people to organise or join weight loss challenges – and hopefully makes them a little bit more fun! We will be branching out into different types of challenges but keeping the focus on a casual audience as opposed to the dailyburn type of user.

    I live in the north of England but have the usual aspiration of getting over to America sooner rather than later! 

  • Hi,

    I’m Tim, cofounder of http://www.zentester.com. We just launched Zentester last week.¬†

    Zentester is an Visual A/B Testing tool that is also social, so that users can learn from tests others have run and gather feedback one how they can improve their sites from other members of the community. 

    It’s currently free for creating unlimited public tests, or there are paid plans for those who wish to keep some data private (like Github, but for website testing).¬†

    Thanks for providing so much great content! I love the startup foundry!

    – Tim

  • Bonjour,

    I’m Nicolas, co founder of¬†http://wealsodocookies.com/¬†we are a small web development and web marketing studio specialised in MVP development (with an average delivery time of 6 weeks). After having worked for our customers for 2 years, we are now going to launch 2 products this summer, an online MARKDOWN document write¬†http://www.dododocs.com/¬†and another project a bit more¬†personal¬†http://www.happydaddymagazine.com

  • Bryan Janeczko

    Aloha!

    I’m Bryan and I founded Wicked Start (http://www.wickedstart.com/), a free and full featured app to help people with business ideas gauge the viability of their ideas and then launch their startups. We launched last year so we’re basically a startup that helps startups start up (so. very. meta ūüėõ )¬†

    Our team reads Startup Foundry because 1) it’s wise information worth reading about (what startups to be conscious of/startup mentality/how startups should launch and be run 2) it’s not the same ol’ same ol’ stuff. For ex: “5 Ways to Build a Brand” where all the advice sounds either unrealistic or too generic. 3) We love reading about startups because our users are all startup owners or thinking about starting a company!

  • Hi,

    I’m Parvesh Garg and I have founded Slabble (http://www.slabble.com).

    “Slabble combs the
    Internet for you, so you’re only ever delivered incredibly good content
    that’s relevant to your interests so you never need worry about
    information overload again”.¬†

    We are in controlled beta right now and anybody can register at http://www.slabble.com/login.php?ref=TSF

    I read TSF because it gives a lot of insight into how startups are run and what it takes to do one. Many times, TSF comes as a surprise and unknowingly solves a problem for me. Its a great source of quality information. I don’t mind reading less but good ūüôā


    Parvesh Garg
    garg [at] slabble.com

  • Hey

    I’m Andrew and I work for a small company called Foliotek Inc. our newest product / startup is called Foliotek:Presentation.

    It uses a super powerful intuitive editor to help users create an ePortfolio that will help them stand out from the crowded pile of resumes.

    Check out this demo video video .. http://blip.tv/foliotek/template-designer-my-foliotek-com-5196219

    You can signup for a free trial here: my.foliotek.com

    TSF has been a great resource for me to learn how to launch a new software product / startup.

    Thanks Guys!

  • Hi, I’m Charles, 22, from Montreal.

    I’m currently studying marketing and love all the possibilities and cool projects that happened in tech startups lately, so that’s why I’m learning as much as I can and this blog, especially because of the combination of articles and interviews with clear titles ¬†makes me stop by regularly and read as much as I can.

    Good luck with your role @ TSF!

  • I’m Trey Griffith and I’m working on increasing traction with my new startup, HoneyComb (www.honeycombhire.com).

    It’s a tool to manage network recruiting and hiring (basically using your network of friends and co-workers to find the perfect person for your next job.)

    Our primary target is companies that are looking for recruiter-like results (good filtering) without the cost (that means you, startups!).

    I read TSF because I love startups and the articles are always interesting and informative.

  • Hi there everyone!
    I¬īm Fernando, from Quito, Ecuador.

    Last year I quit my job as Digital director at PHD (part of the Omnicom Group) to focus full time on developing a visual directory and bookmarking service: http://www.yellowmonkei.com

    Bootstrapped with personal savings and operating from coffee shops (what is now called a coffice), we are almost ready to launch.

    What I like the most about The Startup Foundry is the trenche¬īs insights you guys share. I haven¬īt found any other website with such fresh approach to startup life.

    Great idea Randall! Keep the excellent work you and Paul are doing!

  • obaid waheed

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