Basically, the consumers of the content (the people just wanting to see what's on the list) want to be completely 100% anonymous. I wonder how the producers of the content (the people entering their information on the spreadsheet) would feel about that.
Well there you go, as suggested above.. you can always logout first - or create a dummy account. Google sign-in is arguably one of the commonly used on the Web, even if you're really anti-Google .. having a dummy account would be real handy.
Excess paranoia, on the other hand, is another topic.
I am writing to in a matter of utmost urgency and secrecy. My name is Olamilekan Smith, close personal advisor of the deposed aristocrat Charles Bartholomew Richards ii. In his haste to escape persecution he hastily imposed upon me the task of securing safe transfer of his considerable monetary assets to an international bank account..."
I'm consistently getting a message saying "Viewing in simple list mode due to high traffic to this document" so whatever that limit is, we hit it. I guess I'll have to wait before I can add my info. Bummer.
A resource like this Google Doc, but limited to people with a certain karma threshold. A way to connect potential founders that are geographically separate. I know that cofounders should know each other so not a start up dating site, but a place where people looking to throw their hat in the startup ring can make first connections with other like minded folks. Current solutions like meetups get overcrowded with the unskilled "idea guy" who needs someone to build his half baked social net. HN would be a great filter.
* I need help with: "A,B,C" (text field)
* I'm pretty good at and willing to help with: "X,Y,Z" (another text field)
* I'm in Seattle, WA, USA
I could certainly add this myself, but it wouldn't be possible to see all info on one page for many people - that kind of thing requires scrape-friendly format that enforces some kind of structure on the input text.
A generic social network would work, where users can verify against one or many domains or sets of urls. To reach someone's page, you would type in: site.com/verificationstring edit: the string would have to go in the <head> otherwise it can be faked on ugc sites
If anybody wants to do things to this doc (install Pivot Tables gadget, rearrange columns, do crazy sorts), but is worried about messing up doc for others, remember you can copy it out for yourself with File -> Make a Copy.
(Yes it will be slightly out of date eventually, but you can then copy it out again.)
Does anyone know a board like HN with a designer bent? It looks like more than half of the people filling out the spreadsheet would like to meet up with someone with design skills. It might be worthwhile to share this link on a board with designers.
On the other hand, we used google spreadsheets as an issue tracker to guide working with clients. It fell over repeatedly over the course of an hour phone call on all ends (5 or so people viewing). It's really bad at keeping connections alive.
The problem with this line of thinking is that a founder can have the "coolest" tech idea ever, but without any business sense (growth), he's just swimming around in the same circle, over and over. They're complementary skills, not opposing, and neither one is "greater" or "less" than the other.
Funny, I hear that a lot but I did not find so much of a hurdle. I guess I did start with some tech. I ran a BBS, then stopped coding and did marketing in the entertainment industry for 10 years, then went right into IT security. I don't think there is anything inherently more complex in Applied Cryptography than there is in some of these absurdly obfuscated balance sheets.
Well if you are a single person looking for a co-founder, getting a business person straight up means that your still solely responsible for getting a product out, I guess either you are doing something you can manage, can afford to outsource some code, or you want a co-founder who can help.
Agreed. It's usually best to find somebody with an offsetting skill set. While getting another tech founder will certainly increase your ability to produce quality technology it does not always lead to being able to properly identify a great idea with great potential.
I think that having complementary skill sets is important, but I'd say that after technical skills, interaction design skills are probably more important than business skills. Like they say: first get to product market fit, then grow the business. Getting to product market fit requires someone who understands user needs and interactions (product design) and someone who can implement the solution (technical). A product/interaction designer, though, will probably have some frontend development skills, so perhaps I'm arguing for two technical people.
I agree, but one techie may not have all the tech skills he/she needs. Front-end expert needs back-end expert (and vice versa). Being an expert in both worlds is not as common. That's true for practically everything in life. But sure, given that you have your tech requirement satisfied, you'll be more well-rounded with a business guy too.
The best teams have well rounded/varying skills. Look at Ideo.com (company that invents stuff) - they look for well rounded individuals with passion. So while a team with more techies will produce better tech - not necessarily something that will be successful, a team that's more rounded has a higher chance to produce something that will succeed with inferior technology. That being said, web companies do not fail these days due to a lack of tech. So I implore those who know tech to look for people with differing skill sets and vice versa.
Right. But at least with one general knowledge techie and one general knowledge biz guy you can get a good read on tech issues/requirements and market opportunity. Thus once you get to this point you know what you need more of and more importantly you know what you don't know.
That's actually an interesting comment, are you an angel investor?
For co-founders, everybody wants to pair up .. but for investors and entrepreneurs, the dynamics would appear different, right? In the sense that there's more entrepreneurs than there are investors, and since investors have a finite amount of money, they don't want to be too easily accessible since they can't invest in everybody (and don't want to be pitched to all the time)?
If you are on the investor side of the table, do shed some light :)
I'm on the investor side of the table in that I have money and would be happy to invest in a worthy start-up. I'm young and fairly inexperienced, but I don't mind being pitched, and I would be happy to share my email address with interested parties.
I think nothing could be more valuable than making funding more accessible to companies that could one day change the world; especially if it could be done well. Maybe we should get to work on this idea...partner. :)
!! Did you guys see that? I believe an angel investor just said he wants to be pitched :)
bpick, if you're looking to angel-invest the YC startup community is a really good place to start scouting, you're at the right place! I don't see any contact info on your HN about page. Can you tell us all how to reach you? My contact info is on my about page
One of the reasons that the Bootstrapper Breakfasts have been helpful to bring teams together is that it's a low key way to have a serious conversation with one or more potential cofounders and form an impression based on more than a paragraph or two on a "dating site."
From folks who have attended a Startup Weekend or similar event, I hear that it's a good way to learn how someone performs under at least a moderate amount of pressure.
I am less sanguine about "dating site" although a lot of folks have contributed to the spreadsheet so it will probably help potential co-founders become aware of each other.
I also think you can form a reasonable impression of someone from reading their blog and HN comments but not everyone who has the strengths you will need to get startup off the ground is necessarily interested in contributing to a forum.
You're welcome! I know I'm scratching not just my own itch, but helping others too .. it's a great feeling. Obviously I got lucky too .. it's not like I coded Google Docs. A reminder that despite all our technical and business talent - luck remain an important part of our endeavor. We can however work to maximize our odds and exposure to luck!
I wonder if it would be feasible to construct a database where they enter the zipcode instead, and set a parameter that determines which area you belong to. (Eg. if you live in 94107, any zipcode within 60 mile radius would be considered the "Bay Area".
So, a while back I created a bartering webapp with location aware searching using Django. I did it mostly as a learning process so I could become more familiar with Django, and I never really marketed it much, and it really doesn't get any use now.
With that being said, if you wanted to get on there and create a profile, add a post saying that you're looking for a founder with XYZ skillsets, or that you're available to be a cofounder, other people could search for you based on keywords or tags plus their relation to your zip code.
As one who tried to capture a cofounder in the past, I would insist on listing the primary area of interest (i.e. social media, search etc) and also what obstacles you from progressing on your own (i.e. lack of particular skill, lack of money etc), as it greatly streamlines the further interactions
I copied (almost) all entries from the doc in a semantic wiki: http://www.startuplinkup.com Please go and search your entry there, refine it, rename it, etc. Hope this is more manageable than the google doc. Follow @startuplinkup.
for people just leaving twitter names, how do i send them a message. Sorry I may be one of the only people that only reads twitter (strictly stalker), never use it for actually do messaging or anything else. I followed them, but still don't know how to send message
Would it be appropriate to create an open source community project which would keep the current simple interface of google docs but support more users and perhaps store info such as blog links/HN links to posts along with a standardized location?
This looked very interesting, so we coded up an app based on some of the comments - it's at findmycofounder.com, more details on Twitter (@FindMyCofounder). We figured we could launch this in 24 hours or so, do try it out in a couple of hours.
Just tossed my info on there. Not actively looking for a cofounder -- mostly because I don't think it's likely I'll find anyone with the right skills/temperament -- but it's worth getting out there anyway.
This was posted originally in this thread http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=1046134 - can someone write me a script so everytime someone asks that question, I can auto-reply? ... ok bad idea... spam... never mind :-)
I'm working on a project like this, initially but not exclusively for tech. If you'd be interested in helping us improve the service, we'd definitely appreciate the feedback. You can DM me @startupsquare or find us at http://startupsquare.com Thanks!