Quick first glance feedback on the page, take it or leave it:
a) "the easiest way to" lowercase start and then "Write your life story" uppercase start. Seems weird to me. The other way around or both uppercase.
b) Top bar seems empty, maybe an actual logo (that adds some other color/shade) would chance that.
d) Ned Flanders takes away the credibility and earnesty the page build up so far. Bad!
e) "private, secure, & friendlier", the comma after secure seems out of place to me. I am not an english native but from what I know it would be more normal without it. "friendlier" is not a word, is it? Also, how is it secure if you do not tell me how you actually secure it (both for normalos and hackers please)...?
f) entry is a bad empty word. I guess you already tried to find a better one. Can't think of one myself. :-(
g) "a personal journal that you'll love to use" = you love the journal
"why you'll love us" = you love the company
h) "Oh snap, remember this?" same as Ned, does not fit the otherwise very noble theme at all.
i) The open book has a weird shape. Does not feel right to me. Maybe if it was taller?
I notice that a huge part of my daily life is recorded in email conversations with other people -- it would be cool if I could forward a conversation to email@example.com and it would automatically make it a part of my journal and make it aesthetically pleasing at the same time.
Great job on the execution of this app. I have talked to others who have had this same idea, but their execution was ugly/unexcting/etc. This is clean and simple.
Taking your thought a step further, let's also save the comments you make on others' blogs and bring them into your journal/blog as well.
At the end of the day, I don't need another blog or a slight variation on blogging technology. I need something that basically blogs for me. If I can add value to my site by adding comments like this one to other people's sites (then pressing this "magic" button (maybe a bookmarket?) to automatically save it as part of my blog), that'd be pure awesomeness.
Beyond saving boatloads of time for everyone who used it, it would create a more connected blogosphere by allowing people to link their commenter accounts (like HN, Reddit, etc) to their primary blog...effectively giving people more ownership over the things they write on others blogs, increasing author recognition, etc.
Tumblr is pretty close to doing this, but the problem is its just context-free noise. It's echoes from a very, very noisy set of interactions that you perform. I had a Tumblr blog that harvested photos, blog posts, Twitter, last.fm etc etc. and it all meant absolutely nothing.
This isn't really blogging, it's journaling. Writing a diary is supposed to be therapeutic because you're writing down the things you dare not talk about with others (maybe not even your SO). It's not about what you do, it's about how you feel.
That's why I would like to see encryption mentioned somewhere, and pushed hard. I wrote one entry to see how it works, but I'm going to disable the notifications until I know that my personal outpourings are not actually being read by others.
Hey HN - we made this in our spare time, just because it was something we wanted to use. When we told some friends about the idea though they wanted to use it too, so we decided to release it. Many thanks for checking it out.
I love the idea. Love it. Like, really excited. However, I'm not prepared to use a service like this in a hosted environment. Too many risks: you go out of business, security, privacy, etc. Plus the information just feels to personal to be sitting on someone else's server. I would love to see a quick daily prompt like this added to Macjournal or similar software.
Love it! I've used penzu.com intermittently throughout the yr and every so often get lost in reading past entries!
One thing I've always "wondered" about more than concerned is privacy. Being a journal, I write out some of the deepest and most personal things in it. I'd find it assuring if you guys laid out your thoughts on privacy. I know there is only so much you can do but merely knowing your longterm vision will help.
Last thing I want is to do a journal on a site whose longterm vision is to open up the journal for public viewing ala facebook. If that was the longterm vision(to open it up), I may still use it but for a different purpose.
Of course, setting up PGP, let alone remembering the passphrase (gasp) is a lot to ask of the typical user who needs to use his mail client as a text editor.
Otherwise, it's a cute idea, really. Please excuse cynicism.
The design is beautiful, but why would I use this over WriteRoom? For years now, I've been writing at least 500 words in WriteRoom every single weekday, and I'm closing in on a year of doing it (and a bunch of other habits) without missing a single day. It's not that hard, I know I'll probably never lose my entries (time machine + dropbox backups), and my privacy is more assured. I'm just not sure I see the advantage here...
We don't have export yet, but we've definitely wanted to share some of our entries with close friends and family too. We'll be brainstorming around this!
Regarding past history: For your first week, we just send you your entry from the previous day. After you've been using it for a week though, and some history has built up, we'll show you entries from a week ago (and then a month ago, etc.).
Thanks for checking it out - really appreciate it!
It'd be nice to have some export feature. After few months, if I will use this, you are going to have quite a lot of entries from me, and all of them are important to me, I don't want to lose them, so I'd like to be able to easily make backups to my own computer.
That's not entirely true. If this were purely a web-accessible blog, there's no reason you couldn't encrypt/decrypt this in the client (sending and storing encrypted text). You'd have to throw out email posting in that case though.
That's a very difficult feature to implement, since the encryption has to be 2 way. It's much easier to achieve this with passwords, because all the system needs to do is validate supplied passwords (as opposed to reproducing the passwords themselves).
You could use a passphrase in the head of your email.
"Open sesame" or something equally corny.
However, you'd need an inversion of what is proposed here. Instead of emailing you an entry from the past then asking for your entry for today, it would need to ask for today's entry (plus passphrase), then reply back with an entry from the past instead.
I don't think the latter version is as compelling as the former, but encryption is sort of a must have.
How exactly is this service better than, say, a simple text file on my own machine with a daily reminder set up through some other means?
Why would I want to use some third-party website for something so simple that I might as well do it myself? I can see some pretty annoying downsides (need to have a crypto layer because I don't want you to be able to read my journal, need to export regularly the data to my own computer because I don't want you to be able to lose my journal), but no real advantages (it's not even more convenient!).
In any case, I believe that the two following statements, at least, are plain wrong:
- "The easiest way to write your life story": no, the easiest way is to fire up a text editor and start writing.
- "Only you can see your entries": should read "Only you and us can see your entries".
I think the vertical spacing between the various components is too much. If you could move things up a bit it would work real well. The colors, fonts, and graphics are very soothing and welcoming. I just didn't expect to scroll down so much.