It seems like every other product blog that I visit is intentionally keeping me from being able to navigate to the actual product!
Of course it helps that I built it all from scratch so integrating the blog was pretty easy :)
Thanks a lot for your feedback :)
I've enabled billing in appengine as I'm nearly over quota:
If anyone has any tips to optimise my outgoing bandwidth it would be very much appreciated! Hopefully I caught it in time to avoid any real outages. I'll try and keep an eye on it though.
Ok - right off to trawl through the comments and responses and reply!
Thank you all :)
I've activated billing in app engine but no idea how long it takes to come online. Really sorry guys - I assumed the free quotes would see me through! Hopefully it comes back soon.
edit - looks like the billing just kicked in... Phew. Sorry about that! looks like I caught it just about in time. If you saw the 404 page my apologies. I've loaded it up with credits so it should stay up now
Oh - and nice site.
Here are some suggestions:
1. Use the Amazon API to autosuggest book titles and author names.
2. Normalize the lists. That is, count up which books are recommended the most and use those statistics to recommend books.
3. List similar lists on each list :) Lists that list the same books might be related. If they list two or more of the same books, they're probably related.
But even if you don't change a thing, it's still a great little project!
The ajax thing is definitely a strong priority - but I need to learn how to do ajax first and I think it's pretty hard...!
(AJAX is chapter 7)
These are similar, they may help inspire you for features:
Keep it up!
As HN'er nerfhammer noted: 1 digit + 3 letters = 83.8% availability. http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=1698035
I contacted 7books.net and 7books.com along the way - I'll write a follow up post talking about that experience at some point.
Thanks for the links - I've already looked at them to check they didn't do exactly what I do but will definitely have a proper play around. There's also librarything which I'm a member of.
I've been building something with a similar aim on and off for a long time now, and it's neat to see in the comments that there are at least three others already out there.
I wonder if there is something that will lead to more widespread awareness/adoption of sites like these. Or are we better off trying to pick a target market smaller than [all book readers]?
Some good food for thought as I try and finally finish my own entrant into the space.
Having only just launched I don't know what the market looks like. I strongly suspect that the site will end up gravitating towards one kind of user. But who knows! 22books.com (mentioned below) gets used by quite a lot of school teachers so there are plenty of niches out there.
Let me know how you get on - happy to share thoughts :)
The Rails source is here: https://github.com/marcus/Instabrary
They basically have a set of predefined CSS classes for layouts to give you a starting point. Blueprint and some of the others also have a default set of styles predefined, and you can find several examples of people who have added to them. It basically gave me a good starting point instead of having to hack up my own CSS from the start.
They also claim to help resolve several of the CSS differences between browsers, but I haven't tested that first hand yet.
I haven't done much with the site but it actually ended up getting used by teachers and librarians so I would feel bad ever shutting it down.
I started doing "web stuff" about 3 years ago and have learned sooo much just by forcing myself to do it.
It's so funny to me to see how much I've changed, I came across one of the first ever "apps" that I made a few days ago. It was a DVD cataloger that I made my Dad for his birthday (He glanced at it, went "huh", then bought some commercial version of the same thing...humph) and it was kindof cool to look over the shoulder of Ryan from 3 years ago to see what he was doing.
What's keeping you from finishing these things?
(This has been my excuse to myself before)
Took me a while to realize that sometimes the real reason I canceled my projects were because of laziness.
So is there already a hn spreadsheet up somewhere where one could find a, say, rails mentor? :)
It's been a fun few weeks, I hope my post encourages others to follow in my steps!
1) I'm not sure whether you're using Amazon referral links. You can show the book cover next to the title linking it to the amazon using the associate tag. It will fetch you some decent money I believe if someone buys the books using the links. Have never used but read about this in Stackoverflow.
2) You can use amazon.com/books instead of amazon.com in the Stuck? message link when adding a new book.
Love the simplicity of the site, as well. Good luck.
or did you learn it as your learned google's app engine?
I love the blog theme. Is that a WordPress blog? What's the theme's name?