Have no idea what Treehouse is, clicked the site, took 300ms to look at the 3 giant buttons.
Clicked "web design" (the site looks very nice BTW)
... and started learning about web design.
Watched the first video, hit the only button "Let's Go" and found a collection of other videos to get me further down the path of web design, letting me skip directly to my problems areas instead of grinding through things I know.
Conclusion: Without ever knowing what you guys do, what the site is or how to use it "correctly" I was able to start learning in what was less than probably 3 seconds of thinking.
I still don't know what you guys do or what the plan here is (heading back to read more) but your flow is perfect.
Like abnormally simple and wonderful... really nice job.
I know what IB is, but for a lot of other people, they probably won't even want to click it, and Editor and Utilities Area sounds kind of boring. Clicking around more, it seems like there are specific categories now - Xcode is just one of them. I thought I was going to learn how to build an iPhone app, but now I have to figure out the right subtopic.
Overall, not a good experience. I think it's a great design in terms of colors and such (and even the video page I watched was nice and simple), but the flow was terrible. To top it all off, iOS 4 Foundations is the name of the iOS page. This barely sounds relevant to a newcomer, I would rather see that say 'iOS Development'. Foundations sounds like it'll go through boring stuff, I really just wanted to start hacking away at apps.
There is this shallow navigation depth to everything interesting; I don't have to hunt. Very clearly demarcated signs everywhere indicating where you can go and what you'll get.
Topping all of that off is that the actual design/typography of the site is calm, easy on the eyes and attractive.
It reminded me of an Ira Glass segment where he talked about his early radio career (See http://transom.org/?p=6978 and scroll down to "1. Learning Curve"). He also made this mistake, to the detriment of the story.
Please fix this when you have time. Maybe consider hiring a professional actor to read the script in a more natural way.
I'm not sure exactly what firefox is trying to do (since both IE 8 and chrome are better), but I thought I'd let you guys know.
Please add a sentence or two at the top of the page to tell me your target audience and why I should use the site.
On the about page (http://teamtreehouse.com/about), why are the boxes so big for each person? I see picture, name, title, Twitter handle, and then a fair amount of whitespace that makes me think there'd be a short bio for each person.
I was worried I was going to have to pay for the iOS videos but boy was I wrong - and I'm glad, I'm just a college student ><.
I really like the iOS intro video, y'all really put some time into making them, with the white backdrops and all.
And yeah the website has a really simple, amazing UX!
+50 on this launch guys.
I think that may be your biggest sell in this community. I didn't realize that at ALL when I checked out your site. I actually left thinking "eh, I'll just stick to openclassroom/courseware"... Knowing this really adds a whole new world of appeal. Incorporate that somehow!!
Congrats for the product, the site is amazing and I enjoyed the free videos a lot.
My guess is that it would be useful to review job sites and see which skills are in demand relative to some estimate of the supply of those skills.
I really hope this is the future of education - college is such a waste of time/money for learning practical skills.
Looks good. $25/mo seems too much. Can't take any sample tests without paying $25.
Also, my opinion is $25/mo. is reasonable for access to your videos. Congrats on your launch!
Looks awesome though!
Just wanted to take a moment and thank you for the attention to detail in that you included closed captioning for the sample videos on the site -- it's something I rarely expect to see and I'm always very pleasantly surprised when it's there. Is that something that'll be carrying over to the rest of the videos on the site?
When you click the "Sign Up" link it takes you there. Either $25/month or $40/month. The cheapest you can get away with is $300/year.
I know I am getting tired of using "free" services that actually aren't free at all when you factor in the time I have to use to really extract value from them.
I am just hoping Treehouse actually provides a service that makes a difference, i.e. someone can learn faster and more efficiently with Treehouse than some other way.
So far this looks good. Can't wait to try it out later tonight.
Either way, a great idea looking forward to seeing more material soon!
Am I missing something? That's your learning method? Nothing interactive? No coding? Videos may be a fine way of understanding a process but it's not good for something as in-depth as coding. You don't learn code by watching videos of others doing it, you learn by coding.
The site design is nice but you'd need to offer a lot more than videos to get me to sign up.
My only question thus far: Is there an easy way for me to be informed when new badges/topics/videos are available? Either a digest email or some sort of RSS feed that I could customize based on personal interests would be fantastic.
Good luck with the venture. I am a firm believer that online education in software development is going to be big in the coming years. Get recruiters to start using your service to weed out recruits ;)!
Even someone who is only comfortable at 1.1x (not hard) could save hours of their time if they like your site.
(I watch TV at 2x generally, huge time saver.)
2. They're crowd-sourcing their courses. We've hired full-time Expert Teachers who are carefully crafting courses and editorializing content so Treehouse Members know what order they should learn things in.
3. we're already profitable because we're charging for the product. I think their angle is to sell access to their users for people looking to hire, but I'm not sure.
I'm among the group of visitors who wants to know more before I click any of the big 3 icons. I'm also interested in improving (and adding to) my novice HTML/CSS skills, so I immediately saw value after reading the home page. It came as quite a shock you wanted $50/month to access your full content!
You may want to take this chance to consider a different $ model. Sure, you have plenty of competition- including big name universities- charging way more for effectively the same training. But free substitutes abound. The internet is flooded with tutorials, etc. about how to make stuff for the internet. No matter how much "better" quality you provide, I think prospects will balk at your rates and turn to free resources instead.
But you might still make a lot of money from providing your content "for free". If you only granted access to registered subscribers, you have a great tool for building a strong email list. The demographic has already identified itself: these are people interested in learning more about web & iOS development. There's a lot of cash to be had marketing software tools, templates and all sorts of tertiary materials to this same demo. Imagine the affiliate commission on 1 copy of Adobe CS5.
Also, I found it annoying the "Sign your team up" button on the http://teamtreehouse.com/groups page simply looped back to the main 'Plans' page. Seemed like a mistake when I first clicked; only realized it was intentional after scouring the Plans page to find out "you can easily add other users at a discount". But what are the multi-seat rates?
The "Sign your team up" link isn't finished yet. Apologies for that.
The pricing is $19/mo for Silver sub-users and $39/mo for Gold sub-users.
For example, the big players in iOS education (Big Nerd Ranch, Pragmatic) have been teaching iOS 5 since it was in beta; but you guys are on iOS 4.
At night (and in the early mornings and sometimes at lunch...) I have been teaching myself to program Rails apps. I use books to learn concepts (and RailsCasts too) and I rely on Google and Stack Overflow for problem solving when I get stuck.
I have learned a ton, not only about the language but also about good programming practices. For the latter, I tend to first learn the concept from a book, but only internalize it after having suffered some pain which could have been avoided if I had been using that particular practice. So far I would include orthogonality, version control, testing and asynchronously running processes which I don't control to this list. Behavior Driven Development is also now starting seem like a real benefit and not just overhead so I will try that with my next feature addition.
I guess my question is, how far down the road does one have to go before they could be considered as a potential employee?
1. Looking for a job
2. Have unlocked these badges (as an example):
2a. UX Foundations
2b. Ruby Foundations
2c. Rails Foundations
3c. Node.js Foundations
Then we'll present them with those people and they'll choose if they want to approach those folks to interview
I have to admit that you seem to be offering more value than I realized.
I've followed you for a while on Think Vitamin and some of the DocType guys (Nick and Jim) and I never imagined you were in Orlando too!
Makes me very proud!
Can't wait to get started.
1. From first glance this is an education website
2. No free tier, so you can't actually take any of the quizes without paying at least $25.
3. This is when I closed the tab
1) Provide very high quality education because we can afford to hire full-time Teachers, instead of crowd-sourcing the curriculum
2) Be profitable, so we can stay in business and continue to grow the service, which benefits our Members
Also, I'd like to toss in my obligatory "Awesome job with the design!" comment.
One small thing - I think the badge map would be more informative and interesting if it had some sort of labels.
The Introduction to Development video does not currently have them and I haven't really poked around at other videos.
I'm always looking for tutorials to send to colleagues/friends who need an easy-entry into the basics, and it helps to know what topics are covered and how you've decided to organize/separate them. My main suggestion would be to include the subtopics on this page, or at least have a button that reveals them all:
The page is already a long scroll...having the list of subtopics, IMO, would be more helpful than detrimental.
One thing to note on the new site: clicking "Sign your team up" on this page: http://teamtreehouse.com/groups just takes you back to this page: https://teamtreehouse.com/subscribe/plans, where clicking on "Sign up" takes you to a page with no indication of how to sign up for a group plan.
For now, the way Groups sign up is like this: Sign up and then add "sub-users". It's not elegant, but it works for now. Then in a month, we'll launch something super sweet.
I feel so wary if you aren't asking for my CVV or Billing credentials. Why do banks even allow you to bill without those details using only CC# and Expiry Date? It feels more than a little suspect and weird (though I know that this isn't the case here for you).
How can this compare to MIT (and other) Open Course Work and hundreds if not thousands of good free tutorials on the internet Vs $25/$49 a month?
FWIW, I learned basics of web development/design totally free, just took a bit of searching to find good resources, and once I was confortable with basics, the further education came through just googling-on-demand, videos only helped in the beginning.
Of course a lot of people on HN are going to be people who taught/teach themselves everything, but a lot of people want some hand holding, and that's what we aim to provide with Treehouse.
But don't you think in an industry like software development, you need to be able to self-educate. Software just moves too fast. So a person that needs hand-holding is not going to "get" what it takes to be a good programmer.
Do you disagree?
Also, when I select PayPal as a payment method, you should hide the credit card fields. It's confusing to click the button when I have a required field showing that doesn't need to be filled out.
Videos don't look good when not in full screen mode.
When you click the full screen button (bottom right corner), it doesn't go to full screen mode. It shows you another button on top right corner which you must click to go into full screen mode.
In full screen mode, videos look good but, there are no controls beside the pause button.
BTW, everything else seems right with this site.
Something like "Treehouse is a ...." what? An interactive subscription based learning platform? A online classroom? Whatever you want to call it but it took me a while to figure out
1. What is it
2. What can I do for free vs what do I need to pay for?
I just got an iPhone due to lack of webOS devices and my inner geek wants to learn how iOS development works and this made my day to find iOS learning videos!
Thanks for the amazing website!!
Hint: if you are trying to sell stuff, it's probably best to reach out to the widest possible customer base. I can see no business reason to target Mac/Linux users only.
I will be signing up and if the videos are as good as the samples I'll definitely be sticking around; worth $49 a month for sure. I love that you guys are trying to tackle this end-to-end - ambitious, but I hope you pull it off.
I'm a student as well that is just interested in learning iOS, not necessarily even to get a job.
I know you guys have put a lot of time into these tutorials and are looking to profit from them, but I think having a student plan would be helpful for us and for you!
I think 10-15 dollars a month is reasonable, maybe 20 dollars a month tops for a student pricing plan.
We were just starting to pick up steam on our campaigns.
Not going to be able to buy treehouse.com for awhile though, as they want $1m for it.
But the content is well worth the $25/month and up. Loved ThinkVitamin Membership, this looks even better.
but IMHO the Badge map is confusing. When I click a badge I expect to be redirected to the page of each badge, not to a full size image of all of them.
Also you are using the same videos from ThinkVitamin which provide good introductory knowledge and that's it.
Codeacademy makes you actually code and had badges long before you guys.
"LARRY PAGE this is lame in that it's a crummy featureless version of http://www.yahoo.com
You are using the same internet to search on.
Yahoo makes you actually log into a nice portal and had search capability long before you guys."
Just because there's a competing product in the marketplace doesn't devalue what Ryan's doing here.
In fact, I think Treehouse is already outstripping Codeacademy on breath of education and video quality.
Who cares...no one really cares about badges anyway...except of course, VC's, who are already out of touch.
Badges have been around in video games and educational games for a while and Rails for Zombies already used them.
MANY thanks for doing this. CC is a big deal and helps more people than it gets credit for. I really do appreciate that you included it!
I have sent an email.