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Offer HN: $2000 worth of free work (last 4 days to get your idea in) (samuellevy.com)
51 points by samuellevy 1401 days ago | hide | past | web | 16 comments | favorite

Good luck OP. I expect you're going to catch a lot of undesirable fish with this bait. :)

So how many 'business guys with an idea' have pitched you? Whartonite Seeks Code Monkey would love you.


I think you may have broken your own first rule ;)


The difference is that there's a limit on the "free work", and it's on my own terms. I'm already running a self-sustaining business (contributing to my savings rather than living off them), so giving out some free work to get interesting projects won't kill me. It will, however, help me to stay sane.

This is a great marketing idea.


Just like the OP says in an above comment:

working on 25 hours for free on someone else's project is more likely to lead to future paid work than working for 25 hours on my own projects.

25 hours is almost certainly not enough to get an MVP done, so whoever he works for will likely need to 'pay their way' through the remainder of the project if they want to get it finished.

Is 25 hours of coding sufficient to make an MVP. My experience says at least 100 hrs for meaningful MVP when the idea is not trivial.

That's the beauty of the scheme. The 25 hours is the hook, and it's unlikely that a person will take the product and ask someone else to continue it.

Yeah, like when a fancy retail clothing store gives you a $25 gift card. You can either by one sock, of you can use it + cash for something you truly want. Plus it usually brings you back into the physical store.

25 hours may not be enough for a full project, but it's a massive discount which I can handle swallowing to work on the type of project that I love working on.

It's a reality of life as a freelancer that many of the jobs I take on are uninspiring. This is an attempt at finding some of the type of jobs that I would really enjoy working on, and hopefully encourage someone to take the leap on a project that may have otherwise stayed on the shelf forever.

For me, I'm hoping to find people and projects that I'll get excited about working with. Giving away $2000 of work for free is about as much as I can possibly justify. I've brought a number of projects through from start to finish (complete code base, from scratch) in under 40 hours, and in this case it would represent the difference between a project costing $1200 and the same project costing $3200.

This could also be enough to get a functional prototype in place to impress investors, etc.

Why not work on your own project and try to escape the monotony of freelance work?

I think it's much harder to remain motivated on your own project on a completely independent basis. This seems like fun, in that he's "being paid" (by himself, admittedly) for the 25 hours and might continue work at his normal rates, so it's extrinsically motivating, but still his choice of work, instead of being whatever-he-can-get-hired-to-do, which is the usual freelancer dog's breakfast.

I have several side projects which I do work on, but working on 25 hours for free on someone else's project is more likely to lead to future paid work than working for 25 hours on my own projects.

I also find it hard to justify working on my own projects when there's client work to be done.

Not usually, but in case you or anyone else was wondering I've been spending the past few months optimizing the MVP-building process and have gotten it down to ~36 (uninterrupted) hours, even for non-trivial sites. The result is this: http://prontotype.us/

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