Re: Launching June 15: CohousingMap.net
From: Mary Baker, Solid Communications (marysolid-communications.com)
Date: Fri, 17 Jun 2016 10:05:50 -0700 (PDT)
Ann, respectfully, I think if your firm worked for two years on a solution and 
failed to launch you:

* probably over-engineered your solution

A typical situation that occurs when people over-think a project and try to 
address every imaginable problem, instead of building things in a modular 
fashion. Or perhaps you were trying to use a technology platform unsuited to 
the purpose, instead of building from scratch?

You are also making an:

* assumption that creators are seeking or need income

Some designers do it simply for the challenge and experience, and of course a 
successful application always looks stellar in a career portfolio. An 
application engineer doesn’t always need a highly trafficked app, if he/she can 
point to a fully workable app with satisfied users. I am currently working with 
Dick Yates of GleanWeb.org to build a county-wide gleaning site—the site is 
free, along with one year of free mentoring and hosting. And it’s a very 
complex site with a lot of data gathering. I have yet to find out if the 
software is directly supported by grants, but I know it didn’t start out that 
way—it was simply created to fill a need.

And there is your:

* assumption that apps cannot succeed in a niche audience 

Current advice to app creators is to focus, focus, focus on very small niche 
markets and build apps specifically for their needs. The more specific the 
solution, the more likely they will succeed. GleanWeb started out with just one 
client. 

And then there is the:

* assumption that there is little or no interest

For an in-house solution to work, a community needs buy-in from a majority of 
members, but an outside solution can appeal to just a few members from each 
community and still be a success. My little site is steadily growing, with 
visitors this week from Canada, Spain, Germany and the UK. (You can view 
visitor stats in the traffic box in the right sidebar.) 

I’m feeling very positive about the networking potential for cohousing. In just 
this last year, there have been more and more cohousing sites and organizations 
on Facebook, and within the last year there’s been the advent of my forum, and 
now Carles’ launch, and Corey’s project, which I’m excited to learn more about. 
In fact, Carles has joined my forum, and I’m off now to give him some creative 
feedback.

Cheers,

Mary

PS. Corey, are you familiar with this site? 
http://cohousing-portals.1011783.n3.nabble.com/Mosaic-a-Cohousing-Portal-Web-Application-td17.html


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