planting-seedsOver the past week I have looked at every partial piece of software I have. A few I have poked at while others I’ve just sort of stared at like a staff sergeant looking over a bunch of fresh-faced new recruits wondering why half of them are even here. One of the projects my wife and I have wanted to make for a while has been at the front of the line. I did some coding on it a month or so back. It seemed like a nifty idea.

Without opening the box too much, it is a little puzzle maker. What type of puzzle isn’t really important here. You can make puzzles, solve puzzles, send puzzles to friends. I think I had a mental grip on where it could monetize. I even could see the initial road map of the app and how to spring off other apps from it. There doesn’t seem to be any other apps in this niche and it has some chance to stand on its own with the right development.

But for some reason, it just wasn’t buzzing for me. That’s not to say that I’d pay the project any disrespect. I just don’t know how many people would really jump on something like this. It feels “Kinda cool” and I know that my family would get some enjoyment out of it. But it feels like a tine little ember rather than something that is utterly engaging to me.

While driving my boy home from the bus stop last evening, I thought about another old idea. One that I’d never even started to code. Something I’d seen in paper form years before that I always thought might be better suited as a mobile app. And then I mentally crawled around the ecosystem where this thing would live. The whole ecosystem started to grow in my mind. The Business side, the SaaS component (a term I swore I’d never use), the adjoining consumer component side. It wasn’t just a project… I saw an entire monetize-able business.¬†There even seemed an open niche.

I thought about the contacts in my personal world who had any contact within this ecosystem and figured I’d give them a ping to see if they felt there was a niche opportunity. I called it my 30 second elevator-chat. Give them an idea of what I think can be done. Everyone seemed to react far better than I expected. People saw the value and what could be done. Several offered to sign up and help in anyway they could. (Which considering the entire starting point of $0 and $0 short range income… This seems promising.

Well, the next step was the inevitable step to see how resilient the bubble of my idea was to bursting. Search the internet… you’re certain to find several people in the unfilled niche already trying to fill it. And I did. Happily, no one addressed the audience I wanted. Many didn’t even fill in 25% of what I wanted. This of course begs the question as to whether I am seeing too big a picture or whether there is far too much to do. But the most important one thing that came out the other side was me. It is far too easy to throw up my hands and say, “Ah, well… It already exists.” On the other hands, I think there is still a business case out there.

Granted… I’m a coder with delusions of grandiose ideas.

So, onto my next step. I have gotten buzz from people who are closer to the target; I have seen the potential competition and what the field may look like. I need to cull some people with higher business acumen to take a look at what I’m looking at and help me see if this idea is viable. We need to see if and how we can approach it to make a first step, that would be a strong entry.

I think the project has legs. Other people think the project may have wings. Now I just need a person or two to help me move it out of metaphor and towards the kind of “Proof of concept” that gets it the best thing it could have. Financial support.

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