Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Summer Fun

Wow, the summer sure goes fast! I've been busy with my daughter, who turned one year old in June. She's changing every day, and is so obviously aware and intelligent that I'm in awe. We're planning on homeschooling her, and are wondering who will be teaching who!

On the geek front, I ran across Cambrian House lately. They're a company that wants to generate ideas from the Internet community, build a product, and reward all the community contributors from the profits. It's an interesting idea, and one that deserves to work. Whether it will or not is another matter. The barrier to entry for anyone with an idea is high enough these days that this business model is quite attractive.

Plus, you have a like a company with style enough to deliver 1,000 pizzas to Google's headquarters, and to run a "Guess the weight of a goat" contest.

Since I like the concept, I contributed a few ideas of my own. The way it works is that the community votes on ideas by comparing pairs of ideas and saying which ones they like the best. This community rating system is supposed to separate the ideas that are good from the ones that are not so good.

You can also click the links directly below to show support for my ideas. This contributes to the idea's total rating in some undefined way. On the page that comes up, you'd click "Yes, Please add my support to this idea!" assuming you do support the idea.

Support My Idea at Cambrian House -- this would be a site for what's turning into the average computer user. A person buying a computer who has no built-in knowledge of how the Internet works, and needs the basics spelled out for them. Most guides out there in Internet land assume a base level of knowledge already.

Support My Idea at Cambrian House eNonymous Community -- this would be an online community where you're expected to lie about who you are. You'd get to craft an online persona and play the role as well as you could in this community, knowing full well that everyone else was doing the same. A bit wacky, but it could be fun.

Support My Idea at Cambrian House Trusted Recommendations -- you'd build a trust network by linking to other members, and rating how much you trusted their opinions on different topics. For example, you might trust your friend Joe's opinion about automobile dealers, but not his opinion on books to read. As you do things in your life, you'd enter your recommendations, and your friends would be doing the same. You can search your trust network for the highest rated recommendations in a category the next time you need a recommendation. If everyone does it, it works out well.

I'll be following Cambrian House over the next year to see how they do. Hopefully they'll do much better than the recently deceased Blue Security spam solution, another neat idea that deserved to succeed.