Hamlet is a service that allows restaurants to generate menus just by adding their menu items. No design skills or time required.
This yet to be named endeavor is planned to be a non-profit that will bring more justice to those overlooked by economic opportunities. As you can tell it’s rather in the beginning stages.
For as long as I've been tinkering with technology I've been working on side projects. Over the years this has produced several shipped products — from selling WordPress themes, to self-publishing a book, with a serious go at a boot-strapped startup between. Below is the summary. My track record is questionable.
(Circa 2015) I wrote and self-published the book I wish I had had when I was trying to kick off a full-time freelancing career. It’s free — check it out. People seem to like it.
(Circa 2013) Everyday Weather was an iOS app that was unremarkable except for the fact that I coded and published it on my own. I dove into Objective-C with a book and Stack Overflow at my side. I worked on it very early in the mornings and in the evenings after our little one had gone to bed.
It was fun to have a product to work out information theory and user interface ideas (I was reading The Information by James Gleick at the time) but the app never made any money and it was mentally taxing to stay current with Objective-C.
(Circa 2010-2011) Potluck was a boot-strapped startup co-founded with a friend. It was a collaboration app for business in the vein of Yammer or SocialCast. We had hit on the right idea but couldn’t move at a fast enough pace (trying to get local funding was… hard) and I guess in the end we would have been drubbed by Slack anyways. The company pivoted at the end of 2011 and I left shortly after that to pursue other things — ultimately moving to California to work at a startup there for a while.
(Fun fact: this company, Potluck, later became the wildly successful app, Over. Though I had nothing to do with Over.)
(Circa 2010-2012) Borderlines was a geography trivia game for the iPhone. I was in charge of the product and design, and a friend joined me to actually build the thing. A ton of care went into the flow of the game (progression of easy countries to hard without becoming predictable by the tenth time playing it), rewardable scoring (geometric growth correlated to successful answers in a row), maps of the countries (ask me about France-scaling) and of course the engineering and design.
We spent over two years building it (off and on), formed an LLC with its own identity and website to handle revenue, and naturally had a little marketing website for the app. We even had a Facebook page.
All that said, it was a complete flop. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
(Circa 2008) Artisan Themes was my first product and was a fully integrated member management and payment processing system to sell a premium WordPress theme. I used software called aMemberPro and wrestled that code to completely match my custom design.
In the end I had more pride in the system that sold the theme than the theme itself which probably partly explains why it never went anywhere!