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dot org, dot com,, sometimes it costs ya 30 bucks to learn the difference

wpSo I’ve been trying to get this whole blogging thing to work. I’ve used blogger,, wasn’t too enthralled. So I came over to the WordPress side. There are actually two sides to it (yes, I performed a perfect ‘dingus’ and managed to make a sweet move,, not).

The difference in WordPress is that there is .org, and there is .com. I’ve been using dot com. A great service, I really like it.

Where I’m a moron (I’m sure you were wondering) was that WordPress.com (that I was using) does not allow any plugins outside of those that it already has hosted in it’s system.

“But wait!” you say,, There are all those plugins and themes for WordPress, don’t they work there?! Short answer, yes, long answer, the war of 1812 was fought with Canada, but that’s neither here nor there.

WordPress plugins (the ones where you CAN make money, and do neato stuff) are only available with your own hosting (I use GoDaddy) and downloading WordPress (the blogging software that needs hosting) from WordPress.org (note .org, not .com!)

I mistakenly bought the 15$ (it coulda been worse!)

Now (ok, I can be a bit of a slow learner,, stop throwing lit matches at me) I know that to use all the wordpress plugins with impunity (well, ok, they have be on the web. To do that, you have to use the WordPress.org download, then get it hosted somewhere (Godaddy), then you can use any of the fancy plugins and do whatever you want.

To Recap

WordPress.com=> You can write whatever you want, post whatever you want, and do lots of links, but as for monetizing it,, not so much.

WordPress.org=> Download it, host it, go nuts!! This is the way to do the whole “online business/blog” type thing (yeah, we’ll see how this all goes). So far, it goes slowly.

Next up, going through the 30daychallenge again with that wacky Ed Dale (Dan Raine too!). He puts the netmar in Internet Marketing!

I bet you can’t wait till I start podcasting too!! (ugh, I’ll probably just talk about Formula 1 all day).


Who are you? You’re not Steve!!!

Get your Steve and I’m not Steve Shirts here!

Click here to get your I’m not Steve shirt!!

You think you’re all that,, but are you Steve enough to get a Steve shirt?

There are two main models, the first, it just says “Steve”. Expected sales, 1 unit (yeah Mr. You Know Who)

For the Rest of us, there’s the “I’m not Steve” Shirt.

Simple, yes,, but let’s face it folks. Sometimes, you’ve gotta know where you stand. Sometimes it’s just on a floor in Cupertino, or it’s just somewhere else.

Click Here to get the shirt!!

Social Bookmarking

What tools do you use online (and off) on a daily basis to get stuff done.

its a wrench!This is one of those “Hey everybody, what are you using too” type posts, so please do comment!

As for me,, I use a lot of different software, mostly free, and when I’ve gotta pay for it,, I do. (plus I’ve been paying my podcasting bill lately too, more on that later).

Email, well, I’ve got a lot, (Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, and Godaddy)

Google Reader, (seriously, my feeds list is full like crazy, but I get a ton of info in my eyeholes every day).

Del.icio.us, ooh I do tend to tag a lot! Check out my helpful link RSS feed for DS4tool (its the main link set for DS4 design and a good place to start for business startup prototyping references.

Twitter,, (ok, so I stayed off Twitter for quite a while (I’m looking at you SXSW) but I finally caved, and, wow, it’s just fun).

Plaxo, my Palm Pilot died, (my 5th pilot since 1996, I miss my pilot, I’m waiting till the Centro comes to Verizon, till then, my life is a tiny void, Plaxo has most of my data that I was able to extract,,, I’m never going to get back my recipes though,, I still weep for that category on my palm pilot,,, I weep). Plaxo works great, and they keep improving it. I wish they’d incorporate a neat little simple CRM package (it’s the perfect place and they do such a great job,, however,,,).

ZohoCRM,, I’ve got it, but I’m trying to get around to using it more.

Siphs.com a great way to email your friends things you find.

Remember the Milk (someday, I’ll get around to getting the pro model (especially when I get around to getting a smartphone/blackberry of some sort (ok, an iphone would be cool, but in all likelihood it’ll be a Palm Centro once they come out on Verizon)).

Plaxo, it does a lot, saves all my old Palm data and keeps it current.

As for social networks,, I’m in a lot of them (I only actively use a few). but I can always be found getting things done in terms of Linked in, Myspace, Facebook, Cork’d,mmm,, that’s all the ones I pay attention to.

eFax, good free fax number, then if you want to send a fax,, eh,, it’s pretty cheap, and the darn thing works.

CamStudio of course (don’t worry, soon there’ll be a cast of sorts!) Same goes for Audacity.

OpenOffice,, its lotsa fun, and more affordable than,, well,, if you were to buy some office software made by that operating system company it would cost much more than free.

There’s a bunch more that I do use, but that’s a start!

So what are you using? (yes, I want you to actually leave me a comment,, PLEASE!!!)

Not Invented Here Syndrome,, what’s the cure?

Mine Mine Mine Mine Mine!!!

This is the whine of many companies, and their innovation strategies. It’s interesting, some companies when approached are more than excited to take a look at new ideas from outside sources (as well as signing simple NDA’s (Non-Disclosure-Agreement) that detail that they won’t share the I.P. independently developed and produced with outside developers own time and money).

It’s surprising that so many places dismiss an outside idea. Especially since many outer opportunities, while not fully able to fit with their company can, at least introduce new ideas, thoughts, and concepts to them. Granted, most that look at outer company’s ideas simply find an intellectual property work-around and knock them off to get in the same product category.

Companies should realize that the level of monetary benefit alone exceeds the simple “cost of signing an NDA” (which, to be sure is the simplicity of writing their name, and faxing or emailing a document back). At that point, they can receive the document, prototype, or presentation, and identify the next action (there you go GTDers).

The real thing that companies need to remember is that if someone truly brings you a good idea,, you will NOT LOSE MONEY ON IT. People are bringing you an idea (protected already by at the very least a provisional patent pending, to prove it is theirs). If someone has brought you a beneficial product design, give it a fair shake. You’re only supporting a small group (those who have brought you their idea), while you’re, likely large company benefits every time from an innovative product. With a new product in a new section of your product portfolio, you can always make more money on a idea that you manufacture in house. While the designer you are licensing to may require money, and a percentage of your profits, the money you will be making will always be more than they are making and can make your efforts more than worth your own time.

I would love some feedback on this, but I feel that I’ve got something here. As an independent developer, this is the only way for myself and others that do this sort of thing to succeed. People like me aren’t looking to “take all your money”. Our overhead is usually a computer, a small shop (think a few hand tools), our cost to live, the cost of patenting, and the time and effort to develop a product that seems to fit your company’s industry. It’s often vastly cheaper than having an independent design house do the work (though I do support them entirely), but more often these are people that are seeking you out, and have a passion to help you and your company. These are people that like what you’re doing and want to be helpful, just give em’ a chance is all I’m saying.

Sign that NDA.

See what they have to say.

At worst, make a friend, you never know when that idea will come up again, and be just what your company needs to get ahead!

Just a little food for thought for the day.

Happy Monday!

Stealth mode is very frustrating

stealth mode,, hide in plain sightWell, I’ve been in stealth mode for,,, years.

Why? Why would I not put it all out there, on the line, and say


Look at me toss out idea after idea that doesn’t work!

Oh, yeah,, that’s why.

So coming out of my little shell is a tad odd. There’s a lot to do, and a lot still to be done. Part of this is all just one big “Note to self”. The rest can be chocked up to self serving whining, and offhanded mild publicity attempts.

Like you, I read all the “web marketing”, “Web 2.0”, “social networking” things.

I can be found on Facebook, Myspace, Coroflot, Orkut, Friendster, Linkedin, Cork’d, and a bunch of others I can’t even think of right now.

The problem is, there are so many ways to “be out there,” yet, with “being out there.” What’s really going on? Do you have something to really sell? Are you running a business, or just having fun (and being silly?) Silly is fine, especially if you’re focused on silly,, sometimes, silly is best.

But to do that, you’ve still got to have the knowledge to know just where you’re going with it (plan your silly just a bit here).

As much as I’ve “planned” what I’m going to be doing here, it’s still not as solid as I’d like it to be. I design products and sell them. Personally I prefer to license them to large companies and bootstrap my projects by having big companies buy and sell them. It’s a win win for them, they get a different type of product that is thought out, manufacturable, and works with their current product line. While I get rewarded for my efforts.

I’ll elaborate much more about my process as we go on, but this leads us to the next upcoming post “Not Invented Here Syndrome” and what to do about it.

Also, we’ll deal with the realities of “too many clubs” or put another way,, even if you’re a member everywhere, what should you do with it, and is it worth it?


The construction of a complete blog, here goes nothing

put er thereWell, this blog is here for a number of reasons;

  • To publicize my business DS4 Design
  • To share what I find interesting
  • To share ideas and concepts that others my find helpful
  • To occasionally whine about injustice
  • To elucidate ideas
  • To sell my products
  • To share things I’m doing and maybe help other people do the same sort of thing I’m trying to do (in their own way)

Here are the next few things I want to ad here.

A button to link to my linked in profile already found how to do that here.

The feed link to my tumblr posts like here.

to integrate my Twitter feed (follow me freds4hb)

A button so you can buy me a beer (I like beer) here.

As well as monetize it with adsense and other ad revenue (need to learn all about my SEO things here too!)

Of course I use stumble upon, digg, and delicious for SEO type things (still learning there too). I can pretty much be found everywhere as fredshb, so give it a go!

I also want to be sure to have a template that works with all these things I fear my current template isn’t set up to handle a lot of this. We’l see. I’ll be checking myself with my own RSS reader (you DO use google reader right?!)

There’s much more I want to do, but that’s my first bit for starters.

Collaboration, it’s always fun

We’re always looking for new and exciting groups and people to work with, shoot us a line.  If you hear a funny message, it’s us, just keep talking.