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Observations on Everything

Crowdfunding: What The Fund Episode 17 — LoudMotor

Two things to learn from this one, the first is a pretty common theme: a lot of people who start crowdfunding projects haven’t bothered to do the slightest bit of research on their market space. The second is that picking a brand should involve more effort than just looking for a domain name that hasn’t been registered.

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Catching up with “What The Fund?”

Slightly behind schedule I bring you What The Fund episodes 10 and 11. Back story on the posting delay is below, for those of you interested in a behind-the-scenes look.

Findster is a set of GPS tracking devices that let you keep tabs on your kids and pets.

Digidate is a virtual reality project intended for first dates. I have a better idea.

Here’s the back story. I was using some inexpensive video production software for episodes 1 through 10. While the software wasn’t much to write about, it was sufficient for my original purposes — basically doing some minor post production on a nearly finished product. But when it came to doing much more than that, its inexpensive roots started to show, particularly a nasty green tinge that the webcam driver corrects for but the cheap capture software doesn’t. While I know a good video has more to do with content than with white balance, the photographer in me had a real hard time paying attention to the content.

So I acquired some less inexpensive (but still cheap, as in under $100) replacements [VideoPad from NCH software]. While it’s still not as powerful as professional software, this has let me move to a two head production (two cameras), and use my professional camera to capture full HD. While that’s a major improvement, it comes with a steep learning curve that impacts the whole production process. This means it took a few extra days to get episode 11 out the door. Fortunately after I get back up to speed it looks like it won’t take a lot more work to move forward with this format, so I hope everyone likes it.

Critiquing Crowdfunding: Introducing “What the Fund?”

What the Fund? I love the crowdfunding concept. I’ve backed two Kickstarter projects so far, and I’ve been happy with the results. I really like the product launch model: what better way to know your product is going to be a hit than to have your crowdfunded project blow right past its goals? What a great way to both lower the amount of investment you need to launch a business and to prove that you’ve got a valid concept to investors.

But that’s the ideal case. A crowdfunded project is also an acid test for your idea. If it sucks, nobody’s going to buy in. The sad fact is that a lot of ideas suck, and failure to meet your funding goal can be a harsh reality check. Read more