Nick Mudge Ignition Software Consulting & Development

Every once in awhile I have an interesting idea of some application or software program I'd like to create, but I almost never have the time to immediately do it, and then sometimes later I notice that I forget what the idea was, or why I wanted to do it or what was great about it.

So I'm thinking, why don't I just write my ideas down on my blog? Then I could always look back at my blog posts for any ideas when someday I really have time to do something. And plus, it would be fun to write them down here and of course hearing what other people think is always great.

I would worry about someone taking my ideas but I've grown to the idea that if you can come up with good ideas in general then ideas aren't that important, what really matters is doing something with them. Any helpful idea I might mention that someone uses to carry through with something deserves full credit and respect for what they create, and of course I'd want to hear about it because it would validate my ideas, and of course I enjoy knowing that I had some slight participation in some new creation.

So I'll tell my first idea which was my first idea for a Web application, and I'll tell its story.

Way back when I didn't know I was going to be a programmer for a living I had a great idea called Democranet. Basically the idea was that there would be this website www.democranet.com that would contain political articles. Anybody could submit articles and people could vote on whether they agreed with the articles or not. Through a democratic process the website would push up and show the ideas in the world that people cared about most and how people thought the world should be and how it should change. Democranet = Democracy + Internet. I had gotten the idea from reading the book Ender's Game.

Some of my ideas of functionality of www.democranet.com were similar to how reddit.com and digg.com work, except the content would be on www.democranet.com instead of linked to all over the web. I think Reddit.com and Digg.com were way less known when I first began working on this, in 2004.

Anyway, I was so excited about this idea and this website. But I had no one to build it for me and I didn't know anything about web programming. So I decided to learn how to do all the computer technical work myself. A friend recommended that I get a book on HTML, Javascript and PHP. So that's what I did and that's how I started. I had taken a C programming class in college and knew something about programming (I loved Qbasic in school.)

In the process of learning how to build this website and building it I began to realize that I didn't like politics very much, and that grew more and more. After some time I realized that I really liked learning and building the website but that I didn't like the idea of the website anymore. So that was the end of that. I have the old code for it somewhere. I have a visual redesign of the site I was going to implement that is still in HTML here: http://webdescript.com/redemoc/

The Democranet project has been gone for a long time, but it has an issue connected to it that has lingered. At the time I bought the domain names democranet.com, democranet.org and democranet.net. These are really great domain names and I have no idea what to do with them. If you know of anyone that might be interested in buying them for a million dollars, please let me know.

What came out of Democranet was that I found that I really liked web programming and it gave me a project to learn web programming with. I eventually got a full time web programming job, which was fantastic for me.

Stay tuned for the next idea.

Comments

Robin Green
swansea.academia.edu/RobinGreen
11 April 2009

What you're describing sounds quite a lot like http://kuro5hin.org/ (at least, its political articles). I wrote articles and blogged there for a while (non-renumerated - in fact, I even donated to the site, foolishly as it turns out because the founder spent the money on yachts and monocles).

The code from kuro5hin.org was open sourced and reused on a number of sites, including, I believe, Daily Kos.

kuro5hin predates your implementation by some years (kuro5hin covered 9/11 live in 2001).

It had two main problems, from my perspective: loons (such as myself), and trolls. Though perhaps most of the loons were in fact trolls.
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