For over a year now I have been working in my spare time on a digital asset management system, I have been very serious about this and did quite a bit of competitive research out of the gate which I have refined over time. It got the to point where Outlook notes and scratch pads hobbled together where getting out of hand so I spent a few hours throwing something together to manage the information. made changes, spent more hours (big for loop here) and after way too many hours had something respectable for managing the information. I have showed this to a few people and got a pretty curious reaction, instead of "that’s nice" or "good idea" the response was more like, "why aren’t you selling that?"
I am a big fan of Eric Sink, I love his writings on the business of software and the insight I get from him is very often one of those things where you sit back and think that you knew that deep inside but just couldn't express it (in other words: I’m a fan) So I am going to take some clues from life and my lessons from the dotnetredneck himself and am going to make a detour from my asset management system for awhile and see if this competitive intelligence thing I have built can be something. It is not too big and may just fit a niche market that is out there waiting to happen; the problem scope is limited and I think I can invest the time and resources to take a stab at this without breaking the bank or pissing off my wife. Bottom line, if it fails then I have wasted little money and not much time. If it kinda sort of succeeds then I can buy some toys (Xbox360, highdef tv, etc) and if it really works out I may be able to stop consulting, let this pay some bills and spend more time on my asset management system.
Couple points to ponder; I really don’t want to deal with software distribution and all that jazz, so I going with a service provider model, the software will be subscription based. Unless something about my potential market changes my mind, this is my path. I am going to build on .NET V2 with SQL 2005 because I like it number one and more importantly I have already spent time building something out in those technologies.
I think I will blog this adventure, I am pretty close hold on my consulting practice and since most of my work is defense related I am sure you can understand why but this thing is totally open for public consumption...
And as always I hope you comment to give me some advice.