Hello bootstrapped people!
I’m Matthew and I’m new here I sold my 16yo Linux-nerd hosting company in Nov 2018. In May 2019 my daughter was born and I started sketching a new piece of software in Oct 2019. It’s been pretty slow going as I’ve been trying to fit coding around parenting (I’m married and we have a 7yo too).
My software is going to be for vacation rental (“short let” in the UK) owners who want visibility onto their bookings through multiple booking platforms. I believe this is a software marketplace where people who want the best services need more than one tool, though there are lots of companies vying to be the “one true” platform, not least Airbnb & booking-dot-com themselves. However once you leave the confines of a single platform, you tend to need some systems in place to keep track of them. So I think my bookkeeping system stands a shot.
Parenting has expanded to fill the gap that my old company left. I get a good 8-12 hours/week completely left alone, and maybe the same again where I might be interrupted at any time. I try to do the creative work in the first type of time, and the endless slog in the second. I used to be a diva in my 20s about uninterrupted work time, but now if I can see 15 minutes opening up in the day I’ll open my laptop and see where I’ve left myself note: a ### BUG HERE, DUMMY and just type as fast as I can.
My very broad to do list:
- front-end - account management & setup (hardwired to me for now)
- production hosting, backups - embarrassing if I can’t do this right but it’s got to work for a 1-man show for a while
- external QA framework once the feature list slows down - “not many tests, mostly integration”
- scheduling hands-on interviews with accountants / bookkeepers / let owners to guide the feature set and file off any rough edges.
I’m not a perfectionist (except on data integrity) … so I’m going to let people sign up once the UI stops being horrible, and leak it out piece by piece, even before I’m charging for it.
I’m going to focus on UK owners now, but open it up to people in US, NZ & Australia as fast as I can - because of differences in local short-let marketplaces & tax regulation, I need to be quite careful not to throw it open internationally as I’d have an explosion of testing possibilities.
I’d love to talk to people here to like enjoy doing hosting on the cheap, or where parenting is their main distraction.
Nice to meet you all Matthew