Kickstarter Update #1

Hey, you fans out there!  Guess what?

This is the first major update on my official Kickstarter campaign.

I am totally excited because this project, which I’ll detail in a later update, is a sure winner.

I know you’ll love it.

But, before I launch the Kickstarter project, I want you to join me as I walk the path of a soon-to-be successful entrepreneur.

Success requires planning.

LOTS and LOTS of planning.

And research.

So, without further ado, let’s dive into some research.

Before we get started, let’s create a folder on our Internet-connected notebook PC and call the folder something fun.

How about “Kickstarter Project Xceed Xpectations“?:

New folder

A good place to store our research.
Easiest next step, conduct an Internet search for Kickstarter business plans:

Kickstarter business plan google search


Probably the most important point about launching a project on Kickstarter is actually knowing what kind of projects you can launch on Kickstarter.  Not exactly rocket science here but it pays to be attentive!

Let’s jump over to Kickstarter and read some of their basic requirements:

Kickstarter guidelines


Well, good news so far.  We can fit our Project Xceed Xpectations easily into one of the categories.

But what about a good Kickstarter-based crowdfunding business plan?

By now, the Internet is well-noded with suggestions about a successful business plan but let’s just stick to two videos:

The second one first, which can be boiled down to two important details.  Yes, two again.

  • First, 90% of crowdfunded projects have met/exceeded their goals after reaching 30% of funding.
  • Second, a quick list of important tips:
    • Have a pitch video
    • Offer three or more perks
    • Update your backers and followers every few days, preferably every day
    • Post media to our gallery frequently
    • Link to your other social media pages
    • Keep the campaign less than two months old

Okay, that’s enough for today’s Kickstarter update number one.  I’ll conduct some more research and come back to you with my business plan.

I might, just might, give you a hint about the project itself.  Who knows?!

21 Questions Adhere To The Wall

Only 13,519 days to go.  Is that still the 6th of May 2050?

The backward science on this planet in the the second decade of what some call their 21st century frequently tries my patience.

Just like this momentary search for a map (found it!) and what it means (yet to be found) but tying it to the date given to me, the 6th of May 2050, makes some if not more sense.  Does the camel saddle in the bottom of the sea chest have a meaning?

Living in the zeitgeist is all we have, isn’t it, because somehow, some way, we are attached to the local environment in which our sets of states of energy prove the concept of the conservation of mass.

I borrowed six books from the library and have need to spend time reading them.  I will list their titles later today or in the week.

I am floating in the artificial cloud of happiness, content that, no matter the habits of fellow writers, I am me, having written well, poorly, or not at all.

Will it truly be 20-year old proven technology that ends up on the Moon and Mars for risktaking, adventurous pioneers and settlers to survive with/upon?  If not, what is the ultimate “firmware” that can be reprogrammed in realtime like Transformer bots that have no final, definite shape, form and function(s)?

When there is a world of choices, what in the world do I do?

[Personal notes. Feel free to skip.]

My mother turns 79 years young tomorrow, her first birthday without her husband nearby in 55+years.

When I get down to it, I have hundreds of social network connections, mainly revitalised via the Internet, but no one (no human) other than my wife with whom I communicate daily.

I verbally communicate with my mother on a weekly basis just as I had communicated verbally with my father and mother weekly when Dad was alive, although he and I communicated more frequently through email, trading “did you know…?” facts and jokes back and forth (with me having to remind him not to send NSFW jokes to my work email account or check Snopes before forwarding inaccurate “this is the truth because a friend of a friend told me so” emails).

My sister, her kids and my extended family communicate by randomly posting comments/photos on social networking software but I wouldn’t always call that a conversational form of communicating, somewhere between email and voice calls.

I have always enjoyed writing and was often accused by my employees of bombarding their inboxes with more email than they could read so they’d set up a special folder called “Rick/Boss” that they knew were emails from me they could read at their leisure.

I guess I was a professional email composer if not a professional writer/author.

After retiring from an office job as an engineering manager, I sat down and completed a few books that had grown or festered in my thoughts during business trips around the world.

I finished writing the books I wanted to publish before I died, one of them reaching the “Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award” semifinal level along with a review by Publishers Weekly, achieving my goal of a professional book review, no matter how good/bad (or somewhere in-between), and ended up here as a journalist/diarist in the form of a daily blogger.

Now, I have reached a point, well into the second half of my life, where exploring writing styles is of less interest.

I am comfortable writing at a level understood by those proficient in reading a variant of the English language.

Could I sit here the next 50 years of my life and do this day after day?  Yes, I could.  Possibly.  But do I want to?

Well, that’s why I’m here today.

I have played with computer technology for most of my life.  My formative years, not so much, unless you count battery-powered electromechanical toys as rudimentary computing devices because computers were mainframe monstrosities that my father used at work and I saw on television so it influenced my thoughts but was not part of my everyday life like kids today with computers in every room of their house as smartphones, smart TVs, smart appliances, smart homes, smart cars, smart toys, and PCs/tablets.

I tinkered with open source software, programming computers like a handbuilt Intel 8085 system in the 1970s, the Timex-Sinclair 1000 in the 1980s and so forth up to the Arduino in the 2010s.

I’ve played with a variety of operating systems in the process.

I post blog entries from iOS, Windows, Linux, and Android, for instance, but not in that order of frequent use.

I am used to a QWERTY keyboard but have tried a one-handed Matias keyboard and the DVORAK keyboard layout.

I am not used to thumb typing on a smartphone but have grown accustomed to swiping and pinching on a smartphone/tablet screen.

I observed the set of shorthand acronyms that first grew popular in BBS chatrooms and moved on to SMS but I never used them extensively myself.

I’ve watched minitrends of communication styles come and go in social media on the Internet over the last two decades, just like they bloomed and died in newspapers, pamphlets and magazines for hundreds of years, and wall art/graffiti for millennia.

With less than 50 years of my life left, statistically at this point in the affordable body rejuvenation market, what do I want to do with the rest of my life?

Do I have any skills the world wants and/or I want to share with the world?

Are there any new skills I want to develop?

Can I conservatively live on my accumulated wealth within the socioeconomic web I have financially supported and expect to be rewarded in kind as I grow older?

My days of listening to and buying [into] every pop culture product out there are behind me or fading away.

Or so I think because I look around me and see that the food I eat, the clothes I wear, the bed I sleep in, the computers I use, the cars I drive and the TVs I watch are covered with labels of commercially popular brands.

In other words, either I am comfortable with the brands I use or the brands are neutral/unimportant for the types of products I buy at a reasonable cost for my lifestyle/standard of living.

I am frugal to some extent but not extremely so.

I am content eating a banana and a handful of potato chips for lunch but I will just as easily go out and spend $100 on a meal if I’m in the mood.

My wife and I average a new car every 10 years for her daily driver.  My primary vehicle is a 1995 model, a BMW, not a Kia.

The fact that we own and drive cars says a lot about our standard of living and expectations, along with a digital cable TV subscription, Internet data subscription, landline phone subscription, wireless smartphone subscription, and monthly bills for food, entertainment, electricity, water and garbage pickup.

We don’t pay country club or homeowner association fees.  We don’t belong to a wellness or exercise center of any sort.  We don’t rent furniture or appliances on a weekly basis, either.

We are two people, two cogs, in the wheel of life we call civilisation.

Soon, we shall have no more responsibilities for my wife’s ancestral connections, leaving my mother as the sole responsibility for a child to his/her parents, although my sister shares the responsibility.

If I throw everything away in this room — from the computers (TI-99/4A, Timex-Sinclair 1000, Macintosh II, Mac Plus, Macintosh 6100/66, iMac, Kaypro 2000, etc.) to the toys (model rockets, balsa wood airplanes, plastic model car kits, Hot Wheels cars, Pinewood Derby cars, stuffed animals) to the books (college textbooks, novels, comic books, business books, instruction manuals, how-to guides, coffee table books, ruled notebooks (both empty and used)), posters, photo albums, framed pictures, furniture, boxes of miscellaneous junk, etc. — will my wife and I be free to lengthen our list of choices?

When there is a world of choices, what in the world do I do next?

Latest telemarketing trick

Lately, I noticed for a bunch of different phone numbers the same voice that said, in a generic southern California accent, “Is the lady of the house there?,” similar to the previous recording that said, “This is Rachel from cardholder services.”

I wondered how the same person could be calling the house all the time.

Finally, my curiosity got the best of me.  I responded with my usual “Ola.  No habla inglés,” and waited to see what would happen.

The call rolled over to a telemarketer, on whom I hung up as she said, “Hello!  This is Amanda and the reason I’m calling is…”

Your Evaluation Version of Windows 8 Has Expired…

…or taken its last breath?

What do you do if your credit score is in the top 90th or 99th percentile?

Rather, what have you done?

Living here 1000 years from now, with others who arranged it so, I ask myself if I should keep cracking jokes about this time period.

I have nearly recovered emotionally from the recent deaths of my mother in-law and father.

One estate has been closed, credit scores are in tip-top shape, and life presents many opportunities between now and 365000 days from now.

What about an event 13,622 days from now?

What will inspire me to move forward from this point, my wealth hidden from prying eyes/hands, my health in relatively decent shape and little in the way of wild-dogs-chasing-me, skeletons-in-the-closet-scaring-me or something-to-prove-prodding-me into the future?

Youth is in the hands of the young.  Young adulthood is in the hands of the leaders-to-be.  Leaders are in the hands of their followers.

Thus, I pause.

I do not have anyone or any subculture to compare myself against to justify my existence.

I am myself, the mix of cults and [sub]cultures which formed me.

Every person finds connection with others in one way or another, collectively called generations.

Generations of kids are led, lead and create their own mass identity.

My generation helps form world opinion from many perspectives, politically from the White House, reshaping mass identity.

The purchasing power of money buys opportunity, which may transform one’s emotions into a state of happiness.

Cultural shifts are painful to someone(s) comfortable with the way things had just become from the way they were before.

One needn’t stay in sync with the zeitgeist to be happy.

The absence of the knowledge of one’s relative poverty to another’s relative wealth may or may not make one happier than those who are not ignorant of such, including absolute differences of purchasing power.

Catchy phrases are memorable but not necessarily wise.

A pink cherry tree blooms at the end of the street on the 18th of January 2013.  I am happier for seeing its blooms in the depths of winter but sad for the insects who will later suffer from the absence of its blooms when they are ready to feed on cherry tree flower pollen.

Life out of balance — where does one’s ability to adapt to change affect one’s happiness?

= = = = =

With my evaluation version of Windows 8 having expired, do I purchase the commercially released version or switch back to Ubuntu Linux on this five-year old notebook PC?

= = = = =

Tomorrow’s blog entry: the concept of total cost of ownership (TCO) and TCO’s impact on one’s standard of living’s impact on the future 1000 years from now, subtitled, “When you live in a retirement community on the Moon, who picks up your garbage and washes your windows?”