Although Domain Name Wire broke the news, I want congratulate Elliot Silver on the launch of a new domain industry site today. DomainQuestions.com provides a great forum for domainers to ask questions as well as to provide answers. This will be a great source for the community. Backed by an industry expert, Elliot himself, the quality and value of the site will be unmatched. Have a look and ask your questions!
You may have recently seen TLD.org advertised in the Sponsored Headlines section of Domaining.com at some point over the last week. The site claims to find quality unregistered domain names and list them for domainers to sort through and register. I had a look at the site early today and had a look at some of the names. I actually took a look about a week back and the inventory of names seems to have grown quite a bit in that time.
The site features the ability to hone in using search criteria and as the inventory of names grows, I can see that feature being more useful. At the moment, it’s easy enough to browse through the list of available names, page by page. The are lots of adjective/noun combination that don’t always work, such as BrownKnobs.com or WhitLevers.com. I didn’t sift through the whole list, but a couple of names did pop out at me. I did a quick check on Valuate.com and here’s the results:
Do I think these domains are worth that price? Well… they are not names I am in the market for and I didn’t register them (they are both still available to hand reg). But I think the site does have potential and is a tool to watch over the coming weeks. As I mentioned, I didn’t review all the names so there could be some prizes in there. I’m not sure how the site or the owners generate these names, but I’d keep an eye on this site and see how it continues to develop.
On Thursday, I attended the Tech cocktail Startup Mixology in Chicago. Originally, my intention was to hit the social event that followed the conference. I thought would be a great opportunity to meet with some of the speakers and mix with some entrepreneurs. The more I thought about it, the more it made sense to go to the actual conference, so that’s what I did and ended up skipping the social event that followed.
The conference consisted of a great lineup of speakers, some leaving more of an impression than others. Over all it was a great experience. There were some individual speakers and others were represented on a panel with moderators. Topics ranged from building a team to legal and accounting perspectives. Some areas were a bit dry, yet necessary. Other areas were intriguing and enlightening.
I found the most helpful and influential speaker to be Travis Kalanick, an Internet entrepreneur and investor. He’s got his hand in many different things including Honestly.com (great keyword domain) and is a co-founder of Uber(cab). Travis seems like the type of guy that makes things happen. I’ve embedded his portion of the conference below. In fact, the entire conference was captured and is available at Ustream. I suggest checking out Travis and some of the other speakers when you have time.
Bottom line, the conference covered much of what you would want to know about a successful startup, from the people that have done it themselves. Some of the information was obvious, while other pieces were more detailed and helpful. If Tech cocktail comes to your town, I’d suggest checking out a conference they put on. You’ll learn something and walk out a little better than you walked in.
I recent finished reading Delivering Happiness, by Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos. If you haven’t read it and want to be truly inspired, this could do it. The book has a solid focus on some of the management and leadership philosophies Hsieh employed to deliver a successful result with Zappos. But I found his background and mindset to be far more interesting and inspiring than the customer service focus of the company.
We’re not all Harvard graduates like Hsieh, but he comes across as your average guy. He was an entrepreneurial dreamer as a kid, working on a failed worm farm in his back yard. But that first setback didn’t stop him. He continually worked on ideas and tried things until they worked. Then he tried to make them work better. After college and landing a job with Oracle, he quickly realized that he wanted to do his own thing. A result of that was the development of Link Exchange which was sold to Yahoo in 1999 for $265 million. This positioned him for his later involvement in Zappos.
In the book, you’ll learn that the original name of the site was ShoeSite.com (which still points to Zappos today). The journey from the sale of Link Exchange to the development and eventual sale of Zappos to Amazon is an amazing story, well worth the read.
If you’re looking for the next book to pick up for entertainment and to learn something along the way, Delivering Happiness is it.
It’s well known by now that I’m a Google freak. I like what they have done with things like Gmail, Voice, and I’m always looking for more. I just discovered a pretty cool feature within Google Docs as I was updating a shared spreadsheet. It’s something anyone can use and maybe of interest to blog writers and domain developers. It allows you to create a poll for your website or blog. It’s simple to use and easily captures results. You can use a plain version like I have here or you can add one of 95 themes to it. Here’s what it looks like.
And here’s a sample of how the results look when you view them:
If you’re interested in how to set it up, here are the quick and easy steps.
1. Select “Form” from the Google Docs “Create New” drop down menu.
2. Next, fill out the questions and select the type of response you’ll allow.
3. Click “More Actions” and “Embed”. Just paste the code on your site or blog and it’s that easy.
I haven’t done any polls on this blog in the past, but I can certainly see how useful this can be. Not only on a blog, but any developed website could use this code to get a better view of the users. Let me know how you use it if you choose to.