Website idea... please give me your thoughts

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by Tk, Feb 4, 2003.

  1. Tk

    Tk Well-Known Member

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    i posted this in the on topic forum but not many replied... hopefully it gets more attention here.

    one little dream of mine is owning a business... i think doing this is a good way to get experienced. this isnt really a business plan just an idea that literally popped into my head in class today, so i got out my notebook and started writing whatever came into mind. i ended up with three pieces of paper full of information. heres what i wrote down:

    The Idea
    Start a website that has a database full of PC related questions and answers, troubleshooting steps, and so on. Different categories will include hardware, software, operating systems, networking, and more. When a user has submitted a question it will be placed on hold, then emailed with a timestamp to the volunteer techs that signed up for which ever categories were selected for that particular question. Questions will be tracked by time (time on hold before sent to a tech, time it took for user to get response, etc.)

    Users will be able to rate that tech's solution for the problem, including steps, time taken to receive response, and if the techs solution worked. Rating will be done on a scale of 1-5, 5 being the highest.

    Also available to the users will be a message board where users can submit their questions. This could be used for trying to get a quicker response from someone else using the system, or one of the techs if they are browsing the boards. Points may or may not be awarded for this (not decided yet).

    Techs will have an accumulative point system, of which will increase with points awarded by users (scale of 1 to 5). They will also have their own email address, which is where the questions will be sent.

    Website Details
    - Message board system
    - Search database
    - Question database
    - Tech of the week (Or just a ranking-by-points list of the techs)
    - Blog system for front page

    Tech signup form / application:
    - First name
    - Last name
    - Date of birth
    - Selected Categories (categories to be determined)
    - Rate yourself (1-10) on your knowledge of selected categories
    - Email address
    - Phone number
    - AIM name/ ICQ number

    Tech beeper
    This will be a little desktop tool for the techs, resembling a pager, that will fetch messages from the web server letting me know if they are online, offline, idle, and also will allow them to request work, close out questions or stop requesting questions.

    Users should have the option to select whether they want multiple replies or single, and if they have filed a question before then they can send that question to the tech who helped them previously (Name must be supplied).

    If someone has a question no one can answer, no points will be awarded and the question will be withdrawn. A single tech receiving the question will have the choice to pass the question to another tech.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------

    let me know what you think... i could do this, run and operate it by myself but i dont want to start it and just have the domain sit there and not get used by anyone.

    think it would be a success or just another disaster?
     
  2. Tk

    Tk Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for your questions, I have considered some of them earlier when writing up my idea.

    1) Not sure yet... the point system will be a big part of it, based on how many points you have, you will be awarded prizes (cash or otherwise)

    2) Remote desktop use (tightvnc, most likely) is an excellent idea that I hadn't thought of. Yes, I would allow this, and of course the techs would have to be trusted by me and the user as well, adn the user would have to say they read a waiver.

    3) Stated above...

    4) Mostly pointing towards the average Joe. People like my dad, who ask me ten times a month how to open file attachments in their emails, how to empty their recycle bin, etc. (this little bit of information would be kept in the question and answer database, of course. i wouldnt waste my tech's time with this little stuff)

    5) Umm, nothing really in it for me. I'd just like to have some for of management experience under me, and run a website that helps people out. I guess just the self gratification of knowing I accomplished something worthwhile.
     
  3. Tk

    Tk Well-Known Member

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    Side note: I was in something like this a long time ago... back when I was like 13 or 14. I cant remember how I got involved (I know I didnt signup at a website, I just remember talking to the guy who headed it up) but I'd get about 3 emails a day with typical PC hardware / software questions that I would reply back to with answers. It worked out pretty good for me, and since I had a lot of free time on my hands it was no problem.
     
  4. Astro

    Astro Code Monkey

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    Sounds a lot like:

    http://www.experts-exchange.com

    or

    (example problem/solution)
    http://www.experts-exchange.com/Web/Web_Languages/ASP/Q_20252842.html

    Here, they allow folks to ask a question. Other users (or techs) can provide answers and the person that asked the question chooses the answer and rates it (A-F I believe). If the question goes unanswered for a period of time, I'm not sure what exactly happens, but they appear to follow up with the folks that ask the questions.

    I've had a good number of problems solved by these guys just by doing a search on google and running into someone that has already asked a similar question. You might check out how they are doing business and how yours will be different.
     
  5. DieCast

    DieCast Guest

    I think the idea is good, but i have seen a fair number of similar sites, im not sure if you could make one that would set a new standard.

    Thats probably why i havent actually put up a site, its just tough to be original and useful.

    Good luck to you though
     
  6. Tk

    Tk Well-Known Member

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    thanks a lot for the input, and as i said, this idea just popped into my head one day in class. i havent gone out and looked for the same kind of sites to see what they offer and how they operate.

    i like the idea of giving pc parts to the techs with the most points, or even give a set point scale on what you could get with however many points you have.
     
  7. Tk

    Tk Well-Known Member

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    any more input? ...im still really considering this. i think im going to run it by my mom later on tonight and see if she thinks its a good idea or not.
     
  8. egotrip

    egotrip Submit

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