Good ideas, inquire within

I’ve had lots of idea of things to build, as somebody once said ideas are a dime a dozen, it’s doing it that’s the hard work.  Between talking to companies over the years, or just random things I’ve stumbled across there has to be a good idea to put more energy into.

Things I’ve built in the last few years — in some state of “goodness” (90% complete or better).

  • – Basic idea was to be a daily featured marketplace for PSP games and accessories. It’s there it’s running, but once it was going to move from a “build” to manage step I ran out of interest… [100% done]
  • – Originally came out of a need to have a way to make some review quizes for my PSIA exams. The core idea was to have a community of people contribute questions on a subject and they have people take sample tests and work forward. My daughter wants me to finish it, but I’m not sure what “finished” looks like. This is a case where I’ve not figured out what the product is fully… or how to make it FUN. [95% done]
  • – Shared drawings in the vein of or other shared drawing services. This half in my mind morphed into focusing on creative clipart on photos… Which yeilded a non-existant iPhone app which would allow you to take a photo, mark-it up and share with your friends on facebook. The facebook side of things is working where you can create wallposts with photos from your albums and creative drawing, though the UI is crude and it’s only avalable if you have a secret AppID… [95% done]
  • IrisWall – my Windows Flickr screen saver — it was finished, just never released… Mentioned it to a friend the other day and he was like “Cool Can I get it…” hmm.. source code is in some dusty folder… [100% done]
  • – Yet another news agregator, I think this space is dead again… Had some cool ideas, but not worth anything [90% done].
  • A CMS for google app engine, it allowed for uploading of zip files as template bundles… But, the problem is that it’s a total pain to configure appengine for 3rd party applications. The idea was that a small business could use the CMS as the base for a website — with all the CMS features (WYSIWIG, etc.) and a template collection ala wordpress to quickly get an online presence. [90% done]

Now things I’ve been thinking about:

  • a CRM for job seekers — though I’ve now found about three others, not sure if it’s a worthwhile space.
  • Combining the idea of short status updates and 360′ reviews into a tool that allows you to have a shared vision of how you’re performing and what you’re working on.   Image if a tool periodically pinged you or your co-workers about what you were doing and your performance/perception…
  • Simple portal pages – think, but with the baggage of a search engine.  Focus in on domain name parking and companies like that where potentially providing a more delightful experience around a subject area might increase the parked domain experience.
  • Tools to extract structured information from webpages in a way similar to Yahoo!s Search Monkey but utilzing some better document techniques to provid automated infrastructure.  I keep on having vauge visions of a meeting a from 10 years ago.  They probably had the best system I’ve seen to date, but yet there are still some huge things to do.

Fundamentally, I want to build things to delight users.   It’s not too hard to get passionate about a problem, but fundamentally I want to really know who I’m building for…  Heck, it doesn’t even have to be “hard” — just has to be something that people find annoying and want improved.

What are your pain points – or where should I spend my energy?