I just read this story where they talk about how they built a web app in 4 days for $10,000. Voila! It struck me that I have been equally competitive (if not better) in terms of building a web app. So, here I share my story of building a web app.
I recently built MyJugaad.in, which lets anybody create a slideshow from a set of webpages or RSS feeds. Following is the time line and the money involved during making this web app.
- Day 1: Conceived the idea. Explored the idea space. Refined it. Drew user interface for the slideshow on a paper.
- Day 3: Wasted a ton of time on sorting cross-browser incompatibilities. Done some more programming. Working prototype ready by evening.
- Day 4: Wanted to make a system for user authentication and management, slideshow creation and management. Confused between Django, CodeIgniter or CakePhP. Chose CodeIgniter. Started Learning and programming the web app. (Used SimplePie for RSS feed fetching and parsing.)
- Day 5: Finished Programming. Discovered that NYTimes.com was breaking the slideshow due to their iframe breaking script. Had a hell of a time trying fixing that.
- Day 6: Looked for interesting free designs on the web. Chose this. Implemented and integrated the design with the web app. Wrote a basic ‘about’, ‘faq’, ‘contact’ page. Uploaded the web app on a shared hosting account free of cost (courtesy: my friend). Used a domain already purchased: myjugaad.in (cost Rs. 350). Seeded the app with a few initial users and data. Announced the web app on my homepage and status message on GTalk.
- Market Research: I should have done initial market research. Instead, I simply jumped into programming the web app. If I had done some market research, I would have discovered a product with almost the same feature set as mine’s. Nevertheless, I learnt a lot during my six day journay. So, I don’t regret making this app.
- Testing: I just did some initial testing. But should have done a little bit more testing.
- Users: I didn’t do any marketing for my web app. That’s bad and I am going to fix it soon.
Hope this post helps you write and launch your own web app in record time.
PS: By the way, I think you shouldn’t be making web apps at all.