This post is a duplicate of the first post that I have put on blog.myagilityboard.com
I created My Agility Board at the start of 2012, I was mid way through my fourth year at University and using agile methods but hated using a large pin board to keep track of my project for a number of reasons.
For starters, the pin board was huge, if I went to catchup with my supervisor, I couldn’t very well drag the pin board up with me and what if they weren’t even in the building at the time? Sometimes a photograph just wasn’t good enough.
I started using the sticky notes program on my computer with a background which worked at first but the truth was, I had more than one computer and not being able to access my notes on other computers was annoying so I figured I’d create some kind of online system that I could create notes, have them stored in a database and work just like the notes apps that you get on most operating systems. I wanted to make sure they could be made public too so that I could share them with people in a read only format to keep people up to date on what I was doing.
After creating it, I figured I may as well make the site open to the public which meant that my friends were able to use it for their honours projects too. As I write this, it’s nearing 1,800 boards registered.
Having asperger syndrome, I’ve always been keen on little gadgets that keep me organised, when I was at school, I was the only kid to be walking around with a little pocket PDA with my timetable on it, something my teachers hated but it kept me happy. Of course, now everyone has smartphones so it doesn’t seem like such a big deal.
Well anyway, My Agility Board became a pet project of mine once I left university, I kept using it and was always getting little tips on how I could improve it but one thing that concerned me was, some people were putting private data on their boards, stuff that should be kept secure. The moment I realised, I encrypted the database so that I couldn’t read it by accident and so that if it were some how hacked and downloaded, nobody could read it. Passwords, notes and email addresses are all encrypted but there’s still one security hole.
Unlikely as it may be, if someone were to site and watch packets traveling over a network, they would see the contents of notes and login details transmitted in plain text. This is actually a common method of cyber espionage and it is fixed by using an SSL certificate, you’ll have seen this on many websites in the form of a little padlock in the address bar of your browser. The thing is, to get a certificate that shows that checks have been done to validate a site’s identity, it costs a fair bit of money, so haven’t got one yet.
The site is also unreliable at times, often it can go down for a couple of minutes, not much but when you’re using it a productivity tool, a couple of minutes can mean a lot of frustration. To fix this, I need to move the site to a new dedicated server as opposed to the cheap web hosting that I’m paying for at the moment. Unfortunately, this is a bit out of my price range.
I figured the best thing to do would be to monetise the site. To do this, I wouldn’t charge for the features already there but create some features that have been requested from time to time and sell these as upgraded pro accounts. However, I felt that it would be wrong to start charging for features when the site itself is not yet reliable or secure.
Because of this, I’ve turned to crowd funding, in the hope that people will look kindly on my situation and help me get this site going some more. With my fiancé being super organised (more so than me with my sticky notes;) I asked her to help me by being in charge of the money side of things if I managed to get some funding and in the future monetise the site.
IndieGoGo seemed like the best solution to my hopes so I have placed the site on there and I’ll be giving T-Shirts, free pro membership (when I create it) and other things in exchange for people’s generosity. The campaign can be found at www.indiegogo.com/myagilityboard
I’m not sure if people will think the site a worthy cause but we’ll see :)