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FAMnerd development is on hold

We get emails pretty regularly asking when FAMnerd will be released. We want to be as transparent with this process as possible, so we felt like we should make an official announcement here.

Our efforts to develop FAMnerd are on hold until early 2013. We’re trying to develop FAMnerd on our own without incurring debt or being tied to investors or partners, but the bids we received from developers were substantially higher than we anticipated.  For us personally, this  means that we have some financial goals that we need to accomplish first, before we can set our attention on FAMnerd. We think we’ll be in a better place to fund FAMnerd in early 2013.

We’re sorry for the delay. We’re excited about using FAMnerd, too, so the longer we have to postpone development, the longer we aren’t able to personally use the iPhone app.

Thanks to everyone for your interest and support. We’re looking forward to having a product for you, and we’ll get it done as soon as we can.

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Update: FAMnerd rejected by KickStarter.

To them it was too much of a new-business development than a creative project. We disagree, and can point to multiple examples on KickStarter that are less creative and more business development projects than FAMnerd, but we lost that argument.

So KickStarter is off.

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2012 Progress Update

We want to share the process of developing FAMnerd: the ups and the downs, the good and the bad.

2011 Ups

  • We finished work on interface and navigation flow
  • We completed chart graphics and chart logic

2011 Downs

We had hoped to release FAMnerd in 2011. What we found out was that, while we are well prepared on the design side of FAMnerd (all screens are mocked up, chart logic is mapped out) we were very poorly prepared on the funding side.

Here’s what we learned:

Starting in the Fall of 2011, I began lurking in iPhone developer forums looking for programmers with chart-generating-app experience (typically developers who had built stock/investment charting apps). I began approaching developers and requesting bids on FAMnerd.

While there were slight variances in timeframe and pricing, iPhone app developers cost about $150-$200/hour and need about a month’s worth of billable hours to build FAMnerd from scratch, which puts us in the $20K+ range.

We have funds set aside for development, but not $20K+.

Our options now:

1) Build it ourselves (or at least as much of it as we can).

I’m a web designer/developer by day, so I’m in the process of learning Objective C and Xcode.

  • Pros: Fits our budget
  • Cons: I’ll still need help with the heavy lifting of generating charts and other more complex computing tasks

2) Launch a KickStarter campaign

3) Ask you to fund the development via AppBackr or something similar

If we asked you to back the project by buying FAMnerd early, we could potentially raise a large chunk of funding.

  • Pros: Opportunity to raise funds without being indebted to investors or tied up with partners.
  • Cons: If every person we have on the waiting list for FAMnerd were to pledge $40, we would raise about half of what we need.

If we go the KickStarter AppBackr  route, we’ll need serious FAMgelistic help in spreading the word about FAMnerd.

Update: FAMnerd was rejected by KickStarter.

To them it was too much of a new-business development than a creative project. We disagree, and can point to multiple examples on KickStarter that are less creative and more business development projects than FAMnerd, but we lost that argument. So KickStarter is off.

3 Find a Strategic Coding or Funding Partner

We’ve been approached by a developer who is interested in FAM and iPhone app development, but hasn’t developed for the platform before. He was willing to develop FAM as his first project as a partner in the project (with ownership).

  • Pros: Having a developer committed to the project without having to shell out the full cost of development.
  • Cons: Dave Ramsey often says, “There’s one kind of ship that doesn’t sail: Partnership.” Partnerships are a tenuous thing without careful legal structuring and a really clear understanding of responsibilities. FAMnerd is our baby, so to speak, and we have a certain vision for it. Adding another vision for FAMnerd to follow feels uncomfortable.

I also worked out a profit sharing agreement with a developer for a certain percentage of FAMnerd’s revenue, but that fell through (why should he risk working for free when he can work for cash?).

What we’re doing right now:

I’ve begun learning Xcode, and am pursuing the 1st option of building the simple functions of FAMnerd (interface and data entry). If I can build out the interface and data storage procedures two things can happen:

  1. We can get the app in a few beta testers’ hands for feedback on the interface
  2. I can approach developers to help me build out the chart portion of the app

We’ve opened a KickStarter account, and are considering the message we want to put in it: probably a video of the mocked up app in action.

So… tell us what you think. Which route do you think we should go? Would you consider paying for FAMnerd early to turbo charge development, in exchange for a copy of FAMnerd free or at a reduced price when it’s released?

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FAMnerd featured in Vox Magazine

We’re happy to share that we and FAMnerd were recently featured in Vox Magazine.

We’re looking forward to moving ahead with FAMnerd. We just have one more task to complete before we hand it over to our developer.

Here’s to the near future of having a FAM iPhone app that actually works!

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What can you record?

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First talks with a developer

I met with a young iPhone developer to discuss FAMnerd, and he had some suggestions that will make the app better (and cheaper) to develop.

While he’s still in grad school and booked til the summer, we’ll be retaining him as a consultant on the project as we search for the right person.

Most of FAMnerd uses conventional iPhone inputs, except for the chart. The chart will be the biggest programming challenge of the app, and it has to be just right.

Sign up to be notified when FAMnerd is released.

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