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Four short links: 28 September 2010

  1. What Happens at Y Combinator -- a fascinating infomercial for Y Combinator, but it's interesting despite the soft focus. Usually we advise startups to launch when they've built something with a quantum of utility—when they've built something sufficiently better than existing options that at least some users would say "I'm glad this appeared, because now I can finally do x." If what you've built is a subset of existing technology at the same price, then users have no reason to try it, which means you don't get to start the conversation with them. You need a quantum of utility to get a toehold.
  2. Going Freemium, One Year Later (MailChimp) -- Throughout history, and across all the businesses he researched, the ratio of free-to-paid-subscribers ultimately ended up at the dismal ratio of 10:1. There were a lot of awesome presentations at that Freemium Summit. But this was the presentation (just this one slide, really) that stuck in my brain. (via Hacker News)
  3. Cloud9 IDE -- The Javascript IDE by Javascripters for Javascripters. Source is open source and on GitHub. (via RussB on Twitter)
  4. Mifos -- open source software for microfinance. (via msbehaviour on Twitter)

Don't be the product, buy the product!

Schweinderl