Which of these side projects would add the most value for you?

So over the years I’ve tried a bunch of different things related to the Kindle – a search site, a social network, little tools, Apps, and this blog.

At the core my ideal situation would be to make things for Kindle owners and/or people who read and provide value to them, and get value back. Basically, to make money by providing value to Kindle owners and people who read books.

Here are the different side projects (in addition to the blog) and it’d be great to get your thoughts on which of these you personally would get the most value from -

  1. A site like BookMonk.com which allows searching of the Kindle Store.
  2. Small tools like the Page Number Guesser Tool and the Kindle Start Page tool. These could be expanded with things like a tool to manage your Clippings File on your PC or managing Collections on Your PC (there’s already a tool called Kindleabra for the latter).
  3. A site like BookSummit.com which is a Kindle Social Network. It’s accessible from the Kindle. However, the underying platform went through a period where they closed down code changes so I stopped working on this. It does have over 2,000 members. Probably more authors than readers.
  4. Kindle Apps. We have two games so far. But the other apps are nearly all NOT games. 
  5. A blog on Kindle Apps – KAppReview.com. 
  6. [Possible Projects] A site or blog on Kindle Book Deals. 
  7. [Possible Projects] A site listing indie authors’ books.
  8. A lending site?

It might take a while to get some of these up to speed. However, If there’s enough interest will definitely pick one or two and put solid effort into them.

What should I focus on for side projects?

Thank you for your feedback. Do leave a comment if you have any other ideas or any thoughts in general.

18 Responses

  1. For me, the Kindle is all about reading and possibly some simpler games. Social sites are better served with another device. I’m all on board with the reading focus.

  2. as a Canadian with a Kindle 3, I find there is a need for exchanging./providing helpful info for those who do NOT live in the USA- we do not have access to any of those Amazon apps, games or kindle document conversion email service etc etc. For me the Mobipocket and Calibre programs are the most valuable tools- and any like products would also be of high interest. Some non game apps such as an appointment calendar would be good (and better than google calendar)

  3. I like the idea of a site for free books from indie authors like you described the other day.

    Tools for organizing ebooks and collections are nice too, ereaderiq.com is the most useful out of all of the sites and blogs I use every day.

  4. For me, I want the non-game apps! Though I would be also VERY interested in a PC-side collections organizer.

  5. Kindle Apps not being accessible to Canadians (as pollutionfree mentioned) is an annoyance at best. I can live without them, but i would get no value from any app-focused website.

    Idea #1 I’d love some sort of bookstore search that has advanced features for better queries (nationality of author, price range, date of publication, keywords… all integrated into one) + tweaked to find books available to a user based on their location (again, lots of books not available to Canadians).

    Idea #2 = amazing (the start page and organizer)

    Idea #7 I would love. I like encouraging indie authors, lots of my purchases come from suggestions posted in this blog!

    • thanks for the feedback. Doing something for international Kindle owners would be cool. It’s really good to get feedback from actual kindle owners. It helps me distill things in my head.

  6. I voted for non-game apps because I really want something other than games, but I want to register a secondary vote for the free book from indie author thing to introduce us to them.

  7. A site listing indie authors’ books. Something like manybooks.net, but better, with more community features, linked in with Amazon. There are many places to look for indy and free books, but none of them seem to pull it all togehter.

  8. Apps related directly to reading, price tracking, and shopping would be most useful to me. An app that adds greater granularity to the collections feature and an app that adds current prices to my Kindle books wish list would be particularly welcome. I really have no interest in games on the KIndle.

  9. I like the idea of being able to search the back log of less expensive books in an easier way than paging through a lot of 9.99 books. I also read a lot of indie books and find them an excellent value for some really great books at a great price (usually 1.99 – 2.99 ). Better ways to sort the my library or better yet my archive would be great.

  10. The 2 things I have seen most requested are:
    1) calendar app. Many seem to want sync with Google calendar, but other folks apparently would be happy with just some type of direct entry.
    2) simple notepad app, with notes you can read without clicking on a number.

    I see that we are going to get page numbers. That may solve one of my problems. I don’t need page numbers to look stuff up; I just have difficulty visualizing how long a book is from the number of locations, and length is one factor in deciding what to read next.

  11. You should keep in mind that the ground is shifting fast. Whatever you do should give quick results or take this fact into account when building up (say) an audience.

    For instance, while social apps are probably something needed right now, the landscape is also likely to change in a heartbeat. If Amazon released a feature you had no access to it could wipe that stream from your stable overnight, including whatever user-base you have built.

    OT – But as an example of custmer interest, Wired downplays a device called NoteSlate as vapourware. I can see their point because there are some confusing details on their site. The company seems to be Japanese, so some of this may be down to translation problems but one takeaway that struck me was that their site is almost crashing. This could be proof that the company is run by incompetents or that they’ve hit a latent demand nerve. Looking at the facebook product page and the comments there, I’m inclined to think that the latter is at least partially true.

    If so, this might be an intelligence datapoint worth noting when thinking about apps and services.

  12. I’d enjoy being able to download books from the library onto the Kindle via the library ebook sites – like I can do for my iPod.

  13. I’d like to be able to join a book club on the Kindle. I sent an email awhile back about making one for Kindle but the dev team didn’t respond. I don’t really have the skills to program the kind of book club I envision anyway. I like to learn things but I imagine it would take me at least a year of solid coding to get what I want.

    Let’s say I want to join a science fiction book club, there’s probably informal groups on a number of boards that I could join, and maybe even some I could access through the Kindle’s web browser, but that would be a bit clunky as they say.

    An app for book club creation, would need a way for the clubs creator to send messages about what book to read to the group, a simple link to the Kindle store, everyone clicks to purchase. Start to read.

    This would all be text based, is a large draw of book clubs the face to face interaction? Reading has always been a mostly solitary experience for me. I have discussed books with others of course, in classes, in the home.

    The thing about the book club app is that it could be used for completely digital clubs or as a tool for real life book clubs to simplify the logistics of their book club, I imagine many book clubs are solely Kindle based, this type of app would be perfect for these types of groups and eventually we are going to be doing most of our reading on ereaders, so why not start today?

    Do you have some interest in this type of thing? I could probably help somewhat creating it.

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