Stealth Player Development

My MicroISV. Where software development and pornography collide...

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Friday, March 25, 2005

Stealth Player Beta for XP Ready

I'm not advertising it yet, but on the Stealth Player web site you can now download the Stealth Player Beta for Windows XP. It may work on other OSs but I haven't tested them yet and I'm not in a big hurry. 78% of the web site visitors are using XP.

If you visit the StealthPlayer.com website you'll notice only the default page and download pages are working. The other pages will be available soon. What I'm really testing now is the delivery process mostly with friends and anyone interested through this site.

The actual application code has some known issues that I'm working on, but nothing too serious. The cool thing is that Stealth Player was designed to be self updating. When I publish new binaries to the website they get downloaded when Stealth Player starts. This will ensure that all users get the latest fixes. I hope to never make users uninstall and reinstall to upgrade, but I’m not sure how realistic that will be.

If you would like to give Stealth Player a try, here is a link directly to the download page.

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Monday, March 21, 2005

THE NEW SITE IS UP!

OK, OK...Stealth Player is not quite ready yet and the site is not yet complete, but the latest site will give you a better indication of what Stealth Player is and what its capabilities are.

Right now I'm in the process of testing Stealth Player against the on-line web service and streamlining the registration to download to install process. It needs to be seamless.

I've also made an initial decision about licensing. Stealth Player will be FREE. The goal is to generate revenue by selling premium content through the system in a Google friendly way (text links only, no banners). The idea is to build an audience that wants to use Stealth Player as their preferred interface to view adult content. I could add Amazon like shopping features with ratings and reviews to make everything transparent to customers.

If that doesn't work... I'll be forced to sell license... but I'm going to try to stay away from this model. I figure after I have a couple thousand users I can best judge what needs to be charged for licenses, so I'm not giving price points much thought now.

Wish me luck; I'm nearing the finish line!


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Monday, March 07, 2005

Ill'n

I woke up on Sunday feeling like crap! My wife took good care of me though. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to do the work on the new site, so it’s not up yet. I figure this puts me three days behind. I can't wait to get the new site up...the current one is rubbish.

Man, those weekend days are crucial. I can code about 14 hours straight, get in the zone and hack away. Now it will take me three (five to six hour) shifts after work to make up for the loss of Sunday.

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Saturday, March 05, 2005

Screenshots are up.

Screenshots are up. I blurred out the naked bodies, sorry.

Screenshot 1
Screenshot 2

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Friday, March 04, 2005

The Home Stretch

Ok, real world work is finally slowing down. It’s hard to come home and work more when your mind is too tired.

Here’s the latest news! Screenshots will be up on this blog tomorrow. The new site will be up by Monday. And the application will be up by the end of next week!

It’s been a long journey to get this far. I’ve learned a lot about myself as a developer and about the business of software. Conquering my need to over engineer has been one of my greatest accomplishments for this project and here’s why…

In September I wanted to build an application that could be configured to spider the internet and catalog items of interest. It was going to be infinitely configurable and could create a library of searchable offline content for your area of interest. Are you interested in PDF documents about internet marketing? It could find that. Would you like to find AVI and MPG files larger than 2MBs? It could find that.

In fact, I thought of a lot of different uses. All types of internet users would find this application useful. However, the reality is, this line of thinking is completely bogus.

If I was selling you 4 wheels, and engine, a ton of metal, a welder, some foam, leather, wires, etc. and said you could build a car with it, you’d say “no way” and run to the nearest Lexus dealer. My problem… I was making the raw material for which the average person wouldn’t know what to do with.

I came to this realization in the shower one morning (where many of my epiphanies occur). It was then I decided to build the Lexus of porn viewing.

Step one: Focus on one group of users. I chose the largest group of users on the internet that many times PAY for services.

Step two: Take as much complexity away from the end user as possible. No configuration, no setup, just point and click. All the dirty work is done on by my servers and ugly console apps.

Step three: This is the most important step. Just do it! Start now. Don’t create some grand design because if your final version looks anything like your original vision then you’ve screwed up (or you have incredible foresight).

This line of thinking got me going in the right direction. I got feedback from some very candid friends. I found out what people would like, if there were an application dedicated to viewing porn on the internet.

I’d ask, what are the problems you’ve had looking at porn on the internet? Here are some responses:
My wife (mother in law) sees the history in the browser location window.
I hate when I get redirected to another site that doesn’t have the content I was looking for.
I hate having to close 10 browser windows when I’m done.
More importantly, I hate trying to close 10 browser windows when my wife gets home early.
I don’t like it when sites take control of my browser and won’t let me leave.
I hate not being able to save files for fear that my wife (or kids) will see them.
The short clips would be better if I could play one right after the other.
Navigating galleries can be a pain because to see the next picture I have to click back then click on the next thumb.
I don’t like to wait for things to download!
Sometime it seams like I find the same content over and over again.
Etc…

You get the idea. I’ve managed to solve all these problems. With my original idea, if a user could get past the configuration, I would have only solved a few problems.

Stay tuned…I’m very excited to see when everyone thinks.

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