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TIMO ZIMMERMANN

balancing software engineering & infosec

Change, Change, Change And Fun

posted on Thursday 9th of February 2012 in ,

This post contains ramblings about nearly everything that happened the last few
weeks. Be prepared for massive and fast topic changes. I will talk about my new
business, plans for Zenbo, my new favorite toy and upcoming posts.

Did you hear that blaze it is live?!

Founding and running a new business is always exciting and fun. The initial
plan was created around Christmas. I used the first few weeks in January to
design the homepage and blog, look what our creative department created as
logo, wasted my time talking to urban administrations and did some plans for
the direction blaze it will be taking.

Since I have to run my other business this was no 24/7 job. But I managed it
pretty good to take care of my existing clients and spending most of my time
working on blaze it.

Zenbo: from fun to profit?

I was a bit shocked to be honest. I work with a media agency if one of my
clients needs a promotion video or other stuff. They focus on branding and
marketing and just have two guys to create homepages and they are more
designers than programmers. Leaving Photoshop and writing HTML seems to
cause physical pain to them.

They always used WordPress which would explain the pain – now after a short
talk they started using Zenbo.
I did not sell it nor did I tell them to give it a try. We were just talking
what projects are currently running.
They now manage to run a new project site to present a product in one third
of the time they needed with WordPress. Of course it is another set of features
but it is enough for them. And the fact that they have to write nearly no code
is a welcome addition.

I got €50 for two projects they realized and they told me that I will receive
€25 for every project in which they are using Zenbo. No promises made from my
side, but if they request a feature or some kind of documentation we can talk
about it. Zenbo will remain free and OpenSource. I am not planning to sell it
or add premium plans. I do not see the value behind it to justify that.

But a small thank you, or in this case 1/10 of the money they earn more with
every project because they use Zenbo is really welcome and just stunning.

Hopelesscom is still a playground

My long time readers should know that I am always experimenting with
Hopelesscom. It is my private domain and blog and I see no reason why I should
not use it as playground. When I released Zenbo I wanted to create a small,
minimalistic design. And I think it is pretty. Sadly it is a bit limiting.

I think about adding short notes. Since I use Zenbo there is no reason for me
to stick to Tumblr. Even using it to share photos would not be the best
idea. There are services out there that are way better. But there is more.
Blogging with Zenbo is just a pleasure and something in me refuses to use
something else.

If I add short notes I would prefer an optical separation between my normal
posts and short snippets. Maybe adding links or something else would also
be an option, something Tumblr does well, but you know, in a cool way, with
Zenbo, on my domain and server.

Web 2.0 sucks

There are sites that let you do everything. Most of them even the same way.
You can freely choose which one you like best. They all integrate with
Twitter and all of them have some unique features or clients.

But deciding where to put your content is a pain in the ass. And if you put
your content on platform A you have to trust them and hope that they will
never go down.

I would love an abstraction layer between me and the web. If I have a photo
it should be posted to photoserviceFoooBAR and it should be saved on my
disc. Maybe Zenbo will automatically generate the new page and add it.
Maybe it will just be added after the next generation. And of course there
should be an mention on Twitter, maybe on Facebook. But only one, linking to
one service. I do not want to spam my followers.

There are some ways how you could realize this but I did not find one that
does not suck.

Design is everything and nothing

If I really create a feature for short notes I have to modify or redo my
design. If I also add pictures there will be a fundamental problem with the
current layout and site structure. If I redo the design it could be possible
that I create something stunning. You know, gradients, images, buttons, this
whole web 2.0 shit. Would be a great way for an UI / UX study and another
page for the showcase of blaze it,… 😉

My current problem is that I have no place where I can put something short
that will be associated with me and Hopelesscom. Yesterday I got my new
iPhone 4s. I would post some short points what I like and dislike but a post
with 200 words is boring and would look a bit lonely with the current
layout.

Small steps big changes

There are two things that will happen. First I promise to work on my writing
style. Someone told me that no matter how hard it sucks it is still called
style. I am not happy with the quality I produce, so I will just change it.

Second thing is that I will add comments again. I miss them. Maybe someone
wanted to say something cool and now he or she has no chance because I do
not like Disqus and the other alternatives.

Managing files

There is currently a folder for every project on my drive. I have separate
folders for templates, Django applications and other stuff. I have
folders for projects, for code (private projects like Zenbo) and folders
where my websites are saved. I have an media folder Apache is currently
serving and other stuff. You know what? I have all those folders.

Thanks to Spotlight I do not have to care. But one day I have to collect
all files and put them on a DVD or something else. I have to find
single files and maybe I switch my system and have to copy everything
over. This they will suck and you will read a lot of cursing on Twitter.

ToDo list for the next few weeks

Well, this will be much longer than I would like it.

If I manage to finish everything till April I would be more than happy.