What’s New So Far In 2011

It’s been quite a while since my last blog post; in fact, this is my first post of 2011, and it is already April! As many of you knew, my last blog post was about our new company, Highlighter. This past five months have been a wild ride of startup madness! Obviously, a lot has happened since my last update, including:

  • We successfully completed the TechStars seed incubator program with Highlighter
  • Matt, Josh and I moved to Belltown in February to be closer to booming tech scene that is Seattle
  • We raised $300,000 as part of our seed round for Highlighter (more on that here)

All of this would not have been possible without TechStars, a program that provides funding and mentorship for startups. Though we had nearly four years of previous business experience and a handful of connections from Unique Blog Designs, it was through our work with TechStars that allowed us to build enough momentum to raise the seed round required to get this new (and much more exciting!) business off the ground.

That said, a lot of hard work, dedication and persistence were also required. Even though the Seattle TechStars program started out with ten (10) companies, only eight (8) of those companies are still in operation – proving that even with great mentorship, hard work, and guidance, there are many difficulties that need to be overcome when starting a new business in the technology space.

Finally, I would like to give a shoutout to the Seattle TechStars companies still in operation, including:

  • Deal Co-Op, the best white label software for group buying
  • GoMiles, the best way to manage your frequent flyer miles
  • ThinkFuse, a startup that is simplifying weekly status reports
  • Kinizi, an apartment deal finder
  • Giant ThinkWell, a social gaming company focusing on celebrities
  • RewardsForce, a startup disrupting the customer loyalty arena
  • The Shared Web, a site that allows you to discover the best content based on your friends and interests
  • And of course, us – Highlighter

Even though I haven’t had too much time for blogging over the past few months, it is something I definitely want to get back into as it is a good way to keep track of all of the changes and happenings. I’ve found myself reading over old posts just to see what I was up to a few years ago…If anything, a blog is simply a great personal journal for keeping track of one’s life!

Interesting (and Weird) Facts About the Internet (Infographic)

Quite a few interesting facts about the Internet and its current state. Some of them seem a little hard to believe, but it is the Internet, and it in of itself is hard to believe, such as the fact that Google has indexed only .004% of the Web, despite being the largest search engine.

Also, does anyone believe the human brain can actually hold 1-10 terabytes? That would seem immeasurable.

What do you think is the weirdest or most hard to believe fact?

The Internet!!
Via: Medical Coding Certification

Ending The E-Commerce Nightmare: StoreSuite

Ending The E-Commerce Nightmare: StoreSuite

My web design business used to deal exclusively with setting up shopping cart/e-commerce software for small businesses. The great thing about offering e-commerce solutions is that they provide a tremendous amount of value to the client. As a result, setting up shopping cart software for small businesses can be very lucrative.

My Experience with Shopping Cart Software

We have tried many different e-commerce products, including osCommerce and Zen Cart. That being said, e-commerce setup, installation, and customization can be one of the most frustrating things to do. In my opinion, there is seriously not any good out-of-the-box e-commerce software available. Fortunately, it appears that a much more powerful and easy-to-use e-commerce solution is on the way…

My good buddy and entrepreneur-extraordinaire, Mitchell Harper, is currently working on what looks like will be the best shopping cart software available. It is called StoreSuite and it has many features that I have longed for in e-commerce software.

What’s So Great About StoreSuite?

StoreSuite is a complete PHP and MySQL e-Commerce platform that’s currently being developed by Interspire. It includes everything necessary to sell physical and/or digital products (eBooks, etc) online. It will integrate with all major payment gateways, is 100% HTML template driven, includes a powerful control panel as well as too many other features to list.


Other awesome features of StoreSuite include:

  • Drag & drop design mode.
  • Extensive use of “AJAX” technology.
  • Sell physical and/or downloadable products.
  • 100% template driven layout.
  • Integrates with all major shipping providers.

If you have ever thought about setting up an online store, I highly recommend you check out StoreSuite. Judging from the product interface videos that Mitch has been posting so far, this software looks ALMOST too good to be true…

Have you guys ever played around with other shopping cart products? If so, what did you think of them? As I mentioned, I used to use osCommerce and wow… customizing that was a nightmare!

Best Home Workstation Contest

My pal, Mr. Gary Lee, has started a contest at his blog to see who has the best home workstation.

I primarily work from home and I have a decent setup. I have a MacBook Pro Intel Core Duo 2.16 GHz with 2GB of RAM feeding my Apple Cinema Display 30″ LCD. My resolution? 2560×1600. I also have a wireless keyboard and mouse. My computer is connected to my JVC home stereo.

The winner of the contest will receive a Motorola HT820 Bluetooth Stereo Headset.

my workstation my workstation my workstation

Hello? It’s the First iPhone Commercial.

In cased you missed the Oscars the other night, Apple ran its first teaser commercial for the upcoming iPhone.

Apple has always been great at marketing by keeping it simple. I believe simplicity is the best way to get your message across to an audience and I always design with simplicity in mind.

BTW, if anyone is interested in buying TheiPhone.net from me, make me an offer.

On another note, I am working on a redesign for my web development company, infinFX. We are planning to integrate a blog into the site containing useful articles about web development, design, marketing, and reaching your target audience. It is taking up a ton of time, but look out for that soon.

I will also have a special guest blogger on the infinFX blog. Some of you know him around the blogosphere but I will keep his identity secret for now.