×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Dotcom Business Plan Archive Open for Business

CowboyNeal posted more than 9 years ago | from the recipes-for-disaster dept.

Businesses 105

prostoalex writes "The next time you launch a huge online enterprise designed to cash out on Nasdaq IPO, it might be worth to check the Dotcom Business Plan Archive, MSNBC warns. David A. Kirsch, a professor of entrepreneurship at the University of Maryland, is collecting dotcom business plans and stories about creative destruction. Alas, both archives require free registration. There have been other attempts at creating such a collection."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

105 comments

Recently submitted business plan (5, Funny)

fembots (753724) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659774)

1. String together a collection of dotcom business plans,
2. Put them on a website
3. Attract as many users as possible
4. Don't make users pay to see these business plans (free registration is required), but attract advertisers who want their logos displayed alongside the glorious business plans.
5. Profit!!

Also known as... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659775)

Fucked Company [fuckedcompany.com].

Re:Also known as... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659862)

please explain this "Fucked"?

Conpany I understand.

Re:Also known as... (1)

GhostseTroll (582659) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659966)

Your Bowels Cleansed

Let me ask you this...which is worse:

A. The engine on your Lexus freezes up at 160,000 miles instead of 300,000. You take a financial hit and you are forced to buy a Camry this time.

B. You start bleeding during bowel movements. You go to the doctor and get poked, prodded, X-ray'd, biopsied, etc. 3 days later you get a call for a consultation. The doctor informs you that you have advanced colon cancer at 45 years old. You have anywhere from 6 months to 5 years left to live. He tells you it's time to get your house in order because you'll be checking out soon. Chemotherapy starts today.

A friend of mine who was a science and health researcher at the University of Chicago, just died this past year of colon cancer at 42. In the midst of the prime of his life, he said goodbye, and left his wife and child behind, wondering what just hit them.

Why do you brush your teeth? Are your teeth falling out right now? For most of us, we do it so we won't need false teeth and Fixodent down the road...right? We want to be able to eat apples. Hey, I agree with that. Natural teeth are great.

But have you ever seen someone who was forced to endure a colonectomy? Someone who now will be spending the rest of their life carrying a bag around?

Incredibly, this is an area where even the staunchest MD's AGREE with us!! Can you believe it? If they knew you had the greatest colon cleanse in the world, I bet they might even refer people to you. NO, I'm not kidding...

This subject is not even up for debate. It's a proven fact. The problem is, most people are not doing anything about it. Please don't be one of them.

****WARNING***** The next section of this email contains graphic
material which may not be suitable for squeamish individuals.

Let's talk stools.

The stool tells you a lot about your colon health. If it's dark brown in color, and it sinks, and it stinks, that's not good. And don't feel bad, that's the way most people are. What you want to see is light brown color, which means it's full of fresh bile from the liver, very mild odor, and a stool that floats. We're talking low-density here folks. The more compaction you have the darker the color and the faster it sinks. Compaction is not good. Also, moving bowels should be SIMPLE. If the veins are popping out of your neck and you feel like your doing the bench press, you NEED to cleanse your colon.

When you do the cleanse, for the first few days....things are a little weird. But you know you're cleansed when you see the above good stuff happening, and you are eliminating at least 2-3 times per day.

Cleansing your colon is a 30-day process. Its also very economical at under $50. You may be very surprised at some of the benefits you will receive besides just losing 1-5 lbs of cr*p from your body and brightening your future health.

People have reported more energy, less allergies, clearing of acne, cessation of migraines, and many other results, not to mention restored regularity. When your body is void of old, poisonous toxins that are constantly being reabsorbed through the colon walls, it can begin to heal again. And when the colon walls are clean, the good nutrients from your food and supplements can be absorbed again. You will be thrilled with the results.

At this point you are either nauseated thinking about what is inside your own colon, or you're ready to do something about cleaning it out.

Want more info? Click here and I'll send it to you, including instructions on how to take it. It is private, all natural, totally safe, inexpensive, and very effective. And yes, I have taken it myself.

Currently available only in the U.S. and Canada. Seeking Distributors to meet high demand.

More Infor [goat.cx]

cmdrtaco@slashdot.org?subject=SendColonCleanseIn fo

cmdrtaco@slashdot.org?subject=PleaseRemove

Please do not 'reply' to this email as we might not see your message. Please use the links above.

Re:Also known as... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10661744)

Not any more. Pud has royally screwed the pooch, jumped the shark, whatever. The front page is updated about once a month, depending on how much he wants to pimp out another of his web sites, as opposed to talking about fucks.

fc has fallen by the wayside as he attempts to build up a text ad company, which only seems to be used for the type of products you'd normally see in spam.

But yet... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659781)

> There have been other attempts at creating such a colelction.

But no other successful attempts at creating a Salshdot Etidor.

gary_niger@gnaa.us (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659782)

gary_niger@gnaa.us (Crapflooding Anti-Slash.org is fun!)

third post! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659784)

I'm cool.

Nice one (5, Funny)

dmccarty (152630) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659788)

There have been other attempts at creating such a colelction.

Apparently there haven't been many attempts at running Slashdot submissions through a splel chekcer.

Re:Nice one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10662044)

Also, I could swear this is a dupe, isn't it? (Can't find the previous story, but then I can't find anything with the search here anymore.)

Well (0, Offtopic)

igzat (817053) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659789)

Google seemed to do pretty well, except for that whole investigation thing that is going on with them. Not sure what happened with that, anyone know? Sorry to be off topic. I like random posts.

Re:Forward your spam to (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659893)

balwantchugh@hotmail.com

and win a free PC

WHAT?! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659793)

You mean some of them actually had a written business plan?!

Re:WHAT?! (1)

BCW2 (168187) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660055)

They did, but never one to generate a product or profit. They just generated venture capital and blew it on expensive toys.

Re:WHAT?! (1)

AndyChrist (161262) | more than 9 years ago | (#10661101)

Look at your post with the tag line in place.

Kind of blends together.

I'm just picturing a bunch of geeks blowing millions of dollars on anime and games in one wild orgy of geekiness.

Re:WHAT?! (1)

BCW2 (168187) | more than 9 years ago | (#10662331)

The tag line is for a site owned by my daughter and her husband.

Help your kids become very successful, they will pick your nursing home.

Re:WHAT?! (1)

jallison (693397) | more than 9 years ago | (#10663677)

They did, but never one to generate a product or profit. They just generated venture capital and blew it on expensive toys.

So true. The dot-bomb where I worked for about 15 months was a classic example of this. We had enough funding to keep a small group of us going long enough to create something useful. But the CEO hired by the board of directors ruined all that. They paid him a $300,000 salary, plus a $50,000 per quarter bonus that had no performance parameters. He submitted weekly expense reports in the 2-3 thousand dollar range. When board meetings were held the out of town board members stayed at the Ritz. It was all obviously just a boondoggle for the CEO and board members, there was never any intent to run a real company. Either that or these guys were incompetent beyond any reason. The company went bankrupt, of course.

If you're at a startup and money is being spent on extravagent toys, just have fun. The company will fail, but you can have some fine dinners along the way.

damn registration (5, Informative)

applegoddess (768530) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659794)

Re:damn registration (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659972)

bugmenot.com didn't have any logins for businessplanarchive.org until I added one.

username: firstborn@mailinator.com
password: firstborn

Re:damn registration (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10660047)

I tried to create a successful web site that
served archives of stories and anecdotes once, but
it failed miserably due to free registration requirements.

Note that Slashdot does not require free registration in order to participate. If it did, it too would fail. A year from now, you may wonder whatever happened to that businessarchives.com site (or whatever it was called... I've forgotten already)

Great ! (5, Insightful)

allden (748789) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659805)

I am very sure the collection might have some great plans of companies which failed because the inertia of the market meltdown. One could even find plans which would had been too advanced for that time. Those plans could be used now.

Im Back! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659806)

Hello Slashdotter!

Ive been away for awhile (been playing World of Warcraft) but Im BACK! (Servers are down).

Oh, too bad there's no Linsux client!! HAHAHA LOLOLOL

ohhh, I've got one. (0, Troll)

twitter (104583) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659811)

A masterful plan:

  1. buy an old broadcast network
  2. ???? It's syngerny. Sell off trouble makers [slashdot.org] like Slate [slashdot.org] to keep people in line.
  3. profit?

It's not all in your head.

Re:ohhh, I've got one. (4, Informative)

jgalun (8930) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659833)

You're a moron:

A) Microsoft didn't buy an old broadcast network. Microsoft doesn't own NBC, they partnered with NBC. Big difference.

B) If Microsoft was really bothered by Slate recommending Firefox, they would have tightened their control over an operation that they wholly owned. Selling it - so that it has even more freedom to criticize you - makes no sense in those circumstances. I thought we were supposed to be afraid of corporations controlling the media - not afraid of corporations selling their control of the media!

whatever. (1)

twitter (104583) | more than 9 years ago | (#10662241)

If Microsoft was really bothered by Slate recommending Firefox, they would have tightened their control over an operation that they wholly owned. Selling it - so that it has even more freedom to criticize you - makes no sense in those circumstances.

We shall see how long Slate makes it on it's own or if anyone actually buys it. Nothing cracks the whip like a demonstration of the no viability of your whole business. In the mean time, the author and the editor will be canned.

It's control as much as all the shine on BS you get from NBC is. None of them has reported on IE and M$ exploits very well but the public knows it anyway.

Re:whatever. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10663664)

Moderators: Please note that "twitter" is a known fanatical psycophant whose obnoxious offtopic rants are legend here on Slashdot. It doesn't matter what the topic is, he'll find a way to scrape in some pointless Microsoft bashing. While nobody expects us to love Microsoft in any way, his particularly tepid style of calling anyone he replies to "troll" or "liar" or "fanboy" because he happens to disagree with whatever they're saying is well documented and should not be rewarded. If anything, twitter is the type of person that should not be part of the open source/free software community. He is an anathema to all that is good about free software.

I'm posting this so that you (the moderator) have some context to consider twitter [hyperdictionary.com] and not mod him up whenever he posts his filler preformatted rants about installing Knoppix or whatever that unfortunately get him karma every single time and allow him to continue posting his trademark toxic crap (read on) day in and day out. You may consider this a troll - I consider it community service. And I ain't kidding.

If you're a /. subscriber, I invite you to look through some of his posting history [slashdot.org]. I guarantee that you'll be hard pressed to find someone that is more "out there" than twitter. You'll also probably notice he's got quite an AC following. Don't just read his posts, make sure you go through the replies.

To get an idea of what I'm talking about, check this [slashdot.org] post out. I mean, this is an article about email disclaimers, right? The parent of the post is complaining about the ads in the linked page and so on, and twitter actually goes off on a rant to blame it on Microsoft and recommend Lynx. WTF?

Here's another. In this post [slashdot.org] twitter not only calls the OP a troll but attempts to "tell it like it is" while making some vague argument about "GNU". Yes, if you're confused, you're not alone. The reply (modded +4) proceeds to simply destroy his bogus argument. You will notice he did not reply. This is what some people call "drive-by advocacy". A sort of I'll just leave you with my thoughts here and move on to the next flamebait kind of deal. In fact, he almost never replies because he knows that his fanatical arguments simply do not hold up to any sort of discussion. It's not that he's chosen the wrong cause - he's just going at it in a completely wrong way.

More? Just read though this [slashdot.org] post and the subsequent replies. I guess this stands on its own. Or these [slashdot.org] two [slashdot.org]. Or this one [slashdot.org].

Still not convinced? This [slashdot.org] is what twitter considers "humour" while going about his daily "M$" routine.

More? Bad spelling in astounding conspiracy theories [slashdot.org], more [slashdot.org] offtopic [slashdot.org] FUD [slashdot.org] and uninformed "I'm right, look at me" rants [slashdot.org], promptly proven wrong. Worse even, twitter wants to be RMS [slashdot.org], apparently [slashdot.org] (that first one is a winner). I mean, really [slashdot.org]. You think [slashdot.org]?

FUD [slashdot.org], FUD [slashdot.org], FUD [slashdot.org], FUD [slashdot.org], offtopic FUD [slashdot.org], and more FUD [slashdot.org]. This guy is like the Monty Python SPAM skit, but with FUD [slashdot.org] and more FUD [slashdot.org] instead of canned meat. Amazed yet [slashdot.org]? Don't forget that PowerPoint makes you dumb [slashdot.org], and it's all a Microsoft conspiracy [slashdot.org]. How low do you want to go? Maybe as low as this [slashdot.org]?

The infamous Fax Manifest [slashdot.org]? Nuclear fireballs [slashdot.org]? It goes on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on (troll?) [slashdot.org]. Like the energizer bunny. Or take these [slashdot.org] two [slashdot.org], which stretch the definition of weird.

And in case you haven't had enough, consider that twitter actually thinks Microsoft [slashdot.org] is out [slashdot.org] to [slashdot.org] get [slashdot.org] him. No [slashdot.org], really [slashdot.org]. He figures he's somehow relevant to the Open Source movement, and that by "attacking" him Microsoft wages war on us. He actually puts himself in the same pedestal as people like Bruce Perens. How's that for warped reality. And finally, [slashdot.org] this [slashdot.org] should be good for a few chuckles.

It's up to you. We can get rid of this guy and make Slashdot a better place. I don't know about you, but I'd rather take the trolls and crapflooders over people like "twitter" any day. And I sure as hell don't want to be categorized along with him. This [slashdot.org] is not how you advocate free software, period.

Twitter: Life and times of a petulant cock-gobbler (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10677221)

Twitter, you're a petulant cock-gobbling sycophant to Linux Torvaldyos! Quit taking DP from ESR and RMS's feculent cocks and why don't you try to stop sucking quite so much? Get out of your parents basement and see the real world - maybe then you'll see how pathetic you sound, with your neverending stream of bullshit about how Microsoft is stalking you. Wasnt it you who said that Microsoft believes your insane ranting is actually a threat to them, so they PAY PEOPLE to reply to you on Slashdot? No sir, I don't get any money. I do it for the love. Someone has to go up against your paranoid whining. So get back in your cage and shut the fuck up already.

Re:ohhh, I've got one. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659989)

Moderators: Please note that "twitter" is a known fanatical sycophant whose obnoxious offtopic rants are legend here on Slashdot. It doesn't matter what the topic is, he'll find a way to scrape in some pointless Microsoft bashing. While nobody expects us to love Microsoft in any way, his particularly tepid style of calling anyone he replies to "troll" or "liar" or "fanboy" because he happens to disagree with whatever they're saying is well documented and should not be rewarded. If anything, twitter is the type of person that should not be part of the open source/free software community. He is an anathema to all that is good about free software.

I'm posting this so that you (the moderator) have some context to consider twitter [hyperdictionary.com] and not mod him up whenever he posts his filler preformatted rants about installing Knoppix or Mepis or whatever that unfortunately get him karma every single time and allow him to continue posting his trademark toxic crap (read on) day in and day out. You may consider this a troll - I consider it community service. And I ain't kidding.

If you're a /. subscriber, I invite you to look through some of his posting history [slashdot.org]. I guarantee that you'll be hard pressed to find someone that is more "out there" than twitter. You'll also probably notice he's got quite an AC following. Don't just read his posts, make sure you go through the replies.

To get an idea of what I'm talking about, check this [slashdot.org] post out. This is an article about email disclaimers. The parent of the post is complaining about the ads in the linked page and so on, and twitter actually goes off on a rant to blame it on Microsoft and recommend Lynx, because "is teh free".

Here's another. In this post [slashdot.org] twitter not only calls the OP a troll but attempts to "tell it like it is" while making some vague argument about "GNU". Yes, if you're confused, you're not alone. The reply (modded +4) proceeds to simply destroy his bogus argument. You will notice he did not reply. This is what some people call "drive-by advocacy". A sort of I'll just leave you with my thoughts here and move on to the next flamebait kind of deal. In fact, he almost never replies because he knows that his fanatical arguments simply do not hold up to any sort of discussion. It's not that he's chosen the wrong cause - he's just going at it in a completely wrong way.

Here's that drive-by advocacy and FUD in motion: twitter goes on [slashdot.org] about some topic and then drops the usual "oh and M$ is teh evil" because "WMP phones home" or some such. Called on his FUD, he then claims [slashdot.org] that WMP stores every song and movie you've ever played in a file, somewhere. Pressed further, he just sort of slithers out of sight, his FUD-spreading complete. This is not about some Microsoft technology that nobody likes anyway; it's about lying for the sake of lying. Way too many of his posts are exactly like this one.

More? Just read though this [slashdot.org] post and the subsequent replies. I guess this stands on its own. Or these [slashdot.org] two [slashdot.org]. Or this one [slashdot.org]. Or this one [slashdot.org].

Still not convinced? This [slashdot.org] is what twitter considers "humour" while going about his daily "M$" routine.

More? Bad spelling in astounding conspiracy theories [slashdot.org], more [slashdot.org] offtopic [slashdot.org] FUD [slashdot.org] and uninformed "I'm right, look at me" rants [slashdot.org], promptly proven wrong. Worse even, twitter wants to be RMS [slashdot.org], apparently [slashdot.org] (that first one is a winner). I mean, really [slashdot.org]. You think [slashdot.org]?

FUD [slashdot.org], FUD [slashdot.org], FUD [slashdot.org], FUD [slashdot.org], offtopic FUD [slashdot.org], and more FUD [slashdot.org]. This guy is like the Monty Python SPAM skit, but with FUD [slashdot.org] and more FUD [slashdot.org] instead of canned meat. Amazed yet [slashdot.org]? Don't forget that PowerPoint makes you dumb [slashdot.org], and it's all a Microsoft conspiracy [slashdot.org]. How low do you want to go? Maybe as low as this [slashdot.org]?

The infamous Fax Manifest [slashdot.org]? Nuclear fireballs [slashdot.org]? It goes on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org]. Like the energizer bunny. Or take these [slashdot.org] two [slashdot.org], which stretch the definition of weird. And you have to love this [slashdot.org] thread.

And in case you haven't had enough, consider that twitter actually thinks Microsoft is out [slashdot.org] to [slashdot.org] get [slashdot.org] him. No [slashdot.org], really [slashdot.org]. He figures he's somehow relevant to the Open Source movement, and that by "attacking" him Microsoft wages war on us. How's that for warped reality. And finally, this [slashdot.org] should be good for a few chuckles.

It's up to you. We can get rid of this guy and make Slashdot a better place. I don't know about you, but I'd rather take the trolls and crapflooders over people like "twitter" any day. And I sure as hell don't want to be categorized along with him. This [slashdot.org] is not how you advocate free software, period.

Re:ohhh, I've got one. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10660021)

Are you saying they sold them off to "keep people in line"??? WTF?

What a surprise, another Microsoft basher. Dumb and can't spell, at that.

Re:ohhh, I've got one. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10662011)

they sold them off to "keep people in line"??? WTF?
The sell some of them off to keep the ones that remain in line.

Re:ohhh, I've got one. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10660442)

Moderators: Please note that "twitter" is a known fanatical sycophant whose obnoxious offtopic rants are legend here on Slashdot. It doesn't matter what the topic is, he'll find a way to scrape in some pointless Microsoft bashing. While nobody expects us to love Microsoft in any way, his particularly tepid style of calling anyone he replies to "troll" or "liar" or "fanboy" because he happens to disagree with whatever they're saying is well documented and should not be rewarded. If anything, twitter is the type of person that should not be part of the open source/free software community. He is an anathema to all that is good about free software.

I'm posting this so that you (the moderator) have some context to consider twitter [hyperdictionary.com] and not mod him up whenever he posts his filler preformatted rants about installing Knoppix or Mepis or whatever that unfortunately get him karma every single time and allow him to continue posting his trademark toxic crap (read on) day in and day out. You may consider this a troll - I consider it community service. And I ain't kidding.

If you're a /. subscriber, I invite you to look through some of his posting history [slashdot.org]. I guarantee that you'll be hard pressed to find someone that is more "out there" than twitter. You'll also probably notice he's got quite an AC following. Don't just read his posts, make sure you go through the replies.

To get an idea of what I'm talking about, check this [slashdot.org] post out. This is an article about email disclaimers. The parent of the post is complaining about the ads in the linked page and so on, and twitter actually goes off on a rant to blame it on Microsoft and recommend Lynx, because "is teh free".

Here's another. In this post [slashdot.org] twitter not only calls the OP a troll but attempts to "tell it like it is" while making some vague argument about "GNU". Yes, if you're confused, you're not alone. The reply (modded +4) proceeds to simply destroy his bogus argument. You will notice he did not reply. This is what some people call "drive-by advocacy". A sort of I'll just leave you with my thoughts here and move on to the next flamebait kind of deal. In fact, he almost never replies because he knows that his fanatical arguments simply do not hold up to any sort of discussion. It's not that he's chosen the wrong cause - he's just going at it in a completely wrong way.

Here's that drive-by advocacy and FUD in motion: twitter goes on [slashdot.org] about some topic and then drops the usual "oh and M$ is teh evil" because "WMP phones home" or some such. Called on his FUD, he then claims [slashdot.org] that WMP stores every song and movie you've ever played in a file, somewhere. Pressed further, he just sort of slithers out of sight, his FUD-spreading complete. This is not about some Microsoft technology that nobody likes anyway; it's about lying for the sake of lying. Way too many of his posts are exactly like this one.

More? Just read though this [slashdot.org] post and the subsequent replies. I guess this stands on its own. Or these [slashdot.org] two [slashdot.org]. Or this one [slashdot.org]. Or this one [slashdot.org].

Still not convinced? This [slashdot.org] is what twitter considers "humour" while going about his daily "M$" routine.

More? Bad spelling in astounding conspiracy theories [slashdot.org], more [slashdot.org] offtopic [slashdot.org] FUD [slashdot.org] and uninformed "I'm right, look at me" rants [slashdot.org], promptly proven wrong. Worse even, twitter wants to be RMS [slashdot.org], apparently [slashdot.org] (that first one is a winner). I mean, really [slashdot.org]. You think [slashdot.org]?

FUD [slashdot.org], FUD [slashdot.org], FUD [slashdot.org], FUD [slashdot.org], offtopic FUD [slashdot.org], and more FUD [slashdot.org]. This guy is like the Monty Python SPAM skit, but with FUD [slashdot.org] and more FUD [slashdot.org] instead of canned meat. Amazed yet [slashdot.org]? Don't forget that PowerPoint makes you dumb [slashdot.org], and it's all a Microsoft conspiracy [slashdot.org]. How low do you want to go? Maybe as low as this [slashdot.org]?

The infamous Fax Manifest [slashdot.org]? Nuclear fireballs [slashdot.org]? It goes on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org] and on [slashdot.org]. Like the energizer bunny. Or take these [slashdot.org] two [slashdot.org], which stretch the definition of weird. And you have to love this [slashdot.org] thread.

And in case you haven't had enough, consider that twitter actually thinks Microsoft is out [slashdot.org] to [slashdot.org] get [slashdot.org] him. No [slashdot.org], really [slashdot.org]. He figures he's somehow relevant to the Open Source movement, and that by "attacking" him Microsoft wages war on us. How's that for warped reality. And finally, this [slashdot.org] should be good for a few chuckles.

It's up to you. We can get rid of this guy and make Slashdot a better place. I don't know about you, but I'd rather take the trolls and crapflooders over people like "twitter" any day. And I sure as hell don't want to be categorized along with him. This [slashdot.org] is not how you advocate free software, period.

Twitter: Life and times of a petulant cock-gobbler (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10660770)

Twitter, you're a petulant cock-gobbling sycophant to Linux Torvaldyos! Quit taking DP from ESR and RMS's feculent cocks and why don't you try to stop sucking quite so much? Get out of your parents' basement and see the real world - maybe then you'll see how pathetic you sound, with your neverending stream of bullshit about how Microsoft is stalking you. Wasn't it you who said that Microsoft believes your insane ranting is actually a threat to them, so they PAY PEOPLE to reply to you on Slashdot? No sir, I don't get any money. I do it for the love. Someone has to go up against your paranoid whining. So get back in your cage and shut the fuck up already.

Lots of businesses don't make it (5, Insightful)

Dancin_Santa (265275) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659816)

It's easy to look back now and scoff at what seem to be ridiculous ideas. "Sell catfood over the internet?" Yeah, well, that's what Petsmart is doing now.

The problem was not an abundance of bad ideas, it was that no matter what new market arises, in this case the Internet, the entrenched business community will usually be able to make significant headway into the new market beyond what a startup with a good idea can do. The cost of starting up a new company and putting into place the infrastructure to support doing business is much greater than simply adjusting an existing business model to take advantage of the benefits of the new business environment.

The result is that the startups get bought up, stomped down, or suffocated out of the market that they themselves created. The entrenched companies have the resources and mindshare to do that to the smaller companies. Only in a handful of success stories do we see a startup taking over a market where entrenched business was too late, too hesitant, or unwilling to take advantage of the new paradigm (Amazon vs. B&N/Borders).

The moral of the story isn't that you shouldn't bet the farm on a silly idea. The silly idea isn't always going to seem to silly if it takes off. Most of those dot-bomb creators are rolling in money. The ones who scoff are still making $40,000 a year writing articles for Wired.

Re:Lots of businesses don't make it (3, Funny)

lukewarmfusion (726141) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659851)

$40,000/year would be a nice raise for me. Then again, my bosses are assholes.

Re:Lots of businesses don't make it (1)

Saeger (456549) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659957)

Most of those dot-bomb creators are rolling in money. The ones who scoff are still making $40,000 a year writing articles for Wired.

And the wired writers, who work for a living, have the right to scoff at dotbomb insanity.

...Want to buy some nanotech-tulips?

--

Re:Lots of businesses don't make it (1)

C10H14N2 (640033) | more than 9 years ago | (#10661071)

Most of those dot-bomb creators are rolling in money. ...and we call them "thieves."

I don't care how much money a blatant thief is rolling in. Bob Scheer put it quite well regarding the dot-com's larger cousins (WorldCom, Enron, GlobalCrossing): "these guys have done more damage to capitalism than every communist who ever lived."

Re:Lots of businesses don't make it (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 9 years ago | (#10662075)

the entrenched business community will usually be able to make significant headway into the new market beyond what a startup with a good idea can do.[...]The entrenched companies have the resources and mindshare to do that to the smaller companies.
Plus they understand boring things like logistics, inventory and supply chain management, plus even more boring things like accounting & cost control. Sadly, many of the dotgone brigade didn't have the foggiest fuck of a clue about any of that. It was "soooo old economy, d00d!".
Most of those dot-bomb creators are rolling in money.
You mean the ones who saw it coming and sold out in time - just like it was with the South Sea Company and tulipmania. Plus ca change...

Not much of an archive (5, Interesting)

satans_advocate (787715) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659847)

So, unlike others who scrambled to get first post, I went and had a look at the archive.

Errm... it's a bunch of business names with a "submit information on this company" button next to them. So I did another search for listings with multiple documents and finally found a business plan after the tenth company I looked at which was Artex.com, business plan here [http].

Looking at the executive summary, these guys planned to take a $20M investment and be generating $136M in revenues in two years. Ah, the hubris of those great days would be funny if it wasn't so sad.

Anyways, so they planned to spend $3.5M on hardware/hosting/etc, $3.5M the guys actually doing the software development and $11.5M on the marketroids to sell the idea (and presumably the artwork). No doubt the marketing guys were being paid 3 times the software developers also.

Is software development it's own reward? Do marketing people get paid a lot to compensate them for their frivolous job and their vapourous life?

Re:Not much of an archive (4, Insightful)

servognome (738846) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660071)

Do marketing people get paid a lot to compensate them for their frivolous job and their vapourous life?
I wouldn't call marketing frivolous, at least in their importance to a business.
Just go to a drugstore, right next to the $1.99 Wal-ynol is a $4.99 bottle of Tylenol. It's the same medicine, but somehow people are convinced the name brand is better. Sure the chemical engineers can figure out new ways to make each bottle 10 cents cheaper, but the marketing folks can convince people to pay $3 more. Which do you think is better for profits?
Some marketing person convinced us that $5 for a cup of coffee, or $100 for a pair of shoes is reasonable; They even convince people that american beer "tastes great"!
You shouldn't dismiss the social and psychological side of business. Too often the "better" product doesn't sell as well because people think the other product is "better."

Re:Not much of an archive (2, Interesting)

Zangief (461457) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660279)

You are right, but there is a problem. In this case, the marketing guys took the $11M, said "Sure, we can sell this, leave it to us, we know better", and let the company sunk, and went to the bank laughing all the way.

An ethical professional would have said "You know, this business will die, horribly. Selling catfood through the internet isn't going to work, at least not today. Keep your millions, this advice will cost you $X thousands dollars".

The IT guys couldn't know this. It isn't their work. But it was the work of the marketroids. So, at least these people had frivolous job and vapourous life.

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

servognome (738846) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660448)

An ethical professional would have said "You know, this business will die, horribly. Selling catfood through the internet isn't going to work, at least not today.
I think that's more of a hindsight arguement. It was probably a combination of a workable idea, starry eyes of the .com boom, and ego thinking "I can make this work".
Same thing happens to other professionals like programmers (late, overbudget, buggy products)

Re:Not much of an archive (2, Interesting)

Zangief (461457) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660601)

Yeah, of course today it looks stupid, because today we know what happened. But back in the day, some people (of course the minority), MUST have realized what was going on.

In fact, Paul Graham did realize that Yahoo stock(which had employed him) was priced waaaay above reality. And acted accordingly. He sold his stock, and told his friends to do the same.

He was a programmer. Yes, he had a lot of business vision. But the market guys should have had a lot more of this than him. It was their fricking job.

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

servognome (738846) | more than 9 years ago | (#10661091)

Actually most people realized what was going on, the problem was they didn't want to get burned by no going with the momentum.
In late 90s lots of people said, yeah the market is overpriced, but it keeps going up so they had to stay in.
The fear of fund managers was to not have certain stocks, then have them double in price (for no reason), and look bad because they only managed 10% growth while others were at 70%. So it became a continuous cycle.
I remember a commercial, I think it was for beer, and a couple guys at a rich woman's house are proposing a .com business. One looks up at a picture of a dog and says yeah the website will be captainskippy.com (or whatever the dogs name was), just so they could get the cash. When everybody is getting rich, logic tends to take a back seat.
My reference to programmers was directed towards how they let themselves get pressured into impossible deadlines.
Many people in all jobs convince themselves they can things work no matter what. It's nothing new, ET for the Atari 2600 was done in 6 weeks, and it wasn't some hack who just needed money, it was one of the greats of the industry. And of course the game was terrible.

People's ego + $ will usually convince them they can do the impossible.

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

satans_advocate (787715) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660911)

You shouldn't dismiss the social and psychological side of business. Too often the "better" product doesn't sell as well because people think the other product is "better."

Well, I didn't mean to come off sounding like the social/psychological side of business is frivoulous or vapourous, just the people who engage in it :)

While your example of the ongoing benefits above (10c cheaper per bottle vs 3 bucks) has merit, it disregards the fact that without the chemists/engineers/ethnobotanists there would be no tylenol with which to make that distinction.
In other words, putting marketing before the product is putting the cart before the horse.

They even convince people that american beer "tastes great"!

Well, you have me there, I can't think of a feat of engineering that even comes close to that incredible feat.
Still, someone had to build the equipment that made of all that really bad beer in the first place. Guess what, the engineers.

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

servognome (738846) | more than 9 years ago | (#10663118)

Well, I didn't mean to come off sounding like the social/psychological side of business is frivoulous or vapourous, just the people who engage in it :)
I know alot of engineers who went into marketing. There are different types of marketing. There are the vaccuous funny tv commercial clowns. Then there are the technical marketing folks who shape product roadmaps, who need to understand their industry and products.
I didn't mean to say that marketing was more important than engineering, they need to go hand in hand. There is a cycle.
Engineering comes up with a great idea, marketing convinces people to invest, engineering makes the idea happen, marketing sells it, marketing communicates the customer roadmap, engineering works to match the roadmap... etc.

Re:Not much of an archive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10661818)

Just go to a drugstore, right next to the $1.99 Wal-ynol is a $4.99 bottle of Tylenol. It's the same medicine, but somehow people are convinced the name brand is better. Sure the chemical engineers can figure out new ways to make each bottle 10 cents cheaper, but the marketing folks can convince people to pay $3 more. Which do you think is better for profits?

And a thug can go out and rob somebody for $300. Which do you think is better for profits?

Tricking people into giving you $3 extra is, ultimately, useless. So the company gets more money. Big deal. It's not like anything new has been invented. Making bottles more efficiently is useful above and beyond getting the lousy $3.

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

kin_korn_karn (466864) | more than 9 years ago | (#10663400)

Generic acetaminophen does nothing for me but Tylenol-branded stuff almost always works. It's not this way for me with any other drug so I guess it must have to do with the buffers that Tylenol puts in their pills.

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

fingerfucker (740769) | more than 9 years ago | (#10672222)

Generic acetaminophen does nothing for me but Tylenol-branded stuff almost always works. It's not this way for me with any other drug so I guess it must have to do with the buffers that Tylenol puts in their pills.

Nope, that's called placebo.

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

kin_korn_karn (466864) | more than 9 years ago | (#10676150)

yeah, but I can take generics of anything else and it works just the same as the name brand. aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, sudafed, the only generic that is any different for me is tylenol.

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

donothingsuccessfull (824199) | more than 9 years ago | (#10678935)

>>right next to the $1.99 Wal-ynol is a $4.99 bottle of Tylenol. It's the same medicine, but somehow people are convinced the name brand is better.
This is supposed to endear us to these people?
I think Bill Hicks [btopenworld.com] put is best:
"By the way if anyone here is in advertising or marketing... kill yourself."

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

kansasfame (589362) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660305)

I'm the Professor at Maryland who has spent the last two plus years collecting the business plans and related documents. There are around 3500 objects from 2300 companies in the archive at present, with lots more in boxes and CDs in my office(s). Sounds like we need to improve the search functionality so you can find stuff you want to see. Full text search is on the way once we get the server situation straigthened out. In the meantime, let me also add that it's not just about the business plans; I'm also very interested in learning about the personal experiences of dot com era folks; for that you can take a short survey at http://www.dotcomarchive.org/ [dotcomarchive.org], or click thru there to a longer one. Again, feedback welcome.

mod parent up (1)

tetromino (807969) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660396)

I'm the Professor at Maryland who has spent the last two plus years collecting the business plans and related documents. [...] Sounds like we need to improve the search functionality so you can find stuff you want to see.

Indeed. Also, an overwhelming percentage of entries seem to have no info on them besides the company name and description. Maybe the "browse by one or more documents" should be made a checkbox instead of one of the browse options?

Re:mod parent up (1)

kansasfame (589362) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660481)

I'll think about it; bottom line is that there are still many people out there who think that their old plans are much more valuable than they are; therefore, because they haven't given us permission, we can't allow public access to lots of the cool stuff we do have. Rats. Stay tuned.

Re:Not much of an archive (1)

satans_advocate (787715) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660876)

Full text search is on the way once we get the server situation straigthened out. In the meantime, let me also add that it's not just about the business plans;

Sorry bout that. The slashdot story billed it as a business plan repository.

Perhaps if there were some way to search for a particular type of document (eg. business plans). I do find the other stuff such as anecdotal stories and listing documents, but if my real interest is the business plans, I want a way to go straight to them.

Cheers,

No help for me (1)

BortQ (468164) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659849)

> The next time you launch a huge online enterprise...

So does this mean there's no help for the huge online sock emporium I am currently running?

They are only collecting plans at this point (2, Informative)

gtrubetskoy (734033) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659864)


I've signed up and have yet to come across any business plans, though there are some more or less intriguing docs like photographs of marketing trinkets.

hail victory (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659878)

late.post
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiijtiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiijDMMQtiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiicXMMMMMMQjiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiicSMMMMMMMMHJiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiSWMMMMMMMHJiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiii6WMMMMMMMNYiiiiiiiiJciiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiii5WMMMMMMMN5iiiiiiiiJHMMSciiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiii5NMMMMMMMW5iiiiiiiiJHMMMMMWSiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiicXMMMMMMMMNYiiiiiitKMMMMMMMMMW6iiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiijDMMMMMMMMHJiitQMMMMMMMMMMMMMW5iiiiiii
iiiiitciiiiiiijQMMMMMMMMKDMMMMMMMMQWMMMMMMMN5iiiii
iiitKMWSiiiiiiiijQMMMMMMMMMMMMMMQtiiSWMMMMMMMNYiii
itQMMMMMW6iiiiiiiitKMMMMMMMMMMKtiiiiicSMMMMMMMMHJi
iJHMMMMMMMW6iiiiiicSMMMMMMMMMMDjiiiiiiicXMMMMMMN5i
iiiYNMMMMMMMN5iiiSWMMMMMMMMMMMMMDciiiiiiicDMMW6iii
iiiii5NMMMMMMMNSWMMMMMMMHNMMMMMMMMXciiiiiiij5iiiii
iiiiiii5WMMMMMMMMMMMMMN5ii5NMMMMMMMMSciiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiii6WMMMMMMMMMW5iiiiii6WMMMMMMMWSiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiSWMMMMMW6iiiiiiiitKMMMMMMMMXciiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiicSMMWSiiiiiiiitQMMMMMMMMDjiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiic6ciiiiiiijQMMMMMMMMQjiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiijDMMMMMMMMQtiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiicXMMMMMMMMKtiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiijQMMMMMMHJiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiitKMMHJiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii
iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiitYiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii

Re:hail victory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10672010)

You suck nasty, stinky ass.

Not sure of the point here.... (1)

IamGarageGuy 2 (687655) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659896)

I have been to the site and found no business plans. there is no actual content. You are supposed to post the business plan of your failed company I assume. Can't see any reason for somebody with a failed business to post their business paln that didn't work. I don't even think this plan would have worked in the nineties.

Will be very useful... (2, Insightful)

jordandeamattson (261036) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659909)

I believe that this collection will be very useful to folks that are trying to see 1) what has been done and why it failed, 2) what assumptions (founded or unfounded were made), and 3) what want to see what failed but might work now.

Unfortunately, the study of history - in any form - is very underrated in the current global culture and in American culture specifically. It is suprising to me the number of folks that feel history is 1) uninteresting, 2) irrelevnat, and 3) useless.

I will be registering for this site (and for those of you that refuse to register, TANSTAAFL), and exploring what it makes available. I think I will learn a lot.

And if you don't buy any of my arguments above, just remind yourself that this is a collection of the business plans that got funded by VCs. It can't hurt to look at them and use them as models if you are seeking VC funding someday for your idea.

Yours,

Jordan

Re:Will be very useful... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659917)

Your first three reasons are total nonsense. Essentially, the business plans rarely had anything to do with what the company actually did.

And if you just want to know how to rip off VC's, it would be more helpful to find out the VC's last success, and make your plan just like that but in a different city or some other minor change.

The dotcoms did not fail.... (5, Insightful)

slashname3 (739398) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659911)

Why does everyone keep saying all those dotcoms failed? The basic business plan was to convince a venture capital group to turn over money. The "founders" of the dotcom then used the money to play around for a year or two doing all kinds of fun things and buying expensive toys and throwing parties. Then they had one hell of a garage sell as they unloaded all that expensive equipment.

Saw this first hand at a storage service provider called Sanrise. Burned through something like 200 Million dollars in just a couple of years. Left more than a dozen Hitachi 9900 raid arrays and huge tape libraries all over the country.

Heck of a party while it lasted. And for the CEO and a few of the founders I am sure they extracted a very nice sum prior to the final implosion.

So all in all I would have to say that most of the business plans the dotcoms used worked just exactly the way they were suppose to. They extracted a huge amount of money from venture capital groups. The fact that most of them had silly ideas just makes the venture capital groups look very silly.

Re:The dotcoms did not fail.... (2, Informative)

vidarh (309115) | more than 9 years ago | (#10661563)

While many VC's did catastrophic investments, most of them are VERY good at protecting their investments from ending in the founders pockets until they've sold out, or the company has gone public. I'm sure a portion of dot-com founders that burned their VC's badly still managed to get out with lots of cash, particularly for companies that survived until some time after an IPO, but the majority likely were stuck with peanuts.

Remember the dot-com simpsons episode? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659919)

That aired way after the crash?

Way to be timely, folks!

registration info for businessplanarchive.org (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659923)

I created an account so you all don't have to have to bother wasting your time doing the same.

Access Businessplanarchive's [businessplanarchive.org] archive with this u/p:

username: firstborn@mailinator.com
password: firstborn

Former professor (4, Interesting)

LeiGong (621856) | more than 9 years ago | (#10659927)

I atteneded an undergraduate entrepreneurship class at UMD's Smith School taught by Dr. Kirsch. He's a great professor and is very passionate about archiving the .COM history. He used a lot of these business plans as part of his class. For each lecture we would do a case study of successful companies like Starbucks and many unsuccessful businesses. I must of read over a dozen business plans and case studies as part of his course. I think this resource is great for business professors and MBA students studying entrepreneurship. It showed the businesses that turned out to be failures were the ones that wrote the business plans to find money but didn't bother to follow through on it. The successful businesses were the ones that stuck to the original plan (assuming it was a good plan) and used it as a roadmap. You would be surprised by how many companies used astronomical figures like "$15 billion industry by 2005, with only a 1% market share..." Looking back at articles written in the 90's about rejected business plans, it made sense that so many were rejected... Business school and intro business/marketing classes should be required to teach these business plans as part of the ciriculum.

Re:Former professor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659992)

I must of read over a dozen business plans and case studies as part of his course.


I think you mean "must've" or "must have". (I've seen this in about several other Slashdot posts, and it irritates the heck out of me! )

Re:Former professor (1)

mdfst13 (664665) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660020)

"you mean "must've" or "must have". (I've seen this in ... several other Slashdot posts, and it irritates the heck out of me!"

I see this in freaking books and it irritates the heck out of me. I can see how someone could make the mistake in a forum type setting (like /. ), but aren't books supposed to have editors to catch spelling mistakes?

Re:Former professor (1)

halosfan (691623) | more than 9 years ago | (#10663196)

While studying English (which is my second/third language), I was trying to comprehend the grammar of "must/could/should/might of done something". I encountered it so often, both online and in print, that I couldn't even think it was meant to be "must/could/should/might have done something". It wasn't until I moved to the U.S. that I realized what it was...

I am actually wondering why so many native speakers don't know that? I realize "should've" (as it is commonly pronounced here in the U.S.) and "should of" sound very similar, but it's such a common grammatical construct that I would expect any person who routinely misspells it to be corrected often enough in their 12+4 years of schooling to remember it...might it be that "must/could/should of" were once acceptable spellings?

Re:Former professor (1)

mdfst13 (664665) | more than 9 years ago | (#10665068)

"might it be that "must/could/should of" were once acceptable spellings?"

No, just common (exacerbated by the fact that most teachers don't explain it properly; should've is the proper spelling, but most would recommend should have which is not obviously related). They may become acceptable spellings, because they are so common. As will "alot," which is also very common. Much the way one, two and three has replaced one, two, and three because it's one, two & three (now the rules are the same for both & and "and").

English's logic was always convoluted, since so many words are from other languages (Latin, French, Welsh, etc.); it's sad that it loses what logic it has to popular misunderstanding.

Re:Former professor (1)

innocent_white_lamb (151825) | more than 9 years ago | (#10661175)

an undergraduate entrepreneurship class

I've always found this fascinating. They teach an "entrepreneurship class" at the local high school here as well. I was invited to speak to this class a few times over the years; that's how I know that it exists.

As an "entrepreneur" who never took a class in entrepreneurship (I own and operate my own small business -- my basic theory of business is that if more is coming in than is going out in expenses, then it's a success), I have no idea how anyone would actually teach someone how to start a business. A bookkeeping class, maybe -- double-entry bookkeeping is a thing that I've never really understood completely.

The irony of a class about how to be an entrepreneur being taught by a salaried teacher is lost on many, unfortunately.

If you have a great idea for starting a business, then start it. I doubt that any business is Microsoft or IBM or General Motors right from day one. That's what's called building the business; you as the entrepreneur start with something manageable and something that you're comfortable with. And build from there. And learn what's needed when you need to know it.

Is that really a two-semester course in one sentence?

Re:Former professor (1)

vidarh (309115) | more than 9 years ago | (#10661551)

It's because of an attitude like that about 90% of businesses fold within 2-3 years of being started.

Proper strategic planning can be learnt. Project management can be learnt. Business analysis can be learnt. Basics like learning methods for cost benefits analysis (i.e. not selling at a loss isn't always easy to avoid if the product or service is complex unless you actually spend some time figuring out how much it costs you to provide it), risk analysis, good hiring practices, basic accounting (good for staying out of jail...).

Most of "entrepeneurship" is just about having some skills in a wide variety of areas, and knowing how to look for oppotunities, though ome people make do with just being great at adapting.

I've worked in several startups, and co-founded three of them - the first time we made so many stupid mistakes you wouldn't believe it that could have trivially been avoided if any of us had learned a few of the skills mentioned above. In the next two I wasn't involved in the day to day running of the business, and that is perhaps the biggest regret I have for them, as I saw quite a few repeats of mistakes I'd made myself in my first startup. However I also saw the differences brought in by professional hires in areas of the business that actually had experience in some of those fields.

In a way it was a great experience, though painful, in that I've seen first hand what a difference different approaches makes, and I've learned a lot about what it takes to clean up problems that will otherwise eventually kill a business.

A lot of people will succeed in building a business that can feed them, but even more will fail, and vanishingly few will succeed in building a business that will grow large. The odds of success are badly against you to begin with. If you do aquire some of the skills mentioned you're at least improving your chance of being in the 10% or so that survives more than 3 years significantly.

My advice is take your time to prepare properly first. Yes, there are a lot of things you will need to pick up from experience, but you're much more likely to see your business live long enough to gain that experience if you're well prepared and have picked up some essential skills.

My second advice would be: Make sure you know when to quit and wind your business up in a responsible way. It's better to close down and try again later, that keep flogging a dead horse and burning yourself out. That includes even if your business can keep floating, but you are unhappy with returns and you don't see improvements at a reasonable rate (for YOUR definition of reasonable). Get a regular job, and look for the next opportunity when you're ready for it.

Re:Former professor (1)

innocent_white_lamb (151825) | more than 9 years ago | (#10663433)

It's because of an attitude like that about 90% of businesses fold within 2-3 years of being started.

I don't think that's it. Personally, I have had my own business for ten years and have, lately, been "helping" another small businesses with a lot of stuff related to expansion and production of their product. I have seen a lot of small businesses come and go over the years, so I'd agree with you that most new small businesses fail. From talking to others about this, it seems that no matter what kind of business the new enterprise is, for some reason all businesses (at least the ones that I know about) go through a "cash crunch" at around the two year mark. This is where the business either fails, or succeeds and becomes an established enterprise that should be around for the long term.

I believe that a large part of this is managing the expectations that the owner has for his new business. Far too many people seem to have the idea (and I've heard it expressed in just exactly these words), "I'll work my ass off for a few years doing this and then I can sit back and let the business take care of me."

Well, that seldom happens. I don't personally know any small business owner who sits back and lets the business take care of him (or her).

Most small business people that I know (and this includes me) make a living. Period. Few become millionaires; I only know one and he was a millionaire before he got here so I don't think he counts in this discussion.

That includes even if your business can keep floating, but you are unhappy with returns and you don't see improvements at a reasonable rate (for YOUR definition of reasonable).


You see, I think this is the problem. Unreasonable expectations lead to uncontrollable situations over the longer term. "I'm a businessman now, so I should drive a new Mercedes!" Well, the cost of that Mercedes has to be borne by the business and if it's a non-essential expenditure that could make the difference between making a profit or the lack thereof in any given time-frame. Too many "I should have a..." add up to a big problem.

Simply stated, it appears to me that there are two related problems with the perception of a small businessman. First, folks who aren't in business themselves seem to believe that everyone who has his own business must be rich. Second, the same folks believe that if they get into business themselves then they too will be rich. The concept of a small business that "makes a living" appears beyond their comprehension.

For most people, running a small business is a job. It's a job that you create for yourself, generally, but it's still a job. It's not usually a ticket to fame, fortune, a life of ease and retirement at 40.

Re:Former professor (1)

Proteus (1926) | more than 9 years ago | (#10662586)

I have no idea how anyone would actually teach someone how to start a business.
The vast majority of these "entreprenuership" classes are crap, because no one can really teach about how to be an entreprenuer. But, there are a few good programs that fall under the same header.

A high school where I used to live offered a course that covered taking an idea from concept to market, basic economic prinicples (supply and demand, overhead, trade tarriffs), seeking investors, and writing a business plan. Of course, they horribly over-simplified, but they gave enough of an idea to the students that there was a starting point for further research.
double-entry bookkeeping is a thing that I've never really understood completely.
It's easier than it sounds, at least for a small business. The difference between cash-based accounting and double-entry is that the former is concerned with what's in your account, while the latter is concerned with value and transactions.

Basically, cash-based is like balancing a checkbook: money appears in your account when you get paid, and disappears when you pay a bill. With double-entry, all that money has to come from somewhere. Every time you invoice someone, that invoice increases the balance in that customers "account"; once you invoice, that's your money, but it isn't in the bank. When they pay you, you make a double-entry: you deduct money from their balance and add it to your bank balance.

Likewise with accounts payable -- you have "accounts" for each vendor, and when you issue a purchase order, you deduct that money from their account (making it negative). When you pay them, you remove money from your bank account (entry 1) and add it to the vendor's account (entry 2).

Double-entry accounting is basically like having mini-ledgers for every place money can come from or go to, and allows error-tolerance and a better view of what financial shape your company is in.

Old Dot coms never die (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10659988)

They just generate less and less funding in each new round of venture capital.

This ones perfect (3, Insightful)

dbIII (701233) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660040)

1. Become CEO of old unix company.
2. Claim all *nix is belong to us.
3. Get press by launching an unwinnable lawsuit against IBM.
4. Get the company you run to pay millions in legal fees to your own brother.
5. Watch share price grow as press releases hint that your tiny company can get IBM and millions of users to pay up or go out of business.
6. Cut and run as the company implodes, and become bankrupt if necessary since all the cash is stashed with relatives or otherwise unreachable.
7. If any of the company remains, sue it for letting you be such a wanker.

8. Use your enhanced reputation to become CEO of a small and old soft drink company, and think about how it must have really invented coca-cola.

Re:This ones perfect (1)

Zangief (461457) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660363)

Claim all *nix is belong to us

Sheesh...

All your *nix ARE belong to us.
You are on the way to licenses.

Dot-Com Business Plan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10660214)

1. Come up with sensible, mature business model.
2. Develop a real, salable product.
3. Profit ... oh, wait ...

Better plans (1)

tomsuchy (813628) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660441)

Surfed through a bit, didn't seem that good, with essentially lists of companies that folded, and a sporadic link to some pdf copy of an unfinished memo describing a vague business idea, or less.

When I first started searching for this stuff, I wanted to see what a real business plan contained..
Check out http://www.bplans.com/sp/ [bplans.com]; click on Sample Business Plans for some very thorough plans, but that page has some other stuff that might be useful (marketing plans, etc), although be warned, the company sells business plan software, among other things.
Enjoy.

Re:Better plans (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10661050)

WOW... 4 different domains wanting to set cookies when loading that home page. 3 of them were obvious advertising domains.

startup.com (2, Interesting)

hrm (26016) | more than 9 years ago | (#10660940)

Reminds me of a great documentary, startup.com [imdb.com], about a dot.com that wanted to do something or other that would make tons of money.

So many funny and tragic things happened there that to this day I'm not entirely convinced that it isn't a mockumentary a la Spinal Tap.

For us in old Europe it was a double treat, because we'd get to experience both the dot.com madness, as well as the "standard" American business practices, like the "Monday morning shout" and other weird (for us) motivational stuff.

Definitely check this documentary out if you haven't already.

Re:startup.com (1)

zrk (64468) | more than 9 years ago | (#10661276)

Well, there was Dot [imdb.com], which was a parody that was really close to the mark. More info at The Sneaky Kings [sneakykings.com] website. Startup.com was real, but as a parody, Dot was pretty close to the mark as well. A little too close.

Re:startup.com (1)

Bob Uhl (30977) | more than 9 years ago | (#10664348)

What's a Monday morning shout? Never heard of such a thing.

OTOH, my employee orientation was called 'Becoming One Voice,' which sounds horribly socialist/fascist.

The Real problem (1)

Jesus IS the Devil (317662) | more than 9 years ago | (#10661556)

The real problem I see, with many of these ideas, is not that they weren't good. It's that too much money was thrown into starting up a company based on a pipe dream that it will be worth 100 times what it's real-life true worth will really be.

When you throw $100 million dollars of venture capital on a business that really requires only $5 million, what you end up with is a bunch of antsy investors who can't wait for the return on their investment. Many of these companies had sustainable businesses that could have perhaps become $5 million/year businesses.

However 3 things can kill it:

1) The huge amount of capital. The company managers obvious will find some reason to spend it, and it's usually done on really stupid things, like paying $80/CPM to serve up some ad banners that yielded something like 0.3% click through. It was just one scam after another. People spent money unnecessarily, and companies charged exhorbitant fees for ridiculous things.

2) The return on investment is obviously no longer there, when you plunk down $100 million to yield a business making perhaps $5 million a year. If the initial investment had been $5 million, it would've been a GREAT startup.

3) Expectation of a fast exit strategy that will yield a huge payday. This type of mentality led to really sloppy and poor planning, in terms of resources and commitment. Everyone went in with the expectation that they come out multi-millionaires. This is just not realistic. Any time you start a business you have to be ready to run it for the long-term.

Obviously, there were some really zainy ideas, but I'm only talking about the ones I thought actually had potential.

I know what went wrong ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10662886)

With the dot com bust/era/it's all the creative nerdy adhd closet cases.

trying to do "own businesses" with all this virtual CRAP that ain't needed.

It's the mindset which goes with the dissorder
known as ADHD. Which I suffered from ..and all the creative types. and all the shit that goes with it.Think they won't because it's virtual.
and the GOVT really fucking hate it un all.

I know, I tried .. time and time again.
Failed every go.

It's all to do with mind set.
Think they won't because it's "virtual" reality.

and they won't. thus dot com era = FAILURE.
Big ass BUST.

it was just a woohoo .. a new toy .. thing.

That was blown out of all proportion..
by media and press.

Because it's an exciting new toy.

let's try it here cos where socially inadiquate
fuck-up's else where.

behind a screen of corporate BULLSHIT.
then attack each other over meaningless crap.

Such as IPO's and all that cack.
which is just sooo ...ugh. SEE-THROUGH.

SCO. etc etc etc.

SCO's the next one to go down.

Just because it's virtual .. doesn't mean it's
not a real person at the end.

and this is what other people fail to see.
time and time and again.

because it's cheap. just laziness.
the easy way out.

psychology of real life, applies to psychology
online. no difference.

There is a real person behind that screen yo!
There is a real person behind that art yo!
There is a real person behind that "dissorder" yo!

There is a real person behind that "big flashy expensive car" yo!

and fuck you, if you think otherwise.

WeaselBalls.com (1)

tippergore (32520) | more than 9 years ago | (#10663520)

My dot com [weaselballs.com] is going to make it where the others have failed. Our business plan is infallible.

I don't exactly know how this IPO stuff works, but I can't wait to allow people to make the claim that they own a tiny portion of my Weasel Balls.

Business Plan Archive summary (1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 9 years ago | (#10664314)

Typical pages on the Business Page Archive (once you've finally figured out how to actually access the archive) look something like this:
Company name and address, followed by:

History

No history yet in the archive for this company
Documents
No files yet in the archive for this company

Re:Business Plan Archive summary (1)

hugesmile (587771) | more than 9 years ago | (#10667603)

Look at the little dots that tell you what is on file for each company. Choose the ones that have some documents on file. (In other words, RTF Legend)

Creative destruction (1)

Mark of THE CITY (97325) | more than 9 years ago | (#10664417)

Originally, 'creative destruction' meant reallocation of capital to uses that generated higher return. But, in the context of a weblog of the boom, maybe it means 'creative means of capital destruction.' :-(
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...