Posts Tagged ‘mobile’

So we’ve got a mostly working version of the engine for what we’re calling our K Apps. We still have some performance issues to work through, but we feel confident that those can be resolved.

Now the UI work begins. We had planned to work with James Terry, but the timing wasn’t quite right and we’re looking at another mobile developer. More later.

Nearly all startups go through a period of change. Many go through several periods of change. Most don’t survive these changes. The startups that do manage to stick around tend to adapt to everything thrown at them. They don’t always do it well or immediately, but the ones that survive find some knack for finding the solution to a thousand room maze that few others manage.

Textfyre is on the verge of exiting the startup maze and moving on to being a funded company with strong partnerships and amazing employees. Some of the details remain behind closed doors. Agreements need to be signed, product needs to be prepared, and people need to be notified of the coming changes.

But we’re finally approaching the real launch of Textfyre as a national brand in the Edutainment publishing industry.

These are very exciting and challenging times for me as the founder. I’d like to say that all of the ducks are lined up, but we still need to locate and place a few more of those proverbial ducks. I’m working on a number of fronts, bringing things together, and with a little more work, big announcements will be made in December and January.

These are exciting times for Interactive Fiction.

The life of an entrepreneur is hard. Don’t let anyone tell you differently. For all of the Mark Zuckerberg’s in the world, there are thousands of guys like me. We have a vision, a passion, a singular belief that we can create something special. We will scrounge up dollars to keep our servers running, scramble to networking events that just might lead us to an important contact, and endure ridicule and debasement for our “fantasy”. Our families don’t get it at all. Our friends are supportive, to a point. Our advisors are helpful, but excruciatingly and irritatingly calm and collected. We ourselves either lose weight or gain weight, eat badly, sleep horribly (if at all), and do poorly at our regular jobs because we’re simply not inspired by the grey cube walls of doom.

And yet we persevere. We find inspiration in little things. We continue to poke and prod our network. To find new ways to develop our business plan. To bring new advisors into the mix. To improve our product plans. To find new customers. We think about our business and work on some aspect of it every single day. Some days for hours and hours. Some days for only a few minutes.

We believe with every fiber of our being that our plan is solid and it can succeed. We believe that we’re doing something worthwhile and good. Something that will create jobs that people will love. Something that will create products that people will love. Something that will make the world a better place.

I’ve been working on Textfyre for over four years. We have two published products. A third product incredibly close to being published. A new business plan. New markets (Kindle, iPad). New authors. New Advisors. We still have people investing their time in Textfyre and believing that it can succeed. We have great tools and great plans for new games.

We’re not Facebook and we’re not an overnight sensation. But we’re still working at making a great company, even if it takes years and not hours to get there. We’re still working.

As you all know, the Kickstarter campaign fell short by half. It’s not a bad showing, but not a great one either. I probably should have researched successful campaigns before starting it. There are tricks to prize amounts as well as having a PR plan to get people’s attention. I learned a lot doing it.

But does this mean there won’t be a mobile IF platform? No. It means we just have to continue working with volunteer programmers or programmers willing to sign a revenue based contract. It means I can’t pay someone today to have it done X days, which is a much more efficient development model than sending the occasional e-mail that says, “Hey, how’s that code coming?” and getting the reply, “Sorry, got waylaid by real life. I’ll get back to it soon.”

These are all honest answers. I get waylaid by real life myself and have an enormous list of the tasks that I need to tackle myself. As long as everyone that works for Textfyre has to keep a day job, it’s a long slow process to get to where we need to be, which is generating revenue.

We’re making progress with a mobile Java engine, but the Apple Cocoa code is lying dormant on sourceforge. We will be publishing a Windows Phone 7 application that will be available for the U.S. launch in November. Hopefully we’ll have news on other platforms.

Thanks to everyone that pledged to the Kickstarter campaign. It was much appreciated. I got a lot of great positive feedback from the process.

 

So I’m looking at being a part of the launch of the new Windows Phone 7 and have a dilemma. Andrew is nearing completion of the iPhone/iPad/iPod, and Mac OSX framework for FyreVM games. I’m working on the Silverlight code for Windows Phone 7 games. I think it’s going to be a tie as to when we get the code done.

So then I have to decide how I want to market the new platforms and whether I simply fire off versions for every platform. Do I market just the mobile apps? Do I do just iPad? Do I do just Microsoft or just Apple?

These are the questions I’m pondering every day now.