We are looking for beta-testers who want to start a site like WP Questions

[UPDATE: we now have a waiting list.]

Every month we get 3 or

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4 emails where people ask if we would sell them the software that powers WP Questions. A lot of people want to start sites similar to ours.

We’ve thought about this and decided that we would like to offer our software

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as a service. The software will live on our servers, but you would be able to customize the templates and you would be able to host your site at whatever domain name you wanted (you’d only have to point the domain name at our servers). We are going to charge 2% of whatever you make. For now, PayPal will be the only payment gateway (and PayPal is going to take 5% of everything).

In the short term (October and November) what we need is 4 or 5 beta testers who’d like to start a site with us. We would work with you to get your sites up and running.

If all goes well with the beta testers, we could have a general purpose service, open to the public, as early as January.

[UPDATE: we now have a waiting list.]

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52 Responses to We are looking for beta-testers who want to start a site like WP Questions

  1. Pingback: We are looking for beta-testers who want to start a site like WP Questions | Smash Company

  2. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Someone wrote to ask me for details. Here are some more details:

    Basically, what we’d be offering is a site very much like WP Questions. You would be free to edit the templates to a limited extent, though for now some blocks are hidden inside of the PHP code – such sections you could re-design via CSS, but not via actually changing the HTML. But then, there would be wide portions of the template where you could change the HTML. You would have the ability to upload images, though the process might be tiresome till we can arrange some kind of bulk uploader. Over the next year we would hope to build out the obvious things that would give you more flexibility:

    1.) a more flexible template language, to allow you a greater freedom of design

    2.) new widgets to allow you to do a paid Q&A site radically different than WP Questions

    3.) easier uploading of images en mass

    4.) a better admin panel than what we have now

    5.) more payment options than PayPal

    Regarding #4, I will say our current admin is very primitive.

    You can, if you like, use your own domain name, simply point it our name servers:

    ns1.tailormadeanswers.com
    ns2.tailormadeanswers.com

    You would be free to set your own prices, though we would add our own 2% fee to whatever you charge.

    You would be using your own PayPal account.

    Please feel free to ask more questions, and I will try to answer them.

  3. Alex Cast says:

    I would like to try to launch this site for marekting questions/ Will your site be updatable for Russian language?

  4. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Alex, we hope to expose all of the templates where there is written text, so that you, as the site owner, can re-write the text however you like. This might take us some time, but if you’d like to be one of our beta-testers, we would like to work with you.

  5. Pali Madra says:

    Hi,

    I would like to implement a website similar to WP questions.

    I would discuss the details and prefer not to use the comments section for the detailed plan.

    Please let me know how we can move ahead with this.

    Thanks in advance,

    Pali Madra

  6. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Pali,

    Thanks for writing. Please write to me at this email, if you want to discuss details privately: lawrence @ krubner.com

  7. It looks interesting to join the beta test.

    I must say, though, that for enabling the Hebrew version of the site, I will have to change all css files and make an rtl.css that will hold all the differences that involve direction (like margins, paddings, floats etc..) and then to include this .css file after the regular css file.

    If it won’t be possible, it won’t work well in Hebrew. More than that, if there are images in the template itself that have direction (such as arrows, corner images etc. – I should be able to replace them too with their rtl versions (and include it in the rtl.css file I will create).

    Doing that, will open the option for you later on to have support for other RTL languages, such as all kinds of Arabic, Persian etc.

    If the above is possible, I’d be happy to join the beta testing.

    I’d like to keep the design of the original site, just to have it rtl’ed, so to present it as the Hebrew brother/sister site of the original wpquestions site.

    What do you say?

    Anther question is will the translated site be able to offer also affiliate program to registered users of the local site?

    Thanks,
    Maor

  8. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Maor, to answer your last question first, yes, absolutely, you will be able to use the same affiliate code that we use on WP Questions.

    You will have your own, separate installation of our software. Your site will live on our servers, but you will live at your domain, you must have your own PayPal account. You will have a database that is all yours, with account info that is unique to your site.

    Any affiliates who sign up for your site will have a relationship with your site, but not with any other site (unless they decide to sign up with some other site).

  9. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Maor, in terms of images, we hope to give you the power to change all images, if you wish. I am not sure how quickly we will be able to do this, but the long term goal is certainly to create a flexible template system that will allow people to create any kind of paid Q&A site that they can possibly dream of.

    Certainly, we would be willing to give you the power to include any kind of css files that you need to.

  10. Thank you Lawrence.
    So If I have a separate installation of the software, will I have access to add my own rtl.css and include it in the html? Meaning, would I have FTP access to download files, change and then re-upload?

    Do you work with getText .po/.mo files for the translated strings of texts?

    Thanks

  11. Pingback: Where can you get a site just like WP Questions? Start one.

  12. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Maor, I am sorry, I will need to look into .po/.mo files.

    For now, there will be no FTP access, only forms in a web page that allow you to update the templates.

  13. Lawrence, how could we adjust the site for rtl language? To support the site in rtl we will need changing css files.

    I am really looking forward to beta testing the platform and run it in Hebrew, which is rtl language. Do you have ideas for implementing that?

  14. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Maor, I am sorry, I may need to research this issue more. If you are able to re-write most of the template and control your CSS files, or create new ones, would that be enough?

  15. Lawrence, I think that yes.
    What I think the best to do, is to create the rtl.css file, which will hold **all** rtl css issues.
    This file should be included last in the html head section, after the call to the 4 css files –
    /css/style.css
    /css/style_landing_page.css
    /css/nav.css
    /css/main.css

    So all styling will be applied before it, and rtl will loaded last and overrides things for RTL.
    I think that first stage is to be able to have this file uploaded to server (I will have to grab all css files and then create the rtl.css file and test it of course cross browsers), and then the ability to have it included in the html’s head.

    If you could mail me the 4 css files, I can start prepare the rtl.css file with the rtl definitions.

  16. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Maor,

    I will try to set something up for you this weekend. I assume you have a domain name that you are planning to use. Please point it at our name servers.

    I will say, however, there is still a lot of English embedded in our templates, and it may take me an extra week to make it easy for you to replace all of it.

  17. Lawrence Krubner says:

    To everyone else who is interested, I would remind you, you must have your own PayPal account.

    You will probably also want your own Twitter account.

  18. Lawrence,

    I will register a domain and point it to your servers, I’ll paste the domain name here after doing so.
    I will wait for all preparations you have to do for that and then we will move forward with this.

    Thanks.

  19. Another issue I just have thought about, that will have to be handled, is the option to set the proper timezone, in order to get the correct local time of people’s posting.

  20. Dear Lawrence,

    I’d like to implement a site like wpquestions. If you don’t mind, I prefer to discuss details privately. I’ll write you to the mail you posted earlier.

    Regards.

  21. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Maor,

    That is an interesting point about the time. On WP Questions, I believe the time is set to the time in Texas, which is where our web servers are (Hostway). I never worried about the time, as I assumed our customers would come from all over the world and therefore no particular time would be the correct time. But I realize you are thinking about a specific country, so yes, I will work on this over the weekend. This should be fairly easy to implement.

  22. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Mauko,

    Thank you for contacting us. At this point, interest in our offer is exceeding what we can easily handle right now. I will set up a public waiting list, and I will add everyone to it who has contacted us, and I will allow people to add themselves. We will set people up with a site in the order in which they have contacted us.

  23. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Hey, everyone, I’ve established a waiting list here:

    http://blog.tailormadeanswers.com/signup_for_beta.php

    We are going to set people up with sites largely in the order listed. I’ve added the 4 you (the 4 commenters in this thread) to the list so you will be a head of everyone else.

  24. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Changing the name servers to here:

    ns1.tailormadeanswers.com

    ns2.tailormadeanswers.com

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  27. Mychal M says:

    Lawrence, any news about the site setups? Looking forward to getting things going.

  28. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Mychal,

    Thank you for writing. Rolling out the software has taken us longer than we thought. We have one thing left to do, and that is alter the template system enough to allow people like you to make modifications. I am working on this all week and certainly hope to have something to show by the weekend.

    — lawrence

  29. Mychal M says:

    Thanks for the quick answer…

    Don’t work ALL weekend — this would be a good weekend to take frequent breaks for eating!

    Keep up the good work!

  30. Nile says:

    Personally, I think not offering hosted services would benefit you even more. You could charge more. People are selling review scripts and other WordPress software for nearly $100.

    Not sure if it is a question of keeping things under wraps, but if you offer this for people to be able to download and setup, you could profit more.

    The guy of DirectoryPress has a couple things out there and it is merely some changes to the theme.

    Also, there are already some WordPress bid software out there. Why not offer something cleaner and from someone more trusted. You bet I would promote it at WPAddict for my readers and even mention it at WordCamps when I attend/ or speak.

  31. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Nile,

    Thank you much for writing. Here are my few responses to your ideas:

    1.) We have thought about selling the software. We continue to think about it.

    2.) Profit this year or next is not a concern to us. We hope to build something big over the next 5 years.

    3.) The software is not built with WordPress. We use Symfony, for all the reasons I wrote about here:

    http://symfonynerds.com/?p=323

    4.) However, we have decided to give up on PHP. We are moving toward using a JVM language, so we can offer more real time features, like chat.

    5.) I talked about our motivations in this video:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SvTLK9r8biI

    6.) You write “You could charge more”. But with a hosted service, if we charge less, then our customers have more reason to use the software, yes? And if we make our living as partners of our customers, charging them nothing but only taking a percentage of what their customers give them, then we have a powerful motivation to give our customers exactly what they need.

  32. Marwan says:

    I Would Like to Use Your Script However is It A WordPress Script???

    and do we have access to [email protected] templates

  33. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Marwan, it is not a WordPress script. We built the site using Symfony. You can learn more here:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SvTLK9r8biI

    Just put your name on our waiting list and we will set you up with a site. It does not cost you anything, so long as you already have your domain name.

  34. Matt Heyes says:

    Looking forward to some kind of release of this s/ware. Would love a copy of a wp-questions like theme.

  35. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Thanks, Matt. We faced many delays this month but hope to be public with this by mid-February.

  36. Nabeel says:

    I want to be part of your beta testing too

  37. Asshu says:

    Just applied for Beta testing. Hope I would get it as early as possible πŸ™‚

    Thanks!

  38. Miguelmd says:

    We need this strategy for two clients we have:

    1. Doctors users (MAC related bugs and questions). We currently give lectures on this matter.

    2. eHealth issues in HIs, RIS-PACS of our software and open source solutions.

    We will support this site only in Spanish in LATAM. Currently we have clients in Colombia, Venezuela, Mexico, Panama and Chile.

    Thanks.

  39. Foobar says:

    any news about the beta?

  40. Asshu says:

    Yes ! I am waiting for that too πŸ™‚

  41. Lawrence Krubner says:

    I apologize for the delays. I was sidetracked by a contract that has taken all of my time for the last 3 months. Starting this weekend I will be working full-time on the beta.

  42. Asshu says:

    @Lawrence Krubner ,

    Glad to hear that ! w’l be waiting for it πŸ™‚

    BTW…Is there any plan to create a script/Plugin for WordPress or Drupal like CMS. So that we can host on our own servers

    Thanks !

  43. Luis Abarca says:

    I like to be a beta tester, to replicate in MX, a spanish version would be great !

  44. wan says:

    This site is an great idea, I hope to be able to license the software and use in different industry!

  45. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Luis,

    We hope to get this out as a hosted service soon. Enabling multiple languages has been a problem for us. We are working hard, and this is our main task: to enable people to translate the pages into any language they want. I really thought we would be done months ago, but the process has been sadly slow. But we will let you know as soon as we are ready.

  46. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Wan,

    We won’t be offering a license, exactly. We will, instead, be offering this software as a hosted service, just like Basecamp and TypePad are hosted services:

    http://basecamphq.com/

    http://www.typepad.com/

    We will charge 2% of whatever you make.

  47. Luis Abarca says:

    Excellent!, i looking forward the beta program, i would like “Preguntas WP” in Spanish for MΓ©xico.

    You are making a great job guys !!

    Regards!!

  48. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Luis,

    Thank you. We are about to make WP Questions our full time effort, for awhile. Many things will move quickly.

    — lawrence

  49. Hi Lawrence,

    I’ve written you some mails but no reply till now.
    Is there any progress with enabling fully translating the wpquestions site?
    It’s been a year now from the time I first registered the wpquestion.co.il domain, and I really want to be able to start the site.
    I already made several string translations and css adjustments for rtl, but there were areas in the site that were still not translatable.

    I’d be happy to hear updates from you and looking forward to finishing translating and launching the site.

    Thanks

  50. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Maor Barazany,

    I am sorry for the slow replies.

    I underestimated how complicated it is to open all of the templates so they can be translated and the HTML adapted.

    I did take a contract gig for most of the year. This slowed things down to an extreme degree. My work on TMA got relegated to weekends, and not all weekends. The software really needs me to focus on it full time for 2 or 3 months, especially where the translations and templates are concerned.

    I am wary of making any further estimates, as I have been wrong before.

    I will be working on the software full time for the month of January. I’m sure progress will happen, but I’m not sure if we will get to this point where we can actually roll it out.

    Myself and Misty and Chris would all like to get this software out the door as soon as possible. I am not sure when we can make it a reality.

    I am sorry that I can not be more precise.

    — lawrence

  51. Lawrence Krubner says:

    Also, I apologize for being slow at responding to email, but I have brought in others to help me. Please write to this email:

    support @ tailormadeanswers.com

    Myself and our project manager, Misty, both read that email address. You will get a fast response from one of us.

    And of course, always feel free to post to this weblog.

  52. Thanks for your honest reply Lawrence.
    I’ll patiently wait for you to have the time to deal with making the site fully translatable and I hope it will be soon. I’m happy you did not abandoned the idea of it and understand it takes a lot of time.
    Thanks

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