My New Business

As mentioned in my previous post, I’m starting a new business, but I didn’t say much more. I can say more now.

For starters, it’s a software business, i.e. it develops and markets software.

What does the software do?

The business will develop a set of focused apps, where each app can be used by non-artists to create a particular kind of 2D graphic, with good quality.

I’ll reveal the particular kinds of 2D graphics as I release the apps, but to give you a concrete hypothetical example, one app might be for creating line drawings of oak leaves.

maddy-baker-5UeDc5QT3NI-unsplash.jpg
Photo by Maddy Baker on Unsplash

When you open the app, it would give you a drawing of a typical oak leaf, but it lets you change some properties. You can change the colors by selecting them from a color picker. You can change the length and width of the leaf using sliders. You can change the bend in the leaf, and the number of lobes on the sides. You can make the lines thicker or thinner, and change the prominence of the veins. After a few seconds of tweaking the leaf, you can save it as an SVG or PDF file and then import it into other software such as Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Affinity Designer or Inkscape.

Will they be desktop apps, web apps or what?

I think the apps I have in mind are better-suited to a large screen. A web app can be used on any screen, so if I build a web app and it has lots of mobile users, I might consider making a mobile version.

My initial thinking was to make desktop apps. They’re not the coolest kids anymore, but they’re still widely-used. Think Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Microsoft Excel, video-editing software, engineering CAD tools, 3D modelling software, and high-end video games. Many of them are used for design.

The business is just me, for now, so the software also has to be something that one developer can do without getting overwhelmed (in addition to managing the business). That’s the main reason why I was against web apps. Developing and deploying a modern web app is much more involved than developing a desktop app.

I discussed it with friends and read a lot online, especially a great blog post by Patrick McKenzie, who has done both desktop and web apps. In the end, I decided to make web apps.

I’ll share how that’s going in future posts. I also aim to have a simple demo online in January.

P.S. The photo at the top isn’t a photo of me. It’s a photo taken by Alejandro Escamilla and I got it from Unsplash.

A friendly human