On September 4, 2016 at about 7:00 PM Pacific time, I decided to share my latest side project, Postacard (now called Postcard Bot), with the Hacker News community. What followed was complete, unexpected madness…
Before we start. For reference, here are the links:
Here we go…within just a few minutes, my post had scampered to the front page, where it then continued to climb for the next 12 hours, and stay for the next 24.
I stayed stagnant at #2 for most of the time, hitting #1 only for a few minutes.
The traffic to my project was unreal…considering it had literally been live for 20 mins before posting.
The traffic wasn’t even the best part, though…
Emails: congratulations, feature requests, suggestions, job offers, press interview requests, you name it. These all began flooding into my email account over the hours after the post went live. This, alone, goes to show the incredible value of the Hacker News community - I was given my own tap into the brilliant minds that make up this community.
I had bugs and concerns pointed out to me that I hadn’t even thought of yet, people making suggestions into how to improve the product, feature requests from actual people who were now using my product…it was incredible.
Here’s the upvote and comment count as of this posting.
218 upvotes. 85 comments. It’s not much, but the comments were incredibly constructive and helpful.
What I Learned: Users are More Valuable Than Anything
I also received hundreds of users in my product, and they keep coming in daily. They also continue to email me asking for “this and that,” and I’m able to either put their requests on the todo list, or let them know that feature is already on the way.
I know it’s not a lot, but it’s one of the coolest feelings ever having a side project that people actually use and that you built by yourself in a few days.
Thank You to the Community
All in all, I just want to thank the Hacker News community. The product itself is so much better in just a short period of time because of the type of people who used it and provided feedback - people like me. And now I can say I was one of those people whose side project made it to the front page of HN (for almost 24 hours), which is pretty damn cool.