ResumeLink

Resume Link is my latest idea.  And for once, I’m actually afraid someone might steal it.  Maybe because it’s so easy to do, or maybe it’s that good.  Or maybe I’m just desperate & paranoid.

I’ve got what I think is a pretty good domain name:  resumelink.org

The main idea is that you upload your resume and we host it for you.  Like photobucket for resumes.

We can convert it to any format you want:  DOC, PDF, HTML, plain text, etc.   We then parse it like the major job sites  do and try to get things like Work History, Skills, Contact Information, etc. automatically and put it into a database.  Of course we’ll mistakes, so you can review it and correct it.  Alternately, you can just build a resume from scratch, and then pick a template.  You can change templates & layout at any time and have different templates for online vs. printing.

Then we give you a personalized URL like http://resumelink.org/aaronevans and try to SEO it so that a google search for “aaron evans resume” comes to your link.  Of course you could just get the link and point it to your existing online resume somewhere else too.   Like tinyurl for your resume.  You then have an easy to remember link that you can put on your business card and give to people online or over the phone.

With this URL, you can track how many times it’s seen, by who, when, and where they came from.  With a premium service you can have multiple inbound links for tracking so you know everyone who saw or downloaded your resume that came from a particular recruiter for instance.

You can also create a profile to manage your resume or multiple versions of it.  You can use your resumelink profile to associate your online resume with your total online presence: facebook, twitter, linkedin, etc.  You can limit it to principals or agencies and restrict who can see or download your resume.  Things like sharing references and contact information can be controlled too.  You can see stats and get messages from others.  You can track your job leads and who you’ve sent your resume to.  You can refer jobs to other people.  You give and receive feedback on resumes.

Resume writing consultants and template designers can show off their expertise, and we might have revenue sharing deals with them.

Our goal is to be at the top of the search for terms like ‘online resume’ and ‘resume builder’. We’ll put advertising on the site — targeted ad words and direct marketed of banners. I picked resumes because it’s a broad field, especially in these times when so many people are looking for work. It has quite a lot of value as a search term and good adsense relevance. People will be looking for job listings, resume writing services, etc.

We’ll also sell tools for employers and agencies to help them find candidates, but we’ll keep people in charge of their resumes.  Hopefully, by being the best, they’ll trust us to share their information, and at the very least, they’ll have the traffic filtered through our site so the don’t end up with resume spam.  Hopefully, we can do better than that and do a better job of connecting the right employers with the right candidates, but this won’t be a job site, just a resume site.

Eventually, you’ll be able to manage your resume at resumelink.org and post to all the major job sites (i.e. (Monster, Dice, CareerBuilder.)

What do you think?

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Blogs as bookmark tools

One of the reasons I (and I’m sure others) use a blog is to talk about a product and put a link to it so we can find it again later.  So in affect, I’m using my blog as a bookmark too (with summaries.)  Many popular blogs (like slashdot) are geared towards that.  In fact, that’s the eponymous idea of a “web log” as opposed to a journal or a series of articles (the other purposes for a blog.)  I also tend to use my blog as a task list, idea repository, reviews, and news.

I do use delicious, and my browser’s bookmarks, but they both have flaws.  I work from my blog/wiki/qa-site/etc.  So I want to see the functionality there.

How about this for a practical takeaway (maybe it already exists):

I’d like to have everything I link to in my blog added to my delicious bookmarks (or if not everything, everthing I tag specifically to do that.  There could also be some coordination between blog categories and bookmark tags.

CuencaTravel.com

I’ve started working on CuencaTravel.com, and am creating a qa-site for it. CuencaTravel will be the initial QA Site test platform. I expect to have more features and work on the dashboard. I’ve already got a basic time line widget. I also started a blog for Cuenca Travel, borrowing the theme and image from this one. I might change this sometime soon. I’m also using wordpress-mu for the cuencatravel.qa-site.com/blogs — I’ll use it as kind a project management, qa status, planning blog. I’ll be putting down design, development, and configuration details in that blog (and on the trac wiki), so it may not stay public. I’ll post progress and announcements on cuencatravel.wordpress.com and a daily work summary on cuencatravelqa-site.com/blogs/aaron.

Basically, I’m a bit spread out and just need to have discipline and organization on my blogs, wikis, pm tools, documentation, etc. Of course what I really need is the perfect tool, and this development should help drive requirements.

Threes

So there are 4 days left at work. Then I’m on my own. If I want a boat, I’ll do what it takes to get it. If I can. Now it’s time to find out if I can and if I want it.

Maybe what I really want is to run a restaurant/hotel in Ecuador.

Maybe what I want is to make decent money doing QA part time and helping Kelsey volunteer part time.

Maybe it’s to be on a boat, working via an expensive satellite uplink.

Or to run a business creating software solutions.

Or to build houses, or speculate in real estate, or write or paint.

What I really want is to be Robinson Crusoe, more or less, but that doesn’t happen.

So what I’m going to do is follow a business plan, and try to make enough money to do what I want and to make Kelsey happy. Here’s the plan, for the first six months at least:

After walking away from Varolii, I’ll have two weeks to pack and take stuff to my parents in Montana. I’m not going to worry about anything else except to make sure I’ve got a computer that works and that I can get as much done as possible without a network connection.

– And that I can send and receive email.  I think that’s taken care of, at least I don’t want to screw it up any more.

I anticipate up to a month without a reliable network connection, hopefully less. During that time I can probably get by with a flash drive at a cybercafe. But apart from email, some uploads, searches, and a few tools or tutorials downloads, I won’t get much there. I don’t want to have to download a JDK or learn .NET from a cybercafe. In that time I’ll concentrate on what I have.

What will I have? A LAMP environment on Windows Vista, I hope. That’s what I need to concentrate on getting onto in before going. I want to take a serious look at mod_perl + Catalyst, Ruby + Rails, python + turbo gears, and PHP junk. But I won’t have time to read a bunch of tutorials and junk, so I’ll probably just mirror the PHP documentation and prototype on that. I’ll want a JDK + eclipse + netbeans and .NET + all the free versions of SQL server, Visual Studio, etc.

I’ll join O’Reilly Safari and check out some books on PDF. I don’t know if I’ll do the bookshelf (10 books a month at $20) or the library (unlimited books at $40/month.) I’ll take a few books with me (5-10) — it’ll be tough to decide.

I want to spend the first month brainstorming, evaluating technology, and brushing up my skills. We probably won’t have that much time anyway. We need to find a house, establish a routine, visit friends, get adapted to the local microbes, and plan. But I want stuff to keep me busy.

After that, I want to have three short term projects, three services I can offer, three business plans, and three things I can do to help in Ecuador.

I will submit plans to Kelsey, and have weekly status reports and milestone evaluations.

Here are the threes (as currently in my mind):

3 Small Projects:

  1. A new Bugzilla UI
    • AJAX practice
    • ideas for better tool
    • demonstrate web design ability
    • advertise QA experience
  2. A test case authoring tool
    • webapp dev practice
    • crystalize design of test case model
    • advertize dev and QA experience
  3. a gallery application
    • image manipulation practice
    • current and future reuse on websites
    • donleeart and fotos.foxfish.org
    • web service and front end to attract users

3 Web Services:

  1. An image editor (watermarks, resizing, and comments)
  2. QA Tools Provider
    • Bug Tracking
    • Test Authoring, Execution, Results, Reporting
    • Task Management
    • Wiki, Knowledgebase, Collaboration, etc.
  3. Shipping Tracking
    • for DHL resellers (United Shipping)

3 Business Plans

  1. Telecommute
  2. Piecework (through sites like guru.com, referrals, solicitation, etc.)
  3. Product development and sales or service subscriptions.

Okay, that’s not really the three business plans, and I’m out of time. I need to list three specific things I can do that will potentially make money, give timelines, budgets, etc. for the projects. These are the three main strategies.

Telecommute would also include (or could be broken down into) a QA lab, consulting, or offshore style work.

Piecework could also include bespoke applications and COTS (probably open source) customization and/or administration.

Product development could also be application hosting, or could lead to consulting from distribution of open source apps.

I need to work on some clarification here.

3 things I could do in Ecuador:

  1. Teach computer classes
  2. Work at orphanage and with Kelsey’s foundation
  3. Employ or partner with Ecuadorians

I also need to learn Spanish, manage our household, and figure out business stuff (like taxes.)

After three months (by January) I will need to submit a description of my intent on what to focus on, though there will be room for more experimentation. The next three months should be dedicated to one (or at most two) ideas in an effort to complete them.

I’ll either try to monetize an idea, complete a product, or find income.

After the first 6 months, I’ll think bigger. Like hiring people, looking for financing, or setting up a hosting environment for customer.

More on Covenant Eyes

It’s a great idea.  It is intrusive, but not restrictive.  I read that they are coming out with a blocker, which is probably good for some.

 I would like to help out in this arena.  Maybe come up with a product of my own that works with Covenant Eyes or some other tool that helps to combat pornography and other troubles on the internet.

I see 3 main features:

1 – a scanner that logs traffic
2 – a filter that rates content
3 – a blocker that prevents inappropriate actions

I see immediately that it has commonality with other tools, both legitimate and nefarious.  Obviously it has similar features to anti-spam and anti-virus tools.  Just as obviously it has great similarity to the spyware tools that the spammers and hackers use.  But just as packet sniffers (another commonality) have good as well as bad uses, so can this.  Tools for corporate governance and enforcing traceability compliance policies also use these features.

What I want is to be able to use Covenant Eyes on Linux.  Or an iPod.  Or anything else unsupported.  And it’d be even nicer if I didn’t have to install it.  Or worry about circumvention.  Anti-circumvention is another, somewhat less obvious feature that a tool like Covenant Eyes has.  And it’s also one that corporate policies spend a great deal of time on.  The difficulty of anti-circumvention is a great value add.  

The other big one I see is the accuracy of the filter list, but I don’t have the resources for that.  Utilizing the manpower of the internet is one way to do that, but I’d rather leave that task to someone else.  There’s too much incentive to be proactive, and while those who are still struggling, or who are honest but do not see it as a personal moral problem could help, I could not have it on my head to ask them for it.

Non-intrusiveness or avoiding draconian restrictions is a nice to have as well.  Corporations and other large organizations do this by externalizing their monitors.  Place them at the network edges by your routers. 

Or on them! 

A lot of homes have dedicated routers nowadays.  They connect to the cable box or are used for local Wi-fi networks.  What if I put a linux image on a router (like a Linksys WRT-54GL) and installed a reverse proxy server, a packet sniffer, etc.  and set it to ping a server.  That’s pretty good anti-circumvention.  And I could even include anti-virus and anti-spyware/rootkit controls.  Regular security features. 

I think I could recreate this using mostly open source, some glue and reporting, and a central server.  If I could work out a deal with Covenant Eyes to use their filter for bulk, or license my software for them to distribute (I’d prefer the former),  I’d have a pretty useful product.  An always-on router is even easier to ensure is tamper proof and it takes a higher level of tech savvy to circumvent.

This isn’t a new idea.  I’ve been tossing it around for months as a project I’d like to implement. 

 The problem is getting the time.  I’m sure I could overcome most of the technical hurdles in a few months, and it’d probably be best to find others with more knowledge of particular products and security to help.  I don’t know how much I could afford to pay them, though.

Another added benefit of externalizing the scanner is you don’t have to worry about trusting the software installed on your PC.  If you don’t trust it, unplug the router, re-image it, replace it or whatever.   You don’t lose anything on your PC.  Even if you find out I’ve been sniffing your credit cards when you buy from Amazon, and spamming your grandma and everyone else you email, it’s a non-catastrophic operation to root me out.   Antivirus programs on your computer should be able to detect trojans I wrap around your downloads. 

Not having to trust your accountability / big-brother app is a huge plus.