Sunday, September 03, 2006

Craftr: My latest million dollar idea

This morning, after a couple Google queries, I figured out how to add a LibraryThing widget to my sidebar. I've had a LibraryThing account since last November, but I haven't really done anything with it: the retrocon work is just overwhelming. So earlier today I added the three books I'm reading or listening to now, removed the dozen test titles I'd put in over the past year, and pasted the Javascript widget where I wanted it on the page. This might inspire me to keep working in LibraryThing.

It would be cool if there was something similar for knitting, some Web 2.0 community site that let crafters create accounts, record details about their projects, upload pictures, allow tagging and commenting. Simple RSS widgets could be dropped into blogs (automatically generating nifty percentage bars -- this whole idea occurred to me because I can't make this code work in Blogger Beta, and even if I could, the prospect of editing HTML code every time I want to update my "On the Needles" sidebar makes me want to scrap the whole thing). I see mash-up possibilities, with Flickr of course, but maybe even Etsy.

What do you all think, Gentle Readers? Could one "Craftr" (or "CraftThing") site cover the needs of knittrs, weavrs, spinnrs, etc.? Just the yarn crafts, or could it be expanded out to embrace quiltrs and beadrs? Maybe each separate craft would feature-creep it in too many directions? As a knittr, I think I'd want the project database to include pattern source, start and end dates, materials, and progress indicator. Notes and journal fields would be important, and specifics (like dye lots, gauges, needles, etc.) could be recorded there.


Diane in Chico said...

I like your LibraryThing - very nice.

I don't know about a CraftThing or Crafty. I like when people send a few posts to their blog while working on something. I also like the ability to create a category for each object or type of object - so people can click on a category and get the whole story.

Diane in Chico said...

Ah, but I see there are no categories in Blogger (like Typepad). Can you maybe create a "tag cloud"?

yarmando said...

Like Flickr, a CraftThing wouldn't necessarily replace someone's blog, but supplement it. Just another communication and sharing tool.

Tagging and tag clouds would be vital to a CraftThing. Tagging is a new feature of the Blogger Beta; once I have a good collection of tags in place, I'll look into adding some tag-navigation to the page layout.

Flat Maja's Aunt said...

I am not sure if I totally understand your idea, but I could see something for quilters that had tags for the patterns.

If you looked up a pattern name, you could see all the various projects under that name.

That would be cool and I would use it.