A Social Network for US Navy Veterans!

Navy VetsA few years ago, I purchased the domain NavyVets.com. I didn’t have any time to actually work on building out a site, so I put the domain up on Sedo.com to see if there was any interest in it and to get a little bit of ad dollars. Little basically means nothing… for the thousands of hits each month, I was probably only getting a penny here and there.

With social networks on the rise, I began to test out different social networking packages that I might install on the site. I loaded up Elgg but it wasn’t the easiest package to customize and get working.

About that time, I began working on a logo for the site. I basically took the USN emblem and, using Illustrator, separated all the layers and added some dimension.

A few days ago, I started to take a look at Ning. The first time I saw Ning a few years ago was at the first Mashup Camp. It was very intriguing… software that allowed you to write custom code on top of their platform… not really a plugin, but much more robust.

Ning has built a fantastic social network that’s easy to open right out of the box! In fact, it took me much longer to build the logo than it took to get the social network up and running!

I did opt in for some premier ala carte options – private domain, my own advertising, and removal of all the Ning Bling. I think it’s looking good! Now I just need to find some more Vets that are interested! I think it’s a pretty cool story – a Navy Veteran social network… owned and operated by a Navy Veteran!


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      I was really surprised at how easy it was to use, JD! I think the layout could use some additional help, but it will get there!

      The site got it’s first registration tonight! Woohoo!

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    Glad to see that you’ve started something with the domain (such a great domain!). I’ve been using Ning with IndyLance for a short time and it has been pretty good so far. I’ve not messed to much with any advanced features, but being able to look at some of your code on a hosted, free service is rare.

    I haven’t had time to look at the Ning API or the possibilities with Google’s Open Social. Ah, my never ending to-do list.

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    Good gracious man, do you ever sleep?!

    Yet another nifty, worthwhile project from the Doug-meister. Good luck with it!

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      I actually was crashed most of the day today – I have a bad sore throat. It’s the first sign that I’m working too many hours. I’ll get a good night’s sleep tonight and be back at it in the morning!

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    This is really cool. I have more than a couple of ideas for social networking sites, and have heard of Ning but I have yet to test it out. I may have to. I hope this starts to take off for you.

    The Big Dumb Marketer

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    Wow! Very sharp site! I had heard of Ning but had no idea how powerful it was. I will definitely look into this. Thanks!

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    Sorry you hear you were having problems with Elgg, I’d be interested to know where exactly you found it hard to set up. Things are rapidly changing with Elgg, e.g. the next release, to be expected in December, will include an improved installer. Plus, the Elgg developer community is vibrant with many ipeople willing to help out. So, if you ever find the need to offer your members a higher level of privacy control, or start to feel uneasy about one company managing all your data, we welcome you to stop by again at Elgg.org 😉

    Good luck with this project!

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