Resize, Create Thumbnails, and Watermark Images Easily on a Mac

We just shipped an update to our image picker on KickoffLabs. We made it simpler and added over 150 great images that can be used as landing page backgrounds!

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To do this we I had to make all those images consistent. I needed to shrink them and create cropped thumbnails that were a consistent size. For this task I tried out a few different batch image processors. Then I found QuickScale in the App store.

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For a few dollars this app let me:

1. Select a directory full of original images.

2. Export them with a max width setting to make them smaller and keep proportions.

3. Do a second expect with a specific height/width to create consistent looking thumbnails without changing the proportions.

4. Add watermarks for images that are under creative commons as required. 🙂

I’m sure you could use Photoshop for this too, but it just felt too complicated.

Selling out your kids for fun and profit

I’m blessed with two amazing kids. My oldest was a big motivation for me to quit my job and start KickoffLabs. I think they’re my bootstrapping secret weapon. They need to eat. Lets not even talk about diapors or college funds. Point being… kids are expensive and can’t live on Ramen Noodles.

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We decided, at KickoffLabs, that we weren’t going to be ashamed of our size. We wanted it to be a strength. We wanted to appear boutique… which is what our service is right now… a niche boutique. The opposite of something like GoDaddy.  We needed to make it personal, so we got our kids involved.

They are featured on our company page and when we ask customers to tell people about us we say:

“Would you like to put a huge smile on the face of two scrappy co-founders with beautiful young children who like to eat three times a day? Do you like saving money?…”

Most companies are in a rush to grow up, look, and act bigger than they are. People expect more out of a big service (even if they shouldn’t). Why raise the bar too early? Embrace your size.

KickoffLabs is just Scott and Josh today, but our families took the plunge with us. We’ll take every advantage we can get. 🙂

KickoffLabs is Live… What Next?

Today I wasn’t able to figure out exactly what to do for about 30 minutes.  It was the first time in a while I’d found myself at a complete loss.  I published the announcement blog post and should have walked away for the next half hour. 

What is KickoffLabs?

All new businesses are experiments that start with customers. You don’t know if your idea is going to work, but you know you need customers to make money… whether it’s through ad sales, subscriptions, or walk-ins buying your bagels after you’ve set up shop.  KickoffLabs both simplifies and reduces the costs of the online part of your experiment.

Tomorrow I’ll be hunkering down to work with our first customers, spread the word about KickoffLabs  a little wider, and work on features for the next deployment. 

For now I’m enjoying a nice glass of red wine in celebration…  But we’re bootstrapping, so it’s a cheap bottle. Smile 

Why are you still reading this? Go sign up for your site today!

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Enjoying my KickoffLabs Blogging

There’s only so much time in the day.  If you follow this blog and your wondering what happened… It’s mostly that my effort’s been going into getting KickoffLabs ready to launch.  I’ve been doing two posts there  a week.  This is harder than it sounds without a writing staff. 

So, if your one of the people that enjoys my blogging (which may be a count of zero after finding out my wife stopped reading) then head on over to the KickoffLabs blog and subscribe there.

Practicing what we preach at KickoffLabs

beekerToday Scott and I announced the foundation of a new business with KickoffLabs. Our goal is to make it simpler for people to validate, connect, and launch their ideas with customers. Although V1 hasn’t been released yet we are going to practice what we’re preaching and start building a list of potential early adopters that can help shape the direction of V1 before we launch.

At this stage our goal, in addition to building the product, is to build an audience of people that believe what we believe… that there is a better way to launch your product, business, or service with your target audience. If that’s something that you believe then become part of our tribe by giving us your attention at KickoffLabs.com.