Hey. I was very remiss in not mentioning this here. But here goes, and what a lead in:

How’d you like to win a $430 espresso machine? Or a $140 grinder?

If you would, then head over to www.coffeegeek.com and check it out. Of course, I hope that you would want to check it out for more than just winning some cool stuff, but hey, if the chance of winning a pretty unique prize in the Internet world is the impetus to get you over there, then so be it!

In the meantime, after two years of work, yes, I, we, my company, my lead programmer Wayne Venables, we all managed to FINALLY get CoffeeGeek out the door. It’s like giving birth, I tell you.

If you want to talk about a labour of love, this site is it. I’ve sunk so much funds into the development and initial promotion of this website, it isn’t funny. I’ve spent literally 1000s of hours over the past few years developing designs, writing out business plans, coding pages, trashing both design and pages, starting over from scratch, then doing the whole circle again.

In the early summer of this year, I finalized on a design (the one you see at that site), then worked out strategies and plans with a wide variety of people – my programmer genius Wayne, friends in the coffee business, sponsors and partners for the site, coffee aficionados, my dog, you name it.

It was still very much a side project though, until the horrible attack on September 11. Our company’s projects were cancelled and all of a sudden WebMotif’s staff had a lot of free time. CoffeeGeek became a work project so everyone would have something to do and get paid.

We worked on community features, we worked on ways to get the kind of information people wanted. We tightened up the design, and we got a brand new version of WIPS (our content management system) built just for CoffeeGeek’s advanced requirements.

Probably the only thing we didn’t entirely suss out was how to make money with the site.

Why? To be frank, it wasn’t a priority for me. Call it stupid, call it naive, call it whatever, but the idea of making any kind of income off this website was about the furthest thing from my mind. If the site can support itself and its hosting costs, I’ll be happy. If the site can make a few bucks for the content writers, I’ll be overjoyed. If the site makes a profit, well, maybe, just maybe, I’ll pay myself back some of the development costs. But more likely I’ll just spend the money on prizes and promotional stuff for the website.

CoffeeGeek is an attempt to provide a community space to the coffee and espresso loving community. A modern, state of the art space where people who love coffee can interact and connect. I hope like heck it succeeds. and I hope you enjoy it.

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