First off I'm not quite sure when the first time was that I interacted with Tynan. It might have been on one of his numerous travel adventures, or one of his pickup artist posts. I'm not really certain. One thing I learned was that I really enjoyed his writing. He's got a blog over at Tynan.com. Check it out.
For the last few months I've been testing out SETT his new blogging platform. It now runs this site. And I'm super happy with it. So happy that Ive done a review of it. I've never publicly reviewed anything that runs one of my sites. But switching from WordPress to SETT deserves an explanation. Here it goes...
Since before 1998 I've been in love with technology and more importantly publishing platforms. Because I'm a writer. I've had self hosted personal sites hosted on HTML, Cafelog, MovableType, Pmachine, and WordPress. All of them were different. I noticed after awhile I quit blogging. Because I wasn't writing I was maintaining a blog. I was spending so much energy developing websites for clients, and my businesses that I no longer had time to write. And didn't have time to really develop my own site the way I wanted. I'm still scaling my businesses sites, and client sites and don't have time to manage scaling my own site in any fashion. Or even to pursue my first love which is writing. At the same time Tynan was building SETT.
I liked everything I saw in it. Especially the ability to encourage commenting, and exchanging traffic. It also appeared simple and encourages the development of a community. This is something I used to have in my own personal blog. So after a lot of thought when SETT opened up I signed up to experiment with it.
I experimented for awhile and then I was sold. I like everything about it. Mostly that it will allow me to write and not worry about having to manage my websites infrastructure. I will like it even more when themes come out. But even with a lack of themes I still love it. It's simple and easy to use and keeps me focused on writing when I have time, and developing a community over here. Stats are built in, and I can just focus on doing what I love doing and that's writing. Also love the fact that users can send me a private message without clogging my email. That's smart and it makes my blog a private social network of sorts. Love it.
SETT has so much potential to grow into a great business for Tynan, and his partners. Something like sponsored stories in our What's Next boxes and split revenue with publishers. I mean so much potential just there really. I could go on for hours on just that idea. But I won't.
Speaking of technology. SETT runs on a great set of servers. SETT is being developed smartly. Tynan gets letting people in slowly and developing it as he goes. He worked with me to solve a few problems one day and he was super smart about it. I truly believe he gets what it takes to run this project successfully. He gets customer service too. He answered my emails promptly and super helpfully. Most importantly SETT is fast and stable. That's important to me. And this is coming from someone who once ran the infrastructure of a blog network with over 100+ sites. As well as a site that would get 100,000 visitors a day at times. I know fast sites.
SETT's going to be successful. I just wish it had been around 5 years ago. I probably would have been more successful and had a few more sites on it and running smoothly I'm sure.
I look forward to using SETT for a long time. I've never been happier in a blog host. And probably won't be. It's stress free and I always feel like I can go to sleep at night knowing that a few visitors might find there way here from other SETT sites. This puts a smile on my face...
So if you get a chance sign up for SETT's next round of invites and get started blogging.
This changes everything.
Thanks a lot for the super generous review. SETT has been a tremendous amount of work, and it's words like yours that make it worthwhile (well-- that and getting to run my own blog on it!).
What we have up now is just the basics-- our vision of how very basic blogging should work. It's the tip of the iceberg for the stuff we've got planned.
We'll probably never let people buy placements in the RTN box, because we want people to know that the posts that show up there are there because they're relevant. Better plans get better ratios of in -> out (essentially subsidized by free plan views), but that's as far as we'll go.
That said, we have several never-been-done ideas for how to help writers make money through SETT in ways that will be positive for their community as well as the larger community of SETT bloggers. Still a few steps to go before we can roll them out, but I'm excited about it.
Thanks again for being part of SETT and for the review!
If you don't mind could you delve into technical/experiential detail as to what separates the SETT blogging platform from the rest? I've hitched personal blogs on AOL, myspace, wordpress, then SETT and a few others and they all seem the same reliability wise for tiny blogs. Do blogging platforms tend to hiccup after a certain threshold of users and/or hits? Are the differentiators of one blogging platform from another only perceptible at the level where one runs many many high traffic sites?
Any input would be appreciated - thanks!
I've run a lot of sites. When I look at a blogging platform I look at scalability. Whether or not this thing can take a heavy load. And just looking at how it is set up I believe that it can.
And yes most blogging platforms do hit a scalability issue especially with WordPress because of problems with the general nature of Apache as a server. To me it's perceptable in load speed as well. Even in small sites.
SETT loads much faster than WordPress in my experience.
Looks great! I can totally imagine using this on a few sites that I have in the works...I love the way the blog and community aspects are so well integrated. Thanks for the thorough review!
Exactly it's great the way the two can be separated. Heck something like this would work wonders for CAFETY even. The great thing is its super flexible easy and it helps writers focus on content, and building community not managing a website.
Thanks for stopping by and let me know if you have any questions!
It appears that all posts show up under the archive instead of the blog. Reached out to support too but have not heard back. Anyone else having the same problems
Last Friday night, after two years of really hard work on SETT, we sent invite codes out to the four hundred people on the SETT waiting list, offering fifty spots. Whoever managed to snag a spot could either take a free basic account or buy a premium account and get 50% off for life.
The main point of releasing these spots is to start testing SETT on a wider scale, to get more feedback, and to begin work on some really cool blog to blog features. So if no one actually paid for an account, and everyone just took free ones to mess around with, I would have been satisfied. I figured maybe one or two people might pay, and maybe things would go really well and five people would pay.
As it turns out, thirteen people bought accounts, covering all three price points that we set. More than the actual money, which I've already used to upgrade the servers, I'm personally touched that people are excited enough about SETT to pay for it. I've worked so hard on this and continue to narrowly focus on making it the best blogging platform, that it's moving to have people who share the vision.
I'm also grateful for the people who set up free accounts and have already started using them. Many of the paid and unpaid SETT customers are members of this site who are active in the community section and comments, so I have high expectations for all of their blogs. As they get settled in, import their old blogs, and write new posts, I'll be linking to some of them here. Next Monday I will link to every new SETT blog that has at least one post on it.
Here are the last six posts I've written for the CodeCombat blog over the past few months. Look at the view counts: