www.enca.fi finally opens up its doors to everyone.
You can sign up from this link, or by clicking at the image:
Previously I had issued an invitation to all readers in my ye olde post:
Feel free to spread the word ;)
ENCA has been an interesting side-project for me. Being involved in designing and planning a service with very precise vertical focus: euro coin collectors and hobbyists. It has been engaging to toy around with things like user motivation and involvement and seeing up close how the most enthusiastic members are using the service.
In countries like Germany euro coin collecting is a very common and generally accepted hobby: It is not unheard of to get a question "do you have some finnish euro coins?" from a german after you have introduced yourself as coming from Finland. The French are also pretty well-versed in their eurocoin hobby. ENCA's goal is to create an active community and source of information for any hobbyist or interested person - and basically allow the collectors and hobbyist to love their hobby more. Get more out of it, and out of like-minded people sharing the same interest.
And here's an interesting question: should a company use something like www.ning.com in creating these kinds of vertical communities? Or is it a better option to go with a custom platform like ENCA has done? That remains to be seen; so far Ning and their competitors seem way too restricting and complicated to really act as a basis for proper business. I'm eagerly waiting for that to change, and for some of them to embrace a product/service model that is free-form enough to allow for a completely custom vertical community to be built on it - which would also require a model of "yours to keep forever"...
.. It's somewhat likely that I don't blog another entry before 2009, so:
Happy 2009 everyone!
How was your 2008? What's your sentiment going into 2009? Hopes and fears?