Thursday, May 8, 2008


Life has sped up on me. It has been a very long week. It's as if I had been whisked on a tour bus, at high speed, then, a bit dazed, legs shaky from the ride, left to disembark at the starting point.

A week has passed since my last posting. So many things.

First: troubles with my webhost. They suspended my account, leaving me without my PRW (personal research website) and for a few days without any email (which mysteriously reappeared a couple days ago, after I had established new email elsewhere). Long story short, they overcharged me about 20% more than they had quoted me. They admitted to overcharging me, but refused to take action without some ridiculous documentation on my part. Since their customer service policy is to NEVER speak with anyone on the phone, all communication is done via email, at their pace. I called the credit card company, provided them with the quoted rates, and asked them to refund me only the difference. So the webhost suspended my account.

I'm in process of trying to transfer the domain to another webhost, which supports customer service. In addition, I registered three new domain names (.com, .net, .org) for my business, and set up new email through them.

I registered an LLC with the state. I met with the regional coordinator for the state Entrepreneurs' Network. I had lunch with the patent attorney friend of my father-in-law's. I drove two hours away to meet with the director of another center for technology development, which focuses on garnering federal funding for state enterprises.

I spoke on the phone with the contact for one of the federal grants I'm interested in. That one looks promising. I've left several messages for the contact on a second grant. I agreed to participate in a program through one of the local colleges that teams up a senior in business with an entrepreneur for a year to develop a complete business plan.

Meanwhile, we're still working on the basement family room. We have two walls covered with wallboard now.

This flurry of activity is more daunting than the snow flurries we had when we arrived. I've hit the ground running, but I've yet to catch up with myself. My task list gets longer each day. I'm still here. When I come up for air, I'll post again.


I got the website transferred. (Called back my credit card company and disputed the remainder of their charge, accepting that they did provide me with just under 2 months of the one year of hosting. I reset up my old email addresses forwarded to the new ones (in case any more come to those addresses).

I've installed WordPress (which was the framework I had been using), but have not been able yet to figure out how to unpack the bizarre .tar.tgz backup file, to reset up everything on the site. Worst case scenario, I'll have to redo it all manually. I'd just hate to lose all the search links. Maybe I'll have to check out all the G**gle caches, to figure out the proper pagenames. I get normally 20-100 or so hits per day on my PRW, so someone is finding the info useful.

Got a call back from the second federal grant point of contact. I was beginning to think it a bit beyond my reach at the moment, but now I'm convinced I should apply. I made it clear what I'm working on, and how I think it'd fit with the topic (and incidentally that I thought the wording of their proposal came off a bit too ambitious). He allayed my concerns, at least enough to make me feel more comfortable preparing a bid.

That said, it looks like I'll be hiring a grant writer to assist me (the state offers matching funds to defray the costs). Meanwhile, I need to interview some patent attorneys, and get cracking on the patent filing. I'd like to have that done ideally by the time I submit my federal grant applications. Otherwise (and possibly even so), I need to prepare my fed grant apps with enough detail to be intriguing, but not so much as to give away proprietary Intellectual Property.

  • interview grant writers
  • apply for state matching funds
  • interview patent attorneys
  • get cracking on both:
    • the details of the patent application, and
    • the details of my fed grant proposals.

Tomorrow it's more basement work. The doors are in the store, so I'll pick them up tomorrow. If all goes well, we'll finish the wallboarding, and hang the doors. I'll have a neighbor contractor do the seam taping and sealing. Planning to have the boys help paint the walls (that should be interesting!). Then we have to decide on the flooring. We're thinking of carpeting, but we might just opt for the expedient (an area rug). Then it's time to set up the family room, and for me to take a break from home repairs, and bury myself in research and business for the next month or so.


Leslie Madsen-Brooks said...

Wow! I am so impressed. I wish I had that kind of energy and focus on my personal projects right now.

Sorry about the troubles with your web host.

Lilian said...

wow, things ARE moving fast! I'm thrilled about that. I hope the whole web hosting thing is sorted out soon.