Friends Near and Afar

Friends Near and Afar, Letters we Share and Cherish.

1345 free cups of coffee from around the world

For more than a year, SLOWLY had no ads other than free downloads; in other words, only expenses and no income. I see that as an early testing phase, in order to try to exclude other factors, and to focus on whether this idea is okay.

I only wanted this phase to last for three months, but in the end, due to personal limitations, this period of no income at all was “a little bit” longer than expected.


How I found my first users

When deciding to start a startup, the first challenge is finding the first users. In the past, I did that while working for clients, usually with a good media advertising budget, plus some established brands. Compared to startups that have no money and start from scratch, there is a big difference; and the original knowledge and experience have become useless. Is this an attractive idea? Will the number of users reach a level sufficient to keep things running?


Two startups were not successful, so what will happen this time?

I don't have a deep memory of my childhood, but there is a particularly strong thought: “I don't want to be an office worker.” In fact, not only office work, but I also didn't have much interest in school (but I really like to teach myself!). Maybe it has something to do with the education system, their methods? My little thought is that I am not the kind of person who wants to be a great person or gain fame and fortune, but I am more afraid of formulaic things, afraid of facing myself and realizing I had lost vitality.


As usual, no announcement came

...from the peeps at the SLOWLY team HQ. Sadly, as they are missing big time on promoting the app, the services, the merchandise which supports the free service which most people use.

Their leadership of the project chose to run the company this way. A social media and communications manager is not a part of their staff, and therefore, prime opportunities like this are wasted. 😕🙄


After 2 and a half months, a new Beta version appears

A day ago or so, our good friend Russian Cousin shared his find of a new 7.3.0 BETA release of Slowly.

We had been chatting about the general slow down in releases during the Summer months (last regular release was 7.2.28, June 28, 2022), and wondering what was going on.


“I was excited to receive a new letter till I read it 😒”

A recent topic posted on our subReddit has a screenshot of a full 'letter'. In reality, a 90 words message, the first one this user sent to the reddit poster – a young woman who lives in India.

She was dismayed by the contents of this first contact, the sender is also from India. She posted in the sub and requested comments, and various users replied. As I write this, the topic has 58 comments.


Slangs, Expressions, local Idioms sets

We have seen them come, arrive, puzzle many of us (mostly everyone who doesn't live in their home countries). Sometimes even some locals are surprised, by bizarre words, idioms.

We are referring to the Expressions or Local Idioms stamps – the ones with some local colourful language that is mysterious to most other Slowly users.


Time to write up

Thoughts have crossed my mind, many expressed in various comments (on our subReddit, on Telegram groups, on Feedback site).

The Slowly Feedback site is up and running for two months now, it first arrived and was reported here on April 29.

Much has happened since. Things matured, improved in many ways. But there are still some reasons for a bit of concern. So, let's look at what's up?


There are many ways to join and use the site

I had some experiences and made notes regarding it. And this morning, a message came :

I think that I would have to sign out of the site (I signed in with my email) & likely have to use my Slowly ID to use the feedback Slowly site, by signing in with that.

Since I had some problems, I wrote back and shared insights. Time to publish these, as I think they can be helpful to others as well.


Slowly users tend to be both Cat and Book lovers

All the Cat-themed stamp issues did well – my favourite being the gorgeous 'Purrfect Holidays' set, still available via the Time Machine.

I thought of a suggestion, for a set of stamps presenting both of those passions. I follow a great account on Twitter called 'Reading with Cats' and delight on the imagery she posts and shares on this theme.