By: Jason Cohen
Founder, Smart Bear Software
A Smart Bear
If you’re like me…
I hate that phrase. What if I’m not like you? What if I don’t want to be like you? What if I’m exactly like you but with a better haircut?
So forget whether you’re like me, but see if any of the following could be used to describe you:

  1. You run a startup.
  2. You’re a fan of StackOverflow.
  3. You like talking about, arguing about, learning about, and thinking about startups.
  4. You have useful things to say about startups but you have only 37 RSS subscribers and half of those are RSS directories and one of those is your Mom, and you’d like become just a little more famous waxing philosophical while also getting interesting new perspectives from other people.

In short: You want StackOverflow, for startups.
Well it’s here! It’s called Answers OnStartups, and it’s a Q&A site for any topic about startups and entrepreneurship, using the same technology as StackOverflow.
But wait, doesn’t this compete with our own Bob Walsh’s StartupToDo.com, what with the “community building” and all?
The fact that Bob has graciously hosted this guest-post proves it’s not a conflict, but let me give you a better reason: StartupToDo (besides having a lot more than just forums!) helps you with every operational detail of your startup. The encouragement to “critique other folks’ stuff” is direct and specific, and therefore invaluable.
Answers OnStartups is more general, but not less useful. Some recent questions include:

Answers OnStartups is the latest addition to Dharmesh Shah’s OnStartups.com destination for startups. Once again, the idea isn’t “competition” with sites like 47hats! Your RSS reader has room for more than one feed, right?
I have the privilege of co-moderating Answers with Dharmesh, which basically means I get to correct typos and add tags to questions. Well OK, also so far I’ve maintained the #1 spot on the site (based on up- and down-votes from other members), but I’ve noticed Alex Papadimoulis (below) is gaining fast…
So who else is actually active on the site? Some folks you might know (linked to their user profiles, so you can see that they’re actually active):

Notice something? Everyone listed here — including Dharmesh and myself — are self-made technology geeks-turned-founders. This isn’t run by MBAs. This isn’t run by VPs of Big Title at Souless Corp. We’re coders who learned business through experience and necessity.
You know, like you. That’s why this is so awesome.
Of course the best part is meeting all the folks I didn’t know before who aren’t “famous” but have useful, interesting, new things to say.
Are you the next person I’m going to love meeting? Check out Answers and join this new, intelligent community of startup founders!

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