One topic that came up today was Bijoy Goswami‘s “Demo Sell Build” model for bootstrapping.
Bijoy Goswami, the prime mover behind the Bootstrap Network and founder of Bootstrap Austin, has an approach he advocates he calls “Demo Sell Build” that recognizes that most of the risk in a startup is not technology but market. Bijoy goes into more detail on his model in the “Bootstrap Bootcamp Fall 2007” DVD.
Starting with a demo forces you to figure out the core value you want to provide users. These demos can start out as short presentations or briefings (e.g. one page handout, one slide, one HTML mock-up page) to make sure you’ve nailed it before developing the full application.