23/04/16The Journey Begins
This post has been coming a long time. Really rather a long time in fact, but no destination is ever complete without the journey to get there, right?
Before proceeding any further, it might be a worthwhile idea to first offer a bit of backstory to provide a sense of context for what follows. A few years ago now, I met up with a great friend of mine one Sunday afternoon for a coffee and a chat; he just happened to be my Airsoft “Maker” (aficionados of HBO’s late lamented True Blood will get the reference in less than a heartbeat) – the individual responsible for getting me into this wonderful sport in the first place. Hook, line and sinker too, I might add, as I really didn’t need much convincing that it was going to be something that I could truly immerse myself in.
For some reason, on this particular Sunday, we weren’t actually out in the woods somewhere, or buried deep in one of our favourite subterranean CQB sites, but rather mooching about town in that deliciously carefree way that can only be done at a weekend.
What if you could buy used kit online from multiple sellers in a single transaction? A site selling pre-owned airsoft stuff that used a standard ‘shopping cart’ would be amazing!
While browsing the goodies on offer at the local weekly car boot fair (in the hope this might turn up a hidden gem of camo or some other related goodness), we starting musing on the fact that expanding our respective airsoft arsenals through the second-hand marketplace wasn’t often as easy or as hassle-free as it really ought to be. “What if you could buy used kit online from multiple sellers in a single transaction? A site selling pre-owned airsoft stuff that used a standard ‘shopping cart’ would be amazing!” exclaimed my companion while we leafed through ancient, dog-eared copies of Haynes manuals and rummaged through bins of vintage Star Wars figures.
What this statement had done was to plant a pretty hefty mind bomb in the pair of us. Apple founder Steve Jobs had long been an inspiration to us both, and this seemed like it fitted in with his unwavering, zen-like desire for simplicity in all things. Just why was it so hard to find and buy the stuff you wanted in one place, cart it, and then check out in one hit? And how hard could it be to set something like that up? We were both in the digital design and development games, so it couldn’t be that difficult to do it, surely? Could it?
What’s in a name?
Agreed that developing a solution to this age-old conundrum was the way forward, the first thing to do was to come up with a name for the venture. While that sort of thing can often require an eternity in its own right, mercifully the answer was arrived at almost instantly: Airsoft Classifieds. While it might not pick up any awards in the originality category, it did very much do exactly what was said on the proverbial tin.
Do or not do. There is no try …
And so began the process of making it all happen; fuelled by enough espresso to give the Italian economy a bit of a boost, we set to work.
Before long, the flesh of a design was taking shape around the skeleton of the content and functionality we had in mind. This was followed by a few lines of code, which soon multiplied into thousands of lines. The ball was well and truly rolling now. It was starting to feel as if a long-held dream was slowly becoming reality. Where would it all end up was the burning question on our minds. So, maybe it took a bit more time than we thought it might (sometimes life really does get in the way, you know!), but hopefully, the wait has been worth it. As someone far wiser than I once said a long time ago: “Do or not do. There is no try.”
And the rest is …history?
While we’ve put a fair bit of time, thought, and downright graft into the project so far, and we unquestionably want it to be the go-to destination for those looking to move on their airsoft gear to pastures new, truthfully, it’s far too early to tell what the future holds but we’ve got all the things crossed.
That said, we’re sincerely hopeful we’ve got at least a few bits right from the start, and one of the joys of all things on the Web, is that changes can be rapidly made in response to user feedback. Putting something like this up there will always involve a process of continuous refinement, and we’d be delighted to work with you all to make this thing the very best it can be. If you’ve got any feedback, suggestions, or feature requests, then sound off and hit up our contact form and we’ll gladly consider what can be done.
We’ve also got plans for the whole shebang. A lot of them. We don’t just want to make the experience of buying and selling airsoft stuff as easy and as painless as possible, we’re also looking to put something back into the sport that has given us so much good clean fun over the years; all being well, you can expect to see the pages of this Blog fill up with news, views and reviews of everything that’s going on. On that note, we’re also looking for anybody who fancies writing pieces on things that interest them within this field, so if you think that could well be you, then get in touch and let’s make it happen.
It doesn’t stop there either; you can expect to see changes to the functionality on an ongoing basis (over the coming months, we’ll be sure to keep you updated on any important updates). As we said previously, it’s all about keeping the momentum going and striving for continuing improvements.
Of course, this site will be as nothing without lots of airsofting goodies listed up for sale on it, so now that the hard work has been put in, we’re live and the framework exists for you to post your kit, it’s over to you! That’s the hard sell bit over…
Let’s see where we go with all this.