How we built NameBridge as a side project in 16 hours with a $0 budget
Here's how the creators of EarlyBird, built NameBridge in just 16 hours with a budget of $0.
As a tiny team of 3 indie hackers, we always look for ways to innovate and make things happen with limited resources. And we're on a mission to show our users the full capability of EarlyBird. So, we rolled up our sleeves and got to work, fueled by creativity and a passion for the birdie.
And after a few cups of coffee, we're excited to share our story of building NameBridge in just 16 hours with a budget of $0 and inspire other indie hackers to follow in our footsteps.
Note: Since this is a side project, we obviously took small breaks to focus on other work and meetings.
Sounds good, what is the idea?
NameBridge is a service that allows you to create a meaningful Chinese name based on your English name. The AI algorithm ensures that the name we generate sounds great and has a deep and significant meaning.
Why and How do we use EarlyBird?
With the advent of several low-code tools, the ability to quickly create new products or services has become pretty swift these days. And today, we can proudly say EarlyBird is more than just a landing page builder. It's a hub that enables you to develop stunning low-code microservices. This story sets an example to prove one of the capabilities of EarlyBird.
09:00 AM: Idea
Luo, one of our co-founders, was the driving force behind NameBridge (It was originally named Namiese but later changed to NameBridge as we felt it better represented the meaning of the name).
After coming up with the concept and developing the workflow, Luo presented the idea to the group and we all agreed it was a great idea and decided to collaborate on it.
09:50 AM: Action Plan
The first step was to brainstorm and come up with an action plan.
We planned to use EarlyBird's webhook support to connect with the NameBridge service. Webhooks allow you to receive HTTP POST requests to a URL for new lead captures and other actions. With EarlyBird's webhook feature (available in the Integration with apps section), anyone can easily connect their microservices with our product.
Next, we decided to use Supabase to create the application layer for NameBridge. With Supabase, anyone can start their project with a Postgres database, Authentication, instant APIs, Edge Functions, real-time subscriptions, and Storage.
And to enable the NameBridge service, we finalized to adopt OpenAI's gpt-3.5-turbo.
11:30 AM: Prompt engineering and testing
After validating our plan, we created and tested the AI prompt for gpt-3.5-turbo based on the NameBridge context.
This AI prompt helped us to generate meaningful Chinese names based on the user's English name inputs.
The tests finally went fine after hundreds, if not thousands, of prompt engineering by Luo and myself, here are some of the examples:
12:00 PM: Landing page design and copywriting
While Mufeng was working on the API, we built the skeleton landing page for NameBridge using EarlyBird. I created the first draft of the copy for the landing page in just a few minutes. And later applied it to the UI blocks, Luo then took over, completing the proofreading, rewriting, and tuning the functions.
** coffee breaks and meetings **
04:00 PM: Building the API
Mufeng completed the service API for NameBridge. We tested it internally and made sure nothing acted up during the test. Supabase provided us with a neat authentication layer, database, and Edge Functions, whereas Open AI did the GPT job flawlessly.
** coffee breaks and dinner time, we returned home and began working remotely **
11:15 PM: We called it a wrap
Mufeng released the main branch by midnight, ready for production.
After a few minutes of CI/CD automation deployment, NameBridge was launched and made available at: https://namebridge.earlybird.rocks/
Overall, it was a fun day hacking a mini-product within our ecosystem. As mentioned in the title, we created NameBridge in just 16 hours with a $0 budget:
- Landing page: EarlyBird (Free tier)
- Domain: subdomain by EarlyBird (Free, no need to buy a new domain for a early-stage side project)
- Logo: none (Why do we need a logo for an early-stage product?)
- API: Supabase (Free tier)
We believe other makers with development experience can easily use EarlyBird's webhook feature and build simple but cool services.
And once again, it proves anyone can create a new product or service with the right tools and creativity. We hope this article has inspired you to try something new and build your product or service using EarlyBird.
Remember, it's just the beginning of what we can achieve.