“What I do today is important because I am exchanging a day of my life for it.” -Hugh Mulligan
We all have things we want to do before we die. Accomplishments like climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, row a boat through the Galapagos, and drink Pinot Grigio in Tuscany. I want to help make The Next Web the best website in the world. I also want to go to Greece with my lover. What do you want to do before you die?
By day, Scot Hacker is the Webmaster at UC Berkeley‘s School of Journalism. But when he’s not taking care of his son or hiking, he’s hacking. In fact, the appropriately named Hacker programs every night between 11pm and 1am and his latest project is “Bucketlist.”
Simply put, a bucketlist is a list of things to do before you die, a play off the term “kicked the bucket.” Bucketlist, the website, is a site where you can keep track of all things things you’re going to do before you die. It also acts like a social network, essentially a warehouse of interesting and inspiring stories shared between users to kick-start your own life goals. While the idea behind the website is simple enough, its aims is noble: to help people find inspiration in the accomplishments of others.
On the site, users can add items to their Bucketlist along with stories, images and videos. As you surf the site, you can “vote” for items you think are interesting by clicking the “I Like This” button below the item title. You can also brose the “Popular” section in the main menu which tallies up all the “liked” items and floats the most popular ones to the top of the list.
If you find something cool on someone else’s list, you can click the “Me Too!” button. When you do that, you’ll get a new copy of that item in your own list, which you can then modify. Bucketlist lets you “follow” other people’s lists, which means their added and completed items show up in the following section under the main menu. The rules are simple: no porn, no mean-spirited stuff, no trying to use Bucketlist as a platform to promote your business. “Don’t post anything you wouldn’t want your mother to see,” Hacker writes.
Hacker, who used to run a site that cataloged people’s misinterpretations of song lyrics, enjoys building sites of user contributed content with pages of material for people to “click through and consume like peanuts.” In other words, sites with high page views and low bounce rates. Hacker is spending his time right now understanding the users, watching how people are contributing to a pool.
The site, which launched just three months ago, currently has 1,736 lists and 28,000 goals. Looking forward, Hacker plans to build an iPhone app to accompany the site so users can jot down ideas quickly while they’re out in the real world bumping into inspiration.”I’m still trying to find ways for more Bucketlist be more social,” he says. To monetize, Hacker will avoid selling ad space but he says he’s definitely open to selling the site to a company like Facebook that would be interested in integrating it into their already existing framework.
#1 on Scot’s Bucketlist? He writes, “While hiking Mt. Tamalpais recently, discovered a wonderful little 1930s hotel called the West Point Inn, nestled in with the Bay Area’s best views. No electricity, so you have to rough it a bit, but it was just wonderful. Would love to spend the night here with family or just the wife.”