This is the first week that we really had strangers (no offense strangers) who signed up to use our app. The previous weeks we had friends and family using it and telling us that they liked it and thought it was a good idea. Thanks, everyone! That’s what you are supposed to say. But for this week, we actually had a few people from Reddit, Indie Hackers, and Twitter joining us. It is really fun to see people signing up for your app that you don’t know. We can even see if people are in the app and what they are using, and that is ten times as exciting! Random people are using our app! Woohoo! This week worked well because there were 2 matches that ended in a 0-0 draw, so it was nice to have the app work exactly for the reason we made it. We are looking to start advertising to get 100 users who actually use the Match Oracle each week, so that is one of our next steps. If you want to take a look, you can go to the Match Oracle App and see what you think. Email us if you like what you see!
Matt and I have been working hard and are at a place where Match Oracle (https://matchoracle.com) works for what we want. It has a lot of bugs so it isn’t working as smoothly as we’d like, but we always know what to do to fix it. We decided to ask a few friends and family to try it out to hear their thoughts and while people think it is cool, it didn’t work well. First, we automatically grab data from a soccer site that provides data to users. We use an API (Application Programming Interface) which lets websites talk to each other and share data. I’m using Google Sheets to then take this information and apply different formulas to the data to get a match rating. Unfortunately, the API failed when we tried to get too much information at the same time (there are limitations to what is allowed with using an add-on in Google Sheets). While I really like Google Sheets, some of these limitations are pretty annoying. Because of this error, all the games were showing up as a 0-0 draw, so our app was then recommending skipping all of the matches! Obviously, that wasn’t right. The other major problem was that I was out of cell range so I wasn’t able to make the changes necessary to get it up and running, so we had to wait hours to be able to fix it. We learned a lot from our first attempt and hope to have more success with each progressive week.
In the words of Dani Rojas from Ted Lasso, “Football is life.” Matt (my brother) and I have always enjoyed soccer. We both grew up playing as kids and continued into adulthood. We followed the EPL in the 90s when Man U was the best team by far and even though I’ve parted ways (LFC!), Matt is still a Manchester United supporter. I remember recording all the 1994 World Cup games on VHS and spending the summer watching all of them. Remember when Roberto Baggio missed the PK for Italy in the Finals? I do.
I love watching soccer (especially the Premier League these days) but there are a few aspects I could do without. Diving and the dramatics of getting fouled gets very old very quickly. I really hate watching an entire match and it ending in a 0-0 draw. That’s two hours of my life I’ll never get back… Our lives have also gotten busier and busier as we started to have kids. Weekends are often filling up family activities and although I’d love to sit around and watch Premier League matches all day, I find myself recording as many matches as possible and watching one or two in the evening.
But I don’t want to watch a bad match, so I often would text Matt and ask him “Is the Liverpool match worth watching?” He’s about the only person in the world I can ask that question of because I don’t want any information about the match. All I want to know is should I use my limited time to watch it. Most people aren’t able to only say yes or no, but instead interject a phrase like “Yes, just stick with it,” or “Best. Goal. Ever.” or “You’ll love that match.” Nope. I don’t want to hear anything. Nothing. Nada. Honestly, the only thing I want to know is does it end in a 0-0 tie? That makes it unwatchable (in my book).
A little over a month ago, Matt said, “I have an idea for an app, and I think you’ll like it!” We’ve been working ever since and are getting closer day by day to having a finished product. You can check out where we currently are in our project at https://matchoracle.com. My next post will tell more about it, but feel free to sign up to receive the app once we publish it.