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Steven Skoczen

Welcome to SixLinks!

Steven Skoczen wrote this July 2, 2009 for SixLinks Developers .
A lot of you just joined from various places, so hello, and welcome to SixLinks. We've worked hard to make it a place that's useful and helps you live more sustainabily, and we're still working, making it simpler and adding new features to help you out. But since you're new, here's a quick look around to help start you out on the right foot!

The Basics

The Tour de SixLinks
As the name suggests, the Tour de SixLinks takes you though most of the things you can currently do with SixLinks. We definitely reccomend that people go through the guide at some point, even if you've used the site for a while, since there's likely something you missed!

Sustainability Showdown Sundays
Every Sunday, we post a new column, taking on an X vs. Y issue, sustainability-style. (Hand Dryer vs. Paper Towels, Windows down vs A/C, etc) Topics are suggested by people like you in the Sustainability Showdown Suggestions discussion. If you have an idea, post it in the discussions!

When we post a new showdown, you'll be able to find it featured on the Community page, our Twitter feed, and our Facebook page.

My Part
This is really the core of the site. My Part's a list of the most important things you can do to change how we live. We've focused on actions that have big impacts on the world, so you're not wasting your time, and there are points to give you an idea of how big each action is. (As an aside, earning points lets you get after your friends to keep up :) ) We update the list of tasks every six months, to keep current with legislation, technology, and the state of the world.

Each action has a step-by-step guide of how to complete it, and lets you keep a log of your progress (as well as let your friends comment on what you're doing). In the big picture, changing how we live comes down to you and me. Nobody else can change things in your home, car, diet, or lifestyle!

Coming Soon

We've also got some great things in the pipeline, so here's a sneak peek!

Weekly Emails
Once a week, you'll get an email from the site, telling you about new news stories you've followed, updates from people you're following, and reminders on the things you're working on. We'll also have a weekly challenge, worth bonus points!

Everybody wants badges, and they're on the way. You'll be able to earn cool badges by doing all sorts of things - getting points, posting blogs, helping people out, or submitting bugs. They're coming, and they're way cool. :)

Flags I'm probably most excited about. Flags are a way for you to ask for help when working on an action, in a way the whole community sees. When you see a flag up, you can respond to help the person out, and if you solve their issue, get extra points! As SixLinks grows, flags will become nearly real-time. Have a problem, get some help, keep on going.

Supporting the Site

We've had a few people ask how SixLinks is funded, and how they can help out, so here's the answers!

Tell your Friends
Obsessively. Make sure they get accounts, and get going. The biggest thing we need to change the world is people taking action. If you'd like, there's even a nifty Tell Your Friends page that will send the email for you!

Premium Accounts
The bulk of our funding comes from users like you who get premium accounts. You can get a premium account by setting up a recurring donation of any amount, and having one gets you access to extra features, and some extra points. They're pretty sweet.

We do have ads around the site. We've tried to make them as unobtrusive as possible, but they're here, and probably not going anywhere anytime soon. If you really don't like them, premium accounts have the option to turn off ads, and you can also always give us feedback!

The SixLinks Store
There's also a SixLinks Store. We're still putting it fully together, and have a lot of cool stuff in the works, but we'll eventually have dog toys from the awesome West Paw Design, T-Shirts, bumperstickers, and more!

So that's the extended overview. Welcome once again to SixLinks, and enjoy the site!

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Nicholas Creely July 8, 2009
Hey Steve, I just wanted to let you know that I really like the weekly email. It's very nicely organized and does a good job of both letting people know what's been going on with the site and encouraging them to work on their current tasks at hand.
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