all about the Stacks


Years ago, my college roommate and I built Stackd to make it easier to get a website online. Progress was made on a second version, but we weren’t able to ship before graduating. Recently I started working on Stackd 2 again. At its core it’s the same idea Stackd was founded on (making it easy to start a website), but this time it’s all about the Stacks.

Fulfill the promise of the web

Before the web, everything happened on the big networks. The web was different because it allowed anyone to start a website — at least in theory. It’s costly and hard to start a website, so most don’t. The siteless can participate on a few large networks, but the promise of the open web has been largely abandoned for something much less revolutionary.

Today’s web hands our (digital) lives over to corporations under questionable terms no one really reads. It gives governments the tools to censor citizens and compile lists of “troublemakers.” Security breaches impacting millions (or billions) happen all the time. Ads incentivize a race to the bottom in shady behavior with respect to our privacy.

If this is all the web has to offer, what’s so special about it? The web’s promise was giving everyone a place of their own to share. Instead, today’s web is confined mostly to a few domains. Facebook is even bold enough to call this “the internet” (don’t forget to fill out your application)…

I wish you luck, Zucks. I really do. But you are going to have a mutiny on your hands and I just can’t wait to see how you handle it.
 — Michael Scott

All this because it’s too hard to start a website?

We need to do better if we want the web to be the platform we hoped for. A more open web means more websites, and luckily it’s gotten easier to start one. Gone are the days of manually uploading files to a server and copy/pasting commands to set up a site. It’s now as simple as one command. Developers are able to define software “Stacks” as code, run a command (e.g. `stack up`), and that’s all it takes.

Stackd aims to make it easy to `stack up` a website.

Empower creators

“Open” in front of anything sounds great, but what’s so special about the open web? Easy — creators have more freedom. Instead of giving free content to closed platforms, we can control our own content and share it using a bigger, more open platform — the web.

Ain’t free

It’s hard to compete with “free” software users pay for in ways they aren’t fully aware of. Our price won’t be buried within a TOS somewhere. The real challenge is convincing people not to settle for good enough.

There will always be free things in life and on the internet. It’s easy to just say “f it” and take what you get (I know I do sometimes). Stackd is for those who want more, and aims to make that the easy choice.

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