Just back to the office now, sorry. A few things are happening:
1. Some people already have a limited order form. These are just a very few close friends and long-time drinking buddies who don't give a damn if something turns up worthless or broken. This is a variant of the face to face only sourcing club some people are tossing around last time I was in shenzhen. I'm getting feedback first, before making something public.
2. There will be an order form with 5-10 items released before I go to Shenzhen next on the 29th. That will go only to people who read the rules, sign a waver and fax it to me. Seriously. The flood of inquiries about the PnP and other tools has been amazing and cool, but I'm not equipped for this so it's totally overwhelming. I'm not going to profit from this, so I only want serious inquiries from interested hackers who want to tinker with the tools. This is not a commercial offering. Things may only be sold as a set, there may be a 20KG requirement (or additional $200 shipping fee), etc.
I try to respond to every single comment, email and post, eventually. I feel like a jerk, but I cannot and will not respond to any inquiries such as:
"How much will X and Y cost shipped to Z?" I have no idea! The only way I find out is standing in a muddy alley in China handing boxes over to tapers. There will be some guidelines and estimates, but nothing even close to a shipping table.
"I want X, but not Y, can you just send me X?" Things may be sold in sets to simplify bargaining. If they are, I refuse to unbundle things due to the tracking, packing, and shipping logistics. It would be a nightmare standing in that alley processing orders. That is not what shippers row is for, I'm woefully under equipped to do that, and it's generally uncool. Plenty of ebay, taobao, and aliexpress sellers are setup for that, use them! They will charge you for that convenience/service. I'm just a guy carting some stuff across the market.
"Payment is by X, but I only have Y" "Can I pay by credit card" "Can I have an invoice". Sorry, not a chance. Payment may be by wire to my personal Bank of China account, that is the dead easiest way. I have no desire to track and pool orders and wire the money myself, and paypal is expensive in fees, and I have to move the money to a bank before I can make a wire, then I have to keep track of it all. No way. If this sounds shady, get it from a reputable source. I discourage you from wiring money to a Chinese bank account of some random dude you don't know (me), it's a bad idea! See #1 above.
There will be an FAQ. I'm really sorry, but anyone who asks questions from the FAQ will be automatically excluded from the first buy. It's the only conceivable way I can see to keep it manageable.
3. If things go well, I may do a second buy. Beyond that, Seeed may release a DP documented and co-branded line of stuff I find in the market. Infrastructure can be put in place to move money, process orders, calculate shipping, track handling, etc. But I have NONE of that right now. It's just a dude in a muddy alley in China with a cart.
I really really want to make everyone happy, but I also have a ton of stuff to get done in Shenzhen and can't track and fill orders for a week gratis, then follow up on a lot of it. My idea of good scale is 5-10 items range - I can get a deal on 10 ovens, 10 dispensers, etc.
That got a bit epic, sorry. I have been thinking about this while traveling this past week and needed to type it out.