Hello all as father to kids and after seeing kids surfing the internet and there parents trying to monitor this it made me wander about the parents control market especially the desktop application that filter web content ( yeah i know its proxy server ) . what do you think about this market ? i know there are few big companies.
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There are viable products in the market for both technical and non=technical parents that are free. My guess is that you'll need to do a lot of market research before deciding if there is opportunity to grab the market.
Three products that I know of:
Open DNS allows you to filter sites based on category, a simple re-pointing of your DNS at the router level - higher on the technical side - but very solid
Norton Online Family is free, not sure how effective - but it looks easy to implement and it is a well known name that will attract non-techie paretns
K9 Web Protection is also free, easy and works very well allowing parents to monitor and control using a web interface.
There is also a firefox plug in that works well too.
I think this market is one that hasn't been cracked yet, many companies have attempted to offer a viable solution but no one has succeeded in my own opinion. I believe the problem is that many have tried to create a desktop solution that is hard to use, let alone configure. It is a good idea since the need is obviously out there, and as a parent, I have not found a solution that does what I need without having to setup firewall rules, browser properties, etc... too complex for the non-techie parents.
I worked on Glubble which attempted to do exactly that.
It is doable but it requires quite a lot of automatization in order to not only be a geek product.