What you are asking is like saying I want all my friends to buy me presents, but I'm not going to give them anything.
We started our company in Canada in 1997 before everyone was buzzing about "dot,coms". Now it is 2009 and we are one of the few that survived.
During the last 11 years I've seen many businesses come and go. While some with very strong leaders were able to attract people to work for them for free, especially in the "early days", those were very rare.
What's more you aren't promising much, you've said upfront that it's going to be 1-2 years before there is any hope of any return. That is not a 'unique selling proposition' to inspire people to follow you.
If you quit you day job, how are you
going to support yourself for 1-2
How can you inspire people to
follow you when you make success
sound unlikely before you've begun?
You've talked about the technology
so far - what about the market
opportunity? If you want to get
people to work for you for free you
need to sell the proverbial sizzle,
not the steak. In today's economy
expect things to be a lot harder
than they have been in the past.
I was talking to an entrepreneur the other day who is doing similar things to you, but with a very different approach. He has a division of his own business that is very lucrative and he uses that money to fund his "projects of hope" ... the projects that he hopes will make him a lot of money one day for very little work.
The world is full of people with great ideas. (I've been sitting on an idea I think is really good for 2.5+ years but won't invest in it because I think Canada is the wrong market to launch it in.) It is astonishing how often the same idea get tossed around. Yet how many of those go on to be the next Twitter? 1 in 1,000,000? (Those odds are probably to high.)
My advice: learn from the mistakes of others. Study the best open source projects and learn from them how you can best grow your business idea.
Then adjust your message. Know where your value is and inspire others to follow you by getting them excited about the opportunity you are presenting. Talk to VCs and most will ask first about the management team. What they are looking for are the people who have been able to inspire others to follow them and as a result have grown in spite of the odds against them.
Parting thought: I was chatting with a Silicon Valley VC the other day that is scouting for deals in Canada. When I asked about VC funding opps today he said that great companies will always get a good price. Good companies will get investments, but in today's economy they may have to give up a little. The rest are not going to get financed.