Now blogging at diego's weblog. See you over there!


I want to thank everyone who sent their opinion to my entry yesterday 'to be or not to be, either in comments or to me personally by email. I really appreciate it.

Positive and encouraging comments overall, even those raising words of caution. I'd say there were three common themes, some comments talking about all of them, most about one or two:

  • Building a company is a lot of work, but also very rewarding. I agree. :-) I was the first engineer in the previous company I worked for in the Valley, and I have some first-hand experience of how it goes. Hearing it from others is always a good reminder.
  • Come up with a licensing decision soon. Mainly this reflects the dilemma of 'to open source or not to open source.' I think this decision doesn't necessarily have to preclude the idea of the company itself, but it certainly affects the business model, and other things like early adoption, developer community and how it is formed, and so on. Apart from the open-source decision, even going for binary-only raises some questions: there clearly has to be a free version, since as it was pointed out several free products exist, but going beyond that there are many variables to juggle, such as adversiting-supported or not for the free version, paid (and how much), a combination of those, and so on.
  • Competition. The third and possibly most influential point (in terms of making anybody think twice) was about competition. In general entering what is already an established market is always hard, in any product area, but I really think that innovation in this area is long overdue not just in terms of features but also quality, and I thinks spaces is a good base to build upon, and, relief! several comments agreed on this. Cristian mentioned quite specifically in an email that users must have a good reason to switch, and innovation and quality are big parts of that (price also counts). Bob raised the issue of Microsoft, which is clearly unavoidable to any company, large or small, operating in basically any area of the sofware business and to some hardware manufacturers as well. Mark pointed out that spaces would also be competing with Chandler from OSAF. Also important, and my comment on this is only that Chandler was as much potential competition to spaces before I started along this path as it is now.

Russ posted a cool comment on his weblog. There is one particular sentence he wrote that stuck:

[...] my thoughts are simply this: If you're thinking about starting a business, you must want to. If you want to, then you should.
I can't add much to that, except to say: Onward!


Categories: clevercactus
Posted by diego on March 28 2003 at 10:05 PM

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