Archive for the ‘Startup’ Category

How We Work – Or why we ditched Campfire and moved to Google Wave.

July 21st, 2010 by Cedric Savarese

Veer West is a small “virtual” company. We spend more time working from home, coffee shops or on trips that in our actual office. It’s working well for us, but it’s not without challenges.

First of all, it’s important that we can access all our documents and applications from anywhere. Thankfully, that’s easily taken care of with online services like Google Apps and Dropbox.

A more serious challenge is how to facilitate social interactions. (more…)

Thoughts on Startup School

April 21st, 2008 by Cedric Savarese

I talked to quite a few people at the Startup School event this weekend, and I was surprised to find that almost everyone was working on consumer startups with advertisement as a business model. One startup, Noca, is even forfeiting one of the most lucrative revenue models there is (payment processor fees) to bet on advertising.

I’m not going to criticize this approach but I honestly thought there would be more young entrepreneurs in the Valley interested in emulating companies like Salesforce or 37signals.

It is quite ironic that David Heinemeier Hansson is seen as going against the grain, when his presentation was packed with nothing but grounded advice and a healthy dose of common sense. What’s wrong with the old true and tested way of charging money for your service?

Interestingly, DHH also said that Backback (37signals’ second app after Basecamp), had to be rebranded and relaunched as a “business” application when they realized that the consumer market wasn’t really profitable.

There was maybe one theme missing from the picture though. Building a successful business takes time and hard work. A lot of time and a lot of work, so it was great to meet you all, I have to go back to work now.

FormAssembly On-Site: Take Ownership of Your Web Forms

February 13th, 2008 by Cedric Savarese

If you looked at FormAssembly.com recently but decided that using a third-party service to manage your web forms wasn’t the right solution for you, we have some good news. FormAssembly On-Site is now available.

The On-Site edition offers the same great features enjoyed by thousands of our online users, but you can run it on your own server and keep your data safe and private.

FormAssembly On-Site is a reliable and secure solution designed to work on the most widely available configurations: Windows or Unix, IIS or Apache, and with any of the major database vendors. The support for such a wide range of technologies is made possible by the great open-source framework FormAssembly is built upon.

You can learn more about FormAssembly On-Site at http://onsite.formassembly.com

The new FormAssembly.com launched!

October 2nd, 2007 by Cedric Savarese

Still adjusting stuff here and there, but overall it’s going smoothly… quite a relief!

New FormAssembly.com

Getting ready to launch the new FormAssembly.com

September 10th, 2007 by Cedric Savarese

FormAssembly.com started two years ago as a free form building tool and a repository for an open-source javascript library for web forms. It has since evolved into a commercial web application with thousands of customers using it to process their web forms and collect data. Yet, many aspects of the site still bore the mark of its early days and it became soon apparent that the whole application needed an overhaul.

After months of work, the new FormAssembly.com is nearing completion.

This new version is a complete re-write, and since it is hosted on a completely separate platform, we are looking forward to a very smooth transition, with the two versions running concurrently for as long as necessary.

The feedback from the early beta-testers is pretty good. There are also plenty of new (and long requested) features, so I’m confident that our users will be happy with the new version.

I will also look at the traffic and conversion numbers attentively anxiously. In theory, the new site should perform much better, but sometimes what sells is really not what you think, so it will be interesting to compare the numbers. I’ll try to post my findings here.

It’s easier to learn when you don’t know anything

October 27th, 2006 by Cedric Savarese

The nice thing about being a novice entrepreneur is that you never cease to find new pearls of wisdom about business just about everywhere you look at.

While reading State of Denial, I came accross the following quote regarding how a CEO should allocate his or her time.

“…one third of the time on top priorities, one third on executive placement and development and the final third on evaluating the product or results.”

Had I gone through a MBA this could have sound like old news, but to me, it felt like I had just unearthed the secret rule of time management.

Obviously, I don’t have to worry about finding and managing executive people but even a small independant internet company owner needs to spend time on developing personal relationships with its customers, partners and advisors. The rewritten rule could be:

The entrepreneur’s schedule

  • 1/3: Top Priorities
  • 1/3: Networking, sales and support
  • 1/3: Measuring progress

Let’s just say that I think I get the first one right.