I couldn’t think of a better way to start a technology blog than with a non-technology post… (haha)
We’re about a week away from going live in the Appstore, and what a journey it’s been for us to get there!
This tiny app that you’ll be holding in your palm is our work of art.
Delivering this piece of art has taken love, sweat and blood from our team of 3 doers.
We rolled up our sleeves and WE DID IT! (been watching too much Dora with my twins)
I think there are a few unusual factors about our story:
- All 3 of us are dads, couple of us with toddlers (I have twin girls, Shuhao a boy) and one of us with two teenagers (Michael).
- Our work has been self funded
- We all worked on it while having a full time job: meaning that we really had to deal with 3 jobs at the same time: being Dads, our full time jobs and inkWire.
It’s not without a little smile that i read the news we keep getting about prodigy university students starting a business… I think it is truly great to encourage creativity and entrepreneurship at a young age… but from an effort difficulty standpoint, try being a dad, dealing with a full time job and working on your startup… and you’ll be down for the nightshift on a more or less regular basis.
If this sounds all too familiar to you, you are my hero!
One might ask: Why? Why do it?
Speaking for myself, my answer is: I have this urge, this need to create stuff, objects of art for people to enjoy… I also have this longing for having the freedom to do it, not having a manager telling you what to do… and then, a will to beat the odds… a very american feeling (I am a naturalized US citizen from Belgium).
I’ll never forget this look I got from a partner at a major silicon valley VC firm when I told him my wife was expecting twin girls… he said: good luck with that! … as if having children meant that you couldn’t make it as an entrepreneur…
Sure, my priorities have changed after becoming a dad.
They have shifted from “make enough $$ so i don’t need to worry about it, can work on what i want and can buy some cool toys” to “help my girls grow into smart, healthy and happy young ladies with a college education” … but I’ll add to that: “and have fun at it” … and doing the job that you feel proud of doing is a big part of that. If you have the entrepreneur’s fire in the belly, it doesn’t go away with kids… you’ll just get a few more gray hair while you’re trying to figure out how to keep the whole family fed and safe as you work on your venture…
Our journey has been long.
I always wanted to be an entrepreneur, I knew it since i was 15 years old…
I just had no idea what to do at that age… it took me 20 years to figure it out.. I guess you could say i’m slow… but once i get there I persevere…
and persevere we did!
It was back in 2003 that the idea for inkWire germinated…. while gazing at my computer screen and daydreaming while on my corporate job … it dawned on me: there is so much information out there, constantly being created… most of what I will probably never become even aware it existed… wouldn’t it be cool if there was a little helper out there, who could figure out what i care about, go find the content that matches these interests and automatically deliver it to me?
Sure, news personalization had been tried and tried and so had push delivery (remember pointcast?), but none of it, i thought, with this particular angle….
And so was born … project “Tintin” (I am a big Herge fan, not unexpected for a Belgian national).
Now, having an idea is great indeed, but execution is what it’s all about (I am so with Zuckerberg on that one)… you need a team …
Finding that team wasn’t easy… it took me another five years (and an employer change) to find it… (back to the “I’m schlow” theme, haha)
Michael and Shuhao are the best team i’ve ever worked with, can you imagine working together on something that makes no money for over 2 years? It takes a lot of perseverance, passion and trust to keep going…
… and two years later, here we are…
Our piece of art is ready for a first exposure, and we sincerely hope you will enjoy it.
This being said, we will keep working on our other master art pieces: Lelani (3), Zoe (3), Lucas (3), Will (11) and Kayleigh (13).