Category Archives: Business

On the stewardship of mature software

I just flipped the switch on v2.5.0 of PDFTextStream.  It’s a fairly significant release, representing hundreds of distinct improvements and bugfixes, most in response to feedback and experiences reported by Snowtide customers.  If you find yourself needing to get data … Continue reading

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Stymied from within (an entrepreneurial experience)

In his interview of Andrew Warner, Jason Cohen provided a nice snapshot of the experience of being a software entrepreneur (taken from the transcription provided on the interview page, emphasis mine): You hear all these stories of success, and luck … Continue reading

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Recovering from and avoiding “cloud service” lock-in

We all love our shiny cloud services — until they break, die, or otherwise go away, turning all those unicorns and butterflies into what can only be described as a bark salad.  Case in point: sometime this week, I’ll be … Continue reading

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Ashton’s plight, fight or flight

Joel Spolsky is a stellar writer and a fine storyteller. His latest, the apocryphal tale of Ashton, tells of the plight of a software developer stuck in a crummy job, surrounded by sycophants and half-wits, desperate to escape the inevitable … Continue reading

Posted in Business, Entrepreneurship, geek | 12 Comments

Xerox’s Inspirational Carlson and Wilson

This book tells a great story, but I’m not writing a book review. What struck me most reading this book was the glimpse provided of Chester Carlson, the inventor of electrophotography, and Joseph C. Wilson, the co-founder of Xerox (née The Haloid Photographic Company). As far as I can tell, these men were forces of nature unto themselves, and possessed an array of values and principles that I find remarkable and inspirational. Continue reading

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Open Source, Positioning, and Execution

In the past month, I’ve read no fewer than 8 articles and blog posts trying to thread a story around what is apparently the “big” question these days: how can software companies make money in an open source world? Well, … Continue reading

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Benchmarks and honesty

…like oil and water, right? Not necessarily; we should hope not, for otherwise we’re all in trouble. Last week, someone anonymously posted a comment to a previous entry of mine. In a nutshell, he or she implied that the benchmarks … Continue reading

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Totally flattened

The past 10 days have been just nuts. When it rains, it’s buckets. We got hit last week with serious inquiries from a half a dozen very large organizations — a good mix of governmental, corporate, and nonprofit/research. Each of … Continue reading

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Marketing is hard and scary

Marketing is really hard, despite the rumors you’ve heard. The more I get into it, the more I’ve come to respect the skills (if not necessarily the tactics) necessary to deliver a message to prospective customers. Up until this point, … Continue reading

Posted in Business, Entrepreneurship | 3 Comments

Clients and Customers

Many times I’ve been told, ‘Snowtide should forget about doing custom development work, and concentrate on selling product’. Of course, few people realize just how important our custom development clients are to our overall business and to the quality of … Continue reading

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