Tuesday, October 7, 2008

28 Days: The Name

I have a name for what I'm working on. It's Groupthink.

To some of you, that might be a surprise. You see, I've been using groupthink.com for more than ten years as my personal domain. Originally, I acquired it for some software that I've wanted to build for a long time. I even built prototypes, first on the Macintosh and later on Windows. But, I ended up at Microsoft and the plans stayed on the drawing board.

When I left Microsoft in 2003, I revisited the idea and ended up heading in a different direction -- I tried, unsuccessfully, to start a search technology company (Krypton Technology). Although I had some pretty great ideas and got great responses to my prototype, I couldn't find people interested in funding a project that would end up competing with Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!, etc. So, I filed for a patent and moved on.

Now it's 2008 and I find that I'm revisiting the idea yet again. I didn't plan it this way. I actually started somewhere very different, but, as the concept evolved, I found that a lot of my earlier ideas were resonating. I found myself asking questions that I had asked myself before.

This isn't to say that I'll be implementing a 15-year-old idea. Quite the contrary -- even though I've been asking myself the same questions, I'm coming up with very different answers. In the last 15 years, so much has changed and I have learned so much that the two projects are far more different than they are similar. But, at the core, they are both aimed at solving the same fundamental user needs. It's nice to know that I can meet those needs so much better today than I could have back then. And the name fits.

So, Groupthink it is.


Emily said...

Interesting progression.

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