Tuesday, October 31, 2006
OK, I can finally blurt it out: JotSpot is now part of Google, and I couldn't be more excited.
Three years ago my friend Graham Spencer and I set out to start a new company. We'd both recently left Excite, which we co-founded, and we had spent a few years starting a nonprofit together. We brainstormed scores of ideas, debated late into the night and ultimately exchanged a mountain of email and documents. We realized we needed a tool to help us organize our thoughts or we'd quickly become overwhelmed. So Graham set up a wiki. I was hooked because it immediately changed the way we worked together. Everything was kept in one place, not locked in email threads or on different computers. We could both make changes to the same document, without having to know HTML (well, without me having to know HTML). After twenty minutes of using a wiki, I was convinced that they were like the Internet in 1993 -- useful, but trapped in the land of the nerds (which both Graham and I proudly inhabit). So we set out to start JotSpot as a way to bring the power of wikis to a much broader audience.
As we built the business over the past three years Google consistently attracted our attention. We watched them acquire Writely, and launch Google Groups, Google Spreadsheets and Google Apps for Your Domain. It was pretty apparent that Google shared our vision for how groups of people can create, manage and share information online. Then when we had conversations with people at Google we found ourselves completing each other's sentences. Joining Google allows us to plug into the resources that only a company of Google's scale can offer, like a huge audience, access to world-class data centers and a team of incredibly smart people.
Our first order of business is to move JotSpot to Google's software architecture. While we're doing so, we've turned off new registrations. But if you're interested, sign up for our waitlist and we'll keep you posted.
Finally, I feel a deep sense of gratitude for the support, feedback, grumbles and praises of our users and customers. Thank you. That's the only way great products are built.