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November 27, 2005

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Rick,

I think that's some killer advice you have here.

Great post!

"Release early, release often."

I think I know the Albert you're talking about Rick. I gave him the same advice over a beer the other night.

Once worked - briefly - in a startup that was a spin-out of (insert name of world leading technical university here) and had a whole bunch of geniuses working passionately on something that would change the world.

And it could have done. They had convinced enough VCs to the tune of $60m+ that they would. They brought me in as "Program Manager" because I knew how to ship software and they didn't.

On day 1 they told me they were "a month, 6 weeks tops" from shipping their "boil the ocean" appliance. After talking to all the technical guys and running the numbers I told them ... 18 months. This did not exactly go over well.

The other option I gave them - argued passionately for - was tidy up what they had and "just ship it". That would have a blown one segment of the "ocean" wide open. Keep going and doing that one segment at a time and pretty soon you have the whole ocean.

Long story short ... they took around 18 months or so to ship something that would boil the ocean. But of course it never did. They missed their window.

I am now a passionate believer in JSTDT. It’s the only way you can find out about all the little course corrections you need to do to build a successful startup.

Lets not talk too much about which Albert this Albert really is, because Albert doesn't really want others to know who Albert really is. Because Albert is not quite ready to talk about Albert is doing yet. =)

So for those of you that know who this Albert is, "Albert" is asking that you keep it to yourself for now.

Thanks again for the advice.

- "Albert"

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