Past, Present and Future: Story of a Startup

Most of you are aware that I have quit my job and now have started my own software business. I haven’t revealed much details on the making of this software and whats going on until now.

Some 3 yrs ago I was working on a data-warehousing project. Now during that period I was developing shareware games for the Palm Pilot as hobby. I was making good pocket money out of it and always knew that I could do more if I had the intentions. I knew developing software and selling them would be a perfect thing to do but had very less inclinations to continue doing games development(more about this later). So I started envisioning a product which would allow me to get a jump start on the Business Applications.

Analizing everything, I started believing in “if you have lemons, make lemonade” philosophy. Since my background is around database and applications, I thought, maybe I should develop some extension to Oracle Applications or a database tool. But couldn’t decide on something that would capture my imagination.

So as this is going on in the background and in the job I felt the need to represent the DW data in a dashboard format. But I didn’t like the way the dashboard tools were working, tough to install, create and maintain them. So I thought what if you could just plug the sql and it would show the necessary information, allow you to drill and export to excel. This thought became the seed for InfoCaptor

Then came the decision point on how to get this done, what language, platform? My friend Anil Kukreja who was with me in the project knew java and quickly showed me how easy it is to develop applications using JDeveloper.

Java and OOPs was like Greek to me and all of it intimidated a lot. I gathered the courage to download the tool with the hopes of learning and developing it myself but never got any far. Although I am fast learner, learning Java never felt like my cup of tea coffee.

Then I sought help of my brother Kamlesh (back in India) to help me out with a prototype.  Things moved very slow and slower was my learning of Java (although you would think drinking coffee adds the necessary boost, right?). Maybe it was my constant association of Java with coffee that never got me further and its a fact that coffee and I don’t go very well together.
I then joined Oracle which put the project in the backburner. Meanwhile my brother and his friends kept developing and testing it.

Fast forward 2 yrs, I have quit Oracle and now actively working on my product. I can say that Java doesn’t intimidate me as it used to but I am not even an expert yet. I can manage to look into it, debug and make some changes here and there. On the marketing front, I have also built relationship with couple of IT consulting firms for support and marketing.  In the mean time the product gets upto speed, I am doing some independent consulting work (gotta eat and feed!).

Life is different working of myself. Learning lot of stuff from company legalities, tax forms, installing Quickbooks, bookkeeping, invoicing and the most fun part is learning and implementing marketing techniques. Do you really need parallel universe or 3rd or 4th dimension travelling in order to experience different things at the same time? Founder, developer, consultant, accountant, marketer, blogger, father, husband and janitor all at the same time!
I am going through lot of marketing books and material available on the web. Now without losing your attention further, I will stop at this point (fingures hurting too!). I would like to discuss more about InfoCaptor’s marketing strategy, positioning etc but later. Meanwhile, please drop me a line so I won’t feel totally abandoned 🙂

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