Monday, January 04, 2010

2009 in Review

It's a "Gabor hits Send" tradition to write New Year's wrapup post. Here's what I wrote about 2008 and 2007.

I feel like the last year was a lot of work, and very little fun, but my travel map proves otherwise: I went on trips to Tahoe, LA, Las Vegas, Utah, Alaska, Istanbul, and Rome, not to mention seeing my parents in Switzerland. Not quite like 2008's trip around the world, but certainly not the celibate life I remember living.

At reMail, we built reMail 1.0, which was a failure, but a taught me many lessons, including: (1) Users won't give a startup their email credentials, and (2) we should've launched even earlier. While waiting for the App Store approval, I built reBoxed, a project that was fun to build but wasn't ultimately useful enough. I then built reMail 2.0 with some contractors, and it was a success. I spent the rest of 2009 refining it, releasing a new version of the software every 2-3 weeks.

When Paul Graham asked me about surprises I encountered building a YC startup, I said that the biggest lesson learned was "Fast iteration is the key to success." I think that sentence was my theme for 2009.

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