After three plus years as founder/CEO of Attensa last month the board and I decided it was time to make some changes....and I've stepped down. I've started and run software companies for nearly 22 years now, it's all I've ever done since dropping out of Carnegie Mellon in the mid-eighties, and I can honestly say I love it! Macintosh enthusiasts may remember Now Software in the early nineties, or others may recall Extensis, which is an ongoing concern that I remain very proud of to this day. Obviously, I have a vested interest in Attensa's ongoing success, and have nothing but positive things to say about the experience. So, all the best and thanks to everyone involved!
Early on at Attensa we made big bets on deep technology rather than acquiring market share via popular and solid consumer clients. History will determine if NewsGator's acquisition approach was a smarter move than Attensa's R&D focus on its attentionstream and related technologies. I believe Attensa's future is bright, especially given it's exclusive focus on the enterprise. Consumer RSS is already a commodity and Google, Yahoo, etc will own it - or one could argue they already do. NG and others may make some money from powers users wanting more but the business opportunity is clearly behind the firewall. To date and for the next several quarters businesses that actually are looking at enterprise RSS are essentially just looking for basic "plumbing" to enable RSS workflows and/or standardize on solid RSS clients for support peace of mind. It's not rocket science, or all that interesting actually, but it is where the market is today, IMHO.
Attensa will shine when information overload arrives in big business. My prediction is that this will start happening in 2008 even though I personally started talking about it in late 2005/early 2006. For now though, its just plumbing, and NG and Attensa will battle that out over the next year or so. I believe Attensa will win deals when there is a thorough technology evaluation, NG will win many due to market awareness and the multitude of RSS readers they have built or acquired for a variety of platforms. Both can succeed and thrive - this is a very, very BIG market.
So, what's next for me? It's called Pump Networks. Yes its web 2.0 (whatever that means) and has some RSS components. Look for a late summer "alpha."
I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org