I’m a sucker for real-world stories of succesful high-tech companies.
Startup: A Silicon Valley
such a story because GO, company described in the book, was
unsuccessful but it’s still a great read.
The story begins with Jerry Kaplan (book’s author) and Mitch
Kapor discussing an idea of a
PDA. They get excited and start the company to build it. They invite
Steve Sokoman, a top Apple engineer to join them. Sokoman gets
counter-offer from Apple which results in Apple producing (also
unsuccessful) Newton. Kapor looses the interest, doesn’t want to be personally involved in this venture but encourages Kaplan to go with it alone. Alone but well funded (thanks to Kapor Kaplan gets initial VC funding). The journey of GO begins and it’s a fascinating journey. Reading the book gives an insight into workings of PC business and GO, the company, did everything there is to be done: fund rising (to the tune of $75 million, and those were not dot-com days), good and bad partnerships, brutal competition (with Microsoft, among others), spinning off another company, being bought out and going bankrupt.
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