Thursday, January 13, 2011

I'm Starting a New Company, Improv Style

When people hear that I teach and perform improv theater, they often ask about the practical benefits of improv.  Different people take improv training for different reasons, but the improv lesson that's
helping me most as a software entrepreneur is the aphorism "Leap and the net will appear": if you stand on the sidelines during an improv scene, waiting for your scene partners to create an opportunity, or waiting for some brilliant premise to appear in your mind, you will fail.  Good things only come from taking risks, from opportunities you create for yourself.

In this light, I have decided to reduce the time I spend working on OtherInbox, which I cofounded three years ago, to build new products that may lead to new companies based here in Baltimore.  I was the
only remote developer working on OtherInbox, which is based in Austin, and as the local team gelled and our application became more complex, it seemed like a good time for me to try something new.  I'll still be involved in developing and maintaining OtherInbox code, but I'm now actively searching for other interesting problems to work on, problems I can solve from my home here in Baltimore.  It's time for me to practice what I preach here on this blog and what I teach to improv students.

I'm really proud of what the OtherInbox team has accomplished and I'm psyched to see what 2011 has in store -- if you're looking for a web development job in Austin you should definitely check our company out!

Speaking of taking big risks, my friend Josh Baer took a huge risk on me by inviting me to start OtherInbox with him.   Although we knew each other in college, I was very green and untested at the time as a professional developer.  I'm forever grateful for what I've learned firsthand from Josh about building a company and a software product from scratch, and for the chance I've had to build my reputation by blogging and presenting about the technology we use.

If you are experiencing some kind of life aggravation that you think could be solved with software, I'd love to talk to you!  No aggravation is too big or too little!  Email me at


Avdi Grimm said...

Good luck, man! I expect great things!

James said...

How big or small are you thinking?

kchopson said...

Good luck with your new endeavor(s)!

Brian said...

This is a great post that applies to any field, not just start-ups. Taking a leap is difficult but it beats the alternative--stagnation. I am sure great things lie ahead for you!

Mike Subelsky said...

Thanks guys, I appreciate the kudos and hope I can earn them in the coming months! James, I'm very open-minded but I'm focused on things that will create revenue fairly quickly, only because I want to "fail fast" and learn fast.

Mike Subelsky said...

Hey thanks Deacon! Here's hoping!