After a solid 10 years of programming, learning various languages, launching projects both big and small, some failures, some successes, and exiting via two acquisitions (one a recipe platform, the other a press release platform) - I've decided to retire.
Retire from the world of software.
I've had a nagging feeling for a while now. I think it goes hand in hand with getting older. You get that feeling there must be something "more" out there. It's the same feeling that makes people quit their jobs and pursue their passions, or go traveling round the world, taking a leap into the unknown, ready to embrace new challenges and grow as a person.
Lately I've been feeling that with the world of software. I'm skeptical about how much impact I can make on the world with a pure software solution, and skeptical about how fulfilling software is to spend my life working on. I am and always will be a builder, a maker, an inventor - but in the grand scheme of creating things, pure software skills are but a small subset of the possible skills out there one can learn and harness.
It's time to make the move into hardware.
With hardware, the potential impact one can make on the world exponentially increases. There's simply so many more ways one can create value or influence the world for the better, than with pure software. With software, often you are simply inputting and outputting data. With hardware, you can take that quantum leap and use data to affect the physical world. Robots, automated machines, dongles that plug into your wall or TV and create magic - this is the world that interests me now.
(Above: cooking has definitely catalyzed my interest in hardware!)
Ok ok, it's inaccurate to say I'm retiring from software. Inevitably, any piece of modern hardware needs software to make it run. Even better, the more interesting / challenging hardware businesses are those that combine hardware with embedded software PLUS cloud-based functionality, all of which is of course software too.
So it's more accurate to say that I'm retiring from pure web-based software businesses. My future venture will be a hybrid of hardware and software (embedded and cloud), bringing with it new challenges to satisfy the mad inventor in me, but also increasing the scope and potential impact in a highly positive way.
Am I already working on something? Yes.
Am I going to talk about it? Nope. Not because I'm in "stealth" mode or anything like that, but I guess something else that you develop with age is a general distaste for the typical startup media fanfare. These days I'd rather get on with business, pitching and selling to potential customers, than see my face on some tech news website.
With that said, if you're in Singapore, and you work for the marketing department of a hotel, F&B group or retail chain - send me an email. I've got a new hardware gadget that I think you'd like to see :) (I only have 10 prototype units to test, so email now!)