Techstars: Day 5 (Week 1 Summary)

So you’ll recall that I came to London with a suitcase, bag and rucksack. Look – there’s even a photo to remind you.

My suitcase, bag and rucksack

Everything I need for three months… and some stuff I don’t. Doesn’t seem enough

I’ve returned to Norfolk for the weekend with just the bag and the rucksack (no photo, it’s dark – use your imagination and remove the suitcase from the scene). I wouldn’t have bought the bag, but I’ve quite literally not had time to do any washing during the week1. I’ve not really had time to do anything other than work, talk about work and network.

It’s a really bizarre feeling to be heading home. In some respects it feels like I’ve barely been away. It’s not even been 5 minutes since we first stepped into the Techstars office and time is just running away from me. In other respects it feels like it’s been 5 months since I left home and we’ve achieved an awesome amount of stuff. Time is becoming malleable, and my recollection of when events happened unreliable. We were warned this would happen2, I just thought it would take a few weeks to kick in.

Weirdly enough my view on a few things around the Rainbird, Techstars, and the cohort seem to also suffer from many diametrically opposed but simultaneously held theories3. You could describe them as quantum states waiting to collapse, although that’s probably me just talking out of my arse due to extreme fatigue. Who knows.

So, what have we achieved? Well, we’re taken the company to bits and we’re starting to put it back together. We’re likely to find a few washers left over when we’re done (“So where does this bit go?”), but that’s a way away. At the moment we’ve got past the list of bits we should have and are now at the little pictograms of the guy telling us the tools we’ll need, how many people are needed to lift the company during building, and what to do if bits are needed4.

We’ve not killed each other, fallen out with each other, sniped at each other or had an argument5. This is a good thing and will become a bigger and bigger achievement as time goes on.

We’ve written some code. OK, Nathan has written some code and Ben and I have pissed about with a few simple changes, but hey, you know, teamwork and all that. We’ve even released Beta 0.2.0 which really just means that I finally remembered to increment the version number.

And we’ve met some really cool, and scarily intelligent people which is more than a bit daunting. We’re still getting to know each other, but I can already see that we’re forming bonds that will last well beyond this process.

Oh, and since I know that this blog is read by the wives and girlfriends of Team Rainbird I feel morally obliged to state that we’ve managed to achieve the perfect mix of eating well, exercising properly and looking after ourselves. We’ve also put aside time each day to tell each other how wonderful our families and loved ones are, and quietly reflect each night on how lucky we are while all the time counting the milliseconds until we are reunited6.

1 There’s also the whole no liking tumble dried clothes thing, and don’t worry, I’ll not be dumping the washing on my wife.

2 Hence this blog. It’s more so I can remember exactly what happened than anything else.

3 I hesitate to say beliefs because they’re too transient and intangible. I’ve already completely flipped on one theory in the space of a day.

4 Which seems to involve building your stuff in the Ikea carpark and having a phone on a really long extension cable that reaches into the store if you have problems. I’m guessing they have customer phones in the lobby that reach into the carpark for exactly this purpose.

5 Yet… I’ve been tetchy a few times but have worked hard not to show it.

6 And next week we mean to solve P vs NP7.

7 Google it Chris.