I remember a few years back an entrepreneur I knew mentioned that in running a startup one minute you’ll be ecstatic over how awesome something is or will be, and the next you’ll be ready to jump out your high-rise office window.  At the time I didn’t at all appreciate this, but wow, that’s exactly how it is.  All the time.  One upset email from a customer, or some other reminder about how something is late, or not working, or whatever, and you’re like oh my god, we’re going to fail, and everyone hates us.  Other times (late last night comes to mind) you make a breakthrough on something that had you stumped for a year, and all is good and right in the world.  Then this morning, more bad news.   Another day at a startup!  Frankly, I feel a little seasick.

Right now I’m extremely frustrated/scared about 1) cross platform software isn’t done and has a ways yet to go 2)  SparkFun has no inventory and won’t until Thursday this week and there’s nothing I can do to expedite it.  I really don’t want to get on those guy’s nerves. 3)  We’ve got a manufacturing issue with a new enclosure design (plastics related) and there’s nothing can do but wait for the next samples.  4) After being out of stock for a month or so, our cash flow is particularly vulnerable, and we won’t be out of the woods for at least another month 5)  A number of other issues.

At the same time, sales are decent, and generally speaking customers are happy.  Some certainly aren’t, and for reasons I empathize with (otherwise it wouldn’t upset me), but by and large people seem to understand we’re a small shop, we make mistakes, and we’re doing the best we possibly can.  In fact one thing that makes me feel a sign of relief sometimes is that we do seem to have some decent amount of goodwill in the community, and that’s just priceless.  Hopefully we can live up to that!

Some other good news:  My friend Minh is taking a month off his day job to come help with the cross-platform software, so with any luck we’ll be able to push that to beta under his watch.  The schedule (we use certainly seems to indicate we can.   We’ve got a ton of people on the “let me know when OSX/Linux support is available list” that haven’t heard anything because they signed up after the “alpha is out” email, and I’m desperate to get them an email announcing the beta is ready.

My brother is flying out a few times over the semester to head up some side projects that otherwise wouldn’t get done.  That should be pretty cool.  One thing I really want is a project blog, and so we should see that coming out soon with any luck.

First rule of sales is “sell what you have” so I can’t really go into anything else (product-wise) we’re working on, other than to say that I’m excited about it and I think it’ll be a nice offering.  We’ll see how it goes.  We’re not replacing Logic with anything more cool, so not to worry if you got it recently. And, I should mention that it won’t be coming out until AFTER the cross-platform software is out.

Oh, if you want to play with the cross-platform alpha version, just send me an email for the details.  support at

Back to it!

Joe Garrison

Co-Founder, Saleae

San Francisco, CA