In my previous post, I alluded to some big changes coming in the new year. So, in the interest of not burying the lede too much:
I’m leaving Gowalla.
Having given my notice, it appears Jan 14th will be my final day as a Gowalla employee and the end of nearly two years working on Gowalla for iPhone — seeing it through from pre-1.0 all the way to the recent (and massive) 3.0 release.
I cannot overstate how much Gowalla as a company, team, and product has meant to me these couple of years. I’ve learned so much, grown as a developer significantly, made some great friends, and helped to build some stuff I’m truly proud of.
It was hard to walk away from that.
Gowalla 3.0 for iPhone came out several weeks ago. It was an ambitious release with an even more ambitious schedule and I am very proud of the work I and the team did on what I consider to be the best Gowalla yet.
As anyone who has shipped software (or something similar) will surely be familiar with, in the time approaching the ship date for Gowalla 3.0, I agonized over it. Like tortured-guy-listening-to-“Disintegration”-over-and-over agony. That isn’t to say I wasn’t anxious about previous major releases, but the agony over 3.0 was on another level, it felt like a much bigger deal.
When it finally shipped, I was so relieved and it showed. I was overwhelmed by the response from new and old users alike. It was incredible and gratifying.
It was, in my estimation, one of those high notes you hear about.
Through and after the catharsis of shipping, I spent a lot of time taking inventory of my life, so to speak. After a lot of thinking I came to the conclusion that I was ready for something new. New problems, new people to learn from, something to help me keep growing as a person and a developer.
It’s funny when I think back to how this whole thing started. How I walked in to have some tacos with my new friend @keeg and some of his coworkers from this company called Alamofire, and somehow walked out with an offer from @jw and @sco to work on their new iPhone application. Sneaky bastards, the lot of them.
Thanks guys. It’s been one hell of a ride.
You see, Dan is one of the smartest dudes I know, and someone I’ve wanted to work with for a long time. He has assembled a team of some of the best iOS developers around. These guys do incredible work on projects that are anything but run-of-the-mill, and they’re just getting started.
They believe that software should be beautiful and well-designed. They obsess over the things I obsess over, good design and good engineering, all with incredibly high standards. I get the distinct impression that these are guys constantly punching above their weight.
I believe that iOS is the future (or if not, certainly the shape of things to come) and I want do whatever I can to be part of shaping that future. I believe these guys are and will continue to be at the forefront of people pushing the boundaries of what this platform can be, and I want to join them in doing so.
So, I’ll be taking the next week to tie up some loose ends at Gowalla secure in the knowledge that Gowalla for iPhone will be in good hands.
Then on January 17th, I’ll be joining the team at Black Pixel, working remotely from my home and favorite haunts in Austin, TX. (Also, pretty sure I’ll be turning 23 that day as well)
I can’t thank everyone at Gowalla enough for all of the hard work, lessons, laughs, friendships, beers and good times. I wish them all the best and expect them to do incredible things this year.
I am very excited to be joining the amazing team at Black Pixel. I can’t wait to build great things with them.