During the years of my professional career, as I move to a new company or a new role, I usually don’t spend too much time thinking about the past. I try to do my own post mortem analysis shortly after I leave, and summarize to myself what worked and what did not, as well as what were the lessons learned. Then I try to quickly disconnect and ‘clear my brain’ in order to make room for what’s coming next. Later on, when I come across a company name, product, former colleague or former partner that I had worked for/on/with, usually only the good memories come up.
Lately, I find myself thinking more and more about Galleo, a company I worked for back in the first bubble days (2000-2001) and touched on in the past. Galleo had a very innovative approach of how a mobile multimedia communicator should work and what type of applications and features it needs to contain. The company invested a lot in technology & intellectual property but clearly did do enough to protect it. To be more accurate – we began the process of filing several patent applications and registering numerous trademarks but as the company run out of cash and went out of business this process was never completed. With everything that is going on around the iPhone and the (upcoming) GPhone, some of those patents & trademarks could have been really valuable assets. Entrepreneurs – learn your lesson, always save some cash to cover future IP related fees.
But wait, there is a good part for this post as well. As I was reading the July 2001 Linux Journal article about the Galleo, I came across a quote made by Daniel Benenstein (Galleo’s Dir of Engineering). If you slightly modify his quite, and since both the iPhone and the GPhone use Unix/Linux, it turns out that Daniel’s prophecy is today’s reality…
Mass production is ahead for wireless, embedded Linux multimedia communicators that will contribute even more to make Linux, without a doubt, the OS for the Internet.”
Too bad Galleo did not survive the bubble burst. It could have been a really big company with really big product, and maybe even something Fred Wilson would consider as his dream phone.
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