"Shawn Gordon: I started programming in 1978
when I was 15. I was lucky to have a high school with a computer
department. I ended up going to a trade school for programming when
I was 19 and have been at it ever since. My background has mostly
been writing business software for the HP 3000 mini-computer. I had
a software company for about 10 years in that space where I did a
lot of system management tools, but I also did a very extensive
email system that had some pretty sophisticated features for what
we were working on. I started picking up on Unix about 10 years ago
and was running a Unix clone on my 486 called Coherent for some
years. I was only peripherally aware of the whole OSS and GNU thing
until a few years ago."
"What really drew me to Linux and KDE was the desire to do our
KODE product, and I didn't think Windows was where I wanted to do
it. I sort of watched and researched the landscape for about a year
before I decided to go for it, and then we incorporated in August
1999 and started working in earnest in September."
"Linux.com: How has your reception in the OSS
(and KDE, in particular) community been so far? Have you received
any flak over your decision to sell beta software?"
"Shawn Gordon:Overall the reception has
been great. You always have those few loud voices who think you are
the devil, but they are very few. Actually we've gotten a great
response on selling beta software. People like to get involved with
shaping the application, and they get it at a discount as
well. People that aren't interested in that process are
waiting till the software is done to buy it, and that's great too.
I think it's good for us, and our customers to be able to work
together to provide products that are exactly what they want,
instead of what I think they want."