November 11th, 2011
Marshall Kirkpatrick isn’t just writing about startups anymore, he’s building one
There’s an interesting push and pull between the world of startups and the media covering those startups. Sometimes, members of the media get pulled into the world of funding. Sometimes, successful entrepreneurs get involved in the media. And sometimes, the pull of the startup scene proves too strong and members of the media jump into their own startup dreams headlong.
After years of writing about startup companies, I’m now building one myself. Specifically, I’m building a company that’s developing a technology based on some of my favorite consulting projects I’ve done for clients over the years: an app and data platform that discovers emerging topical information. It’s a learning-curve busting, “first mover’s advantage” as a service, technology for information workers who want to win. It’s about helping users “skate to where the puck is going to be, not to where it’s been.”
The product, which is still in private beta, is called Plexus Engine. And, long story short, it takes Marshall’s seemingly magic ability to weave RSS feeds and Twitter feeds and automation and crates it up into a tool that practically anyone can use to become all but clairvoyant.
Marshall has written about these data management techniques, spoken about them countless times, and helped people munge together their own versions of his dashboards. Now, with Plexus Engine, he’s working to codify that expertise in a way that makes it far more accessible.
On a personal note, I’ve been lucky enough to have Marshall serve as my mentor, my boss, my “in the know” media contact, and my friend. I’m very, very excited to see him take the same energy and passion he’s put into his research and writing for others and to channel that toward something he owns and controls.
This is an exciting step for him. And another interesting and compelling startup for the Portland startup scene.