Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Demonstration derby / Alpha beta soup

I'm pretty excited that the product that I've been working on at Primal Fusion is in alpha release and that we revealed oursleves to the wider world at the Demo 09 conference in Palm Desert today. We're all about "thought networking" and with these initial steps we're laying the groundwork for more great products in the future.

What does it mean for a software product to be in alpha release? My initial answer is another question. What does it mean for a software product to be in beta release? Beta used to mean, roughly, a software release that is essentially complete but is being put into wider distribution for final testing in anticipation of a final release. Google's Gmail, though, has been in beta since, what, the end of the last ice age? That has undoubtedly had an effect on what people think "beta" means.

Where does that leave alpha? It's got to be at least somewhat less finished than beta, but beyond that...?

At Primal Fusion, it means that we have a new product that we're proud of, that we know we have more work to do, that we're letting users join us in a measured way, and that we're watching what happens closely. We want to be sure that everything is working as expected, and we want to learn as much as we can while our user base grows.

Creating something new is invigourating, exhausting, illuminating, and certainly a few more "tings" beyond those. We're still early in our journey at Primal Fusion, and we have a lot more work to do to make our product even better. What we have now, though, is something that we're all proud of, and it's time to get out in the world with it.

Please come and try it out and let us know what you think.

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