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A fork in the road (An important announcement about I want Sandy)

Today marks a fork in the road for this particular startup. Values of n [http://valuesofn.com], the company behind Stikkit [http://stikkit.com] and I Want Sandy [http://iwantsandy.com], will be closing its doors. Both services will going offline at close of business (5pm PST) on Monday December 8th, 2008. Until then, they'll be up and running as usual to allow our users time to make the transition, find alternative services, and download any data they wish to take with them.

While the company and services will be shutting down, Stikkit and Sandy's DNA will live on; the intellectual property behind both has been acquired by Twitter, Inc [http://twitter.com]. While Twitter has no immediate plans to incorporate Sandy or Stikkit's feature sets into its core product, those who know our apps well may notice familiar-feeling bits and bobs appearing in your Twitter experience.

The third tine of this fork is me: I have taken an engineering position in the User Experience group at Twitter. I started consulting there a few months ago, and fell in love with the team, their way of thinking about things, and of course the product (my Twitter user id is in the low 100s). It turns out we worked incredibly well together, the feeling was mutual, and they pulled me in as a permanent member of the team.

I'm excited to continue building simple, engrossing products -- my favorite thing to do -- and to imbue my work with all I've learned over the last three years.

We are so proud of the technology we've created behind the scenes, the experience we've provided our users, and the sense of playfulness and suspension of disbelief we've managed to inject into personal productivity. When I look back at our statement of intent [http://valuesofn.com], I realize just how true we've been to what we set out to do and how we set out to do it:

Values of n brings an iconoclastic approach to social software design.
We're throwing out the well-worn assumptions about how applications are
supposed to work, and are instead paying attention to the clever ways in
which people have adapted software to fit their needs. These workarounds
usually contain the seeds of a better solution.

We always strive to move beyond software that's "cool" or feature-full to
software that's transparent and feature-useful: software so elegantly
implemented it becomes an extension of the person using it.

As I blogged mid-last year [http://www.valuesofn.com/blog/2007/07..., "We programmers and engineers aren't so lucky as to find free-standing virtual marble blocks ready for the sculpting. We must first build up the marble block itself until it shows sufficient promise and only then start chipping away to reveal our product's true form." We built up that marble block in Stikkit and subsequently revealed what we believed to be our product's true form in Sandy.

We're honored that our work was recognized by the award-givers (SWSX award for Best Technical Achievement 2007 [http://www.valuesofn.com/blog/2007/03...] and Webware 100 award for Productivity [http://news.cnet.com/8301-13546_109-9..., but we've been even more excited about the conversations we've had with our users [http://getsatisfaction.com/iwantsandy], both directly and through our applications. So much energy and goodwill has come out of that exchange -- I will personally take that with me as one of the high points as CEO.

None of this would have been possible without an incredible cast of characters. Our investors made it all possible in the first place. Our board provided guidance, asked or answered difficult questions, and kicked our collective asses on just the right occasions. Our team of employees, consultants, and ad hoc barn-raisers infused all we did with a goodly mix of solid engineering, creativity, and fun. Our advisors shared their combined years of wisdom and experience. Our users have been a wellspring of positive energy and support -- even (and especially) when they ran into bugs; in particular, our "deputies," the volunteer user community leaders [http://getsatisfaction.com/iwantsandy..., took up the slack and provided a helping hand to their peers. And our families and friends -- the unsung heroes of the startup life -- gave us the better part of three years to sink into our work and cheered us along every day.

Thank you to everyone who has made Values of n, Stikkit, and Sandy possible. It has been an honor to work with you and I look forward to continuing the conversation. You can find me at http://raelity.org (blog to be rebooted shortly) and http://twitter.com/rael.

Rael

Rael Dornfest
CEO, Values of n, Inc.

--

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

(?) When will Stikkit and I want Sandy go offline?

We will be shutting off our servers at close of business (5pm PST) on Monday December 8th, 2008.

(?) Where should I go for further information and help?

* I want Sandy: The best place to turn to for help with I want Sandy is our Get Satisfaction user-to-user forum at http://getsatisfaction.com/iwantsandy.

* Stikkit: Visit the Stikkit discussion forums at http://community.valuesofn.com/stikkit.

If you can't seem to find what you're after on either of these two forums, please send email to help@valuesofn.com.

(?) How do I cancel my account?

If you'd like to explicitly cancel your account:

* I want Sandy: Point your browser at http://iwantsandy.com/cancel.

* Stikkit: Send email to help@valuesofn.com with the subject "Stikkit Cancellation" in the subject line and we'll cancel your account for you.

(?) Can I take my data with me?

But of course! Both Stikkit and I want Sandy provide RSS/Atom and iCalendar feeds of your data that can be downloaded to your computer (and then uploaded to/imported into any other desktop application or online service that supports these same standards.

* I want Sandy: Visit http://iwantsandy.com/help/feeds for information on I want Sandy's data feeds.

* Stikkit also has a programmatic interface -- the Stikkit API -- that provides more comprehensive access to your data, both directly and through one of the many third-party tools and applications built against it. Visit http://stikkit.com/api#feeds for details.

We will be providing some additional export functionality in the days to come should our users require anything beyond what is provided in these feeds.

(?) What services should we look at to take the place of Stikkit and/or Sandy?

We have been continuously impressed by the following calendar, to-do list, and notebook'ing services:

* Google Calendar: http://calendar.google.com
* Remember the Milk: http://rememberthemilk.com
* Backpack: http://backpackit.com
* PBWiki: http://pbwiki.com

(?) What will Sandy do now?

Sandy has not filled us in on her plans as yet, but we rather suspect she'll be taking a day or three off for some much deserved offline rest and relaxation -- and she won't be reachable by email ;-).
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  • EMPLOYEE
    I’m not sure what I'll do without her!
    Dave Ross (Non-employee Deputy) November 25, 2008 00:52
    Rael, it's been fun being an unofficial member of the Sandy team. I'm going to miss our weekly town halls as much as I'll miss Sandy herself.

    Best of luck to you & the rest of the team at your new gigs!
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  • Best of luck, Rael, and thanks for all the tweets -- I look forward to seeing what's next!
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  • I’m pissed.
    Wow. Just wow. That's real big of you, Rael.
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  • EMPLOYEE
    I’m thankful
    Dave, I'm so thankful for all that you and Yeraze have done to help Sandy help others. Thank you, thank you!

    Rael
    • Rael, Thanks for an app that was outside the box - it was fun and useful to me. To all those users complaining about the creator of an application improving his own fortunes, and shutting down an application you never paid for -- grow up. Free software is not an unalienable right -- no matter how useful.
    • It's not that we're griping about losing something we never paid for... its that we're griping that we were never given an option to pay for it in order to keep it up and running, and to keep Rael well off enough to not need a job. Oh well, thanks Rael for putting together the export utility... I've pulled all my info, and it looks like everything is there. If there's any way you can twist Twitter's arm into kicking off an official return of Sandy (for a monthly fee)...

      Thanks again for getting the export tool put together. It has helped me move on (literally and figuratively).
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  • David,

    If I'm detecting a "So long and thanks for all the fish" reference there, it is appreciated :-) (If not, then might I recommend a book you should read?)

    Thanks for the kind words.

    Rael
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  • Hi Jim,

    I'm sorry to have disappointed and appreciate how you must be feeling about this.

    Thanks for taking the time to give Sandy a whirl: I do hope she was helpful to you and that you stumble across another system that works to keep you organized and productive.

    Rael
    • Actually Rael, I don't think you appreciate how I'm feeling. I did not just "give Sandy a whirl" I used her as much as I possibly could and have come to rely on the service to an increasing degree as it appeared more viable. It also appeared that you were relatively committed to developing it over time. If you had initiated a premium subsription option, this is the one web service I would have been overjoyed to pay for.

      It seems I overestimated your commitment to the service and to those of us who you encouraged to use it.

      Sandy was great. It was one of the few web services that actually did make me more organized and productive.

      Eh, I don't even know what to say anymore. See ya.
    • Hi Jim. I'm glad Sandy made such a difference in your life — in so many of our lives. I've lived and breathed this company, our products, and our incredibly thoughtful users for the past 3 years. It's difficult too for me to let it go. And so I do understand that you're upset and am not attempting to minimize that at all. I wish you well and thank you for caring so much about what we brought into being. —Rael
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  • Hey Rael, now that you're shutting down the two services is there any chance we could get some juicy stats? How many users were registered, how much bandwidth was used on average, how many emails the services handled a day, or whatever else you can disclose without getting yourself in trouble :)
    • Hi JeanMarc. I'll give that some thought. Right now I'm focusing on making this as smooth a process as possible for folks: updating the sites, adding notices where they're most likely to be seen, and working on some export tools.
    • Maybe I've missed it (in that case point me in the right direction), but I really need those export tools. I am spending as much time as I can re-entering my information in another service (both Sandy & Stikkit), but I know I will not have it all done by the 8th. I happened to find this thread on Wednesday, then had to go away for the holiday. Now I have to go back to work...

      I don't want to lose all the information I have put into Sandy & Stikkit.
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  • I’m sad.
    Hi Rael,

    Congrats on the new position.

    I am however sad to see an end to iwantsandy. I found her perfect for my needs. Oh well, I might have to write my own now...

    Trev
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  • I’m upset and disappointed.
    I can't believe you would just pull the plug on Sandy. So many people count on the service. Couldn't you have worked out some kind of agreement with the Twitter folks to at least keep the service alive even if you don't add new features/fixes etc??

    You're really leaving a lot of people high and dry. If you treat your users like this now why should we trust you not to do the same again in the future?
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  • I’m angry
    I agree it's a really crappy way to tell users "hey, sorry we talked you in to relying on us for a service - piss off". But....dems da breaks when you put all your eggs in a free web 2.0 basket.

    Just remember when Twitter rolls out some new similar services not to go rushing off to give it a try - they could just as easily tell you to bend over if someone buys them out......

    This is a perfect example of why people still spend money on software that they own and maintain. "In the cloud" doesn't in any way mean permanent. And, even better, your data is out there on a server disk, that may or may not be properly disposed of - and there isn't jack squat you can do about it.

    A big lesson learned for me. I knew it was a possibility, but you always tell yourself it won't because these services are so useful......but, yes, it does happen.
    • Hi Freeda. I'm sorry this is so disruptive to you and others. I know that every entrepreneur I know works incredibly hard (harder than even they could imagine possible) to create, develop, and maintain services like these. Some of them will succeed, many will not. Nevertheless, I've not met a single one yet who let it go lightly. I certainly didn't mean to give the impression that this was a decision taken lightly or without giving it all there was to give.
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  • I’m happy for Rael, but sad for Sandy for now...
    I'm a fair newcomer to the Sandy service, and I was using it to augment my use of Cultured Code's Things applications for Mac OS X and the iPhone, so I'm not too heartbroken over this announcement. I already have an escape route of sorts.

    And what really attracted me to Sandy was the ability to get reminders through Twitter; I thought the Twitter interface for setting/getting reminders worked better for me than email as I'm always fighting my email inbox anyway. So I'm hoping that Twitter can integrate some of Sandy's features without losing it's own simplicity.

    That said, this seems really harsh. Maybe it's the Thanksgiving holiday and the oncoming seasonal end of year rush that follows, but it feels like things are going to get shuttered off rather quickly. It would have been kinder to the long standing users of the service to wait until after the holidays to shut things down. But I guess Sandy is just giving her "two weeks notice".

    Good luck to you Rael, and good luck to everyone else finding alternative services!
    • Hi Raven. I've come upon a fair number of small pieces loosely joined (to borrow from David Weinberger) that are just awesome. They're small, single-purpose, simple apps that provide some similar or at least tangentially-related functionality. Since you're a Twitter user, you might try http://twitter.com/timer. Things, as you mentioned, has done a wonderful job on their iPhone app. Backpack provides a great place for storing odds and ends (and they do reminders too). If you've not already checked them out, I highly recommend Merlin Mann's 43 Folders [http://43folders.com] and Gina Trapani's Lifehacker [http://lifehacker.com/] sites for some great insights into productivity and some of the tools you can string together to do better than what some of the bigger 110% solutions (only providing you 10-20-30% of the functionality you need) do.
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  • I’m frustrated
    Needless to say I'm not thrilled. Yes it's free, etc etc, but right now this makes me think less of twitter and sandy, two services I enjoy very much. If sandy cost 10 or 20 a month I'd gladly pay. This feels like the wrong direction.
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  • I’m unsure, but hopeful.
    Bye Sandy, I hope you have a nice extended holiday!

    I very much look forward to seeing your influence in the future when you start working inside Twitter.

    Bon voyage!

    Drew Robinson (sometime Sandy user)
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  • I’m grateful and hopeful
    Wow. I am a Sandy Super-fan that found it perfect for me. The best productivity system I had found; ever. Our office affectionately referred to Sandy as though she were real. We'd praise her, blame things on her... you know.
    In any case, I am very interested in what other options people suggest to replicate Sandy's work ethic and ease of use!
    Great and inventive service. Having trouble anticipating how to cope.
    Any recommendations?
    Kudo's to all...
    • Hi brischmidty! There was seldom a week that went by without Sandy coming up in conversation in such a way as to confuse (and then delight) passers-by. I intend to reboot my blog (it went by the wayside when I started the company) and share some of the things I and you have learned along the way in the hopes that it might help people pull together a system that's just right for them or indeed try their hand at building one that would make Sandy proud.
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  • I’m silly
    Wow, it looks like even Sandy has not escaped the effects of the economic downturn. I hope she will find work elsewhere. Sandy is out of a job.
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  • I’m sure you'll make waves in the new job
    Congratulations, Rael, and best of luck with the new job. Maybe you'll come by and play some chess with me at the Get Satisfaction HQ. We're just 'round the corner from Twitter HQ.
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  • Hi Thor!

    A spot of chess (how'd you know I played anyway?) would be grand. And your new GS HQ is the HQ formerly known as Twitter HQ, if memory serves?

    Many thanks to you and the rest of the Get Satisfaction crew for affording us a place to hold the conversation.

    Rael
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  • Just curious, would you ever be willing to sell off I Want Sandy and Stikkit to an interested suitor? Not that I, personally, have the money, but I'm sure there's people who would be interested in buying them and the technology behind them.
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  • Our (sandy followers) loss is our (twitter users) gain.

    For folks looking for a backup - I've been using Remember the Milk and it's pretty good about doing text-messaging...
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  • I’m irritated.
    This information might have been something that Sandy could have sent out. I have only heard about this from other sites who may or may not be chuckling about the demise of One More Big Idea.

    Maybe Sandy can start sending reminders to users who aren't immersed in the blogosphere?
    • view 3 more comments
    • Agreed - as a UK user - Twitter has already stuck two fingers up at us long ago - and so the first I heard of this was todays email - hardly much notice :-(

      Rael - whilst I agree that we can't expect much from a free service I would have thought a note saying "Sandy has been taken over by Twitter but everythings continuing as before" wouldn't have been too hard. Then Twitter could have slowly migrated us over to their new service.

      I for one won't trust or use anything with Twitters name attached to it ever again - their customer service and loyalty stinks :-(
    • Agreed - as a UK user - Twitter has already stuck two fingers up at us long ago - and so the first I heard of this was todays email - hardly much notice :-(

      Rael - whilst I agree that we can't expect much from a free service I would have thought a note saying "Sandy has been taken over by Twitter but everythings continuing as before" wouldn't have been too hard. Then Twitter could have slowly migrated us over to their new service.

      I for one won't trust or use anything with Twitters name attached to it ever again - their customer service and loyalty stinks :-(
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  • I’m very angry.
    I'm so glad that we were all able to contribute so much value to you so that you could be acquired, and shut down that which we contributed so much value. Thanks for nothing.
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  • I’m annoyed
    While I appreciate the advance notice via GetSatisfaction of Sandy's retirement (and she'll surely be missed), I should point out that Sandy's website does not mention this fact, and appears to still be accepting signups. Just my 2 cents.
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  • Sorry to see Sandy go, Rael. We've really enjoyed having her community interact here on Get Satisfaction. However, we're excited for your next chapter. Congrats on the Twitter gig and best of luck! We'll look forward to seeing you around the 'hood and the GS HQ whenever you want to pop by.
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  • I’m profoundly disappointed.
    I just cancelled my Sandy account, as I don't want to get any more Daily Digests. No sense in relying on that anymore.
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  • I’m sad, frustrated
    I just signed up for an account an spent half an hour setting it up before I decided to visit the user forums for more tips and found out the service is disappearing. That information needs to be on the home page. When I signed up for an account that information should have come in the auto-reply message. I do Want Sandy. It seemed like exactly what I've been looking for. It baffles me that this service won't continue to exist, perhaps bearing a Twitter logo, for a period of time until Twitter decides to integrate features and a friendly email arrives with a link to port your account to Twitter.
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  • I’m mad as hell
    2 weeks notice? Are you kidding me? And, what, you're relying on people to stumble across this notification on this one website, while the Sandy emails say nothing (and you're still accepting sign-ups). Look, Sandy is/was a great service, but as someone who caries a "CEO" title, your customer relationship skills need some polish...
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  • I’m frustrated
    I am very disappointed to loose a service I came to enjoy and rely on.

    I think you send a bad message to those of us who trusted you were building something for the future and not something you would throw away when opportunity served.

    Twitter, I am likewise shocked at the ruthless nature of your decision.

    Trust is earned and all involved here have breached that trust to some degree.
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  • Yeraze (Non-employee Deputy) November 25, 2008 20:34
    Sandy will send out a message in the next few days with more information. I believe Rael is waiting until the Data export procedures are online.
    • I can understand that Rael would want that feature in place first, but I imagine there are many, many users who do not know that Sandy is going, and the longer it takes to fully announce to everyone what is going on, the shorter the time will be to the December 8th shutdown. I already think two weeks is barely sufficient time for those who depend on the service, but let's say the full announcement goes out next Monday -- that's only a week then. At the very least, the closing date should be pushed out. Whenever the full info goes on Sandy's homepage and emailed, that's when the clock should start.

      As I mentioned in an earlier message, this doesn't affect me personally, I'm advocating this for the people who heavily use Sandy and rely on it, who are most likely mostly interacting with Sandy by email and have no idea what is going on.
    • Hi Raven. Sandy is now pointing to the announcement in every outgoing message (replies, reminders, digests, etc). Sandy also just tweeted the same thing for those who don't use email all that much, talking to Sandy via Twitter instead. That should cover any active clients of Sandy's (and Stikkit's shortly).
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  • I’m amused
    gopingme at http://gopingme.com is very close in functionality to I Want Sandy. It's my pick for an alternative service.
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  • It gets worse the more I hear. There may be an upgrade or migration path but not until after the lights-out date is announced, allowing users of all stripes just one week to figure out what to do next, in a post-Sandy world?

    If I was Twitter, I would be having some buyer's remorse right about now. Buying a big sack of bad karma in the form of alienated former customers is probably not what they had in mind. I just dropped my account there as I never use it and I am going to take a hard look at free services from here on out. If you don't owe them anything, nor do they owe you. A hard lesson, but worth learning.
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  • I’m grieving
    Rael, I think you've made a big stuff up. Despite how you frame it, this is a career lowlight for you.

    When you read the hundreds of complaints you're going to receive, I do hope it gives you pause for thought. You seem like a lovely guy, but it's obvious you're blinkered to something extremely important. Now's the time to get clued in to what you're missing.

    Whether or not people should put their trust in a free, web-based application, the fact is they do and they did in Sandy. What's more, you know they did. You have betrayed that trust.

    I already pay for a Remember the Milk subscription and would have gladly done the same for Sandy. Yes, I would have paid for both because Sandy offered something unique.

    As an Australian, I've already been shafted by Twitter when the text messaging service was shut down here with little warning so I don't share in the enthusiasm for your move.

    Rael, thank you for Sandy. I do wish you every success for the future but on one condition: you learn the few home truths you're currently blind to.

    If, however, you remain as blinkered in the future as you are now, then I hope you *don't* make it big again. The people who have contributed to your success don't deserve to be shafted a second time.
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  • It might be free, but you are breaking an implicit promise that you made when you ask people to depend on your service. If you going to shut it down, three to six months notice would have been the minimum I would have considered "reasonable" for a shut down like this given how much people depend on these services (and how few alternatives there really are) two weeks is utterly insane (and as others have noted, a random blog post does not really count as an official announcement, I'm sure most Sandy users are not even aware of this yet).

    I have to remember never to sign up for anything else you create given your obvious disregard for your customers/users.
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  • I’m silly
    I am sorry to say that these boards will most likely be taken down soon and all these comments won't make any difference while Rael is playing chess with Thor. Rael is moving on to twitter and no matter how unhappy you may be ... taking the time to construct passionate dissent about the transition won't change that if you are under the impression it will.

    If you or i were moving to Twitter who knows if we would not be in the same place. If Rael is as bad as some of you say he is then he really won't care what you think of him and his decision. The most pertinent question at hand is "What is the next action" or alternative at this point.

    I Want Sandy is being taken over by TWITTER. if you look at audience size I think Twitter has more say about what happens with I Want Sandy than Sandy customers do. I am not saying it's right and I am not saying it's wrong and you can hate me for saying so.

    I figure some thought has gone into what to do with I Want Sandy before this cam down and unhappy customers is collateral damage that was factored in to this choice. It is business and it may not be fair but it's business. Sandy is a bot not a real person. I'll also let you know she has no say in the matter either if that is comforting to those of you who have grown emotionally attached.

    Anybody grab the domain name Iwantsandyback.com for more customer dissent opportunities.

    Trust No One.
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  • I’m devastated
    Sandy was such an integral part of my daily routine. My whole workgroup relies on her.

    She was a service I would easily pay for.

    F•••.

    Frak.

    Frell.

    I hate Twitter a little bit now for shuttering these doors.
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  • I'm looking at Google calendar again. Now with Quick Add, + Dial2do its looking quite promising
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  • I’m very upset
    The more I think about this, the angrier I become. This one move has taken the whole Web 2.0 movement backwards several years. Congratulations Twitter - you have made life hard for every other provider of web based tools to gain the user's trust.

    Congratulations Rael and the team - I am truly glad that you feel you are doing well, but it shouldn't have come at the cost of hosing down your loyal user base.
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  • I’m angry.
    Yes, it's a free service, but the users were certainly a part of Sandy's success. Shutting it down and giving a 2 week notice is the height of arrogance.

    Thanks for nothing Rael. Remember, karma is a ...
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  • I’m amazed that someone will trash their own reputation in the market by not providing a proper transition period and migration option. Customer Satisfaction at Twitter gets a new tarnish as well as they own the product.
    In the last 30 minutes or so a banner has appeared on the Snady page indicating service is shutting down Dec 8.
    So the "man who doesn't care" may be reading this and doing the minimum possible.
    Still.
    Still totally inadequate notice.
    FAIL.
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  • Yeraze (Non-employee Deputy) November 26, 2008 03:41
    Wow.. I think the visceral outlashes here are a bit excessive. I understand that 2 weeks is a short time for transition, but given that Sandy is a Free Service that Rael developed on his own (He is the sole developer of the Product) I think he's done a fine job. Given that Stikkit/IWS product absolutely no revenue for Rael and he's funding the server maintenance costs out of his own pocket, I think a 2 week period is more than we should even expect.

    As the IP is transitioning to a significantly larger entity (Twitter), it's definitely possible that IWS will be back within a matter of days/weeks once it's finished transitioning from Rael's hosting to Twitter's internal servers. We simply don't know what Twitter's intentions are.

    Rael has done a fine job of developing a product that lots of people love and care about, and one thing the Internet is good at is keeping ideas alive. Even if Twitter doesn't care to stand IWS back up, Rael has proven that the concept is technically possible and realistically productive and desirable. That alone will be enough for someone to take the idea (Twitter, RTM, or some other unknown) and bring it back.
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    • Yeraze,

      I just spent three weeks inputting reminders, and tasks into Sandy, you're darn right I'm having a visceral reaction. Sandy was meant to be a trusted system. My data was meant to be safe and I was meant to be able to rely on the reminders. Instead I get a weird smug self-congratulatory email with jokes about Sandy taking a vacation where there should be apologies for a sudden end-to-service.

      And selling the IP to Twitter but not insisting that Twitter make an announcement about what they will do with the IP once the transition is over? Stunningly unprofessional on all sides. When google buys companies at least they have the temerity to avoid an interruption in service!
    • This comment was removed on 2008-11-26.
      see the change log
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  • I’m disappointed in you
    With a free Web 2.0 application, it's reasonable to say "we can't do this for free anymore, it's going fee, and we'll see if that's enough to keep the doors open". There are, after all costs of hosting.

    That said, it's a full shutdown with less than two weeks notice (It's Nov 25th and I was just informed via a twitter from Sandy).

    That's just silly, Rael. Why would you agree to let Twitter shut you down so very quickly, when so many people use the service in their daily life?

    This certainly is a poor reflection on those who would develop new services and hope that "the community" adopts them. Why should we bother, if we're just going to get dumped when you get some $$$ waved in front of you?
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  • I’m in denial. And WTF'd.
    I'll remember the details so you can focus on what's important, like remembering that the lady that remembers all of your details is going to vanish from the face of the Earth in less than two weeks.

    Life moves too fast for your calendar...but I hope you still have a calendar, because you should probably start physically writing things on it again...
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  • I'm sad to see Sandy go, I enjoyed her and got to depend on her. However, I understand that you have to go where life leads you. Good luck!
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  • Yeraze (Non-employee Deputy) November 26, 2008 04:01
    Well, the comments about Rael only posting more information in response to the outcry here are a bit incorrect. Rael's plan was always to spend today/tonight working on that very issue, and in fact is making good progress:
    * Export is coming along
    * A banner is now on the website
    * All future email from SAndy (reminders, digests, lookups) will contain information about the shutdown
    * A tweet just went out to all Sandy's followers
    • What part of inadequate notice do you not understand. I for one cannot wait because I will be gone before any recovery information is posted due to the failed process being followed. The banner and twitter announcements by Sandy did not come until after it was widely talked about by the user community on twitter and friendfeed among others.
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  • I’m Sad and Angry and Vengeful and Happy - wait not happy, just sad.
    This sucks, I only recently started using IWantSandy about 3-4 months back - now it's closing and I find myself looking for an alternative that simply doesn't exist.

    I'm a member of twitter, but twitter has and most likely will not offer the I Want Sandy service - instead they may use it to let people email twittered messages to each other by date, so that you can send a message to x user 10 days from now. But there won't be a way to remind people or to send a message to yourself, I mean if they do that - it'll be strictly a twitter message not an email :(

    Google calendar is ok, but it doesn't really beat the integration of I Want Sandy. If it was a money problem, I could help out - it would be easy to monetize I Want Sandy..I mean sell a few links on the site and attached to emails sent out.

    I'll try rememberthemillk, hopefully it has email integration. So long and thanks for all the fish
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  • I’m frustrated
    This just proves that Web 2.0's "Free, free free" mantra can't hold out, especially in this economy. I have a feeling Rael likely said "Screw this, I need a job" (though really, is Twitter going to be the most stable job choice, with no revenue plan so to speak, and tons of staff changes?).

    It sucks, and I'm scrambling to replace this, but now, I'm starting to think that after seeing this debacle, I may go back to pen and paper, or simply stick with big companies like Google or Microsoft, and never trust "the little guy" to launch something again.

    If it was financially driven, it would have been nice to have at least been given the option to pay for a service. So with Rael's team saying "He did it out of his pocket, paid the server expenses, etc."...well of course he did, but did he ever think of asking? Was he afraid we'd run in fear of a $5/month fee, calling him a sellout? Can't possibly be any worse than the fact that anything he creates for any company in the future will carry a taint of distrust from the thousands of Sandy and Stickkit users he screwed without so much as a shot at an alternative.
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  • I’m neutral
    Oh, and from a PR/Marketing perspective, I would highly suggest Twitter never put Rael's name out their products as "Developed by the people behind such popular apps as..." because you know the people here who got burned are going to just fill those news postings with angry comments. Won't matter how awesome the app is (and I honestly trust that his work will be amazing), the anger shown here will easily be passed along to future projects. Sad to say, but true.
    • Absolutely true.
      Also consider the fact that Twitter bought the company - and is taking Rael as employee. Twitter could have funded a transition period and export facility if their reputation was important to them... it became their problem when they bought the company. It would appear they don't care about users either, they don't care about Rael's reputation, and they don't care about their corporate reputation it appears.
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  • I’m ambivalent
    Mixed feelings about the changes. Sorry to see you go, but more Voodoo Donuts for me when I'm in pdx.
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  • I have spent so much time turning people on to Sandy and extolling its virtues. I feel kind of like an idiot now.

    Even worse I had ADHD and found Sandy one of the few things to help me stay on top of things and organized at school. It took so long to adjust my life to sandy but it finally worked for me and I started to see some real success.

    This is terrible, and it happens right before finals week. I know this sounds ridiculous but I feel like I am going to cry.
    • By no means does that sound ridiculous: one of the things I've most been surprised about over the past year or so has been how much people have come to care about Sandy.
    • Well I more wanted to cry because of the complete meltdown that is looming during finals week when I am adrift without my remonder/todo list service.

      I am hoping that i can jump into remember the milk as a stop gap, as much as I don't like it.

      I take part in the disability services program at my University (for other people with ADD and Dyslexia) and have been touting Sandy like mad. i will have to tell people to pump the breaks. I worry people got turned on to it and are going through what I am.
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  • I’m sad
    I am really sad about I Want Sandy shutting down. While there are other reminder services, I really like the simplicity of using Sandy's real language input. I am largely turned off by all the keywords and formatting many other services require. Also, most to-do services don't allow you to simply store something such as "Remember boyfriend's favorite color is red." That's not something you are going to-do, nor does it have a due date. I can only hope that another service develops such functionality.
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  • I’m still wondering why Twitter doesn't care even if Rael has jumped the shark.
    Rael:
    I see you are now responding to comments left here.
    Thank-you for that little bit of consideration.
    Now get it right and put the transition system in place for those who won't be able to access it from tomorrow on.
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