The Founder Formula
The Founder Formula

Episode · 3 years ago

Benjamin Hindman, Co-founder D2iQ - A Great and Terrible Idea: Founding a Company With High School Buddies


Today’s guest is Benjamin Hindman, Co-Founder of D2iQ (formerly Mesosphere). 

After founding a company with buddies from high school, would you undertake a CEO search and an entire company rebrand? If you did, here’s what you’d learn:  

  • Why founding a company with high school buddies is a great and terrible idea 
  • What it’s like to search for a CEO 
  • The process of rebranding  

Listen to this and all of The Founder Formula episodes at Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or our website.

If we learned anything from the first to go around, it was that sometimes it's better to have a name that doesn't necessarily mean anything to particular because then you have to do a rebrand right. The founder Formula Brings you in behind the curtains and inside the minds of today's brave executives at the most future leaning startups. Each interview will feature a transformative leader who's behind the wheel at a fast paced and innovative tech firm. They'll give you an insider's look at how companies are envisioned, created and scaled. We hope you're ready. Let's get into the show. Hey, everybody, welcome to another episode of the PODCAST. My Name is Todd Galina, and with me again is the chief innovation officer of trace three, Mark Campbell. Hello Mark, well, Hello Todd. How's it going? It's going pretty good. Now I know that we have this ongoing joke when we kick off the show you have just returned from vacation. But you are just returning, but not from vacation. You've come from Detroit for a work thing. Yeah, yeah, we had our solution architects from the east of the Mississippi all together in Detroit. went out. We tackle a bunch of bunch of trific topics and, by the way, we had four companies coming and present, two of which are founder Formula Guess that we've had on so that was pretty cool. Kind of at all in the family. It's all come full circle what we're doing here. Yeah, I actually had never been to Detroit before those my first time going to Detroit and and you know, you hear stuff about Detroit and that's a town that's certainly on the upsurgeons right now, but you kind of hear about, you know, eight mile, it's a hard city and stuff like that, and I've always heard it was kind of a tough city. Myself absolutely, absolutely delightful. Had A great time. But go and I got a, you know, a buddy out there and he says that a lot of that's just kind of hyped up by the media. It's a little bit of an exaggeration. That NOTT's that it's not, you know, it's not any worse than any other city. It's you know, it's really mellow and and he would know. He's a tailgunner on a budweiser truck and expected ending. I like it, but you know, we have the hard rule only one joke per intro, so I say we get to our guests. Okay, hey everybody. I wanted to pause just for a second to let you all know that we're really excited to announce that this podcast is sponsored by net APP, which is another company that was born out of the Silicon Valley. So they fit right in. And I like to introduce trace three CO founder Brett mcinnis, and he's going to tell us a little bit about what's going on over at net APP. Hey, todd, you know, I think many technology leaders today are thinking. I know AI is a critical part of our future, but how do I ai word I start? Fortunately, not up has taken the first steps with their on top AI architecture. Sounds rate. So what's the AI architecture? So the AI architecture is a validated design that includes the world's fastest all flash storage raised from net APP, and the world's fastest GPU enabled dgx service from Nvidia, designed to handle the largest, most complex data sets in use today, with the ability to scale as those data sets grow. Because today data is the new currency and speed is the new scale, and businesses today need to keep up or get left behind. Sounds Great. So where can our listeners hear more about this? For more information, simply go to net apcom Ai. Thanks, Brett. Thanks. Okay, as promised, our guest is a founder of dtwo IQ, which is a company headquartered in San Francisco. They helped today's companies control all the internal plumbing of their most advanced applications using containers, which is something we plan on covering. please. Welcome, been hinman. Welcome band. Thanks, guys, great to be here. Hey Ben, it's so, so good that you took time out of your out of your day to be on the show with us here for our audience that may not be familiar with D to Iq, because... use a little bit of background on the company, why you started it, what problems you're solving for customers and how you got into this whole Shin Dig. Yeah, of course. Yeah. So, D Toiq actually stands for a day to intelligence, and you know that really traces back to when people are trying to manage all that plumbing and then he get all their applications applications running that you were talking about earlier. It's one thing to kind of get stuff up and running day one. Sometimes we can call it day zero, when you're first playing around with things, as another thing to actually help people be successful day two and on. You often hear about construction job talking about the day two things they need to do. You know, once puple actually started living and operating in whatever buildings were built for them, and it's just as real problem in the tech world and especially in the enterprise world, and our experience over the years as told us that we need to help people be as a successful as possible with that stuff, and it's actually an area that's kind of overlooked a lot. So how do we get into this? Well, we started to see sort of the chaos that was was kind of emerging from the way people were managing all their applications, whether they were in the clouds or they were on Pram, and they're they're trying to run all these these applications across all their computers in their own data centers, across a bunch of virtual machines, whatever it was, and there was just a lot that they had to manage or with a lot of things that they had to do, and we felt the most of it could actually be automated and on top of that, not only could we automate a lot of it, but we could use more efficient technology than virtual machine. The notably containers. You can think it. Containers, is kind of lightweights really efficient virtual machines, and so we said, Hey, could we, you know, take this this technology that was really emerging from from Linux, really containers, and combine it with smarter automations, smarter scheduling aboutlications, better managements of fault tolerance and scaling up and scaling down, you know, elasticity, and build a build companies from then application. So anyway, that's kind of from tenzero feet. You know what the companies about and where we started and and why really help people. That's great. been taking taking a step back. Before starting Dt Iq, you are at twitter, and twitter was founded in two thousand and six and you arrived shortly after. For our listeners, can you share with us what it was like to be around the company and those those early days? Yeah, yeah, it was a ton of fun. So, you know, when I first got to twitter it was probably about a hundred people, and you reason why, I don't know my exacting point number. Actually, the done reason why I know that is they had just somebody had just created a really cool graph of first hundred employees and it was sort of how they were all connected by a twitter and you know how much they tweeted and stuff, and somebody that had joined right before me was like the hundred person on the grass. So I would just it just after that. But you know, it was pretty crazy. You know, I joined and that year there was a World Cup and twitter they when it first came out, it don't it didn't really get necessarily the rise, you know, the exponential gross that maybe all consumer companies that tend to be really successful gets. So it kind of been around for a while, but but two thousand and ten was really the year that it cranked up, at least from my perspective inside the company, and we definitely felt that. So in two thousand and ten there was a World Cup and I still remember every time that someone scored a goal, pretty much the site went down and it was pretty insane, you know, and it's one of the fun things about working at twitter was that it's really an event company and everybody is constantly sort of plugged into all the events...

...that are happening because we have all these TV's around the company showing the events. Twitter is a great platform for coming together and communicate other people to the event. World Cups, Olympics, Super Bowl, just, I mean just Monday night football, whatever it is, right, and so kind of you get to watch all these events, but for the World Cup, nobody really want to watch. You know, they'd see it. Oh my gosh, someone's one to breakaway. Please don't score, please don't score. And and that happened. Yeah, and that was just that was we know, it's fun. It was really valuable and fun experience to sort of beat a company that was going through that mega grow and, you know, having to be in the trenches and try to figure out what's going on and we can actually just get all the software to scale. The good news for you is you at least picked a sport where there's just not a lot of scoring. That's exactly right, exactly, you're right. Yeah, as the World Cup went on, it actually it was, you know, better and better because there's less games, right, you know, and the early part of the turnament sons of games. As it goes on, less and less game. So so before the World Cup, so the World Cup happens, but before that, you know, two thousand and nine late, two thousand and nine where you thinking like came in, I don't know if this thing, this whole twitter thing, is going to work out. You know, it's it's interesting. I think that the company was really it was seeing the growth. You know, it was growing, but I think things like the World Cup, things like other events like that, that is really what got me, as an employee of the company internally, to be like wow, this, this has some stain power. And you know, of course I was using it's also communicates within circles of other tech people, you know, nerds and academics, as a peach did Berkeley, and so I stayed in touch with all the research that was happening. So it felt like all those pieces were really strong and honestly, that part of the platform is just as strong as ever. But I felt like it was these events that might actually actually really be a big, big thing for it to be, be a great watercooler for people to come around and have conversations about, and I to this day still I mean those kinds of events. I find myself participating in twitter conversations even more than than other times. And Yeah, one day you walked in and said Hey, I need to give notice. I think I'm going to go start a company of each. How the other Batt all come about? I mean that probably, yeah, snap decision. Yeah. Well, so before twitter, when I was at Berkeley, I was working on this software platform that was doing what I was talking about earlier, using containers to help people run, you know, their applications and scheduling them around all the different machines you had in the data center. And I really went to twitter and helped them basically deploy this software at really, really massive scale. So, you know, early days we ran on a couple machines. You know, by the time that I'd left twitter, these there is right on tens of thousands of machines and all the critical APPs we're taking advantage of it, and so that was an amazing experience. Obviously learned as fun through that, but because we built this software in an open source way and people outside of twitter could consume it as well, we started to see some adoption of it other places. So, you know, we had folks like Uber and we had folks like Netflix, we had folks like cap, with a bunch of these different kind of companies that, you know, publicly had come out when I was at twitter and talked about how they were they were they were using this software as well, and that for me was like, HMM, interesting. Bunch of these Silicon Valley companies that are looking, you know, at how they can use this, this technology to be more efficient themselves a bit to the enterprises could really benefit from this as well, and I think one of the, you know, really revealing things for me was that my cofounders were action...

...and air BNB and it. They were using the technology as well, but they were very, very different. They that the websites to back in the air bb was a hundred percent on Amazon, they were on the cloud. Twitter was a hundred percent their own data centers. At AIRBNB, they were really using this for one particular class of applications, that twitter. We really focus on different class of applications and, you know, from it wasn't too hard to be like wow, you know, maybe this could be generally useful for lots of places, not just people in the cloud, not just people on their own private data centers, not just people doing these this kind of class affications also this other kind of class of applications, and I decided to take the jump and and see if we could, we could get out there and and help all those other organizations that might not have the resources that a twitter or uber or or Airbnb or Netflix have at their disposal and help them do the same kind of stuff that all the other folks are doing. So you mentioned your cofounders. How exactly did you pick them, or they pick you, or at all, just came together at the same time? How did you kind of I had to get the band together. You know what? It's interesting. Three of us have known each other for very long time, which in some ways is the worst, worst idea for starting the company, is to you know, mix personal and business. But in other ways I think actually it's been really, really beneficial. So one of my cofounders, gentleman named Florian Liebert, or flow, flow Lebert. He he was actually German foreign exchange student of mine when I was in high school. kind of a crazy story, but came over and yeah, he came over and I got to know him then. And the third cofounder a guy named Toby Canal. Toby and flow go back to early days in middle school where they actually had a their own computer company, their own content management software, CMS company, when that was kind of early and happening in the web days. So I got to know toby in high school through flow and then we all just stayed in touch and not too surprisingly, we all ended up in Silicon Valley. I came down as a graduate student that at Berkeley. Flow came and was actually working at twitter, and then toby was working at AIRBNB and Solo ultimately ended up actually working at Airbnb as well. But through this sort of us all kind of coming together and then all sort of working on similar technology, especially across twitter and AIRBNB. I think we were just always talking about it and seemed like it was the right thing to do put them together and help and you know, I think credit to flow. I think he really led led the charge for a lot of us to just come together and actually actually take the plunge. You know, I think it's easy to sit at a check job like like twitter as it's growing and watching all that stuff and to be sort of risk or verse, but it's, you know, really fun to actually dive in and build companies, and that's what we ended up done. Well. Speaking of flows, so he a little while ago decided to step aside from the CEO Positionn't remain on the board, remain with his eyes, with his eyes on what's going on. But of course selecting and appointing your currents Yo, Mike, and bringing him in that had to be a little disruptive on culture maybe so apprehended. How did that whole process work and how did you guys pull it off? Yeah, yeah, well, you know, I think one of the things that we know the founders have tried to be really thoughtful about from the early days is play things we don't know and when we can bring in, we can bring in experts to manage that, that gap. That's really important. So, you know, we didn't try to be marketing experts and the early case of the company we...

...brought in a great early CMO who I learned a ton from and I still would and not definitely a marketing expert at all, but I think that was a really valuable experience for us to sort of realize that, you know, we need to bring in these these experts who have live, breathed and died and in doing they're saying exceptionally well. And as we were growing the company, I think at one point we decided that this probably made sense to do. Who from the the chief executive officer position as well so the long process is a it was a very supported process by our by the board. You know, we spent a lot of time looking at a ton of different people and really trying to find that that right candidate, that right person, and and it who we ended up bringing on my pay is he was exactly what we're looking for, someone whould add that experience, who I've already learned an amazing amount from in the seven, eight, eight, ten months or so that he's been with the company and you know, just you know, has has intuitions and, you know, answers questions and does things without even blinking. That we would have spend a lot more time thinking about because it was our first time in one of those those experiences. In terms of, you know, I guess disruption to the culture. I mean it's totally disruptive thing because I think all the founders are still deeply involved in the company in some shape or another. I think that makes it less disruptive, but I do think, yeah, a lot of organizations, a lot of people come to companies kind of hoping or kind of thinking that, you know, maybe maybe the founders will will take the company all the way to IPO or wherever it gets to. And the reality, I think is is, especially with enterprise, the soccer company, in my experience, is such a steep learning curve at such a there's just so much they're that bringing in an expert who's done a lot of that work before, made some of those mistakes other places, that they can bring in just makes a lot of sense and that's that's why we did it, and I think the team has all been really supportive and rallied behind that. It's it's obviously been exceptionally positive. I again, as we said, you know, Mike Mike's been a great addition and we really enjoy working with them. They're really happy to have them, having beyond the fund them. That's perfect and certainly that transition is is obviously tricky to get right. We went through a very similar transition here at trace three, but it's a different stage of maturation. I certainly think you guys have hit that. If we kind of go back and look from the early days, you guys have always had a terrific track record and getting BC sponsorship for what you guys have got going on, including all the way up through this most recent transition. Talk about like some of the early days of when you know you made your first pitch? Did you guys just walk in, knock it out of the park, walk out with a doumple bag of money, or or and then how is that change to some of the later rounds you guys have? I think you guys closed to most recent round last year, and I assume that walking in with a track record and some you know, some trailing revenue and so forth pretty changes that. What's that like pitching that, that whole BC thing? Yeah, well, so we had, we had something going for us for sure, and and I got to tell you, the very first real titch we did was a total failure. And No, we did not get raise any money from the people. I think what we had going for us, which opened a lot of doors and helped us, you know, get a lot of the meetings that we have, a lot of the VC's, and I honestly sort of made, you know, when I chat with a lot of people about it, made made kind of getting those introductions in those initial conversations seem a lot more straightforward than then. I know... really is. was was just because we had real deployments of this this software, of this technology at a bunch of places that were public about it, and so you know you could you could call up a VC and you know you could have the conversation. Said Hey, we're interested in telling you about this company, we're interested in building, about this technology that's running at this place, this place, this place, and those just these see they see's, could just jump on a phone called the you know, the VP's or cteos or whoever it is, and there's even CEOS that these companies and say, Hey, can you, you know, validate whether or not to stuff running, and and they'd say yeah, it's running, then it's a great come in and chat with us. So that was a huge help. Of the huge, huge help, and I think that's one of the things that you often hear about being one of the big value out of doing your software open source is that you can you can get, you know, introductions to people or you can get, like, a lot of forward progress just based on people using the open source, Orpensos version your technology. I think it's similar thing is happening actually with software and service organizations that are building their applications first and foremost as sort of SASS products. They can also get a lot of customers to start using their things before necessarily they have had to raise the ton of money or had a lot of these conversations, and then they can get some real real users that they can go, go talk to vcs to but anyway, we had that and so that was really useful. That didn't mean that was the slam duck right. Just because the door was open doesn't mean that people would just wanted to wanted to give us money. And you know that definitely one of our early pitches was total, total failure. In fact, I still remember after that pitch in particular, we we spent two solid days just working on the story, just work it on the pitch, iterating, iterated, iterating, and you know, and that week we went and chatted with and recent Horwitz and we went back the following week to meet with the GPS, the general partners that in recent or wits and band up being be in our series a, and I definitely a credit that to that first really, really massive sale we had with our pitches and and sort of the forced okay, we gotta we got to really get our stuff together here and be ready to explain this. So you know, over the years, I guess you ask about the other funding rounds over the years. I think it's been very you know, some have been some have been more straightforward and some have been been more challenging. You know, we sort of we chose a obviously, you know, traditional VC funding for our series aid and series be. For our series C, we actually decided we would we would work with some strategic partners and it sort of made sense. You know, we wanted to get in the channels of a bunch of these companies. We were doing some other work to build some do some product development with some of these these guys, and particular Microsoft, and so it just it was really good for tuitous timing. We were chatting with these organizations to say hey, you know, want it, we create a even stronger relationship here, which we did with with the investments. And then our series D was also strategic, but I think in a different way that was this one was much more about how can we work with some organizations that we believe can really help us get even better access to some customers and, you know, segments of enterprises that we might not have previously been easily gotten in introductions to or had seats at the table with. So so that's kind of that's sort of the progression of how we've thought about each of the funding rooms. It seems like you guys have gotten wiser, you know, each round, and you guys did you guys did great on your own your series D as well. So you've definitely figured out, you know, from from the rough start of the pitch to where you guys are at now. You've you've definitely figured something out. So so Kudos. Yeah, always learning the probably experiment. Yeah, well,...

...anytime you know you have a company that gets the attention of Gardner, you're definitely doing something right. Can you tell our listeners a little bit about what it's like working with with outside analyst, you know, an outsider coming in assessing your product and your technology and then essentially rating it, you know, where they want to put it in a a quadrant? Yeah, yeah, can you? Should you share with us a little bit about working with with outside analysts? Yeah, I mean, you know, it's an interesting thing. My background was very technical. You know, I think if you were to go and pull ten engineers at a at a a tech company, they would say, you know, there's no value in analysts, or nine of the ten would say that. I think their reality is actually the analyst function as a critical one, to help aggregate a crazy amount of information and take it out there and make it accessible to an even larger population of people that are interested in consuming different technologies. So, you know, for us, I think that was definitely, you know, early, early learning experience to figure out that working with analysts and and how that works. But it's been, it's been very, really valuable and I think, for you know, it's for us, it's especially interesting to have basically somebody with a really critical eye should trying to understand what it is that you're doing and then sort of place you in a particular particular in a bucket or in a particular category or in a particular use case, because it also forces you to be really reflective and say way, to say get no, that's not where we're supposed to be, that's not what I'm trying to do, and and that's you know, if you listen to that, it can be a great opportunity to say, Wow, well, what are we doing or saying or building or being? That is not actually who we want to be, because this is this is how how people are seeing us and this is how, especially the analysts or seeing us. So so I think that from kind of the early days of maybe being less, you know, taking it less seriously, to as we've as we've grown with a company and gotten great feedback from all the analyst relations we've had, you know, and helping us really like hone hone our products and what we're working on, it's been a good, you know, good, good journey and you know, I will say that, you know, we've got, you even have one of our best product managers. That came from from one of the analysts and he also brings a great, great perspective on you know, having kind of been in the hot seat to be able to understand, understand how he's going to be explaining technology to other customers, lots of different technologies. Now that's been exceptionally valuable for him as he as he product manages and built products themselves for us here. So again, I know it's's been a good, good journey. It's definitely been. It's evolved over the years, but I think it's really valuable and I suppose I should say to any any founders out there maybe that are discounting the value of it. It's totally valuable and it's a worthwhile task. It's funny. You know you're doing something right when one of the analysts, you know, climbs over the table and joins joins the company. Mark. I haven't heard that one yet. No, no, I like that. I like that. You mentioned earlier about the evolution right in the the sometimes the analysts are putting you in one bucket and you kind of see yourself in a different bucket as you evolved. You know the ofttouted pivot. That's kind of a staple of the Silicon Valley. Have have you guys face that? When do you make the decision of Hey, look, we had we had a vision when we started this company. That's stay true to that vision, or hey, look, the world is kind of changed a little bit. Even the analysts or seeing us a little different than we see ourselves. maybe our customers are seeing ourselves different than we see ourselves. Maybe we have to pivot. Have you gone through some of those pivots and, if so, how were the decisions made on that? Yeah, yeah, it's a great question. Yeah, you know, I think what's most interesting for is, you know,...

...the vision and the mission of the company hasn't changed. You know, when when we set out to start the company, it was to help all these organizations manage all the crazy applications they're running across the m's or physical machines with containers and said, you know, to kind of make that be a common way in which all of the teams within these companies are doing stuff, and so I think we've been really fortunate over the years that that we haven't had to to change. That hasn't changed, which has been great. We get to continue to think about solving those problems. What has changed, though, is the technology landscape heads of all, and while we started with one particular technology to help solve those problems, there were other technologies that were also introduced that gained a lot of momentum and traction and ultimately what we did as a business was we incorporate that into our suite. So we said, yeah, you know, that technology is also helping US solve the same core problems that we're trying to help our customers solved. We have expertise in this area of solving these problems for customers, so we can we can use that technology to solve those problems as well, and that was definitely a critical decision that was made by by the company and ultimately ended up turning into a rebrand for the company which, you know, talk about potential culture shock from bringing the CEO rebrand can also have a pretty pretty dramatic culture shock. But it made sense, you know, based on the fact that we really were trying to tell our customers and tell the community and tell everybody else that, you know, this original mission and vision that we set out is the most important part it, regardless of which technologies you actually choose to use. You know, the rebrand really makes sense in our case that that's because the original company, company name, actually included the name of that original technology. And so, you know, a lot of people just naturally busy going through their every days. They're interested in companies that can help them solve the problems we're helping people solve. But they see our company, they see that that name of the technology and the company name and they think, okay, those guys are just helping with that technology. It is this other one I'm interested in, so I'm not going to chat with them. And some of course, and you're talking about the incorporation of Coubernetti's alongside your mesule. Got It, yeah, you got yeah, exactly right. Yeah, so, you know, the company original we we founded a company. We called the company Mesosphere, and that the name, the name mesos comes from the Apache, Apache project, which was the original projects that I was mentioning earlier. It was used by twitter and all these organizations, and then Kubernetti's was they've been a bunch of actual projects that can mouse that we're all trying to do something similar to to what Masos was doing, and some of them were successful, some of them kind of sailed, but Cubernis is the one that really really gained a lot of traction. And so in earlier early years of the company was sort of like, you know, one of these things popped up, it seemed like every month or something like that, and we were like, okay, we'll just we'll see what happens, we'll watch it. And with Coubernetti, so was like yeah, let's you know, let's incorporate this and and I think that's been great because again, you know, this is not a when you talk about out companies pivoting. All of our experts are still experts, right, you know, we didn't have to go hire a whole brand new set of people to understand containers, to understand distributed systems, to understand any of these pieces and and the way that a lot of these communities interacted. There were also a lot of synergies already. So a great example is we actually started an API basically called the container storage interface, CSI, after another organization has started CNI and, which is the container networking interface, and we said, wow, you know, that makes a ton of sense. Like C and...

I makes sense. You can get all these different components to talk to one another. So so let's do see USI as well, and says we did a couple of these different things. We basically were playing in all these different communities, and so bringing on curbanities to our portfolio was not a crazy feet too crazy endeavor for us to do, and it's been fun. Honestly, it's been really fun. Comments Great Community and it's great to work with with the people there and at the end of the day, we just like solving people's problems when it comes to running all their stuff and in containers. That's a you might have gone over. Maybe one of the biggest pivots we've we've heard on the show so far been and you mentioned you mentioned the name change and I wanted to kind of double click on the for those of you who are listening, the company used to be called Mesosphere, now called dto IQ, and there's a great article in tech crunch a around the why, and then you covered that a little bit. But there are a lot of companies when they get to a certain level of maturity, you know, some of the founders and some of the marketing folks, and they get together and they're like, Hey, we might be ready for a name change. What was a lot for you guys? Was it just like you flow and that the CMO, you push a button, or that process? Yeah, well, so I think we're really started. Was What we actually going to get out of this. You know, it's not a cheap process. When you start to put together the bomb, if you will, you know, the build materials, of all the things you have to deal with. It's when it comes to doing a rebrand, it's not like a couple things. Everything down to things like your your accounts at places like like Github, where you store your code. There's a crazy amount of places where your your the name wrote, really really permeate. So it was definitely not a light decision. It was not a Oh you know there this could be valuable. Let's do it. It was. It was very much taken as a let's be really, really serious about the value we're going to get from this, and I think in our case, you know, the overwhelming value for us was to really capture the bigger picture of what we're doing as a company. That, you know, we didn't want to give people any of the wrong ideas. We want to tip people to make sure that they knew, you know, the bigger picture what we really focused on, which again is not just any particular technology. It's containers, distributed systems in general. And you know, the more that, I think, we sort of chatted about that and talk to organizations, the more we saw that that really valuable reason to do a rebrand and it just makes a lot of sense. So, you know, we also decided to do it coming up with a name, or sort of the second part. You know, first part is to shying that you're going to do it. The second part is coming up and coming up with a new name, and that was an interesting process to you know, what we really did was we took a step back and we said, all right, what really signifies this this mission? Envision that we're still on but, you know, isn't captured in the name, but it is still very, very representative of what we're trying to do. Is A business. And so, as I mentioned that the beginning beginning of the show in day to intelligence as has been a theme for us that we've thought a lot about since the earliest, early stays of the company, you know, when we first founded the company. There's just there's so much open source tech out there that people play with and use and a lot of the projects end up failing that when they try to use that and we really wanted people to be successful in production and we really wanted people to get to day two where they actually or just letting the software run and they were doing upgrades of it and they had all the monitoring and everything else that they security and everything put in place and they could actually just have this software provide the value that that they intended for to ride when they when they initially embarked on the project. And it's just it's it had been a big focus of us, of ours from day one and it's been one of the things that we always really really thought about as being important for our customers. And it seems like a natural, great name for our brand.

Now. I think if we learned anything from the first go around, it was that, you know, sometimes it's better to have a name that doesn't necessarily mean anything to particular because then you have to do a rebrand right. So, original company name at the technology name in it, and that's kind of what got us into this this place in the first place. And so we thought, you know, this time around that would be great to have a name that was really symbolic of what's really important, but could maybe also be a long, long lasting name. And so d to IQ is kind of the kind of capturing that, you know, yes, stands for day to intelligence and yes, it really captures what support to us, but also on its own, D to Iq is something that we believe can be a lasting, a lasting name, and and take on many, many potential interpretations over the years, as all companies go through phases where they bring on new parts of their business and and you know, maybe the original name for a company doesn't make sense for for what's what's most important. You know, I guess it's a good thing that Microsoft didn't call themselves the personal operating system company. Wouldn't wouldn't make sense right for all the stuff that they're they're doing now in Microsoft. Is, you know, kind of a generic name and we were also kind of looking for something like that as well that we felt could have more lasting power. Well, and certainly you know you talking about from the little say you're messaging deer customers encapsulated in the name, how that's changed and grown. You talked about kind of how the technology space, where you guys are major player at has grown. Adoption, of course, is a wildfire right now for not just containers with the holy ecosystem around it, and you guys have kind of grown along with that. As you guys have scaled through those various transition points. How do you keep your company true to to the DNA that was injected right at the very beginning? How do you stay true to that not just become captured and drifted along with the tide? Yeah, it's a it's a great question. You know. I think you know one of the best ways of doing it is is keeping some of our best people, especially on the product and engineering side, that have been been with the company the longest and still really understand and know, you know, our mission and what we're trying to do. I think that's a that's critical and and I think a big part of that, you know, continues to come from from the founders as well. As I said, even through flows transition, we're all still at the company and we all still spend a lot of time in bed with with different teams and and trying to continue to push those original cultural goals. And you know, when Mike joined the company, I was one thing that I think he was really, you know, excited about with the fact that all three three founders were still the company. I think maybe should ask him. He'd say he was both excited and terrified at the same time. But it ruses is we all work really well together and so it was that it's a great thing to have us all still together and be able to separate and work with various different, different teams from the company, but then kind of come together and and I'll get aligned on on what we're trying to do and keep it true to why we founded the company, where we actually started. Yeah, you know, it's a testing I would say, in still can really move so fast and lots of new technologies and some of them are fad and some of them are not, but I think you know, for us the fact that all three founders really were practitioners. We were really run in this tech at companies. I think that that cultural value is still very much embedded within the company and and and with the employees, and I think that's really really important because even with really fast changing, volatile you know what's happening untilicon valley and new piece of technology seems to show...

...up all the time, you got to consider if you want to use it or not. I think maybe one of the core core values for us is with what technologies we do pick to help customers with. It's going to be important to us that we get those customers all into production with those things because we really want to see see it used to practice and I think that's one of the real core values. And again it goes back to why we called the we did the rebrand and called the company what we did what we called it. Well, it's been a heck of a journey. I greatly appreciate you sharing that with us. Is there anything that we haven't asked that you think would be of interest to the audience, something that you'd like to share from the journey that you've been on? Yeah, I think one of the things that that's been you know, speaking sort of more you know presently in terms of what's happening with the company. I think one of the things that we'd love to share, if you've heard about us before and and kind of maybe heard about about the rebrand or didn't, is come and check out a bunch of our new products. You know, we were pretty quiet about doing the rebrand and about the the new products we were we were putting together. But again, as I said, we are expertise that we already had in the distributed systems and container space. We're really excited about the Cubaranetis products that we put together and, you know, it's been an opportunity to take a lot of what's without there in the community but also kind of add our own our own slaver and our own our own twist to it, based on all the experience that we had, you know, in the first the first phase of the company as Masius fere when it with Maso's and everything we built around around Masos. It's to take a lot of the best of what we learned there and really apply it to all the things we're doing around Cubarnett. So yeah, you know, please come check out. There's cool things there that we're really proud of and excited about and we love to chat with about it. Oh that's that's awesome. That's open invitation there. I love that. Hey Been I can't thank you enough for spending time. I know you're up in the mountains of Beautiful Veil Colorado. You probably have a thousand and one things you want to get to today. So again, thanks a ton for carving out part of your day to spend with todd and I greatly appreciate it. This was been so much fun. I learned a ton. Thanks so much for having me. Guys. You're welcome, man. Thank you. Cheers. Trace three is hyper focused on helping it leaders deliver business outcomes by providing a wide variety of data center solutions and consulting services. If you're looking for emerging technology to solve tried and true business problems, trace three is here to help. We believe all possibilities live in technology. You can learn more at trace threecom podcast. That's trace, the number threecom podcast. You've been listening to the founder formula, the podcast for all things start up, from Silicon Valley to innovators across the country. If you want to know what it takes to lead tomorrow's tech companies, subscribe to the show wherever you get your podcasts. Until next time,.

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