MyQuire, experiences, and DEMOfall 2007 conference

In early June I hinted of change. One of those changes was my decision to join the Quire, Inc. team developing a web application known as MyQuire. Since then, I’ve experienced the joys of working [physically] in an "office" which made Nerf gun wars a reality meant help was a slap on the back of the head within earshot. Which is great, because there were quite a number of situations that were remedied with a 2-3 minute face-to-face chat as opposed to a lengthy instant message conversation.

In any event, the past few months have been heads-down – work, test, work, Nerf, work, test, and Halo 3. The "natural" order of things for a development team right? I’ve had the opportunity to continue working with my favorite(s) XHTML & CSS while spending more time with Ruby on Rails (RoR) – which, may I respectfully add I suck at [for now]. My true suck’iness is masked by the fact that I work in an office comprised of people who eat RoR cereal. You know, the one with the limited edition Gems at the bottom of specially marked boxes? That RMagick sure was a doozy to install. I admit that I am CLI challenged. No shame, give me the GUI’s! I did my best to hold my own though, adapting. That Apple application called Terminal – which I am supposed to befriend and love as I do Photoshop – really is quite useful.

The web meets MyQuire at DEMOfall 2007

The Quire, Inc. team made a significant step after being accepted to present at the much talked-about DEMOfall 2007 Conference. CEO David Steinberg took the stage to explain the story behind MyQuire, and updates to look forward to come late Fall.

Simple project collaboration & management, VoIP, file-sharing, screen-sharing, all mixed together with basic networking. It was exciting to see MyQuire presented on-stage, even more exciting to find sites taking notice and feedback coming in.

There is much to be continually improved and polished. If you’ve tried MyQuire, share your thoughts in the comments – or send feedback directly [MyQuire Contact page]. Keep in mind that what was presented at DEMO has not yet been made live on MyQuire. Look for updates this Fall. If you haven’t had a chance to check out the MyQuire Blog, I invite you you to visit or subscribe.

Discuss - 8 Comments

  1. Ian says:

    MyQuire certainly looks like quite a handy collaboration/project management tool but how does it differ to some of the big players in the business like Basecamp and the 37Signals apps? It definitely seems to have more of a social network feel to it with user profiles and the ability to view their projects, and even join them. But what’s the privacy and security like if you wanted to keep things strictly business and work on projects in a similar fashion to the way Basecamp users do?

    What’s the upload space limit too?

  2. Derek says:

    Regarding files, there is a per file upload limit of 10 MB. Fortunately, there is no actual total file(s) uploaded limitation, so upload away! Concerning your security & privacy concern question, only network contacts that you invite to projects can see activity. At this time, project title and description are visible [to the public] for anyone who visits your profile – we’re working on additional permissions features to provide more flexibility.

  3. Ian says:

    I like the sound of limitless uploads, that always seems to be a catch on many of the big name online collaboration apps, but it does sound like its leaning slightly more towards the social networking app side of things rather than a tool for freelancers and web professionals.

    So are you in full-time employment at MyQuire now or working on a contractor basis? The office life certainly sounds like more fun than the typical desk work and with working on an app such as this at the same time as getting to grips with RoR sounds like its a shrewd move! Just read an article on RoR 2. I still haven’t crossed RoR 1 off the to-do list yet :P

  4. Derek says:

    [...] but it does sound like its leaning slightly more towards the social networking app side of things rather than a tool for freelancers and web professionals.

    Curious to understand why you think MyQuire sounds like it’s leaning more towards the social networking side?

  5. Ian says:

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking it but from taking a look at screencasts, the tour on the website and reading through the FAQs trying to figure out how it compares to some of the popular project management tools I got the impression that it was built with more of a social slant to it. For instance, in their FAQ they mention:

    “Members can use MyQuire to find people to participate in their projects, give feedback, and seek out public projects to join.”

    This is what I would consider to be more of a social network feature in terms of searching for projects to join and connecting with members throughout the world. They also state:

    “…connecting projects to a broader network opens up possibilities to get together with a range of people and projects across the globe. MyQuire is really a combination of project coordination and social networks – bringing them together for the first time.”

    It seems that MyQuire are trying to combine elements of the two and tools such as GoPlan and Basecamp don’t really focus on the social side.

    Even your own comment mentioning:

    “At this time, project title and description are visible [to the public] for anyone who visits your profile”

    also makes your profile and projects sound very open like your facebook profile and updates. Ok, they can’t see any activity but if you’re a freelancer working on projects for clients and need a good method of communication and collaboration then I’d find it VERY hard to persuade any clients to use MyQuire as a tool with open info such as that. Privacy is of the utmost.

    Maybe this is a niche that needs filling but personally I’d rather keep business networks and social networks separate. I find that clients want guarantees that project details are kept confidential and social networkers rarely want to talk about work. In my humble opinion a combination of the two misses the specialist advantages of both network types.

  6. Derek says:

    Good points Ian. I’m going to make sure to pass them along. Regarding the privacy surrounding projects, you can still assure clients that the core of the project is private from public eyes. Although the project title and description – at this time – are made viewable on your own public profile, actually viewing the project requires that you have already have been invited. Using obscure titles / desc. is the only method of "throwing" random visitors off from figuring out what you’re working on.

    If you were viewing a contacts profile and happened to be curious enough to click on a project, a popup would stop you from continuing. In order to view the project, you can request to be added (which the project owner would then need to accept).

  7. Blair R says:

    I have used Basecamp for several years and have found it helpful. I do like the look of MyQuire though. I’ve tried it out and it seems very similar to Basecamp. The networks idea is like people and permissions and there are files and a calendar and tasks etc. Chat is like having campfire.

    What would be the advantages of using this product vs Basecamp? File storage space seems to be one. Also, the dashboard lets you see everything at once where as Basecamp has the chat etc in different sections. Any others?

  8. Derek says:

    There is no denying that Basecamp is a fantastic tool. There is also no denying that 37signals delivered – and continues to improve – an online project management tool suitable for a wide spectrum of teams. However, the service is not for everyone. I’ve taken a look at some of the other alternatives – activeCollab, GoPlan, etc. Although all the services have continued to evolve since those posts, the reality is there is not a single service has the power of appealing to everyone. MyQuire was simply another option. A option for individuals who wanted a little bit of everything. A lightweight tool for collaborating, a platform to share files, and a networking tool that brought the two together.

    Note: I left Quire in early 2008.