12/21/2011, 09:17 AM
It's been almost three years now since webOS and the Palm Pre were announced back in January of 2009. I remember watching the CES keynote by Jon Rubenstein several times on that eventful day, cheering with the virtual crowds and going gaga over what I believed, what we all believed, would be the first great iPhone competitor. In those three years I have had a lot of very fond memories coming from this webOS Nation, and so it's somewhat bittersweet to announce that I'm leaving to pursue my other passions elsewhere.
It has taken me a long time to come to this decision, but as with everything in life, at some point we just have to follow through and get the tough stuff over with. Yesterday it was finalized - I will no longer be writing for the Mobile Nations team (including webOS Nation, WPCentral and AndroidCentral), and will instead go on to the next phase of life that is before me.
Let me assure you, this has nothing at all to do with any differences in opinion on the direction of Mobile Nations. I have loved this company since before I wrote my very first article, and will continue to support them in the direction that they go. These guys are making a lot of changes very quickly, and they are all exciting. You'll see in a very short amount of time, the Mobile Nations really do care about making your experiences as members of these sites as positive as they can.
No, I am leaving for another reason. In less than two weeks, not only will I be moving into a new house to get a fresh start on life, but I will be going back to school to finish my degree in Culinary Arts. My day job as a bartender/waiter/prep-cook has been keeping me busy, especially as I continue to take on more responsibilities at the restaurant. Something I've only mentioned to very few of you is my desire to one day open my own fine-dining restaurant. It's now apparent to me that I need to start working to make that dream a reality. Between full-time at school and full-time at work, there is very little time left over to continue to be as active as I have been. This is the reason for the hard decision.
Sadly, I am not just leaving the webOS Nation as a writer; I am also leaving as an active member and contributor. Over the last two years, my life has been completely enveloped with thoughts of webOS and its future. I have traveled around the US (on my own dime) to meet with some of the great developers and creators of the platform. I have spent thousands of dollars to support app development, community-related events, and have even bought several devices to get deserving people a webOS tablet/phone. I worked as the editor of the TouchPad For Dummies book (before it was cancelled) and have even worked with HP/Palm directly to help with their Palm Connections program a year ago. And I can't forget about my 30 Day Challenge- what an awesome time that was. It's hard to explain how crushed I was when Apotheker decided to cut webOS hardware earlier this year, though that pales in comparison to how people working in Sunnyvale felt.
I guess what I'm trying to say is, this has not been an easy decision to make, but it is a necessary one. While I may continue to talk a bit about webOS on Twitter, it is very unlikely that I will be involved heavily in the community after the first of the year. In fact, I have already made my move to using a Nexus S, running Ice Cream Sandwich, as my daily-driver phone. It does everything that I need it to do with work/school, and I don't have to worry about breaking it and losing one of the last of its kind (like I do with my Pre3).
webOS is not just a platform to me, it's a community and an idea. When I say that webOS filled my every-waking moment most days since I bought my first Sprint Palm Pre, understand that the webOS community has taken up most of those thoughts, not just the device itself. You are all great people, and it has been an exciting experience to work for and with you. I hope to stay in touch with many of you as life continues to go on, as the friendships we have all built should stand on more than just the possible success of a mobile platform.
Thanks for all that you do, and keep up the great work. webOS needs you all now more than ever, and I encourage you to stick with it, even though I am not. Feel free to connect with me on Twitter (@anotherguy), Google+ or Facebook. I also would still love to meet with many of you in person, so if you're in the South-West Ohio region, send me a message (firstname.lastname@example.org) so that we can meetup for lunch/coffee/beer. Or, you know, stop by my restaurant and I'll make you something nice.
Some people I would like to thank personally. Each of you has been a friend to me in ways that a simple business-relationship would normally not allow (I'm sure I've missed a few):
Derek Kessler, Dieter Bohn, John Kneeland (for letting me live with you for a week, how much better can it get?), Lisa Brewster, James Harris, Geoff Gauchett (you still owe me a stick-figure), Jason Robitaille, @errade/@ColonelKernel/@benfysh/@newsmatt (you were the first people to encourage me to do the 30 Day Challenge), Dion Almaer, @MrKal_El, Pamela Hazelton, Evan Wilbrecht, Donald Kirker, Clifton Thomas, Bruce K., Kevin Michaluk, Rod Whitby, Rich Dunbar, Greg Stoll, Ashley Esqueda and finally, the great @Palm himself, Jon Zilber.
Thanks for all you've done to support my work/life and to support each other. I look forward to seeing what else you do in the future.