Jason Fried: 37signals
Jason Fried is the co-founder of the company 37signals – the company responsible for some awesome collaborative programs like Basecamp, Highrise, Backpack, Campfire, Ta-Da List, and Writeboard. He and David Hansson also published a book, Rework, about the principles at the core of 37signals’ success and offering ideas for putting them into practice for others. Jason has also been a speaker for TED: Ideas Worth Spreading. Check him out speaking on why work doesn’t happen in the office.
I think have begun to pinpoint what it is that makes 37signals (and guys like Jason Fried and David Heinemeir Hansson) so successful. 37signals offers up programs that are simple and don’t do too much, but these programs are EXTREMELY good at what they do. Reading about Jason has lead me to believe that he’s a very simple, to-the-point type of person. I read an article on him and I believe the world would be a much better place if everyone would think the same way he thinks: “I spend another good portion of my day thinking about how to make things less complicated.” I think that’s exactly what the world needs: less complication.
David Heinemeier Hansson: Ruby on Rails, Basecamp, 37signals
“If you want to change the world, you have to stick with it.” – David Heinemeir Hansson
Known simply to most as “DHH”, David has an extensive list of projects/ideas/startups that he has stuck with to try to change the world. He is the creator of the open-source web development framework, Ruby on Rails. While many have criticized Rails for being too simple and for “lowering the bar” for programmers, David respectfully disagrees. While he believes that Rails does simplify things, he definitely opens the doors for future programmers and “fresh blood”. Check out his awesome explanation here.
The original Rails app is Basecamp, a project management tool. Basecamp is part of 37signals where David is currently a partner along with Jason Fried. Basecamp is a tool that we use daily here at Atilus and I love the simplicity of the program and I think that’s something that David has strived for.
Setting aside his list of amazing accomplishments, David is an absolutely brilliant public speaker. After watching a few videos and reading his tweets, I can already tell how passionate he is about his work. When asked if he would sell 37signals (or any of his ideas), he repeatedly declined no matter how much the number went up (you can check out the debate here). His ideas about business are genius, yet simple and practical.
We will definitely be watching and looking forward to all the things Jason and David accomplish with 37signals in the future!