O'Reilly Software Goes Away

O'Reilly Software Goes Away. Wow. I've been waiting for this to happen for a few years. Back in 1997, I was one of the 25-or-so people in O'Reilly's software division. I had more than one debate during that time with Tim and others in the company about whether or not O'Reilly should even be in the software business. I thought not and assumed Tim and gang would eventually reach this decision, as well. I'm sure it would have happened earlier if not for the difficulties of aborting a project that is supporting a fair number of people -- people who are not only employees, but long-time friends and neighbors. The fact is, a Windows-based, software startup just didn't thrive within the open-source/Unix-centric, wine-country-centered, book publisher's environment. And its existence didn't contribute to the strong brand and identification O'Reilly has in so many people's minds. (Though, the last couple years, one heard so little of O'Reilly Software, it probably didn't hurt that much either.) There were a lot of smart, hard-working people in that little-known part of O'Reilly who did some interesting and innovative things. And I wish them well. I wonder what would have happened if the group was spun out a couple years ago when they perhaps could have gotten some serious financing or found an acquirer. I also wonder what would happen if if's and but's where candy and nuts.