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Saturday, March 7, 2009

Dot-Com nostalgia

12:38:00 PM Posted by Oscar Berg No comments
Those were the days...

During the summer of year 2000, I managed a project that developed student community web sites for a startup in Stockholm owned by Universum. Besides managing the project, I also managed requirements and developed the interaction design for the sites. 

In the beginning of year 2000, some expensive management consultants from Boston Consulting Group had identified a "window of opportunity" that they presented to Universum. Their message was that the company that was able to get there first would dominate the market...you probably know how the story goes.

As most startups did back then, they made some very big plans, evidently too big to be even close to realistic. They had already recruited people and set up organizations in Sweden, UK, France and Germany before there was a web site within sight. At that point, they appointed my company in May 2000  to develop the sites (Sweden, Germany, France and UK) and made me and my project team work our asses off (pardon my French) during the entire summer so that we could launch the sites for the new semester. As you might have guessed already, it was one of those projects that you afterwards regret getting yourself into. 

I recently found an illustration of the site concept in my "archive" and I was struck by how little things actually have changed since then - at least on a conceptual level. 
Not bad, if I may say so myself. But it is probably to generic to be usable. I see no other reason why it seems relevant even today.


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