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August 17, 2006

For the love of the B

I'd been meaning to write about the recent release of the new version of Blogger. But fortunately Ev captured pretty much everything I wanted to point out, but didn't mention on Buzz. And then he ripped the face offa evhead.com ... which I'm gonna assume is unrelated.

This release of Blogger will also be the last I work on as I am leaving Google at the end of next week. I'd been planning on leaving for a while but really wanted to see this version in the wild before I went.

There are two questions you get asked when you leave a job: 1) why and 2) what next. I'll take the second part first.

What's next is nothing much. I'm going to travel some ... Vegas, London (yes, that London) and France are due up for the Fall. I'm going to play a bunch of poker (hopefully better than I have been) and a bunch of video games as well. The reading of books (comic or otherwise) will likely be involved, potentially in a beach-like setting. I'm definitely not going to look for or accept another job for several months altho' I anticipate working on the web again.

As to the Why, well, I've been working on Blogger for almost four years and I've been at Google for 3 1/2. I could have taken time off or switched to a different project, but I feel that after I'm finished doing the nothing I've got planned, I'm going to want to do something somewhere small. And, to be honest, I can't really imagine being at Google but not being involved in Blogger.

As Bryan Mason likes to recount, when I interviewed for the job at Pyra he asked me what I wanted to do next and I said "Anything but want I've been doing." Not the best interview answer, but fortuntely Bryan thought that would make me a good fit. Turns out, I couldn't have been luckier.

Early on when I was working on Blogger I realized that there were those who saw blogging as a Great Leap Forward in personal expression and those who saw it as largely self-indulgent nonsense. The thing that surprised me was that I was in the former group.

I struggle with excessive skepticism and in many ways would be a natural blog-hater were it not for the fact that, to me, it's undeniably awesome that people can so easily put their profound, profane, revolutionary and ridiculous thoughts online. To me, this is so obviously the fullest expression of why the web is the most important invention of our lives. To what better use could it be put?

To put it another way, I love facts. Love 'em! Especially about movies. So, when I first saw IMDB I thought I was looking into the mind of God. But I never actually wanted to work on the web until I learned about Blogger.

I feel amazingly privileged to have been able to work on a product that's used by millions of passionate users and to help that product grow to enable more voices to exist. In doing so, I've been able to work with some phenomenal people. I'd like to thank Jason Sutter who successfully campaigned for me to get interviewed at Pyra despite the fact that the requirements for the job were allegedly "Not a dude, and especially not a dude named Jason." I'm incredibly grateful to Evan Williams who hired me, brought me to Google, enabled me to become Blogger's product manager and entrusted me with his creation when he left.

And I thank all of the folks who've worked on Blogger - the folks who worked on it before I was around, the Pyra crew with whom I spent many a day cramped into offices in both San Francisco and Mountain View and the people who built Blogger into what it is today and what it will become.

48 comments:

kimbalina said...

*sniff*

I love ya man!

Lane said...

Thank jeebus.

Haochi said...

You are one of the Googler that I know. Going to miss you man. T_T

Ted R. said...

Change breeds growth! Congrats on choosing a path the means leaving on a high note. The internet will still be here when you hear it's call again.

Stay in touch.

steve said...

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ism said...

Hi Jason,

Congrats on your move. I sent you an email to your mac.com address; before you leave Google and Blogger will you please help me? Or point me to someone who can? I am seriously desperate.

Thank you so much.

Jason Goldman said...

Thanks everyone for the kind words. One thing I forgot to mention is that I very much recommend the Blogger Help Group for seeking assistance with Blogger related issues.

John said...

Thanks for the great new tools, & best of luck with whatever's next!

Conciencia Activa said...

Can you tell me if there is a chance to get a blog name that is already taken but not used.

thanks a lot.

Marcelo.

Hoctro said...

Thank you Jason for your hard work. I've just been exposed to blogger for a month, and beta blogger just yesterday (on buzz,) but I like it already. My goal is to spead the words out this new tool (by writing tutorials, links, etc.) to fellows of my old country, Vietnam, so they can use this free and ingenious tool to communicate with each other more freely and effectively. You see, Blogger helps people in many ways you probably wouldn't even thought of, and that's the beauty of it.

Best of luck and happiness on your next career move!

Greg Stein said...

Waaaah!

Gonna miss ya, man. I'll never forget the time we spent working on Blogger, from our little corner, watching all the folks making it happen. Well, except for that gap in the wall behind where Ev, Shellen, or Biz would bean us in the head with something.

I know your console habit, and your new Vegas habit, so maybe the right not-quite-goodbye phrase is...

Game On.

Dick Costolo said...

Oh, so you're just gonna quit??!! GOD, that is just like you world of warcraft freaks. So not able to deal with reality. Hope to see you in Vegas...i'm the guy with the fedora and the "My Other Body's a Lexus" tshirt.

Gerrie said...

When will I be able to get the new Beta version. I've wanted to redo my Blog for ages,,,hate to do it now, and then again!
Gerrie

Omar Basawad said...

Wishing you all the best and good luck!

fakir005 said...

I did not know about new blogger. I hope it means I could recover the template at one of my blogs. It has gone completly and so has the the articles Iwrote for the blog. Could you tell me how if it can be done. An answer by email to fakir005@aim.com would be appreciated.

fakir005 said...

I just want to add to my comments that if you start your own company after your travels good luck.

Dear AL said...

Like, OMG! You're a Blog of Note!

The Gods have smiled upon thou! :P

Good luck with whatever you decide to do, dude! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

TV Guy said...

Sounds like you're in for fun.. thanks for all you did

LAFD Media and Public Relations said...

Jason:

Thanks to you, we've been able to effectively inform and interact with more than a half-million people who have an interest in the Los Angeles Fire Department, sharing words of safety, humor and enlightenment along the way.

Please accept our best wishes for success in the many adventures to come.

With warmest regards,

Brian Humphrey
Firefighter/Specialist
Public Service Officer
Los Angeles Fire Department

*Jason, please let us know when your travels bring you to Los Angeles. There's always a warm cup of coffee with your name on it, and plenty of room at the firehouse kitchen table.

S. Scott Craft said...

I agree with that blogs have enabled more people to have a voice in the affairs of the world. Good luck to you.

Wishing You Good Health And Plenty Of Wealth,
S. Scott Craft

Teamsters said...

It would be a good time to leave since I can't get a picture up! Good luck. Congrtas on a bold and successful endeavor. By the way when was the last time a stranger said you have excellent taste in earrings? OUCH. That many times?

Gary W. Scott said...

I've just started with Sentimental Journeys, but thanks for all your hard work and talent. Go, enjoy, and find yourself, but be aware that travel can become addictive, robbing you of careers and relationships.
Good & Better Luck!
Gary W. Scott, 73 and wise

R2K said...

Welcome to the top 10 list!

How do you get a .net addy?

Ashes are gone, they blogged here said...

You've got a pretty cool blog out there.
Would love if you could check out mine.

coecelanth shaastra zeppelin equivocate durbatuluk

Adios

miss tracey nolan said...

"...when I first saw IMDB I thought I was looking into the mind of God."

That is so great.

admin said...

ciao Jason,

Grazie di tutto (from Pyra to this Beta)

Career guru said...

Be blessed, Jason! Make memories to treasure.

Improbulus said...

Best of luck Jason. I've been a big Blogger fan for over a year and a half now. When you're in London feel free to look me up - I'll buy you a coffee to say thank you for all your Blogger efforts!

J C said...

I accidently ran across your blog so am not familiar with you. On your leaving for new pastures, best of luck in whatever you decide on. As a person grows older, he (or she) increasingly thinks back on the things he has done but moreso, on things he left undone. Life is too short to leave anything undone so go for it and have a good time doing it. You're building memories, good ones. If you get discouraged, check out Omar Khayyams' Rubaiyat as a pick-me-up. Good luck.

mrsnesbitt said...

Enjoy London, but bring a brolly...it's raining at the mo!

shashavica said...

Godspeed to you! One step backward is two steps forward like they say.
But before you totally vanish from the blogosphere, take one a last peek at my blogsite: www.shashavica.blogspot.com
I would love to hear from you.

shashavica

JIEYING` said...

did you tag me. someone tagged using your name.

boobtoons said...

great blog!

Mimi said...

Perfect!!!!!!!

..: Navid Tabrizi :.. said...

Hi Mr.Goldman,as a blogger I just wanted to thank you for all the best you did for us,wish to be have good chanse in you life and be successful,

Navid Tabrizi

healing hoves said...

you seem to really know what your doing on this blog stuff. I am new at this and being in my 50's being new I can not figure out how to make my blog like your. to show the last post upfront, do you think you could help me out so my blog does not look so bla,,,,thanks sonja brooks
http:/healing-hooves.blogspot.com

snakeflake said...

Post some photos of your travels. I love to travel and love to see others photos and read about their experiences, especially in foreign lands. I plan to post more travel photos on by own site.

laurzeilei said...

I was blogging before blogging was cool.

Good luck and enjoy your travels!

Denise said...

Best of luck in all you do Jason, and thanks for all your tireless efforts with Blogger! I hope our paths will cross again soon.

life in stuttgart said...

Enjoy London!

Brock said...

I would Love to leave a comment, but who would ever see it, let alone care! Such is the nature of Blogging.
Just as I was falling in love, you go! Are all men the same? You bastard.

aniii said...

enjoy london, enjoy europe, then go to poland and see you at cracov :)

R2K said...

.nut?

I guess so :P

Digital Art Photography for Dummies said...

Thanks for creating a great platform for art and phtoography and writing.

Lane said...

Before you left, you should have invented an invisible electric fence for comments.

"help me I don't know how to read a help document the internet is made of tubes" = ZZZAP!

Filip Verhaeghe said...

Is there a solution planned for people who want the dynamic features of the new Blogger, but also want to make the blog part of a larger website (where the blog drives traffic, amongst others)?

Perhaps someone should add more information about this to Blogger's help.

Thanks for passing the message on to your (former) colleagues and good luck with your new job.

Chris Engler said...

Hi Jason - The 'B' in the title of your post must be for the 'B'illion people reading this right now and thinking I wonder if Google will hire me? I wish you lots of luck and blessings.

Cas said...

Jason, as a first time Blogger, I only signed up last night, thanks for all your work in making Blogger available and congratualtions on a great, and well written Blog. Inspiring - thanks!