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Thx, nice info and learnings Renn, hope I can put this into practice at the Next Web should I win one of the two available wildcard spots on stage.

by roelandp on April 13, 2010 at 12:07 am. #

Great story! Discipline comes from within

by Joop on April 13, 2010 at 3:12 am. #

Interesting view on internal startup dynamics. Never founded a company myself, but have seen relationships of co-founder of startups I’ve worked for. Varied a lot from really stressfull situations, to awkwardness to plain no-talking. That was the worst, imho.

by Gary on April 20, 2010 at 6:34 pm. #

Couple on holiday metaphor is very well found.

by Martin Beukenaar on April 20, 2010 at 6:35 pm. #

Great write-up, and thanks for the mention. I especially like the picture where Wouter gives me the death stare and looks like he’s about to strangle me to death.

To answer your closing question: I bumped into my co-founder through my blog. We where both writing about startups and bumped into each other in person at a local event. I told him about the idea of starting a startup and he responded ’send me an idea if you have it’. After sending the idea he made the prototype in a weekend. For me that was a good signal of somebody that has a similar style of working. Only later I discovered that we also have complementary skills, so I lucked out. Big time.

by Robert Gaal on April 21, 2010 at 12:02 pm. #

This puppy has been posted as a guest article on The Next Web Blog as well.

by renn on April 21, 2010 at 12:05 pm. #

wow. this is great. i’m so glad i read this.
i haven’t the same hill to climb, but i’m on the last (or 1st) 25 lbs of my hill- and they’re going slow.
i love the straight talk.
this just reminded me why i paid $50 for the bicycle i just bought. i can guilt myself into riding harder and farther reminding myself that my dumbass paid for it, so i better make it worth it!
thank you a MILLION TIMES OVER for sharing your experience and your strength!

by DeeDawg on May 4, 2010 at 5:04 pm. #

In my opinion, working out regularly and eat sensibly.

by Charmaine on May 7, 2010 at 8:21 am. #

Thanks for the inspiration and the pep talk. I’m a fat bastard and need an ass kicking to get motivated and stay disciplined. Oh and thanks for the laugh too ( I thought I was the only one who felt weirded out by the Narcissus cult that seems to hang around the gym not really doing anything mouthing ‘i love you’ to themselves in the mirror). I simply avoid eye contact a gtfo as soon as I’m done. Not to mention the annoyingly self-righteous tossers who work at gyms. Sorry for the rant. Congratulations with your weight loss success.

by Justin on May 15, 2010 at 7:58 am. #


Wat doet die naakte vrouw met rood struikgewas op jullie muur ?

by Robert on June 3, 2010 at 2:26 pm. #

I posted in Dutch.
Translated :


Why is there a naked woman with red bush on your wall ?

by Robert on June 3, 2010 at 2:30 pm. #

thank u for that useful piece of info i was going to reward myself wit ah ah yummy treat at the end of the day but if i really need to lose the weight i guess am going to have to forget that yummy treat

by kitty025 on July 6, 2010 at 8:27 pm. #

laptop bags using natural leather is my choice because natural leather is much softer and looks better *-`

by Metal Railings %0A on November 16, 2010 at 6:52 pm. #

thumbs up! :)

by Choi on February 18, 2011 at 9:13 pm. #

Hey Renato

Been following your progress for a while and I think the name + branding change was a great move. I’m a big fan of the new look. Looking forward to hearing more and perhaps meeting tomorrow at Hackers and Founders AMS.



by Dave on June 1, 2011 at 12:17 pm. #

There are many things to be said about Amsterdam as a developer hub (both good and bad), which I will leave for another time. But I do believe Appsterdam can be a net positive for the city exactly for the reasons you outline above.

It is time to make stuff to be proud of.

by Alper on June 27, 2011 at 2:53 pm. #

Location is crucial, because – even in the age of the Internet -ecosystems are physical: networks of startups, serendipity at someone’s office warming party, access to smart money, etc. Or as Paul Graham says: “the physical world is very high bandwidth”. For sure, you can do a startup in, say, a medium-sized town in Italy with a high quality of life. Perhaps you can even be successful with it. But it wouldn’t bet on it.

A better bet would be to move to a startup hub. Then it becomes a question which one. There is a ranking of these places, depending on the market you’ve chosen and the quality of the “hub-market” fit (say advertising in NYC). The final constraints are ambition, personal situation & preference, and perhaps immigration policy.

by Peter Tegelaar on June 27, 2011 at 3:22 pm. #

@Peter: Couldn’t agree more. I’m not trying to say hubs are bad, nor am I trying to say that you’d have the same chances in smalltown, Italy. Perhaps the problem I’m trying to address is that ‘hubification’ might lead to a London vs Amsterdam vs Berlin thing, and nobody will benefit fromt that.

by renn on June 28, 2011 at 7:45 am. #

“It really doesn’t matter where you build your software. ”

Totally don’t agree with this at all. The software we create is as much a product of our physical surroundings and influences as all other things in our lives. But you kind of said that in your comment too Renato: startup hubs are important.

About the competition part of that: it’s a PR thing. Nobody really convinced people using moderation. You need a bold statement here and there. Mike has found an awesome word to describe our city, that helps too.

by Robert Gaal on June 28, 2011 at 8:30 am. #

@Robert: It does not define the success of your app. I’m not saying that you’ll have the same success outside of the hubs, but each hub has its own quality. Which one you pick to base your business doesn’t matter.

by renn on June 28, 2011 at 8:35 am. #

It is a part of the success. Not in the cliché way of “go to Silicon Valley and everything will be peachy”. But being in the right places is how excellent hires are made, how you get an article in a news paper, or how you met the company that acquired you.

by Robert Gaal on June 28, 2011 at 11:11 am. #

OK, so we all agree that startup hub are important. Because of network effects, the success of a hub is a direct function of its size. Therefore, every hub has an incentive to become as big as possible. Unfortunately this will most likely come at the expense of other hubs. Altogether it just seems a bit unrealistic to ask people to not promote their hub, also because there are so much natural PR, like number of acquisitions, presence of big tech companies, amount of venture capital, etc.

by Peter Tegelaar on July 4, 2011 at 1:37 pm. #