Octopz two months after launch

June 28, 2007

Octopz Woman

Hi, my name is Barry Fogarty. I’m a co-founder and the Chief Evangelist for Octopz. We launched our collaboration service a little over two months ago and a lot has happened in these first couple of months – some of it planned and some not. I thought I’d share a few of our impressions.
1. If you build it, they will come 

Since our launch, a number of positive Octopz reviews have been written by technology media outlets. One of the first was published by Robin Good’s MasterNewMedia website – which was especially pleasing for us as, unknown to him, we’d used his reports to help guide our development efforts. 

Just prior to our public launch at Web 2.0 Expo, CNET’s Webware.com also published a positive review of Octopz. They followed that up by selecting our software as one of the Top 5 technologies at the Web 2.0 Expo; we were also nominated as a finalist for the Webware 100. InfoWorld identified Octopz as a 2007 Rising Star and profiled us in their Month of Startups feature.

We also started this blog right at the same time we released Octopz and we were pleased to see the blogosphere take early notice of us as well. The blog has also proven to be a great way to connect with our users. Which leads me to my second impression . . .
2. If they build it, they will come 
Someone, I’m not sure who, said this at the Enterprise 2.0 conference last week (more about the conference in a future post) and I couldn’t agree more.
Our users have been clear about what they like (ease of use, range of document types supported, etc.); and what they don’t like (insufficient disk storage, confusion in the signup process for free trials, and lack of clarity re how to get tech support). We’ve taken this feedback very seriously and addressed the shortcomings as quickly as possible. 
We’ve also decided to take things a bit further and we’re currently working on a number of initiatives:


  • expanding our support for Flash documents by releasing an API that will allow our users to easily import their Flash swf’s into Octopz – while maintaining all of the content’s features and interactivity

  • enabling users to make their Flash documents available to other Octopz users. We’ve seen some very cool mini apps that our users have built and we’re considering providing a forum to facilitate the sharing of these apps

  • enhancing Octopz’s content management capabilities – both internally (within Octopz itself) and externally, via API, with other content and digital asset management programs

 Any thoughts and suggestions are more than welcome.
 3. Builders wanted
Getting good media reviews and positive feedback from early adopters of Octopz has been very gratifying. But we’re not resting on our launch laurels and are working hard to improve the way we collaborate with our users (and how our users can collaborate with each other)

We also need to expand our great team So we’re looking to hire some new people. In particular we’re looking for people with the following skills:

  • Flash (especially AS3 and Flex)
  • Java
  • Sales (in particular within the creative and agency businesses)

We’re based in Toronto, Canada but if you’re good you can be anywhere – we eat our own dogfood and will use Octopz to collaborate with you. 

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New Octopz features and upgrades

June 19, 2007

Octopz Custombrand

Last week we released a couple of enhancements to Octopz. They are:

The Octopz document storage space has been doubled to 1 GigaByte per license at no additional cost. So now you can upload, view, markup and save even more digital documents and rich media files.

We’ve added support for Microsoft Office 7 documents, which typically end in .docx, .pptx and .xlsx. You can simply upload, view and markup Office 7 files as you did with previous versions of Office documents, which continue to be fully supported.

The new Custom Branding feature allows you to customize your Octopz Meeting Zone and Rooms with your company’s logo. Simply upload a gif or jpg of your logo and it will be automatically placed in the upper left hand corner. Your logo can be up to 36 pixels high and 360 pixels wide. For instructions, click here to see a short video on how to do this.

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Octopz and meaning

June 14, 2007
What is language

What is language?, originally uploaded by dgray_xplane.

Dave Gray, founder and CEO of XPLANE, the visual thinking company, created this infographic to explain what language is. His definition is that language is the accumulation of shared meaning.

Looking at the infographic, it struck me that in a way, it is a nice summary of what Octopz really allows people to do: to create meaning and define common ground by providing a shared place online to communicate, converse, collaborate and co-create.

Octopz wows at How

June 12, 2007

Barry How

Filmmaker Andy Coon stopped by our booth at the How Design Conference yesterday and really liked what he saw in Octopz for film and video creatives. Writing on his blog, Andy said:

Editors around the world rejoice, Octopz is a web application that will allow you to collaborate with your clients anywhere in the world. Granted there are other applications out there but check out Barry Fogarty Co-founder & Chief Evangelist take us through an example of the features for video editors.

Andy also taped Barry’s demo at the booth and published it on his blog. You can see it here.

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