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Today I’m pleased to say that ThreadOne is now available.

Now that it’s live, I wanted to write a bit about how it came to be, and what’s to come.

The History

Last summer, I was collaborating with my friends Adam Kool and Gavin McKenzie on an iPhone app. It was our ambition to start a company together, and this would be our portfolio piece. As we worked from our various day jobs, cafes and homes, a communication channel became of vital importance. We were dissatisfied with everything we tried:

  • iMessage was (and remains) famously unreliable, dropping messages between devices and just generally acting wonky.
  • HipChat worked okay, but didn’t do enough to notify when messages came in.
  • Kickoff looked like a great option, but it’s no longer being maintained.

Gavin was a big fan of App.Net’s private messaging service. We were all ADN users, and it’s true that the private message system was both rock-solid reliable and the apps in place offered great notifications. But there was no Mac desktop client, meaning we’d have to use a browser, or a general ADN app like Kiwi, of which private messaging is just one component.

That iPhone project never really panned out, and the potential partnership fizzled in the storm of real life. But Adam and I never let go of that idea for a Mac-based desktop app for ADN direct messages. Adam mocked it up, and I started coding.

The State of ThreadOne

Working with App.Net was a fantastic experience. Their APIs are clean and beautiful, and their support staff was an invaluable source of assistance during the sticky bits. My first goal with ThreadOne has been met: it’s been a terrific learning experience.

ThreadOne isn’t really finished yet. While I’ve seen talk of Maximum Viable Products, I’m not Panic, and I’m doing this in my spare time. I can see every deficiency, every feature unimplemented, every bug that I haven’t yet squished.

I want to patch all those openings, and make T1 a truly classy product. But the only way I’ll be able to dedicate the kind of time needed is if there are enough users who believe in it.

So tell your friends about ThreadOne. Set your parents up with free ADN accounts. And let me know what you want to see in future releases. I can’t promise I’ll get to all of them, but if you’re here with me, I’ll do my best.