Four Months and Seven Years Ago...
(Give or take a month or two)
During the dotcom bust of 2000, I decided to forgo job stability and start the business I'd always wanted -- a boutique web design shop that specialized in designing and developing useful websites. I also knew that Content Management was going to be a large part of it.
I had just seen a browser-based WYSIWYG editor for the first time a few months before and was blown away that it was actually possible, not to mention the opportunity it suggested for clients. The only problem was that I was a designer and front-end developer, and the only thing I knew about server-side scripting was how to blow things up (which I still do on occasion). Enter my good friend Matt Levine.
Matt was a friend I had known for more than a decade who worked at the local PBS station as a Database Administrator. While hanging out one night, I talked him into coming over and checking out this cool new tool I was trying to make sense of, Dreamweaver UltraDev. Amazingly, Matt not only sort of understood what I was trying to do with it, he actually made it do something I couldn't -- return a result set. Obviously, I needed him to be a part of my new venture.
Matt agreed and decided server-side programming sounded like fun. He set off to learn everything he could about ColdFusion and figure out how to make a WYSIWIG editor save content and output to HTML. Meanwhile, I did everything I could to land our first gig.
We haven't stopped working on it since. We've grown from a 2-person boutique to a company that's working with Apple, Intel and other top names. With the feedback and features requests we've had from our clients, and with the help of our friends and co-workers, Sava has gone through a bertrillion iterations, been named and re-named, been skinned and de-skinned and re-skinned again, customized, and completely rebuilt at least a couple times.
Sava has served us well as a web development business, allowing us the advantage of not having to purchase third-party solutions for our clients while giving us the flexibility to solve just about any business challenge they could throw at us without having to reinvent the wheel every time. It's been the foundation for everything from magazine publishing, HR management and billing, classified ad and job database publishing, numerous marketing sites and now even a social network.
And that's why we're so excited to finally release it as a free, open-source CMS. We didn't start out with the intention of creating a product (especially open source), but that's exactly why we think it makes sense to. It was built to solve problems for us and for our clients, and we think it can do the same for others too.
We still have a lot of ideas about where we'd like to take it, but we're very proud of Sava and hope it serves the web community as well as it's served us. We look forward to hearing where you'd like to see it go, too. Please don't hesitate to let us know by shooting us an email, posting to the forum or commenting on this blog.
- Sean Schroeder, Partner
Blue RIver Interactive Group