I’ve really been enjoying working on Agave with Jared. There are lots of reasons, but I want to focus on one in particular.

At first, it was a little weird starting a company with someone while remote from the start. Jared’s in Mountain View, I’m in South Lake Tahoe. We were using the standard toolset: Slack, Zoom, and various documentation tools like Notion. For awhile it felt fine – just like every other remote team, I imagine. Scheduled zoom calls in our calendar, various slack channels for product discussions, growth ideas, and random Red Alert gaming taunts.

But something has changed over the last 2 to 3 weeks. The product has gotten to a point where it now feels like we’re in the same room. I don’t mean in an abstract way – like “he’s around when we need to talk about something”. It’s more visceral than that – we can see each other. There is a strong sense of presence, compounded with a type of video interaction that often feels spontaneous as much as it is useful.

Remember bumping into your coworkers while you’re waiting for the coffee to brew in the office kitchen? Or taking a break on the couches just chatting with someone from the marketing team?

That’s what I’m talking about.

We don’t even use Zoom anymore.

One of the things that makes this work is the cross-disciplinary nature of the product. One look and you know it’s not your typical web or mobile app. It’s something new. It has elements of video game design and game rendering challenges just as much as it has the API design of a web app. There is an element of desktop OS interaction as well that is fairly unique.

It is a crazy fun challenge to take these ingredients and produce a recipe that works well and makes you feel something strong.