Goodbye Sencha, Hello World
My decision to leave Sencha is personal and does not reflect my faith in Sencha’s values, amazing team, and incredible products. When I joined Sencha back in 2009, I was number eight on the team. In the first year, we grew this number to about 50. This was an incredibly exciting time: I worked on Sencha Touch 1, in secret, with my roommate Tommy Maintz for several months; I was responsible for renaming and rebranding the company; When not working directly on our products or marketing, I spoke at a number of conferences helping evangelize our work.
The company now has over 100 employees. While this momentum means incredible things for the company on a whole, it has been personally challenging to me: it has recently grown harder and harder to retain a feeling of ownership in the work we ship. Design — and most importantly, brand — are truly cross-departmental subjects: Aside from the obvious marketing needs (including website, advertising, and developer relations) and products (which require themes, demo styles, desktop UX, etc.), there are more finessed pieces, like how a company manages licensing and pricing, which are all critical to a company’s perception. In these last few months, I’ve found myself wanting to simplify and get more in touch with the web community as a whole.
I will continue to work with Sencha for a small time as a contractor, to ease the transition. I will also be releasing a few Tumblr themes, both free and premium, and potentially a few plugins for things like Sencha Touch. While it sounds hazy — and believe me, it is — the goal in my mind is fairly clear: Work on a limited number of projects where I can design, ship code, and experiment with the balance of open source and commercial. Incidentally, I will also be blogging more, both here and on WebKitBits, working with more open source projects, and hopefully continuing to speak and attend some of my favorite conferences.
I’m incredibly thankful to all of my friends, both real-life and online, and family for their support during this transition. There is plenty of mystery in the coming months, and I couldn’t be more excited to see out how it turns out.