... or how we've been building, refining, and learning for years.
Founded in 2001. Our company was founded by a couple of technologists tired of spending billable hours on work that didn’t matter. They saw countless disconnects and inefficiencies within organizations whose work really mattered - and knew they could do something about it.
Pedigree of secure, mission critical solutions. As much as we pursued a commercial client base, we were continually drawn back into technology solutions for US Intelligence and Defense communities - where our founders had spent a good portion of their earlier careers, and where our innovative approach to secure knowledge sharing was having the greatest impact. Even as Yakabox 3.x and now 4.0 have exposed Yakabod to broader markets, the national security sector remains our core business.
Like most "overnight successes," we've been building our company's foundation for years. Here's a brief timeline representing the significant milestones of our journey:
2001 - Launched early in the year with a few consulting clients and a contract to build a web-based information sharing solution for the State of Florida Department of Revenue. Wondered what we were thinking when the dot-com (and IT) bubble burst a few months later.
2002 - Counseled by Board to sell customers, not investors - something we've focused on ever since. Sustained company through the post-tech-bubble meltdown by consulting on web-based enterprise architecture and information sharing projects for the Intelligence Community (IC).
2003 - Merged with DayDog, acquiring the VNE intellectual property - an "object relational management" engine serving "content and commerce, personalized and localized" - that would become the core of Yakabox.
Early 2004 - Repurposed VNE from consumer-facing web applications to an enterprise information sharing platform. Delivered it as a toolkit with supporting development services to our first IC client for their highly secure applications.
Early 2005 - Moved to beautiful historic downtown Frederick. One day, after a bit too much coffee, somehow envisioned a derelict second floor of a historically prominent building on the town's Square Corner as the perfect space for our HQ. Worked on folding tables in our temporary rental apartment - not much bigger than Steve Jobs’ garage, but strategically located a few steps away so we could make daily inspections during the lengthy construction. Came up with the brilliant idea of pulling all of our own cables. After days of breathing Civil War-era dust and several trips to the very creepy basement, decided we should have outsourced this task. Finally moved into the new HQ in July.
Late 2005 - Successfully shifted to agile software development - then an emerging practice - by adapting early textbook methods to the real world challenges of running multiple inter-dependent development projects in parallel.
2006 - Installed Yakabox 2.0 (then called KnowledgeWorks) for our first IC client, marking the shift from a software toolkit delivery model to a fully bundled appliance product.
Early 2007 - Realized after trying several of the industry leading agile software management apps that none of them could adapt to our unique approach of managing concurrent customer-directed developments on a commercially supported core. In our frustration, had a flash of inspiration to just move the process onto Yakabox. When our 5 hour planning meeting quickly shrank to 20 minutes, we understood the power of driving user adoption through "social apps" rather than "social networking."
Winter 2007/2008 - Started using alpha version 3.0, officially renamed Yakabox, featuring a single stream Activity Viewer and Matter Meter as the primary user interface. After years of knowing who we were, while struggling to express it concisely - finally nailed our tagline: Do Stuff That MattersTM.
Early 2008 - Delivered the first Yakabox 3 appliance to an IC client, followed shortly thereafter by first continuity of operations (COOP) appliance.
Fall 2008 - After an exhaustive 6+ month test and mitigation period, received our first Authority to Operate (ATO) at an accredited level of PL/3 plus Annex E for an IC installation - something that was subsequently required for an ever increasing number of the secure missions our platform served.
2009/2010 - Attracted industry analyst recognition outside our core IC market as we continued to refine the Yakabox 3.x platform. Analysts weren't quite sure how to define Yakabox, but praised it for its ease of use, focus on getting work done, and seamless integration of a broad feature set. Recognized by Gartner as Cool Vendor to Watch.
Late 2011 - First private cloud (virtual machine) delivery to IC, a rather painless transition since we'd already been running that way on our own appliance. Delivered initial production release to first group of SMB (commercial small/midsized business) customers.
Early 2012 - Rolled out Yakabox 4.0 to existing IC customers - and strong reviews. Yakabox gains praise for enhanced user experience and more robust application/workflow support.