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Shuttering the Doors to Oh Hey World (aka the Real Eulogy)

Oh Hey World has been a long, hard journey.  I wrote the “Almost Eulogy of Oh Hey World” a few months ago. Following another 9 months of neglect for the product due to lack of resources/money as well as further Facebook API deprecations causing login functionality to cease, the decision to pull the plug was made.  Thus, today is the real eulogy of Oh Hey World (OHW). The final chapter. The shutting of our digital doors.

Note: Legally, Oh Hey World, Inc lives on in Horizon.

While OHW found its mark helping travel bloggers update their current location on their travel blogs more efficiently — ultimately, it didn’t solve an urgent or frequent problem for a large enough addressable market to grow and survive in the world.

For that, I’m incredibly sad.

That said, I’ll forever be grateful for the experience — I wouldn’t trade the journey, experience, learnings, hardships, stress and friendships for the world. It goes without saying — without OHW, there would never have been a Horizon. On that front, we’ve recently launched a crowdfunding campaign to enable supporters to fund continued product development of the best community building tool that’s ever existed. If you’re a community builder with an interest in strengthening a global membership base, manage a home stay network with email and spreadsheets, host or stay with trusted connections regularly, or simply believe life’s magical moments occur face to face, not staring at a screen — please head over to support our Horizon Patreon campaign.

Back to OHW…

Thank You

Thank you, Eric Roland. It took me 7 months of searching to find you — but your skill and efficiency was worth the wait. You made engineering seem easy; sorry I forced us down the path to building a bloated piece of software. Thanks Will Moyer for designing the gorgeous application that OHW was. I’m still bummed the iOS version you designed never saw the light of day. Thanks Shannon O’Donnell for your faith in the company’s mission throughout. Thank you Jessica Na for your design work to bringing my initial concepts to light.

Thank you to all our advisors — Jeff Turner, Spencer Rascoff, Jerry Ostradicky, Andrew Mattie, Matt Duncan, Matt Zito, Ian Ord, and Todd Sampson. A special thank you to Seann Birkelund and Eric Marcoullier for pushing me through the rut. Without all your support, well…I have no idea where I’d be, and Horizon would likely never have been created.

Thank you to all OHW’s passionate supporters — specifically Anna Zalazar, Annie Cheng, Jessie Spielvogel, Dave Dean, Lori Bee, Jan Riedel, Peter Parkorr, Mike Derzko, Martin Bergstrom, and Kristin Henning.

To all my friends & family, and specifically Brandon Matson, thanks for constantly putting up with my thoughts, updates, and ups & downs. Thank you to my mom and step dad for putting me up with food, shelter, and support throughout the early journey.

Shutting it Down

From selling/swapping candy, baseball cards, and used nintendo64 games to offering services such as mowing lawns, house demolition and website creation — I’ve been an “entrepreneur” my whole life. In the “digital” world, I’ve embarked on lots and lots of projects, mostly blogs (Geek Estate, Carnival of Real Estate, myKRO.org, ESM, etc). Oh Hey World was the first real functional “startup” that I forced upon the world.

When I FINALLY finally clicked the delete/cancel account in EngineYard (our website host), it certainly was a weird feeling.

ohw-engineyard-cancel

How does it feel? Frankly, I’m at a loss for words. It feels like a small piece of my soul just died. Like I abandoned my first (startup) baby because they couldn’t grow up. Sad I couldn’t provide the direction and capital needed for my baby to reach adulthood.

Why Now?

I grew weary of the $150-$200 per month burning a hole in my back pocket every month continuing to push my credit card farther in the red.

Weary of the mental stress and bandwidth associated with OHW existing in the world.

Weary of asking myself, “Should I keep OHW going next month?”

Weary of not knowing whether a developer would come along to put new energy into the product.

Weary of contemplating which company might acquire the assets.

Weary of wondering who might sponsor the site (with little traffic).

That combined weariness, and stress, could only go on so long before insanity crept into the equation. At some point, I had to decide enough is enough.

RIP, Oh Hey World.

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Drew Meyers

Drew Meyers is the co-founder of Horizon & Oh Hey World. He worked for Zillow from September of 2005 to January of 2010 on the marketing team managing Zillow’s API program and various online partnerships. Founder of Geek Estate Blog, a multi-author blog focused on real estate technology for real estate professionals, and myKRO.org, a blog devoted to exploring the world of microfinance. As passionate as you get about travel.

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Mobile Web Startup “Oh Hey World” Streamlines the Travel Experience from the Moment of Arrival

OHWiconOh Hey World is officially out of private beta and into a limited public beta. Below is the press release that will hit the wire tomorrow morning (update: press release here)…

Mobile Web Startup “Oh Hey World” Streamlines the Travel Experience from the Moment of Arrival

March 12, 2013 – Today is the private beta launch of Oh Hey World, a mobile website solution created to be the best way to arrive in any city in the world. The site uses a centralized location sharing service to solve two pain points particularly applicable to frequent travelers: sharing their safe arrival with friends and family back home, and connecting with those who are nearby and care to meet.

The moment a traveler arrives in a new city, they can use their mobile phone to inform their loved ones of their safe arrival via email, update their status on Facebook and Twitter, and text a nearby friend to connect. Currently, that process requires several services at best, and half-a-dozen at worst.

Oh Hey World’s intuitive check-in process across multiple services simplifies the travel experience, and the site’s innovative community interface acts as a discovery tool for travelers to connect with new faces over shared interests.

“Fragmented location sharing has been a problem for a long time,” says co-founder Eric Roland. “Our team knows this problem first-hand, and so we created an easy way for travelers to update their location across all channels – both publicly and privately – and to really ensure those who care are easily notified of their safe arrival.”

The site’s other key solution is to help travelers connect with other travelers in each location. The platform allows users to view their Facebook friends who are nearby, as well as connect with community members over shared experiences, passions, values, and affiliations.

Co-founder Drew Meyers has spent five years involved within the microfinance industry building myKRO.org, and he notes,“I traveled around the world for two and a half years and my one regret was the knowledge that there were so many missed connections in each place I visited – with Oh Hey World, we created a solution to the frustration so many travelers experience on the road.” Oh Hey World partnered with Month of Microfinance so travelers interested in microfinance can connect to other like-minded travelers in each city they visit.

Travelers can check in via mobile Web, email, or with a text message; native iOS and Android applications are planned.

The private beta launch is limited to the first 2,500 registrants with a registration code, or those with an invite from a current user. Select partners will announce registration codes to their audience, and our ongoing partners can be found at blog.ohheyworld.com/private-beta/.

About Oh Hey World, Inc.
Oh Hey World was co-founded by Drew Meyers and Eric Roland in September 2012. Both founders are avid travelers and have worked extensively within the startup and technology space before pairing up to launch Oh Hey World. Roland brings more than 17 years experience in software architecture to the table, including his knowledge as a former team lead for Telepoint. Meyers worked at real estate site Zillow.com where he ran the API program and was also instrumental in the company’s social media and community-building efforts. Full public launch is expected by May 2013. Oh Hey World, Inc. is based in Seattle, Wash., and Louisville, Ky.

For more information visit http://beta.ohheyworld.com

To sign up, get a registration code from here – blog.ohheyworld.com/private-beta/.

Oh Hey World

Oh Hey World -- Share your location with the people, communities, and services that matter. Now working on Horizon.

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