Gatherscope Will Be Winding Down

An email that I sent to the gatherscope-friends google group today:


I wanted to let you know that I’ve decided to wind down Gatherscope and will be turning off its services on October 31st.

Before all else, let me first say a heartfelt thanks to all of you for your support and guidance over the last year. Building, for the first time, an original product for you has been a wonderfully energizing and enlightening experience for me. I’m sorry that the result was not more lasting.

Why stop now? For one, I estimate that there is an unsustainable gap between the cost of productionizing state-of-the-art natural language processing in a news context and consumers’ willingness to pay for it. Second, as many of you know, I’ve chosen since his terminal diagnosis last September to prioritize being a caregiver to my father-in-law, and as a result haven’t developed Gatherscope during this time with the focus and responsiveness that’s necessary to iterate upon a new product and from it grow a team and business. Following Scott’s recent passing, I’ve taken a deep look at things and concluded it would be best to reset instead of trying to rebuild momentum with Gatherscope. I’ve written more about this decision, what I’ve built, and what I’ve learned here, but this is the core of my thinking. I have no regrets.

So, what’s next? I’ve begun doing some freelance work, and I plan to spend the rest of this year exploring problems and opportunities with smart people and evaluating full time roles. There are a few things in which I’m particularly interested:

  1. Making public goods provisioning more responsive and competitive
  2. Making healthcare more proactive and personalized and accelerating the pace of innovation in it
  3. Making early childhood education more individually attentive, creative, and holistic
  4. Making personal computing more integrated and less distracting

If you’re around in New York and want to meet up for a related discussion (or just to catch up), tell me when and where and let’s do so. If you’re elsewhere, I hope our paths cross soon. In any case, in closing, much love to all of you and have the best week ever.



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