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113 of 115 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real advice from the frontline trenches of software start-ups
The Summary

Jessica Livingston has written an amazing book. If you want to read the stories behind some of the most well known software companies in the last 30 years, you will find it in this book. But Livingston hasn't just covered the usual suspects (Google, Microsoft), she has included a diverse collection from Steve Wozniak (Apple) to David Heinemeier...
Published on June 3, 2007 by K. Sampanthar

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43 of 51 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great content, awful format
There's plenty of great information here, as all the other reviews said. But this interview format is really excruciating to read. Casual speech is very hard to transcribe in such a way that it becomes readable. This is why journalists and other writers are trained in how to reduce a long, tangential speech into something meaningful and clear. These interviews tend to run...
Published on September 19, 2007 by Andrew Otwell


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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As Good as Everyone is Saying...Just Buy It!, September 15, 2007
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Loved this book. The interviewer asked a similar set of questions for all participants yet improvised when needed to follow an interesting train of thought to it's natural conclusion. All of the participants were refreshingly candid. Almost as if they were unloading on a therapist. Each interview is just long enough to feel complete but not so long as to feel redundant. On another note, I'm pretty anal when it comes to the physical presentation of a book and this one passes all my criteria: Decent margins, pleasant type face, good line space and font sizes, flexible spine stays open easily without trying to close itself, and easy to browse logical organization. If you're an entrepreneur working on tech start up this is one of the few "must read" books.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oustanding insight into 32 upstarts and their founders, April 22, 2007
Wow...what a book! I just finished reading Founders at Work and I've got to admit it's one of the best books I've read in the past several years. What makes it so special? It's a series of interviews with 32 different tech entrepreneurs, so it's like getting 32 mini-books in one. The book also has a nice mix of old and new technologies. For example, are you old enough to remember VisiCalc? If so, you'll enjoy the interview with Dan Bricklin.

You really get the feeling your sitting down with each one of the founders being interviewed. Great questions are asked throughout that help shed light on key turning points with each company, whether the founder ever wanted to give up, etc. You could argue that much of this information is probably available via magazine articles and online resources, but rather than having to gather it all up on your own, this book presents it all in one nice package. Highly recommended!
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tedious, Slow, Focused on Internet Startups, January 27, 2011
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At the end of the day, this book is too long winded to be either motivational or instructional. The author just lets these guys rant and rant about their glory days, which amounts to a lot of dated tech speak and high-level summaries of their paths to success. I was hoping for something that would inspire and perhaps educate me in my own endeavors but the interview format of the book prevents that from happening. There are very few nuggets of wisdom buried under lots of rambling and irrelevant details, and after the fact I'd argue the treasure hunt is not worth it. Unlike startups themselves, the book is very slow moving. If you are looking for extra motivation in the form of exciting tales of startup success as I was, then this is not your book.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good book!, April 10, 2007
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I would have wanted some other founders that probably haven't been heard of to much. However, the book is interesting and motivational to a degree. Some stories are a bit boring but the others make up for it. Keep in mind that these are interviews.....
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Arrived without the cover, January 18, 2014
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The book cover is missed when it arrived...not sure what to say now, disappointed a bit even it is a used book. But didn't say it doesn't have a cover.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Mostly rambling, November 1, 2011
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T.J. Moretto (Denver, CO USA) - See all my reviews
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There are some small areas of interesting dialog in this book, but most of it is meaningless, in-the-weeds babble. The book could have been great, but the questions posed to the founders are so open-ended and random that nothing but rambling comes out the other end. Not worth the time it takes to pick out the good parts from all of the junk.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful for anyone with a dream, September 6, 2011
This book shaped my own journey coming off one successful founding, and as I struggled to embrace corporate America as it exposed my true desire to "build something" as the people in this book had.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How interviews uncover new truths, May 24, 2009
This review is from: Founders at Work: Stories of Startups' Early Days (Paperback)
The thing I like most about interviews in general are that some new truths are often uncovered and the chance to dispel common myths is revealed. All the answers we need already exist among us. When you surround yourself with those you admire, your beliefs begin to change and so do your moment-by-moment decisions. Instead of harboring envy or jealousy for those who have succeeded, look to them as mentors and role models. If you enjoyed Founders At Work, you'll likely appreciate 50 Interviews: Entrepreneurs, finding more insights and ideas from other successful entrepreneurs in a variety of different industries. I invite you to check it out: 50 Interviews : Entrepreneurs
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring, January 18, 2009
This was an inspiring book to read. Gives you insight on how several founders from the top companies/products we know today (Firefox, Apple, Hotmail) progressed in its early stages.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than the 7 Harry Potter books together, August 11, 2007
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Patrice (Brussels, Belgium) - See all my reviews
Better than the 7 Harry Potter books together (wich is a bad comparison as I didn't like them that much). The book is a collection of interviews with founders of famous technology companies about what happened in the very earliest days and later. Within each interviews, you'll catch dozen of interesting infos. Believe me , when you start it, you'll finish it within the week.
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Founders at Work: Stories of Startups' Early Days
Founders at Work: Stories of Startups' Early Days by Jessica Livingston (Paperback - September 18, 2008)
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