• "I learned a hell of a lot designing and building Dopplr. I still stand by a lot of the principles that we as a team tried to follow." So did we all, Matt; it's still a model in the background of my head for things I work on.

Dopplr: Huge Success

11 December 2007

Just a brief post here to unashamedly promote the work of some friends. As the title hints, Dopplr – the little startup that could – is now out of beta and releasing on time. It’s a great site – a product that exists not to make you travel more, or travel less, but to make that travel more pleasurable, by fostering coincidensity.

Now, I don’t travel a great amount, so I put “smaller” trips than most people in. Somebody once laughed that I put trips to visit my parents in. But that’s where other useful functionality of Dopplr comes in handy: it lets my trusted friends know when I’m not around. Sometimes, I’m telling you I’m away, not that I’ll be there.

And it’s super-handy if you don’t travel much, but you have foreign friends – it’s already engineered several “oh, you’re passing through London?” meet-ups for me, that otherwise I’d never have had.

So, Dopplr: if you’ve not been playing with it in the beta, take a look. It’s wonderfully put together, with lots of tiny touches that make all the difference. And if you’re not sure that it’s quite for you… think again; it might come in handy. The only thing you need to get your head around: it’s not about your friendsters. It’s about your friends. Proper, real-life friends. You need the people you know on it – but once they are, it makes the business of global friendship so much easier…