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are there any true "products" companies around DC?

I've lived and worked in northern Virginia for ten years, and I'm frustrated by what seems to be the very nature of all software work around here.  It's all "business software".  That is, expensive semi-custom software with a relatively small, preconstrued user base.  Software for the government, or software for other people doing gov't work.

Writing software like this drives me nuts.  I want to work on consumer products (even if they have to be web-based).

Anyone know of DC-area companies (besides AOL) that fit the bill?

anon for this one
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

I would think that companies that produce commercial shrink-wrapped software would always be in the minority compared to the type of companies you're describing.

Kyralessa
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Let's not overlook Microstrategy.

That wacky guy who was briefly worth $14B
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Group Logic in Arilngton makes 3 different network-oriented products.

www.grouplogic.com

JasonB
Wednesday, October 08, 2003


I think blackboard is in the DC area.

It's web-delivered, but I think they like to avoid custom work in preference of "drop it and move on ..."

Matt H.
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

"I would think that companies that produce commercial shrink-wrapped software would always be in the minority compared to the type of companies you're describing."

Yah, I'm sure.  How many successful shrinkwrap software companies can you name *nationwide*?  I can't think of all that many.

Still, it seems like in DC it's almost exclusively non-shrinkwrap, besides AOL and a few game companies.  Maybe the consumer companies that *are* here, are small.

anon for this one
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Now that I look back, that was a tad vague, wasn't it?  What I meant, of course, was that what we might call "shrink-wrap software companies" would always be a minority compared to "custom software companies."

Kyralessa
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

And now that I look back again, I think I misread your "Yah, I'm sure."

Don't mind me, I'm going to hit my head against the wall for a while to try to wake up.

Kyralessa
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

No

o' my
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Indeed, Kyralessa, we're in amusing agreement. :)

anon for this one
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

I don't think you'll find many non-game shrink wrap companies outside of Redmond.

chris
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

I think it depends you your definition of "shrink wrap."  Certainly by it a K-mart type software is pretty much dead, but a lot companies do commercial software packages.  In finance alone there must be 100.  Many of which ARE successful. 

tough problems..
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

It is not really clear to me what kind of company you are looking for.

OpNet, http://www.opnet.com is headquartered in Bethesda.  (Don't know how much development they do there).  They have products, but they are of the sort used by large businesses.  Do you want to write the kinds of things that are sold in CompUSA?

What is it that you don't like about "business software"?  A lot of the software written in the area is for scientific or engineering applications, although it is for use by a large business or government agency.

Keep in mind that if you don't have a security clearance and you still have a job, you are doing very well.  But it doesn't hurt to think about what you want to do when the economy picks up.  If ever.

Have you thought about moving?

mackinac
Wednesday, October 08, 2003

How about: Micros, Manugistics and WebMethods

Reluctant Bureaucrat
Thursday, October 09, 2003

"It is not really clear to me what kind of company you are looking for. "

I've been thinking about this... it comes down to writing "software you might use when you're not at work".  Does that narrow it down?  Could be Adobe, could be Friendster, could be Fog Creek.

My belief is that these companies are few and far between, and that most are small and don't really need to advertise in order to hire.  (not a news flash... we all know that the coolest jobs rarely come from ads.)

anon for this one
Thursday, October 09, 2003

Well, I can't think of anything for you.  Is AOL not acceptable or are you just trying to find other companies in addition to the obvious big guy?

Right now any job in the DC area would look good.  I have been applying to companies that, four years ago, I had said I wouldn't ever want to work for.  Even 5 or 15 years ago I wouldn't have wanted to work for them.  Conditions are really bad right now.  Finding a great job is something for the future.

mackinac
Thursday, October 09, 2003

In the political capital of the country, what kind of software products would you expect?  Political software!

http://www.gnossos.com

They're looking for developers.  Looks like they want business type developers, MS and database stuff, Delphi, etc.

mackinac
Sunday, October 12, 2003

"Is AOL not acceptable or are you just trying to find other companies in addition to the obvious big guy?"

AOL might be a neat place to work but it's apparently impossible to get an interview... their HR system seems to be a black hole for resumes.  (And they're not real stable right now .)


"Right now any job in the DC area would look good.  I have been applying to companies that, four years ago, I had said I wouldn't ever want to work for."

Sorry to hear that.  From where I sit things seems to be picking up... I've had a good job offer or two in the past six months (though I turned them down).  Good luck!

anon for this one
Monday, October 13, 2003

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