For IT consulting firms, it seems it’s always “feast or famine,” says Rory Laitila. Sometimes you’re backed up with projects, and other times you’re “binging on House of Cards.” It’s time to do something more productive with that time.
The cofounder of itr8group, the agency he runs from the Wilmington coworking space coIN Loft, has done just that. As announced last month, between larger client work, he and his long-distance business partner built their first product in just six weeks, something they’ve wanted and know other developers do too.
“This is serving a need we have and others who are already using it do too,” he said.
It’s called SyncQL, a tool that connects a database and an API with “bi-directional synchronization.” For example, if you have a big set of structured data (like a dynamic Salesforce client list) that you want to combine with business data and other APIs like a Google contacts file or Invoicing system, this is a product for you.
Laitila used Delaware Innovation Week as an internal deadline and, true his promise, he unveiled it during the happy hour following the #DIW15 Dev Talks held at coIN last Thursday. The product is currently in alpha, accepting free test users. In the spirit of collaboration, during the launch, one fellow coIN Loft member spoke up as a happy alpha user.
— Mona Parikh (@monaparikhesq) November 19, 2015
“We can make better products together,” said volunteer coIN Loft community manager Mona Parikh, who is also a community builder for nearby creative agency the Archer Group. Parikh introduced Laitila for the demo.
Laitila is tall, lanky and speaks purposefully. He’s part of this first generation of college-educated entrepreneurs who are choosing Wilmington city as a place to live and work. Whether Wilmington can shake its Murder Town characterization or not, will in part be determined by whether they stick around.
He’s been documenting the product build with a weekly one-minute video newsletter, called the Road to SyncQL, and featuring enthusiastic selfie-style lessons and updates from Laitila. The promo campaign was nominated for a Delaware Innovation Award.
“I’ve loved doing the videos,” he said, in the low-light of a rainy late night product launch on North Market Street. “But I’m ready to have people start using SyncQL more.”-30-