Wow what a ride it's been, after tons of pitching, forms, phone calls and coffee shops, I'm overjoyed to announce we've finally gone full-time on Marvel after raising a seed round from Haatch!
Now that we've settled in and surrounded ourselves with cables, cookie crumbs and old containers of takeaway food, I thought it would be good to start blogging and sharing what's happening with Marvel and things we're learning along the way.
Marvel is an idea that began in the summer last year as a side-project. The aim was to solve the frustrations of how designers pitch and present their work to clients and teams.
I had always been unhappy with all the prototyping tools on the web, many were either too complex, too limited or too expensive. There was always so much friction. I just wanted something that could get my mockups onto a device then just get out of the way.
Like most designers, I make hundreds of changes and tweaks as I work to get things right. With the majority of prototyping tools not supporting PSDs, it means saving each screen out as PNGs or JPGs and reuploading, it took huge amounts of time to maintain the latest version of the prototypes.
Then it hit me, all my files are stored on Dropbox, why not just grab them from there? Why not leave my files exactly where they are and always have the latest version synced? The idea for Marvel began to form.
There was an opportunity to make something better, something different. The world didn't need another '3 project limit' prototyping service.
The vision began to evolve - we want Marvel to help every designer and creative mind bring their ideas to life. That's what we aim to achieve over the coming months.
So who's building Marvel? Here's a quick intro to the co-founders and the awesome freelancers helping us:
Brendan (@oh_moore) is in charge of building the Marvel platform and making sure it keeps running. His background is in Python, J2EE and HTML5 and previously built scalable solutions for Nokia and Navteq. He also plays guitar and likes dive bars.
Jonathan Siao (@pakmee) is currently developing the Marvel iPhone app from the sunny beaches of Mauritius (grrrr) and occasionally works on the backend too. His tools are Objective-C and Python. He also worked with Brendan at Nokia. Often without reason, Jon will taunt us by sending pictures of the beautiful beaches near his house.
Me (@mutlu). I'm in charge of all the design, marketing and support. My background is a bit of design, innovation and product management. I like to eat chicken and procrastinate heavily.
Oleg Tsaplin (@olegtsaplin) is a brilliant front-end developer and has created the website and the interface.
Jack Barham (@jackbarham) is a experienced and talented designer and front-end developer with lots of WordPress skills. He's developed the blog and spruced up our interface
Mike Morley (@9eggs) is a awesome front-end developer and helping us with serious optimisation and moving to Backbone.js.
So there we have it, we're really excited to be able to focus all our energy and attention on Marvel. There's lots of awesome features in the pipeline, many ideas came from user feedback during this beta period so a big thank you to everyone who's taken the time to email.
Can't wait to show you what's in store :)