inessential by Brent Simmons

How Glassboard Got Its Name

I’ve written before the real story about how MarsEdit got its name. (Hint: the story involves beer.)

The story we tell about Glassboard is that “glass” refers to the glass covering your phone, and “board” is like board-of-directors, with hints of bulletin board.

That’s fine, and that fits. It works. (Though I realize that “glass” doesn’t really suggest privacy. Well, the app’s private anyway.)

Of course we looked at a bunch of names, not just for the app but for the company. (For a while I thought we’d be called Hepcat Software. We ended up as Sepia Labs. I’ve learned that almost nobody pronounces Sepia correctly — it’s like the C in C3PO, not like the “se” in “severed heads.”)

Raise High the Roof Beams, Geeks

The name “Glass” comes straight outta Salinger. I was a huge fan when I was a teenager, and I remain fond (though I’ve read Mary McCarthy’s excellent, scorching takedown — and, well, she’s right).

I’d wanted to name a product Glass-something, or just Glass, since I first started naming products in the mid-’90s — because of the Salinger stories and because glass itself is cool. Because I love the name.

NetNewsWire could have been GlassNews. MarsEdit could have been GlassEdit. TapLynx could have been GlassAppMaker.

Texts from the ’60s

I can’t help but imagine Franny and Zooey as a modern mobile conversation.

Franny: Dude Im having a nervous breakdown.

Zooey: Whats wrong??!?

Franny: Ive gone all spiritual OCD.

Zooey: Remember the little people okey?

Franny: Thanks. Ill feel better soon. Don’t smoke so many cigars.

Zooey: Cigars are just balls.

Franny: ???? wtf Zoey

Zooey: Ballast not balls. Damn you autocorrect!