Charlie Key has one question for software developers: “How do you want to spend your time?”
A developer himself, he discovered there wasn’t a good place to gather information about apps that he built while creating a Facebook game with his college roommate and co-founder Brandon Cannaday. Key’s brother, Richard Key, is the business’ third partner.
This trio of techies is trying to help software developers spend less time messing with servers and more time building applications. They built their company, Modulus
, on Amazon’s cloud to offer scalable, reliable hosting for developers.
While the company’s services are almost business-to-business – developer to developer, if you will -- they nonetheless attracted the attention of The Brandery
, an Over-the-Rhine start-up accelerator.
“We’re different from the other companies at The Brandery," Key says. "We’re very technically heavy, and I think they were interested in looking at companies like us because they’re getting so many consumer products companies coming in – people who make iPhone apps, for example. Modulus presented a different challenge for them.”
The company helps developers follow time-consuming best practices they might otherwise skip, such as tracking analytics for usage and information requests and alerting developers if a site starts to misbehave.
For developers who make living writing code, having a fast, functional way to track this transfer of information (and what happens when it’s not transferring) is critical to keeping clients happy.
But with such a technical product, where do clients come from? “Grassroots marketing,” says Key, who attends conferences about cloud computing and Node.js, and even launched a Node.js Meetup group. “We found that actively getting out there and helping people learn is the best way to find new customers.”
By Robin Donovan