Evernote – 2014

If you have to sync with Windows or Android, it’s still a great product. Highly recommended.


The second Wednesday after I started at Mozilla, while I was still in the Bay Area for orientation and training, I got this note:

I came across your profile today and was very impressed with your background and projects!  I’m not sure if you’re familiar with Evernote, but our goal is to help the world remember everything, communicate effectively, and get things done. We’re now nearing 100 million users worldwide!
We currently have a Mac OS opportunity available and your background looks like a great match! To tell you a bit more, our core team will always stay small (we say no larger than you’d invite to your house for dinner), but at Evernote, a lot of our initiatives are cross-platform so we often have other engineers cycle on and off as needed for various bits of functionality. We currently have a lot of these initiatives going so there are probably another 8-10 engineers in our codebase right now located around the US, Germany, and Switzerland. Our Design and QA also sit right next to us. We’re like a big family.
With regards to our projects, we are in the midst of a complete redesign of our existing Evernote Mac application. It will include sweeping architectural changes that will allow us to take advantage of more recent OS X technologies as well as share more code with our other Evernote clients. Our goal is to produce a much more light-weight client that feels quick, responsive and modern.
If this sounds interesting to you, please let me know a good time to chat further!

Argh! Where were they 3 weeks earlier? Or better yet, two months earlier?

I responded that I had just started a new job, and that I wasn’t interested in moving to the Bay Area anyway, and they responded:

Thanks for getting back to me! We are open to remote work for this role if the skill set is suiting for what we are looking for. I don’t want to waste your time so please let me know if you are wanting to learn more and I will definitely set up some time for you. However, congrats on your new role with Mozilla!
Looking forward to hearing back!

Now I was in a quandary.

I took the job at Mozilla for three reasons.

  1. I needed to work, and it was the only offer I had. It was a QA job, and I had been hoping to be rid of QA forever, but what can you do?
  2. One of my best friends recommended me, one of my favorite managers was the VP, and another acquaintance was a former coworker of mine, all from Cygnus.
  3. It was work on open-source, which I had missed since leaving Cygnus/Red Hat.

So, I knew nobody at Evernote. It was certainly not open source.

But, I loved the product and used it. It would have meant staying as a software developer, rather than being in QA. And, I could have worked remotely.

I should have interviewed. I was already in CA; they and I could have got the interview process to work. And then, if I got an offer, considered it on its merits. If I accepted an offer, it would have meant telling 3 friends that their recommendations and interviewing were a big waste of time.

So I said no.


  • I loved Evernote, but their pricing started being pretty high. And then Apple introduced Notes with iCloud syncing. Since I did not have to sync my notes with Android or Windows anyway, I ditched Evernote at that point. It’s a shame when Apple Sherlocks you.
  • You have to take care of yourself. Disappointing my friends was the primary reason I did not interview. I will never know if that position would have worked out, but I knew it was in development which is what I wanted. I should have taken care of myself; true friends would have understood.



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