It was ten years ago today September 6, 1996 that my first startup (Labrador Software) went on the road to pitch Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 3 team on a concept called ‘paid keyword navigation’ now known as autosearch. I will never forget that meeting. It was three of us and a room of the entire IE 3 team led by Joe Belfoire (now corp VP ehome group at msft), Scott Berkun (who now is a distingushed author – we did some podcast together), Paul Osborne (I remember him because he grilled us on how we would handle generics), and like 10 others (mostly engineers). This was the team that killed Netscape. Microsoft IE 3 team love the idea but our company wasn’t formed and we missed the opportunity – they went with a small startup called Yahoo.
Keyword navigation and paid search developed fast from there with Goto.com and Realnames. I wonder what he next ten years will bring.