Last month marked one entire year of living with the coronavirus pandemic. One year of missing our connection with loved ones. One year of dealing with the loss of normalcy. One year of making adjustment after adjustment to life as we knew it.
But it’s also been a year that has made us focus on a lot of silver linings - it’s definitely been a year of making lemonade from lemons. We’re super grateful for the time we had to focus on our health, both physical and mental, the time it gave us to do all the projects we constantly put aside, and the time to really focus on what matters. We certainly won’t be taking holidays with loved ones -or even maskless Happy Hours with our friends- for granted any more.
Despite the ups and downs of the past year, we here at Yeti are very grateful to still be running a successful software development company. Like everyone else we’ve certainly had to make some pivots, but we did our very best to make the most of the year - and had the opportunity to work on some amazing projects.
When the pandemic started we were a thriving software development company in the SoMA district of San Francisco working on a platform for in-person gaming at Punch Bowl Social, volunteering with students at Mission Bit and a lot more. Little did we know how much our world would change over the course of a year.
Here’s a look back at the past year for Yeti:
The World Health Organization declares coronavirus a pandemic.
Shelter in place order announced for six Bay Area counties to take effect at midnight on March 17 - Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Mateo, San Francisco, and Santa Clara.
Despite opening day being postponed due to coronavirus, Yeti helped Jim Bettencourt, author of Baseball Rules in Black and White, create a mobile app that provides umpires, coaches, players, and fans with the ability to easily navigate the rules of baseball at all levels of play. The app is available for both iOS and Android and can be found in the App Store and Google Play Store.
April 25th & 26th
Yeti Hosts Hack the Virus, a 27 hour hackathon that brought together teams of software developers and experts fighting on the front lines of COVID-19. Together they created solutions to some of the biggest problems being faced in the face of the pandemic. Some notable solutions included:
*ReachCare, a texting platform allowing individuals without internet or smart phone access to find COVID-19 testing sites close to their zip code.
*A geo-spacial application to help the medical community with resource management.
With schools and daycares suddenly being closed, parents and caregivers faced the challenge of becoming their children's sole sources of learning and support.
We quickly mobilized to create the free app, Stay Play Grow in less than three weeks. This comprehensive, one-stop resource provided families with valuable resources to help keep them happy, healthy and learning while sheltered in place.
The Yeti office in San Francisco shuts its doors indefinitely. While this was a somewhat difficult choice, we had easily adapted to working virtually throughout the pandemic thus far and knew it was the best decision both financially for the safety of our team.
Because we have been using systems and processes that promote an agile working model, we were actually able to easily adapt these processes to an entirely-online model.
Yeti launches “Yes We Are Open” an initiative by open source smart building company, Verdicity, to help provide companies with the information and resources necessary to safely re-open- and remain open- during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The “Yes We Are Open” app is a customized tool that allows users to submit their building/business information to receive custom service recommendations specifically tailored to their building.
In addition to being a valuable source of information for users, “Yes We Are Open” also serves as a significant lead generation tool for Verdicity’s core smart building business.
We worked with Northeastern University to launch an entirely virtual version of their annual Fall Fest.
FallFest world was a retro game experience that students could explore in real time via a personalized avatar. Within FallFest World attendees had the ability to explore booths customized by student groups with information, videos, links and photos, as well as integrated zoom video chats allowing them to chat with organizers and learn more about the club.
Fall Fest was a huge success! 400 individual clubs and over 10,000 unique users participated in Fall Fest on the day of the event.
Yeti celebrates our 10th anniversary in business. Despite being completely virtual, the team gathered to celebrate and toast to continued success for 10 more years in business.
Tony writes a piece in Entrepreneur about some of the not-so-glorious lessons the Yeti team has learned over the past 10 years.
Yeti and Early Learning Lab, launched the Reflectable app.
Throughout their years of experience the team at Early Learning Lab has seen that it is often a challenge for parents, teachers and caregivers to actually take what they've learned in their training and apply it to the work they do with their children.
To help bridge that gap, Reflectable provides teachers and caregivers with a platform for self-reflection, goal setting and planning, making it easy to build on best practices in just 10 minutes a week.
Jay-Z launches Monogram, an upscale cannabis line.
The Yeti team joins each other in Virtual Reality for our company holiday party.
With the increase in demand for virtual events like these two for Northeastern University and the American Cancer Society, Yeti has launched a spinoff company, Virtual Fest, that focuses on creating inspiring digital events.
It’s certainly been a year of adapting to life during a pandemic and preparing for what life will be like after the pandemic. Software development is in a unique position to help create better solutions for keeping us better connected moving forward and we are so excited to be a part of the industry at this unique time.
Tony Scherba is a CEO + Founding Partner at Yeti. Tony has been developing software since high school and has worked on digital products for global brands such as Google, MIT, Qualcomm, Hershey’s, Britney Spears and Harmon/Kardon. Tony’s writing about innovation and technology has been featured in Forbes, Huffington Post and Inc. At Yeti, Tony works on strategy, product design and day to day operations, hopping in and working with the development teams when needed. Follow Tony on Twitter.