Owen WilliamsFormer TNW employee
Owen was a reporter for TNW based in Amsterdam, now a full-time freelance writer and consultant helping technology companies make their word Owen was a reporter for TNW based in Amsterdam, now a full-time freelance writer and consultant helping technology companies make their words friendlier. In his spare time he codes, writes newsletters and cycles around the city.
Uber’s first blog posts, from when the company was still called UberCab, provide amazing insight into a more innocent time for the company as it enters day two of protests in France.
The Tumblr account, first uncovered by a blog called Uber Expansion, documents UberCab submitting its first apps to the App Store, its initial Web-only service and more. It’s penned by Uber’s co-founders and early employees.
A entry from 2010 shows a single car on the streets of San Francisco, overlaid on a desktop map with the caption “we’re in business.”
Another post from Ryan Graves, now Uber’s head of global operations, describes “why taxi’s suck,” describing an experience where he tried to order a cab and ended up with a smelly driver.
Graves also asks for people to submit stories of bad experiences in cabs, with my personal favorite: a screenshot of his own Twitter account declaring “can you believe this crap!!!!????”
An early job posting on the blog promising a “ground floor opportunity” says that “most application processes suck as bad as the car services industry so we won’t ask you to submit a resumé or tell us what kitchen appliance you most resemble.”
Graves said he would “personally be responding the same day” to applications.
This entry where the company jokes it might change its slogan to “Avoid the creeps, ride Uber” is ironic given recent controversies.
It’s also pretty fascinating to see a time when Uber was still just starting out and had set time frames where cars would be available.
The company has come a long way from its first offices, too.
There’s a post about Uber’s first cease and desist order from the SF Metro Transit authority, which marked the point where the company officially dropped “Cab” from its name to “avoid confusion” about its services.
Finally, this amateur video filmed by Uber shows a staff member walking around San Francisco asking people what they think the word “Uber” means. It’s painfully hilarious. One person asks if it’s related to the Nazis.
Reading the old Uber blog gives fun insight into the company’s excitement about its own product, directly from the founders, before the world knew what it was.
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