Amazon vets raise $2M for Dendron, a tool to manage large amounts of information
New funding: Seattle-based startup Dendron has raised $2 million in seed funding for its open source note-taking tool that helps users manage any amount of information.
The founders: Kevin Lin is a former software engineer at Amazon Web Services who left after five years to launch his own company. The former Geek of the Week went through Y Combinator as a solo founder before being joined by Kiran Pathakota, one of Dendron’s first customers, as co-founder. Pathakota is a former Amazon technical program manager who also spent time at Facebook and Microsoft.
The tech: The way Lin sees it, the big problem with note taking and knowledge management in general is that there’s too much information and no good way of finding what you need when you need it.
“Google organizes the world’s information to make it accessible, but there’s nothing that does that for personal or institutional information,” Lin said. “If search worked in this case, Google Drive and Google Docs should be enough for note taking — but they’re not.”
Dendron is taking the concepts of IDEs (integrated development environments) that let developers uniformly structure, update, and find specific areas of code and applying it to general knowledge. Lin, who has a collection of over 20,000 notes that he manages with Dendron, said his tech makes it possible to “enforce a consistent structure across thousands of documents so that you can always find what you need.”
Monetization: Lin says that Dendron plans to make money by charging teams and enterprises who want access to additional features like single sign-on, private registries and fine-grained access control.
Growth plans: Lin and Pathakota are currently the only two employees, until an intern joins in May. But they’re interviewing for full time engineers and have two potential candidates, one in South Korea and one in Hong Kong. “We are a remote-first company,” Lin said, adding that since Dendron is open source, “we also get regular contributions from the community.”
Final word: “What Excel did for numbers is what Dendron is doing with general information — providing users a framework in which they can organize and manage it at scale,” Lin said.