First released in 1989 by Jim Matthews as an employee of Dartmouth College, Fetch is the original Mac FTP client.
In 2001, Fetch Softworks’ founder Jim Matthews appeared on Who Wants to be a Millionaire. He used some of his show winnings to purchase Fetch’s source code and name from Dartmouth so that the product could be enhanced and marketed independently. The result: a small, thriving software company fanatical about reliability and service.
As Jim himself explains, the first Fetch Softworks website was hastily put together on a flight to San Francisco to launch Fetch Softworks at Macworld Expo 2001. Fetch expanded the site to include message boards, but the result was an inconsistent hodgepodge of visual elements and functionality that was driven by markup that was far from modern or semantic.
Web designers use Fetch. The Fetch Softworks website gave web designers heartburn. It was time to do something.
Finding the right design team
Fetch looked for a design team that not only understood their product, but were also Fetch users and fans. After doing a significant amount of research, and influenced by complimentary words by influential voices such as John Gruber, Fetch chose Happy Cog. Jim describes his decision making process in detail.
Sunny in Philadelphia
It would be easy for us to tell you how the rest of the story goes, but we’re not sure we could do it as eloquently or completely as, once again, Jim Matthews has on Who We Are, Part 5: Sunny In Philadelphia on Fetch’s product blog.