Backpack: 10,000 accounts since we launched yesterday 04 May 2005

27 comments Latest by eyezberg

No wonder we were experiencing some heavy loads. 10,000 people have signed up since we launched yesterday! We’re thrilled with the response so far and the blogosphere seems to be too. Thanks for everyone’s kind words and well wishes. We have a lot planned for this product, including an API shortly. Stay tuned!

27 comments so far (Jump to latest)

Gil 04 May 05


One complaint. I got an email from a friend who was sharing a page with me. She sent it to another email address besides the one I use in Backpack. When I clicked the link it asked me to create another account and there was no way around that.

I guess I’d like to see a “Already have an account? Click here to login” section somewhere on the page.

Alex King 04 May 05


One question about the API - I’m guessing that you mean an API to get and send data to and from Backpack, to display on the desktop, ect. Is that correct, or are you planning on allowing developers to write their own plugins to backpack? If not, is this in your plans? Also - what do you think about plugins in general?

Sam 04 May 05

10,000 user registrations in 2 days?! I guess there goes people’s worries about Rails scalling well

Ruy 04 May 05

Hey wait a minute- there will be an API?

I just set-up a very hack-ish ruby script (using curl to deal with auth) to grab live data from the xml export page…

Well, this is even better - will we get to add data or just retrieve it?

Bill Bradford 04 May 05

My only wish is that the email address for pages could be tied to the name of the page itself. E.g., “[email protected]” isntead of something randomly-generated like “[email protected]”.

I can understand not wanting to have to maintain a lookup table where six thousand people are using “[email protected]” though.

Jean Moniatte 04 May 05

10,000: nice, very nice. Congratulations!

I would be very interested in knowing the ratio of free accounts vs the $5, $9 and $19 a month accounts.

Does the business model validate? Are people willing to spend their $$ for a PIM application ?

Bryan W 04 May 05

I wanna second what bill said. it annoys me every time i make a link to one of my backpack pages that i have to copy/paste the url or memorize page id’s. would be nice
along with the [email protected] email addresses. and why oh why can i send email to my page’s email address from ANY address? why not restrict it to the address that the account was created with or the addresses of people it’s shared with that have edit privileges

Bryan W 04 May 05

Actually after more thought i think it’d be easier to spoof my email address than to guess the random page addresses (:

Tarun Malhotra 05 May 05

If I could make two suggestions

- It would be useful to have the Add link at both the top and the bottom. As each of the sections get larger, I find myself scrolling down the page when I come to a page to add more notes.

- It would be nice for the edit/delete buttons to be always visible instead of having to rollover the link. Many times if I don’t scroll in a straight line, the Edit/Delete buttons go away. Alternatively, make the Edit/Delte buttons come up whenever one roles over the titles or the content

Tom 05 May 05

Backpack is great. I can’t beleive you released it while I was finalising my dissertation, it took me an extra 3 hours to finish my work because I couldn’t stop playing.

Just one thing I noticed about the login. I signed up with the name ‘Thomas Loudon’ and the username ‘tomloudon’ when I goto my URL ‘http://thomasloudon.back…’ it automatically fills out the username field for me, great, but it puts ‘thomasloudon’ in instead of ‘tomloudon’. A minor problem but just though you should know.

mindful learner 05 May 05

Backpack is crying out for something similar to the ‘blog this’ bookmarklet from blogger. If I’m viewing an image or page that I’d like to add to a Backpack page (whether this is a to-do item or note or whatever), I’d love to be able to click a simple button on my links bar and have it automatically added. Please, please, please add this feature and I may even move up to one of the paid options!

Brad 05 May 05

If I�m viewing an image or page that I�d like to add to a Backpack page (whether this is a to-do item or note or whatever), I�d love to be able to click a simple button on my links bar and have it automatically added.

If you have Safari, you can do something almost this simple: select the text or image you want to send to your Backpack, go up to the Safari menu>Services>Mail>Send Selection.

If, as the Backpack “Tips and Tricks” has suggested, you’ve set up easy-to-remember aliases for your various Backpack page e-mail addresses, all you have to do now is type that alias in the “To” field of your e-mail message and click “Send.”

Not as simple as clicking one button, but in reality unless you are only going to be sending stuff to one Backpack page, one button isn’t going to be enough (you’d need a dropdown menu of buttons so you could choose which Backpage page to send this particular item to).

Kyle 05 May 05

Personally, I think the random email addresses are genius.

Geoff 05 May 05

Using the awesome Firefox-based Camino Browser on Mac OS X, you can choose View -> Customize Toolbar and add the “Send Link” button to your toolbar.

Whenever you click the button, it opens your email client with the link in the body and the page title as the subject of the email.

I use it all the time for many things, but it would also be useful for Backpack.

Brad 05 May 05

For everyone who’s complaining about the random e-mail addresses for pages, see this note from Backpack Tips and Tricks:

While the random word##[email protected] email addresses can be tricky to remember, they are there for good reason (it�s much tougher to spam when there are tens of thousands of possible combinations to shuffle through before you get a direct hit).

However, there�s an easy to way to remember.

Add your page�s email addresses to your computer or cell phone�s address book and then give them your own names (�BP� as the first name and whatever you want for the last name). For example:

“BP Home” for your Backpack home page
“BP Vacation” for the page you made for your vacation
“BP Quotes” for your favorite quotes page
“BP Receipts” for your e-commerce email receipts page
�and so on.

So, instead of having to remember that [email protected] is your home page�s email address, you can just remember BP Home.

Spencer 05 May 05

Is there any quick way of adding HTML to the lists on Backpack? I’m using BBCodeXtra extension in Firefox at work, but I’d like a simple Backpack tool to use when I’m using Safari.

Markus Sandy 05 May 05

Wow! 10K users in one day? You rock! I just tried it and I love Backpack! We would really like to see an API for this so we can hook in from our p2p secure file sharing and private collaboration tool.

We just released our free SpinXpress product and community for free last week and we have a fraction of the sign-up’s you do (but they are starting to take off, woohoo!). I just set up our discussion forums and optional add-on services coming soon.

Guess what we’re using to manage my projects and action items? Basecamp (and Ta-Da) of course.

What do we use to create ad-hoc work groups and to move our files, person-to-person, across platforms and through firewalls? SpinXpress of course.

Now Backpack. Too cool.

My hat’s off to the energy that you folks have created around your products. Your are our hereos!

Congratulations, Markus [at]

brian 05 May 05

my only comment at this point, is why, when i set a reminder for 4pm, did it not get sent until 4:30pm ( at least as noted in the mail headers )? half-hour is a deal breaker for many reminders. =\ but i can’t email tech support because i have a free account…

Mark John 05 May 05

Guys, you rock! No, No, you’re the man! I learned about the BaseCamp, while browsing through, which featured Backpack. And the moment I saw the page, i mean, i’m hooked. It’s like seeing an oasis in the middle of the desert. I’ve been looking for something like this for years now, as i have been managing a lot of projects.

The big praise should go the interface, it’s so simple, so clear (like crystal clear signal), that I got the logic behind the system in less than 30 mins. In fact, i have already created a free account (okay, free for now, as i have to migrate and test it fully first), and trying to get myself around the system. I’ve also invited a lot of my co-workers here and they too are mesmerized!

Anyway, I know you guys deserve all the praises. As a web developer myself, i quickly tried to find out what your system is running on, and that’s where i learned about this Ruby On Rails. We have C/C++, then Perl, then PHP, and now Ruby, good lord, why can’t the world just speak one language! I said to myself, i can’t, no more, i can’t learn another language, ‘m over bloated! but then again, rails deserve another look, the design, the thing is just brilliant.

anyway, i don’t want to say a lot, even if i do have a lot to say. :) ‘ll try to see if i can cook something like rails for PHP, as i just can’t leave my beloved PHP right now. :(

once again, kudos to the 37signals team!

Kim Siever 06 May 05

I tried Backpack when it was released. When I copied and pasted the email address for a page and tried sending an email to do list, it came back undeliverable saying the suer could not be found.

I haven’t used it since.

Maybe I should give Backpack another chance.

Kim Siever 06 May 05

Sorry, ‘suer’ should be ‘user’.

JF 06 May 05

Hi Kim, yeah please try again. We fixed that issue.

eyezberg 12 May 05

Jon, if you want to share things with your family, like thoughts and photos, do as I do and use Google all the way:
Picasa pics to Hello to Blogger, all for free, and set up members for that blog. Simple, quick and easy..