But this is just what history tells us about successful companies — winner takes it all. Compare Google vs the second biggest engine. Do you even know which one that is? Or the third? Or the fourth? In software it just seems like there is such a positive scale effect of being biggest that being biggest is the only way to create a lasting company. If I was running Basecamp I would be super proud of what I had achieved, but at the same time scared shitless of Google or Slack making a similar product available for free or ad part of their basic offering. If you’re not, then more power to you. But it’s not that people necessarily want to “own the universe”, it’s about people looking at history and thinking “I have this great thing now, but to keep it going I’m gonna have to do all this other stuff too”.