Welcoming Norbert de Langen and Michael Shilman to Chroma

I’m absolutely thrilled to welcome Storybook’s core maintainers Norbert de Langen and Michael Shilman to Chroma! This post dives into what it means for Chroma and Storybook.

Frontend development is more satisfying than ever. The cornucopia of frontend tools such as React, Storybook, Apollo, Jest, Enzyme, and Webpack make it structured and joyful to transform ideas into code.

But user interface is still one of the hardest parts of the stack to master. Even with the invaluable component construct, the view layer is increasingly complex. It’s now responsible for delicate state management, responsiveness, business logic, and servicing millions of users.

In 2015, our consulting company Percolate Studio was acquired by Meteor Development Group, maker of the popular open source Javascript framework Meteor. In 2017, we started Chroma, our new product company.

The question first and foremost on the minds of budding entrepreneurs, ourselves included, is whether to go it alone and bootstrap our next company or to raise venture capital. Having recently worked at Meteor as Director of Customer Success, I experienced what it’s like to run a venture capital(VC) backed company in as close a capacity to being a founder as possible. Great VCs provide connections and the wisdom…

Part II — Monetizing Meteor and increasing the number of quality open source contributions.

In 2015, our consulting company Percolate Studio was acquired by Meteor Development Group, maker of the popular open source Javascript framework Meteor. In 2017, we started Chroma, our new product company.

It’s tempting to dismiss open source software (OSS) as hobby projects built by engineers in their spare time. However, the world’s largest companies now rely on OSS to power their businesses. There are a growing number of successful open source commercial companies like MongoDB, Docker and of course Redhat whose business models build atop inherently free software. Let’s see how to commercialize and maintain momentum on open source projects.

The backstory

Part I — Valuations and the acquisition mechanics.

In June 2015, our consulting company Percolate Studio was acquired by Meteor Development Group, maker of the popular open source Javascript framework called Meteor. In December 2016, we left to start Chroma, our new product company.

This is Part 1 in a series of posts where I reflect upon the lessons learnt from the acquisition and tales of life at a Silicon Valley startup.


Everyone has their own reasons for entering into an acquisition ranging from a successful cash exit to saving a company on life support. Our goal at Percolate was to transition from a services to a product…

Lessons learnt from 8 years of working across the Pacific

Here at Chroma we’re a remote team. Dominic and I are based in San Francisco and Oakland respectively. We rarely work from the same office because of the painful commute across the Bay Bridge. Tom is half a world away in Melbourne, meaning we have to contend with the timezone challenge on top of being physically separated. After 8+ years of working like this I’m here to share the tools and processes that actually work.

Working remote doesn’t have to be lonely

Cities are getting more crowded and expensive. Knowledge work is becoming the driver of post-manufacturing economies. …

Get field performance and usage analysis for GraphQL APIs with Apollo Optics

Over the past few weeks we’ve been busy putting the final touches on Apollo Optics for Rails. With version 0.4.2 of the agent, we’re excited to announce that Optics for Rails is ready for production workloads. Thanks to help and feedback from core members of the GraphQL and Ruby communities, including Shopify and graphql-ruby maintainer Robert Mosolgo, it came together fast!

Why GraphQL + Rails?

Just over two months ago, GitHub announced they were moving their public API to GraphQL, and the excitement within the Rails community has been building ever since. GraphQL is a natural fit for the challenges facing Rails developers today…

We’re pleased to announce Meteor 1.4, with major updates to Node and MongoDB, and a more flexible and community-oriented release process. The 1.4 release focuses on long term stability for the platform, continues our work to align Meteor with the wider JavaScript ecosystem, and positions us to work closer with the community than ever before.

Here are the highlights: We’ve updated Node to the long term supported version 4.4.7. We’re also shipping the latest MongoDB 3.2.6. This version of MongoDB includes the performant WiredTiger storage engine, now enabled by default. We’ve also introduced flexibility in the way Meteor pins core…

Today we’re excited to announce Meteor 1.3, the latest release of the Meteor JavaScript application platform. The focus of this major release is to help teams with production applications manage, scale, and test their Meteor codebases, and to continue our work to align the Meteor platform with the latest innovations in JavaScript. Run meteor update to upgrade existing apps or visit the Meteor install page if you’re just getting started.

Meteor 1.3’s focus is based on listening to our production customers, whose experiences building and running Meteor apps now span multiple years and major releases. Better support for application testing…

We recently opened up Galaxy Early Access to offer select customers a glimpse into our new service for running and managing Meteor applications in the cloud. The program is going very well so far — we’ve received great feedback and a number of customers are already running their apps in production on Galaxy.

We’re steadily adding the features Galaxy will need before it is ready for general release. I would like to introduce the latest one today. We’ve launched a page showing the operational status of Galaxy in addition to the other services that make up the Meteor ecosystem. Behind the scenes, the status page is backed by a robust set of processes designed to give you complete transparency regarding outages and technical issues that may be affecting your apps running on Galaxy.

Check out the new status page »

Zoltan Olah is a partner at Percolate Studio. Check out his Devshop talk on Meteor + Famo.us, as well as his introductory guide to Famo.us.

Percolate Studio believes in building cross-platform apps with one codebase using web technology. Rather than wasting developer effort on cloning business logic across platforms, we prefer to create more value through innovation, efficiency, and rapid iteration.

Meteor is a great tool for doing that, and it’s the foundation for all of our cross-platform apps. A standard Meteor app,built with the right UI transitions, gives you a mobile web app virtually for free — ready to…

Zoltan Olah

Builder of apps. Climber. Cyclist. Enthusiast. Founder @hi_chroma, previously @percolatestudio and @meteorjs

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