3DWriter was more of a fulfillment of a vision than a software company. It was created as a service to the education community, not as a way of lining the CEO's pockets. I'm Art Wolinsky, the OEO of 3DWriting, Inc. In case you're wondering, an OEO is an "Only Operating Officer", and that's the way it's going to stay.
I spent 30 years in the classroom. The last 15 were centered around educational technology. In 1998, I left the classroom to enter my second lifetime as a technology infusion consultant with schools.
One of the things I tried to do was promote hypertext narrative writing as a 21st century writing genre. You can read more about it if you like, but the bottom line is that I found that there was no simple tool designed specifically for the process.
I looked at hundreds of tools that would do the job, but each one was like using a hammer to do the job of a screw driver. The simplest tools available were Microsoft Word and Netscape Composer, but they both still had huge technical roadblocks that caused problems. They also have hundreds of features that cause students to focus on the creation of eye-candy rather then good writing.
I was puzzled as to why the tool I wanted didn't exist. Countless times I said, "If Bill Gates would just put hyperlinking and image handling in Word Pad that's built into Windows, I'd be a very happy man!" Then the blinding flash of obvious hit me. If he did that, schools would have very little need Microsoft Word, because the FREE Word Pad would do almost everything a school needs.
Once I realized that I wasn't going to find the tool I needed, I decided to develop 3DWriter. Having a programming background, I knew that the tool I envisioned was not difficult to make. The problem is that I am an educator and my love is teaching and professional development. I had no intention of letting a software company take me away from my dream. If money was my goal in life, I wouldn't have spent 30 years in the classroom. Besides, the only thing on my list of things I don't want to do that is lower than sales is having root canal work without Novacaine.
I decided to have FUN with 3DWriter. My philosophy became, "I'd rather make a difference than a million!" (Though I had no objections to doing both) I said that I wanted to support education and teachers. I think I have made good of that promise... BIG TIME.
I started in 2000 by offering 3DWriter and the most unique licensing in the industry at a price that ANY school could afford. For $249, they could put it on every computer in the school and send it home with every teacher and every student!
That could have been enough, but as I mentioned I wanted to have fun and make a difference! Even at that ridiculous price, I was able to continue to develop the product. I was able to hire two of my protégées to write a 3DWriting Activities which were bundled in the site license without any additional cost.
That should have been enough, but your support and feedback allowed me to give back even more. Now 3DWriter is FREE for anyone.
Why am I doing this?
I retired from the classroom in 1999 to consult with school districts and to try to help people to teach and learn through the use of technology. I had the wonderful good fortune of developing a support network of Internet pioneers who shared their knowledge freely.
The past six years have been an experience I wouldn't trade for anything. I have more work than I want and I don't want this site or the software taking away from the things I really love, namely working with students and teachers. So, 3DWriter is now FREE. It just one more way I can repay those who have helped me in the past and one more way for me to try to make a difference.
Thanks for your support!
OEO 3DWriting, Inc.