Changing an Industry. First by accident
and then by design.
"There are two kinds of companies, those that work to try to charge more and those that work to charge less. We will be the second." - Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon
When SampleServe.com first started back in 2001, the goals we had for the company were completely different than the goals we have now. Back then the internet was just gaining momentum and not everyone was comfortable having their data online. As a matter of fact, some people were actually outright opposed to it.
In the beginning we wanted to be a "field services" company. In 2002 we developed an online data management tool to facilitate our own sampling. Being efficiency minded, we wanted to be able to lay out a project and print chain of custody's, sample bottle label's and sample location
Unfortunately, not much happened with SampleServe.com for a while, largely because I was busy doing other things. In 2008 when I decided to give it my full attention again, things started taking off. The software was revamped and the selling went full force. The goal was still to be a "field services" company. Again, the software was meant to be a "value added" to the client and something that separated us from other companies.
It was in early 2011 while meeting with a large nationwide engineering company to discuss their sampling needs when they said, "Well, we really want to keep doing our own sampling, but we really like your software.
We've been moving along and continually improving our software since then but now it's time for the next iteration of SampleServe.com. Just for grins, I'm calling it SampleServe 2.0.
SampleServe 2.0 is still in field services, that's been our bread and butter, but now we're emphasizing software and developing our own tablet/smart phone application. People have asked why we don't get out of the field services business if we want to be a software company. My answer is that laboratory services and the testing and analysis function will soon be moving into the field and we want to be in a position to take advantage of that market as the technology developments.
Mobile smart devices and sensor technologies like this onethat can detect lung cancer using a breathalyzer like device and other technologies being developed like this one, are being developed all the time. I imagine a time in the
Here is how SampleServe 2.0 will be the same.
- We will still do field sampling for clients that want the service (using "tricorders" as they become available).
- We will still allow clients that do their own sampling access our project management and reporting functions.
Here is how SampleServe 2.0 will be different:
- SampleServe 2.0 will be able to be accessed directly through your current participating laboratory's website. I have one poll question for those that are interested here: Lab Data Reporting Poll
- We will have improved project set up and project management functions. Many functions that are repetitive will be automated.
- Project management and reporting for other media will be available (e.g. soil, air, surface water, sediment, soil vapor, asbestos, mold and radon).
- Sampling instructions and access to the system will be available through a tablet/smartphone application. Data will be able to be collected and uploaded directly from the application. Photos and GPS coordinates and sampling details will be able to be input through the applications features.
- Sample bottle labels will be able to be printed in the field with QR Codes and text that identifies all sampling details using a small inexpensive simple 12-volt label printer.
- Electronic "Chains of Custody" will be automatically generated and e-mailed to the lab ahead of the samples for efficient automated sample login by laboratories using the sample bottle label QR Codes.
I'd like to say exactly when SampleServe 2.0 will be completed, however, currently the timeline is inversely proportional to the budget. If you're interested in partnering on this industry changing project, I can be contacted directly at 231-218-7955 or via e-mail. Ideal partners would be software programmers, laboratories or other venture stakeholders.
Your comments and questions about anything I've written are appreciated.
- Russell Schindler