Friday, September 07, 2007

department of "duh"

Most big industries are just like railroads. Except they don't run trains. You know what I mean. You know how all big companies these days are conglomerates made up mergers of mergers of mergers?

Like, for instance, Bank of America. What we now know as the Bank of America is an empire built out of hundreds of smaller, older banks. Some of them dating back to the 19th century. Same with media companies. Time Warner, anyone?

Guess who did all this stuff before, bigger and badder than everybody else?


Check out the family trees of Union Pacific and BNSF.

Google and Yahoo are starting to look like this too.

Even the lesser known companies, like the ones some of us work for, have complex twisted roots stretching back into the past.

?------> Fiserv
XP Systems
\ 1995-ish
Digital Insight-------------- Digital Insight
/ / 2004 \
N-Front / \
Anytime Lender / \
Vi-Fi / \
/ \
Magnet Communications \
.: 1995 \
.: \
: \
Disk Access Intuit
\ / 2007
\ Turbo Tax /
FundTech Lacerte /
etc. /
1983 \
Quicken Loans

(I cannot vouch for the absolute correctness of this.. the line from Disk to Magnet is dotted because it's not a legitimate corporate spinoff, but all the old timers came from there so everybody kind of thought of it as an unofficial forking. There are probably many more of those that could be shown, if I could remember them.)


I used to work for a software company in B'ham called Revere which could supposedly trace it's roots all the way back to Paul Revere. It started as the IT department for Revere Ware, the pots and pans company, but got split off to support a software product they had developed.