just a quick response to the 37signals post, where i feel they're unfairly discrediting people who decide to take the plunge into a start up full time. that's a huge step to take. i tend to agree with aaron patzer's stance:
"I was trying to work on this other start up and Mint, and it was too much. I was working essentially two jobs. and I realized one day if I gave it 100% and failed, I could live with that. If i didn't, and it didn't work out, I just couldn't live with myself. [Mint] was an idea I had to try.
So rule number three is quit your job. On March 1st, 2006, I quit my job and I lived off my savings for the next seven months. I worked alone in a room for 14 hours a day, 7 days a week, and I didn't have air conditioning either. During this period, I had a lot of self doubt. I was 25, taking on Microsoft with Microsoft Money and Intuit with Quicken. Every day, I thought this was the greatest idea ever... the next day, I thought 'who am I to do this? I don't have any background in finance... didn't work for Quicken or Microsoft Money.' I think that's probably an advantage, because you'll get to rethink the entire field."
i still don't think rejecting a steady paycheck is an easy thing to do. but it's a commitment to focusing on something, and i wouldn't give that up in a start up.