In the comments to this 37signals blog post (which is excellent), dhh and commenter Dave Christiansen collaboratively coined a term for startup companies that aim to go into the black as soon as possible and grow under their own steam: bootstraps.
I’m in love with this. Bootstraps give entrepreneurs full control over their businesses, without interference from venture capitalists or other interests, and put the onus on finding an actual business model that works on day one. To me, it seems like a responsible, autonomous way to create a product and grow a business.
Right now, startups are sexy, and maybe they always will be – but watch the people hard at work bootstrapping, and take note of their reasons for doing it. The risks are great, but so are the potential rewards. And there’s a lot to be said for doing business on your terms.