GT Blog Analysis, insights, and general musings on government contracting.

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Doing more with less

Nate Nash / Feb 12, 2013

Sure...this is a pretty lame, obscure, and generic thought. However, in the increasingly competitive world of government contracting, it is a reality. Whether you're seeing sinking margins because of the competition, the looming sequestration, or a rough patch of lost opportunities, the concept of "less" is staring you dead in the eye. One of the reasons we built hōrd is to help you defiantly stare back.

Notification Mishap

Nate Nash / Feb 9, 2013

GovTribe believes in the power of open government data. In fact, we built our entire business on it. However, as we continue to expand our data sources to deliver the right information to you, there can be bumps in the road. Since we expect transparency from the government, it is only fair we provide a level of transparency into our operations.

This Process Sucks

Nate Nash / Feb 4, 2013

Specifically, I mean the process by which people who care about opportunities with the US Government, are informed of important events. For the most part, this is caused by totally unnecessary process intermediaries. These intermediaries come in various incarnations, ranging from people whose sole responsibility is to watch/listen to FBO (or other websites), to dedicated "business developers" who roam the halls of potential client's buildings. To be clear, the people themselves are not the issue. It is the awkward and technologically arcane process they are forced to work within.

​GovTribe is interested in democratizing government data. Our first product, hōrd was designed to do just that. We give everyone the ability to quickly access useful government procurement information, from a mobile device, both online and off. We turn RFPs and RFIs into information humans are interested in, like Notices, Topics and Organizations. We let you add these things to your hōrd so that you can keep track of your favorite USAID Mission, contracting officer, or competitor. We price it at 4 bucks so that anyone can buy it. We want people to make their own technology choices and be in the know, the minute something happens.


Nate Nash / Jan 17, 2013

"The life of a programmer is mostly a never-ending struggle. Solving problems in an always-changing technical landscape means that programmers are always learning new things. In this case, 'learning new things' is a euphemism for 'battling against our own ignorance.'" Hillegass, Aaron (2011-11-22). Objective-C Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide (Big Nerd Ranch Guides) (p. 4). Pearson Education (US). Kindle Edition.

hōrd. Why do you want it?

Marc Vogtman / Jan 15, 2013

Entrepreneur. Futurist. Clairvoyant. Narcissist. Incisive product developer. Call me what you will, but I think you'll want what we've built. I hope I'm right. This is a position that's relatively new to me, though I realize that many, many an upstart have been here. I've made something and I'm going out on a limb on the hypothesis that enough people will want to buy it. So why do I think that?

Agency Insight: USAID Bangkok

Nate Nash / Jan 10, 2013 you all know, we recently released our first product, hōrd. During said launch, we tweeted the only USAID Mission who was following us on Twitter about the capabilities of hōrd. They were kind enough to engage so we thought we would use some of the data we harvested to provide a little insight into their world. So here you go, USAID Timor-Leste...thanks for the tweet.


Nate Nash / Jan 9, 2013

​One of the more interesting processes I was exposed to during my career as a government contractor was that of 'business development." I participated in more pursuits than I care to remember and they always had this sort of Highland games feel. There were people performing great feats of professional strength, such as working all night to develop an acronym list or missing a holiday to correct the grammar of a so-called luminary. Communication seemed to occur over the digital equivalent of a bullhorn and pipe bands of reviewers marched hither and yon, belting out familiar guidance written ages ago. For all intents and purposes, the people were "modern", but man-o-man was the game itself pretty 11th century.

Curious about federal procurement data? So are we. Actually, it's one of the main reasons we founded GovTribe. Also, it is the foundation for our first product, hōrd. Agency spending data is far too difficult to find, understand, and track. To help ease the process, and maybe even make it interesting, we've launched a series of blog posts on the spending habits of different agencies - Agency Insight.

Is Gamma Next?

Nate Nash / Nov 28, 2012

As of yesterday, the GovTribe private beta is closed. As this is our first of such events, I wanted to reflect a bit on the process, the tools, and the results. All in, I was pretty pleased with the way it turned out. As GovTribe grows, I expect we will continue to use this approach to early testing with actual users. In general, it gave us a nice mix of input from our target customers, as well as feedback from informed iPhone app consumers that may not be in the business of government contracting.

Brand New Jam

Nate Nash / Nov 5, 2012

GovTribe released the beta version of our first product today. Hooray! For the moment, it is still a private beta. However, if you are interested in participating hop on over to the signup and we will get you squared away.

Making Better Music

Nate Nash / Oct 20, 2012

​"Son...when this is all over, you need to have some hard skills." This is what my father said to me before I departed for an exhilarating undergraduate experience at my now alma mater, Indiana University. I nodded in violent agreement at his academic sentiment, while my mind swam with the possibilities of achievements. Hard skills, eh? Well, ok Pops. I'll get right on that.

What to keep and what to throw away?

Marc Vogtman / Oct 15, 2012

​I was working on the executive summary of GovTribe's business plan over the weekend. It shouldn't have been too difficult. After all, we've been living and breathing this little venture on nights and weekends for months. Summing up what we're all about and why the three of us are confident enough to give up gainful employment should have been a simple task. And, in truth, I had no problem getting the ideas on paper.

It's late. Probably much later than you would prefer to be working. Or maybe it is a weekend afternoon. Perhaps your friends or family are watching football or a jai alai match. Maybe there are beverages to be served and fun to be had. You however, are doing none of these things. You are staring at a Word document, littered with editorial graffiti and wordlessly vague comments, all the while staring at seconds ticking toward a rapidly approaching deadline. While this pile of jargon you are massaging is probably called a "proposal", the likelihood of resulting lifelong happiness is pretty slim. In a word, terrible.

Staring Down the Abyss

Nate Nash / Sep 5, 2012

However foreign to me, I find comfort in the appearance of wear on this path toward the unknown. This path, an inimitable walk through what I imagine being a combination of fear and excitement, triumph and pain, lies dead ahead. I assume there are lessons I should have learned, books I should have read, and networks I should have in place. Perhaps there were maps handed out at some forgotten waypoint. Perhaps I must make my own. Nonetheless, I go forward.