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Ten Years and Counting

This week marks a significant anniversary milestone for SDG Systems. On December 1, 2004, SDG’s co-founder, Todd Blumer, began working on SDG’s first full-time project: Linux Qtopia on the TDS (Trimble) Recon for 10East Corporation. “I recall the excitement of the time,” says Todd. “We had been doing part time work for Sharp Electronics, supporting their developer program. Sharp decided to leave the PDA market segment in the US, since US sales of the Zaurus had not met their expectations. 10East had deployed thousands of Zaurus handhelds with their railroad clients who were using the PDA to gather inspection data. 10East was looking for a fully rugged solution that could take abuse and still run their Qtopia-based software. Aric [Blumer] and I were able to deliver what 10East and other customers needed. We still have some partners purchasing Linux Recon units today.”

Lester Hightower, who was Chief Technology Officer of 10East Corp. at the time, had this to say: “I’m proud that 10East could play a part in helping SDG Systems get off the ground. SDG is a great American small business success story, as was its partnership with 10East, another successful American small business. When 10East’s mobile computing platform partner, a multi-national conglomerate, exited the US market, they took away the mobile computing platform on which 10East had built a significant part of its successful software-as-a-service franchise. We needed a quick solution to that problem and, even more, we needed a solution that would not be susceptible to similar problems going forward. Our answer was the TDS Recon, and later the Nomad, running SDG ports of Linux Qtopia. Those partnerships saved our bacon, and were also a win/win/win for the three companies. Those partnerships also funded Linux support for several generations of TDS Recon and Nomad handheld devices. Since then, SDG has expanded Linux support to many other hardened mobile computing devices. It’s been great for me to witness SDG’s continued success, even as the 10East days fade into history.”

A lot has changed since 2004, but many quality relationships continue. In 2009, 10East was acquired by RMI and is now a part of GE Transportation. SDG still has a strong relationship with Trimble. SDG built a couple of Linux implementations and an early version of Android for the Trimble Nomad, and Linux implementations for the Yuma tablets. We continue to implement and support Android releases on the Trimble Juno T41. We also customize software for Trimble clients, selling and supporting the hardware and software development services.

SDG Systems has grown to 11 employees and has sold well over $20 million in computer hardware and programming services. We are still a customer-focused company with an emphasis on our engineering capabilities. One of our most recent clients had this to say, “SDG Systems has been one of the best vendors I have ever worked with…. They work extremely hard to make sure they understand the application for what they are building. They are very responsive. Their work has been everything we have asked for.” - Justen Harper, Tribogenics.

Please contact us to see how we can help you build a solution that will meet your mobile computing needs. We can provide assistance with hardware selection and development of your solutions.

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