Over the Sun, LLC — 2009-present
Over the Sun, LLC builds platforms for research and science education. Through computer software, documentary film, observatories and research centers, OTS projects give foundation to the curiosity, passion, and motivation of those who strive to better understand the inner workings of the world around us, while inspiring the next generation of curious investigators. To learn more, visit www.overthesun.com
Fixstars Solutions — 2008-2009
Staats and the Terra Soft team helped launch Fixstars Solutions, a California based subsidiary of Fixstars of Tokyo, Japan in order to carry forward the Yellow Dog Linux and Yellow Dog Enterprise Linux operating systems while transitioning into new markets under the leadership of Satoshi Miki, Fixstars CEO. Staats served as COO during this pivotal period.
Terra Soft Solutions — 1999-2008
Terra Soft was born of the article Shutting Down NT: How we did it, published on the Apple website for three weeks in the summer of 1998 . Then Sr. Manager of Business Markets Development at Apple, Morgan Simpson visited with would-be Terra Soft founders Kai Staats and Dan Burcaw, encouraging them to help pave the way for Rhapsody and Mac OSX … and Yellow Dog Linux was born.
Staats negotiated the only contract with Apple which allowed the installation of an alternative operating system while maintaining full warranty. Terra Soft moved quickly into supercomputer design and construction, and integrated solutions sales as a top-tier Apple Value Added Reseller‐Proprietary Solutions Provider. This lead to contracts with Department of Energy, Department of Defense, NASA, and several prominent U.S. and international Universities, including the unprecedented delivery of realtime image processing systems for each submarine in the U.S. Navy fleet, supercomputers for Argonne, Lawrence Livermore, and Sandia National Labs, and assistance with the world’s two largest Xserve clusters.
YDL was often heralded as the simplest to install of all Linux operating systems, an OS which played a dual role as a highly scalable supercomputing OS, and yet one that maintained an elegance of use and appeal to home users.
In 2006, Terra Soft was contracted by Sony Computer Entertainment of America to develop a version of YDL for the yet-to-be-released PLAYSTATION3, and design and construct a supercomputing facility designed for 2,000 rackmount servers. In the early winter of 2007, Terra Soft hosted the first of two IBM and Sony sponsored Cell Hack-a-thons in the newly constructed Sony facility where individuals from across the U.S. came to gain first-hand and first-ever experience with Cell programming. The nine-day event included daily tutorials from industry experts, home-cooked catering, and weekend adventures in the freshly fallen, Colorado snow.
In the fall of 2008 Terra Soft was acquired by Fixstars of Tokyo, Japan, bringing to close ten years of Staats’ leadership and drive for constant innovation, ease of use of the desktop interface, and support of solid, mission critical environments.
Terra Firma Design — 1993-2000
In his final year of the ASU program, Staats founded Terra Firma Design in Phoenix, Arizona, designing brochures and product manuals for Xylem Design and Cool Paw Productions, as well as the design and construction of an interactive exhibit for the Phoenix Children’s Science Museum. Following the move to Colorado Staats market identity and website development clients grew to include local retail, engineering, and manufacturing companies Audio Alternative, BioBubble, RLE Technologies, WTCI (Western Telecommunications, Inc.), General Robotics Corporation, Ultimate Support Systems, and six years development of the New Belgium Brewing website.
TFD maintained a unique, holistic approach to marketing, using real stories captured from within its clients’ organizations and from its customers to spread the good word about the company’s products and services. Kai Staats and partner Janet Logothetti traveled to Northern California to capture the story of the Wetsel-Oviat lumber company. This process included high-quality audio interviews and in-the-field photography of the active plantation and mill, to tell the story of one of the last family owned lumber companies in North America.
‘Corporate Storytelling’ and ‘marketing with integrity’ were cornerstone to TFD, a philosophy maintained as Staats’ team moved from website development and hosting into Linux development. It was Staats desire to host his clients’ websites that lead to the use of Linux on Apple PowerPC computers and the subsequent launch of Terra Soft Solutions.