History of PlusPlus
Join the team that’s redefining Learning & Development space
Born out of Twitter University
In 2013, Twitter acquired Marakana, a company Marko Gargenta co-founded with his brother, Aleksandar (Saša). Twitter University was born.
The initial focus was on helping Twitter Engineering to go mobile. But the bigger problem was that engineers didn’t understand how Twitter worked. They needed to share tribal knowledge and do that at Twitter scale.
The solution: enable employees to learn from one another.
Twitter University introduced a methodology for Peer Learning. Soon, one in five Twitter engineers taught classes. It was successful.
Same mission, many years later
In 2016, Marko started PlusPlus to recreate that magic at other companies. As with all great things, it started with a Medium post: PlusPlus, in a Nutshell. A few years later, Saša joined him to once again redefine how people learn and grow.
Work is where you grow
We believe the future is where you go to work to grow.
Our parents’ generation was about the industrial age: exchange a unit of time for a unit of money. As such, companies existed to exploit their workers.
Working in Silicon Valley and having taught 10,000s of engineers how to get better at their craft showed us that the fastest growing companies invest in their people. It is the ingenuity of their people that has them innovate faster.
Our vision for the future of work? Read what Wired wrote about it (in the future): WIRED: How Silicon Valley is Liberating Ingenuity.
PlusPlus: What’s in the name?
Where did the name come from? Here’s the back story:
After a few months of soul searching, I realized that our reason for existence is to help people get to the next level. Interestingly, our previous startup’s purpose was also that. So, in a way, it took a few months to arrive back at the beginning.
Next up, we needed a name. I named the previous company Marakana, which was too abstract and hard to pronounce. This time, I wanted a name that encapsulates our purpose. So I was looking for something that implies leveling up, getting better, evolving.
At that time, I was traveling through Europe visiting family. I remember a sleepless night at my aunt’s house in Brussels. I ran through all possible permutations and combinations and nothing popped. Not even in Latin.
Then, I started thinking about computer science terms. In many languages, you can increment a variable by 1 using the ++ operator. Even the programming language C++ was named this way – it was the next version of C language.
So, that was it! PlusPlus was born! Its purpose is to help people grow and doing it at scale through software. Luckily, the trademark was also available. The only other PlusPlus is a Dutch toymaker and that makes for great swag.
Marko Gargenta, founder