Mixer was a live video streaming startup born out, and funded by, MCProHosting. I was the first engineering hire at MCPH, and after spending early 2014 revamping its platform, we were looking for something new. We started working Mixer—called Beam, at the time—in the fall of 2014, and released public alpha shortly thereafter.
(Fun fact—in spite of the Wikipedia article saying we officially launched in 2016, that was just the last of multiple "launches" of the platform. If your startup doesn't launch the first time, try again!)
In the spring of 2016, Beam had graduated from the TechStars accelerator, and that summer I came to Seattle to work in startup hall. That fall, Beam was acquired by Microsoft, and I with it. At the time there were five of us engineers working on Beam, in addition to our cofounders Matt and James.
By 2019, Mixer had grown from five to around a hundred engineers, with hundreds more roles in community, support, enforcement, programming, and so on. At one point, Mixer was larger than Xbox Live (the software and services portion of the Xbox business.)
Notably interesting things I built during my time at Mixer include:
- The (original) low latency video ingest server, which was used for the lifetime of the product;
- The realtime event system that broadcasted millions of events/second to users on the site—one day I'll write about it;
- The MixPlay game development platform;
- Lots of CRUD APIs and web UI, of course.
In late 2019, following several internal and external events, attrition kicked in. The cofounders left, as did I and several other engineers. In July of 2020, Mixer was shut down.
We started on Beam while I was still in high school, and I had never worked at a company larger than five to ten people before this point. I made countless mistakes. I learned a whole lot, and was supported—and given passes on my mistakes!—by so many amazing people.