My last company was a desktop first company.  We built a web app that was optimized for the desktop experience, and that people interacted with primarily via desktop and laptop computers.

DoubleDutch is a mobile first – actually, mobile only – company.  We build apps that help people collaborate at work, via their smartphones.

So what’s the difference between building apps for desktops and laptops and building apps for smartphones?

Everything is the difference.

Design, connectivity, gestures, DNA, real estate, context, navigation, portability, bandwidth, and use cases are just some of the things that get flipped on their head when you compare building for mobile vs. building for desktop.

As a wise man once said, if you’re building for desktop you’re NOT building for mobile.

Tomorrow, at Dreamforce 2011, I will be presenting on the topic of Eight Ways Mobile is Different than Desktop.

Date: Wednesday, August 31

Time: 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Speakers: Cindy Krum, MobileMoxie; Lawrence Coburn, DoubleDutch

Location: Marriott Marquis, Lower B2 Level (55 Fourth Street, San Francisco)

Description: A top priority for Web teams everywhere is publishing to mobile devices. But you can’t just shrink your existing site. How, then, should companies meet the needs of customers across all these devices—and do it without breaking the bank? Join us, and we’ll show you how!

I’ll post the deck on Slideshare tomorrow afternoon.