Back in 2006 I was working on a venture I called SocialNet (MySocialMap), based largely on research by dinah boyd and the Vister application she and Jeffery Heer put together. The idea was to build a icon based visual map of relationships across multiple social networks and layer this with a Taste Fabric styled algorithm. Users would be able to visualize their relationships across social networks (something still not done well) as well as discover their networks propensity to like anything from brands to movies. After a couple of successful beta applications the initiative got bogged down in a bunch of issues from vendor management to time constraints (not to mention SocialStream). I had to shelve it late last year after a ton of work and a couple grand in expenses with only a barebones prototype to show for it.
Does your pre-teen need both style and stopping power? Tired of all the other survivalist sporting the same AK-47 as you? Well the good folks at GlamGuns have a solution, the Hello Kitty AK-47. It fires 10 rounds per second and has an effective kill range of 300 yards. Making it the best looking assult rifle for the murderous rages of your pre-teen girls.
While exploring GooTube I came across this humorous blueprint of how a company can be its own worse enemy. companies erase innovation through . Taken as a metaphor for the innovation process, it highlights a bunch of steps that get in the way of a great product. Even more amazing is this video was made by the good folks in Redmond.
Innovation is the hard to achieve because ultimately it requires a leap of faith. An emotional connection to an idea or ideal that is so strong it transcends the available information and may in fact contradict it. Its this leap of faith that management cant make, especially when their 401k’s, titles, and careers are on the line.
Business management is a pseudo-science that attempts to establish and maintaining order by institutionalizing processes that allow for control. Innovation is a pseudo-religion that resists control and requires the same faith in its existence that all gods have, since humans started creating them.
Our friends across the pond have pulled together some stats about what makes a successful entrepreneur in the EU. The stats are culled from surveys that were conducted by the National Statistics Institutes of 15 countries in the EU. The goals of the survey was to identify some FOBS (factors of business success), which to them means your business survived for 3 years with the same founder/entrepreneur involved in the running the show.
So, what did they find? 1) You dont need experience in the area to be successful. 2) Most of the entrepreneurs found dealing with customers and the details of running their businesses to be the biggest headache, which is just kinda funny. The younger the entrepreneur the faster the business was likely to grow. While women found it easier to get paid for invoices then men, male entrepreneurs felt better about getting to profitability then the women. My favorite finding from the report is that the more degrees the entrepreneur had, the more likely they were to claim their business was “innovative”.
Its an interesting report check it out here.
Munjal Shah is a genius. Well to be more specific “Lisa and Laura” at his PR firm, are geniusi, geniuses. When was the last time you saw someone get front page promo in the WSJ and a profile on press release hit the wires (for an alpha application no less)? If you needed a sign that Bubble 2.0 was in full effect this might be a good one.
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One of the many astute observations made by the street philosopher and urban griot, Bonty Killa, in his seminal work on the moral decay urban centers, Caan Believe Mi Eye, was his observation that “everybody wan go heaven but no body wan dead.” This is a perfect metaphor for the corporate relationship to innovation. All companies want the heavenly rewards that result from successful innovation but few are willing to allow legacy systems, processes, hierarchies, thinking and models to die so that they can get there.