Monday, July 7, 2014

A Step In The Right Direction

I read this article earlier today and started thinking about the best ways to allow people to send money to family and friends (outside of the US) without having to worry about the regulators trying to shut the service provider down for unknowingly supporting terrorist activity. It's a bit ironic that I found this article, because I just watched Inside Job (a documentary about the 2008 financial collapse) last night. It was a bit creepy seeing the same banks that caused the 2008 financial collapse trying to convince everyone that the tens of billions of dollars in annual transactions (that send US$ to other countries) are great for the American economy. 

We need to build a website/app + debit card. People could deposit their cash by mailing it in a provided envelope or taking a photo of their check using the app. We could allow people to easily monitor their account, charge 4% for every transaction or $40 a month, and give account holders the option of ordering extra cards for $14 a card. No longer are people secretly transferring money to terrorists and drug lords. We would be allowing people to place money in accounts and share access with their family and friends. If it is thought that people are doing bad things with their money.. Regulators could easily verify, monitor, or even cancel accounts. 

This would be cool as a business, but it would be even cooler if a congressman/ congresswoman/ senator stood up and presented this as a solution to our current scenario. There's obviously a lot missing from this to make it a perfect plan, but it's more of a solution than anyone in D.C. has provided. There would need to be security on every end (photos, addresses, phone numbers, et cetera). The debit cards would each need unique codes attached to them to make monitoring specific cards much more simple. This would quickly separate the bad people from the good people, because there wouldn't be a need to monitor accounts with several people attached to them. 

This isn't a complete solution, but it would be a step in the right direction. 

Saturday, June 21, 2014


What if everyone could easily help everyone? Crowd-funding? More like crowd-feeding. A business that makes its money off of sponsorships and transactions by helping those in need would be a pretty awesome business. It would be like getting paid to put smiles on faces. There's something magical about strangers helping strangers. 

Those in need could have profiles that they make or are made for them. Their profiles would be simple. A short video, their condition, their story, their location, their dream, their skills, their passion, and your ROI. 

A Social Platform

I kind of wish there was a photo/video sharing social platform that isn't like all the others. Think Instagram + Snapchat. Now add in having everyone else as your personal photographer/videographer. This would put the 'social' back in social media and completely flip current forms of social media on its head.

People (friends/family/followers) would take a photo or a short video clip of you or something that applies to you and then send it to you. You would then view it and have about 10 seconds to decide if you want to post it or decline it and have it be gone forever. (This is possible, because everything is done through the app.)

Your profile would consist of content that other people captured and 100% of it would be approved by you. The benefit is always having your own personal photographers. It's the future of selfies. Or whatever a non-selfie is. Photographs.

Add in location (geo-tagging and GPS). Geo-tagging isn't huge, but verified users could have a ping go out every 45 minutes (or whenever they want it to) that lets their followers know they were "within 3 miles of Hollywood." It would just tell people they're within a certain distance from the largest local city.

You would have people feeling more connected with the people they follow. All of the content on everyone's profiles would feature the username of the person who captured it, so it pushes more people to try to get shots as well as the best shots.

I think stamps/badges/whatever you want to call them would be a cool feature too. There could be one for having a verified user use your content on their profile, one for using the app at the Super Bowl, and others for all kinds of cool stuff.

People could have public and private accounts. Public accounts would allow anyone to see your content and private accounts would be for people who only want their friends/family to see their content. These settings wouldn't have to apply to who can send a person a photo/video, but likely would.

Shares and reTweets are cool, but I prefer colors. Content could be separated with patterned colorful borders. Content that you share could have a thin light blue line around it that features tiny dark blue dots. Reposted content (other people’s content) could have a thin light red line around it with tiny dark red zigzags. Content that you want to highlight or stand out on your profile could have a thin yellow line around it with tiny orange swirls.

If I wasn't so bad with languages.. I would have started working on this thing a long time ago. I'm not sure it's valuable (as far as money goes). I think it would be a cool addition to the Twitter umbrella, but it's probably pretty weak by itself. Ev Williams once told me that this is "of questionable value (by that, I mean, it might or might not be)" and I think he's correct. 

North American Bird Calls

Someone needs to interview the guy who sits in the library making weird noises whilst wearing headphones. The funny part is that he's listening to Rosetta Stone's "North American Bird Calls" lesson.

It would be fun to teach a parrot how to sound like different birds. Maybe thats what he's doing. That would really freak people out. "That's not a robin you hear. That's a parrot in your front yard."

Friday, June 20, 2014


The world needs a mobile application that applies face-scanning technology to objects and allows everyone (with a mobile device) to take a photo of something and immediately know everything about the object as well as where they can possibly purchase one. If you see something that you want as a gift, all you should have to do is take a photo of it and send it to your friend or family member. People should be able to see the object along with a brief description and a link to where they can purchase it (Amazon) or learn more about it (Wikipedia). There could also be a social network comprised of the smart-photos of things people want/like. A photo is worth 1,000 words and soon you'll [hopefully] be able to read them. Google has a photo search feature, but they don't take advantage of its potential. This would be fun and useful. Who knows? It could save lives.