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Product Idea

debator//debater

A machine to help us communicate… The last time I had free nights and weekends, 2011, our country was growing predictably chipper over the coming election election, so I spent some of that free time considering debaterdebator. The idea was simple: build a machine to help us communicate. I wondered whether personal relationships could be […]

Enable your customers

Here’s one of many articles describing the challenge of maintaining personal privacy amidst the spread of data brokers http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/nation-world/national/national-security/article166488597.html The core and often unacknowledged challenge here is the asymmetry, that people will generally modify their behavior (self-censor in some contexts) according to their surroundings and present purposes.  This ability falters when we do not know […]

LED Christmas Lights

For any given product, it is always interesting to see which aspects are improved and which languish.  Engadget’s recommendation of the best LED and incandescent Christmas lights highlighted this; the difference between the LED and incandescent strands is almost entirely restricted to the bulb (and associated electronic driver).   Looking carefully at the above picture, […]

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Pandora Bounties

I’ve used Pandora for many years and its selection is persistently limited in some genres of music I’d like to hear more of.  So given this, why can’t it offer bounties for creation of new music? In my experience, liking or disliking more than every fourth track quickly leads their algorithm to overfit and play […]

AmISheltered

Consider a Facebook/Netflix/etc. app that analyzes a user’s profile to determine how sheltered they may be relative to their peers.  This data would be presented to the user, accompanied by a breakout plan to get them up to their peer norm.  Offers from media providers (Netflix/Amazon/etc.) would encourage the user to ‘rectify’ the situation through […]