Here’s what I’d invest in:
Digital Publishing - New platforms that offer immersive media experiences for literary fiction lovers
The literary fiction part is due to my own personal interests (and my fear of the death of imaginative work in a dumbed down world) – but this model could be applied to all fiction and non-fiction. The innovation and technology put into gaming could be applied to merging documentary, non-fiction writing, photojournalism as well as literature, independent cinema, the best in illustration, cinematography, music composition to create rich multi-lateral access to imagination, knowledge and story. Hell it could work for low culture too, that’s the low hanging fruit after all.
I read on Fast Company that this already exists as The Fancy so I signed up – but Pinterest still gets my vote because it builds context with such fluidity as a visualization board for all kinds of planning and creativity. By placing objects or experiences that would lead to acquisition next to the the stuff of life that thankfully does not – plants, a cityscape, a curled up cat – buying becomes more of an act of careful consideration than blind consumption. Organic self-directed retail. Facilitated by a platform that takes the whole spectrum of your life and imagination into account.
Farm-to-Table Fast Food
A farm fresh menu with crops chosen by ease and season. The company would work in cooperation with various local producers. It would mimic the fast food experience in some useful and familiar ways but act as a teaching tool for change in the food system. Done right, it could be replicated anywhere (along the sidelines of the football field? On a corporate campus or at a university? In lower income or subsidized housing estates?) I haven’t worked out the kinks, but I’d invest in this. Jamie? Where are you?
Open Education and Other New Education Business Models
Browsing articles on the rise of homeschooling, statistics in online learning, and the movement against traditional degree programs, nothing on the horizon is due for such a complete overhaul as education. I’m appalled by the idea of the 40,000 dollar Manhattan preschool. (Nobody wins.) Nonetheless, I think progressive dynamic and creative education is invaluable. I look back to my fondness for Montessori and Bennington (no grades) and the New School (essays instead of tests) and know this approach, and ones that incorporate working in a natural environment, is applicable to the future. I’d love to sign on to a new model of education which balances real world social interaction and problem solving with democratic access to the best possible learning tools from top educators.
Skip the middleman. Think. Plan. Make. Sell. I love the 3D printer and I can’t wait until prototypes can be passed onto small factories that can afford to make small batches putting the designer / maker / entrepreneur in the drivers seat. A mini version of this idea exists in Spoonflower.
Data-Mining For Good: Customer Service 3.0
Ignoring the spook factor of privacy concerns, I’d defer to someone else on that one – if you could know enough about your customer to serve them as well as they expect to be served, remembered, listened to, customized for, well I find that very exciting. Innovations in customer experience that really put the customer first could extend to healthcare and safety, travel, home buying, and finance. It could be a good thing put in the right hands. -Chauncey Zalkin
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