Tie And Jeans

#dcedu The Pitch

This was my pitch on Friday night, captured with the great PearNotes iPad app. The choppy sound quality is due to my incredibly jangled self, practically vibrating through the conference room flor after waiting in the pitch line.

#dcedu Pitch – Show Your Work

Let’s look at what’s wrong with this, from a startup perspective. First off, few people know what a QR code is and most of those view them with justifiable distaste. QR codes are floating through this idea becuase I found a good library for reading them out of images (the briefly mention Zebra Crossing – zxing), and I knew how to write a script that would pull the images attached to email. I have two layers of tech completely disguising the central purpose of the idea – move the organizational parts of gathering digital material to the FRONT of the capture process, instead of at back.

Although teachers know and hate the work involved with organizing this digital material, I doubt they want it enough to pay for it. Here’s the second critical flaw of my pitch as a startup – it’s solving *my* problems. I want better tools to hand to my teachers, who feel stuck pressured to spend long afternoon hours importing, tagging and uploading all manner of classroom ephermera. This is a deep 1% problem, teachers working in a resource rich space struggling to make good use of them inside the time crunch of the classroom day.

Another problem for the Startup Weekend experience, is that as I’ve phrased the problem, there’s no relatable experience outside the classroom. Do software developers ever need to grab quick videos of their peers at work? Do marketing folk? The closest real-world situations I could come up with is wanting to keep a tagged media archive of all your chess, Dominion or Street Fighter games. Let me assure you, that simile didn’t increase my pitch’s support among the attendees. Thankfully, classroom teachers grokked the problem, and enough of them lent their support to the pitch that it was voted up into the development round.


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  1. Pingback: St. Hacktrick’s Day | Tie And Jeans

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