I’m 23 years old. I live in San Francisco. I’ve previously lived in New York City, Philadelphia and Florence. I mean business, but I like to relax. I’ve accomplished minor success, but it wasn’t easy. Nothing worthwhile ever is. I’ve previously started two businesses of my own, and failed gracefully. Failure is always more constructive than success; it’s also less fun. I’m currently running my third venture, which I raised seed funding for. I also research and consult independently for people and companies I admire. I enjoy traveling, and have visited 15+ countries. I plan to visit the rest soon. The more you learn about other people, the more you learn about yourself. My ideal world is one where we define ourselves by our joyful craft, rather than our dreadful career. I believe good art is the best business. I have no idea what I want to do with my life.We'd been talking over e-mail when the subject turned to entrepreneurship, the conditions that affect the modern young entrepreneur and how that self-starting impulse fits into the broader world of human creation. At that point, the conversation became simply too interesting not to take public.
Alex Mann: The concept of entrepreneurship is often stuffed into a little box, limited to specific concentrations of business. A simple Google search for the term brings up what appears to be an overpriced MBA course on the subject. What I think is missing, and what I attempt to evangelize, is its applications outside "business as usual." For instance, breaking down how an artist or writer looks at risk, return and opportunity cost. Paul Graham articulates his business well. But the anomalies are less traditional business-types like David Byrne and Takashi Murakami, who view their art as investments.
As a journalist, how do you take and measure risk? Journalism is an evolving -- not dying -- industry. How have the changes affected your work output and risk appetite?
Colin Marshall: I should first admit that, if I call myself a journalist, I'll only be 25 to maybe 75 percent correct. My work breaks, roughly, into four "quadrants": broadcasting/interviewing, writing/essayism, film/video and sound/music. (Not that they're compartmentalized: essay films, sound-art broadcasts and written interviews like this one all happen at the borders.) Only the first two seem to me to be inherently journalistic pursuits, though the third, given my interest in documentary, isn't without journalistic qualities.
That said, I find I measure risk in my journalistic capacities in pretty much the same way that I measure risk in my other ones. That is to say, I overestimate it -- as almost every human being does -- and the overestimation hurts me. The real humor in this is that journalism, in the forms that interest me, is an un-risky sort of endeavor. (I've never been one of those Young Fourth Estate Types who dreams of clandestinely meeting Deep Throat to learn the dark state secrets that, by god, the American people deserve to know.) Journalism, as I practice it, is for me more of a tool to learn about subjects with which I'm less familiar, make connections with interesting (i.e., stuff-doing) people, raise my public profile for improved attraction of randomness and lay the groundwork for future projects.
I don't think I'd want journalism to be my "job," though, partially because I am uncomfortable with the idea of a "job" but also because, at least at the present moment, I'd have to deal with the thousands of old-guard hand-wringers deeply convinced that, contra your point, journalism is dying, not evolving. Then again, if the maintenance of my food-and-shelter supply chain relied entirely on the functioning of a no-longer-functional business model, I'd be bitching and moaning too. Business evolution is the death of one model and the rise of another, but the death-of-journalism types only care about the one leaving the building.
Not being a career journalist, I care mostly about the newer model(s). My expectations of journalism do not include a lifelong meal ticket, a retirement package or much directly measurable payout at all, really. My expectations of journalism do include a free hand to excel -- because whatever doesn't offer much of a paycheck must offer that freedom -- and the opportunity to accrue the aforementioned knowledge, profile, reach and stuff-doing friends. (Not to mention the fat speaking fees that truly sharp journalistic types like Charlie Rose command. But then, I enjoy public speaking too.)
I feel on a basic level as if I could approach all four of "quadrants" entrepreneurially. Perhaps it's not too far beyond the pale to call myself a talk show entrepreneur. But I'm not quite sure how to articulate what, exactly, constitutes the entrepreneurial approach itself. When you talk about entrepreneurship outside "business as usual," how far, to your mind, can it extend? What operating qualities do you find that David Byrne and Takashi Murakami share with any dozen successful Silicon Valley guys we could name?
Alex Mann: Entrepreneurship is an applied mindset acquired over time. To be an entrepreneur, it requires thinking and feeling like one, which takes practice. The perception of the term is convoluted due to what's taught in business school and the repetitive industry blogs flaunting it as their theme. While I admire the tech entrepreneurs profiled obsessively on the web, it's the artistic outliers I find truly fascinating.
The extension of entrepreneurship, or my interpretation of it, would probably be clear with a definition. At that, I'll funnel the wisdom of Paul Graham and say that entrepreneurship is "making something that people want." It's a liberal representation, but in all fairness, it should be. The "making something" aspect can be anything, including, but not limited to: interviews, essays, software, music, art, communities and ice cream. The "that people want" aspect is more defined, assuming economic tangibility and an understanding of supply and demand.
Crunching the phrase together would proclaim you're making stuff good enough that someone, somewhere in the world, will pay you more than it cost to make. Successful entrepreneurs leverage the relationship between the two halves of the phrase to their favor. This is why the guy that's actually scooping the ice cream isn't an entrepreneur, even though he's technically "making stuff people want." The guy who scouts the location of the shop, develops a unique formula, builds an efficient serving system and manages a skilled team to execute the entire operation, is an entrepreneur. He's made something out of nothing, or, he's made more out of less.
The reason a stereotypical entrepreneur is a technology entrepreneur is because the software business has relatively low barriers of entry. You can develop a piece of software at the cost of an engineer's time and server fees, both continuously dropping in price. The low financial cost of developing software adds leverage to the "making something out of nothing" relationship. The financial "something" can prove to be relatively large, simply because your inputs, mostly time, are comparatively slim. Successful tech entrepreneurs are noticeable, and thus stereotypical, because their return on investment is often quickly substantial.
The operational practices of David Byrne and Takashi Murakami are unique, and using my purposely scattered criteria, are arguably entrepreneurial figures:
David Byrne and the Talking Heads invented a fresh genre of sound by combining punk, world, electronic and rock. Similar to Byrne, Silicon Valley entrepreneurs develop software by choosing sporadic features from existing platforms and molding them into a unique creation. Looking at the progression of social networks, from Friendster to MySpace to Facebook to Twitter, the "pick what works and drop what doesn't" evolution is apparent. Also, the Talking Heads live shows weren't concerts; they were meticulously engineered performances (i.e. Stop Making Sense). Technologists, like Byrne, are concerned with product perception, including engineered design. Byrne understood the importance of design to marketing, and so do successful Valley entrepreneurs.
Takashi Murakami popularized a new wave of pop art, like nothing since Andy Warhol, and has a team of artists working under him to execute his grandiose vision. Like Murakami, an entrepreneur, specifically the Valley types, often have teams working behind the scenes allowing them to appear "bigger than they are." Technical ideas are rarely executed by just one person, as a surplus of development tasks can be outsourced and uncredited. Also, Murakami's work is a business platform beyond paintings, expanding to books, film, sculpture and even handbags. He's has created a global brand that sells itself in unexpected genres. Entrepreneurs hope for business development this effective.
The connection between art and entrepreneurship is based on the continuous experimentation involved with each activity. It's an instinct as much as it's a skill. An artist chooses from an unlimited variety of colors, strokes a brush on a canvas and patiently reworks and edits until a picture appears. An entrepreneur chooses from an unlimited variety of hypothesized ideas, tests a market, and diligently works a revenue model until a business appears. Murakami, Byrne or any Silicon Valley entrepreneur experiments often and has learned to fail quickly if they must.
What is your entrepreneurial process, from start to finish, for any one of your artistic compartments? What is your creative daily routine? My parallels to Byrne and Murakami are less traditional icons for someone in business. I've reviewed your list of icons. Who's practice is most "out" of your arena?
Colin Marshall: That's one of the finest definitions of entrepreneurship that I've read. It's certainly most appealing, especially those bits about "pick what works and drop what doesn't" evolution, about "continuous experimentation involved with each activity." That is a mindset that I've consciously attempted to apply to much of what I do or produce. I could stand to up the rate of mutation in my work, actually -- I suspect I fall victim to staleness of formula somewhat too often.
And yes, the Graham command "make something people want" deserves all the thought one wants to give it. I know I enjoy making stuff, but gauging what "people want" seems like an altogether tougher nut to crack. Then again, hasn't Graham also written about this? My mind returns to his essay "Copy What You Like", in which he advises the reader to look to their own genuine pleasures in order to find out what people want, because hey, they're a person too. Here he gets his point across by describing what happened when he didn't do this:
When I was in high school I spent a lot of time imitating bad writers. What we studied in English classes was mostly fiction, so I assumed that was the highest form of writing. Mistake number one. The stories that seemed to be most admired were ones in which people suffered in complicated ways. Anything funny or gripping was ipso facto suspect, unless it was old enough to be hard to understand, like Shakespeare or Chaucer. Mistake number two. The ideal medium seemed the short story, which I've since learned had quite a brief life, roughly coincident with the peak of magazine publishing. But since their size made them perfect for use in high school classes, we read a lot of them, which gave us the impression the short story was flourishing. Mistake number three. And because they were so short, nothing really had to happen; you could just show a randomly truncated slice of life, and that was considered advanced. Mistake number four. The result was that I wrote a lot of stories in which nothing happened except that someone was unhappy in a way that seemed deep.One problem, though: I do genuinely enjoy a lot of those short stories he seems to be talking about.
In any case, whatever one could call my "creative daily routine" turns out to be highly variable, since I have to wedge it in around "regular work," that is to say, the stuff that pays me cash bucks but is not broadcasting/interviewing, writing/essayism, film/video or sound/music. (I'm not sure how much sense it makes to organize life this way at my age, but bear with me.) But, to whip out my own horn and toot, I'm pretty good at that. Which is not to confuse skill at a practice with the practice itself being tenable, but still.
Pretty much everything I do has its basis in writing, since that's where the bulk of my thinking happens. In its involvement with concrete reality via manipulable symbols and responding readers, I find writing has an enormous advantage over pure thinking. I would submit that my creative routines are cyclical, and begin with absorbing some input from the world -- films, books, music, blog posts -- thought-digesting this input by writing about it here or elsewhere and then using what I write as a prompt for other types of action. I might write up a movie, write up an album, and then learn from the writing process that I should combine them into a video or something. To use a stupid-simple example.
If I could be said to have ever used an "entrepreneurial process," it would be in the development of my most fully-realized project, The Marketplace of Ideas. That phrase almost misrepresents it, though, since it's almost ludicrously un-nuanced:
- Flip on Charlie Rose, notice that I like interview shows
- Discover podcasts, notice that technology has arrived that a such a point that interview shows can be produced on the cheap
- Remember that I am licensed to broadcast on a local radio station
- Simultaneously assemble podcasting gear and FM program proposal
- Send out "feeler" e-mails to potential guests
- Record, distribute interviews
I recall once reading an interview with The Sound of Young America host/producer Jesse Thorn wherein he admitted that, when he thinks about delivering what the market wants, he looks at the market and a voice within him says, "Eww, the market wants that?" I think I harbor a little bit of that voice myself. Jesse uses a donation model, which has made him a success but with which I would be for some reason uncomfortable. I think quite a bit about the revenue model of my life as a whole, and in that context no given individual project necessarily needs one of its own.
I'll interpret your question about which of my icons is, in what I know of their own creative/entrepreneurial processes, most different from me. The obvious answer, to work his name into this response as many times as humanly possible, is Paul Graham. As a past internet tech startup founder and current internet tech startup funder, he would seem to reside in a different universe than me. Yet in his essays, he thinks brilliant and clearly about many of the same issues I do -- and sometimes he seems to be the only other guy who does.
John Brockman's working style also appears to bear little similarity to my own. As an organizer and literary agent, he remains behind the scenes much more than I do (or would want to), and as someone who works primarily with science and engineering types, he's also quite distinct from my own subject areas. But on a fundamental level, he's in the basic business of communicating with other humans, which I suppose is also my thang (and the thang of everyone in the icon rectangle, I'd argue).
I'm now going to take this entrepreneurship angle in an even more personal direction. What provided your own entrée into entrepreneurship? Friends? Family? Mentors? School? Surroundings? You just decided to get into it out of the blue? What was your journey from guy-with-an-inkling-that-being-an-entrep
Alex Mann: My entrée into the land of entrepreneurship, or whatever you'd like to call it, breaks down into a relatively easy answer and a personally difficult, somewhat self-indulgent answer. The easy answer is a bit of the Gladwellian Outlier equation, where a mix of luck, timing and cultural advantage guided me into it. The difficult answer is admittedly a combination of my stubbornness to bureaucracy, the urge to be creative and the audacity to do things on my own terms. Both factors have become reliant and dependent on each other, while each of the inputs you named have played a role as well:
Family: Family was influential, even though it was through hindsight that I was able to recognize it. I was brought up in a household that encouraged me to earn the things I wanted, resulting in me working from a fairly young age. I remember feeling slightly rebellious attempting to pave my own way (to the extent that I could) as an adolescent, rather than relying on an allowance. It sounds silly now, but it built a foundation for projects to come. Also, my father runs a business and he's an artist, so my appeal to that combination of capitalistic design makes sense as well.
Mentors: I've been grateful enough to seek out a select handful of mentors that are both doing what I want to be doing and doing it in a way that's personally appealing. Even when I find myself damagingly particular, it's soothing to know those I look up to have made their radical aspirations a reality. The path I'm on has been shaped by mentors, although it hasn't necessarily been determined by them. They mostly act as reinforcement.
School: Contrary to my feelings on the university system in regards to academic applicability, I'll take a chance of sounding hypocritical my admitting my school, not my schooling, was influential on my entrepreneurial endeavors. In addition to studying finance, an aspect of my degree was deemed "engineering entrepreneurship," allowing me to pursue my own projects and courses while getting graded on them respectively. Fortunately, the professors I worked with were not just academics; they were "been-there, done-that" entrepreneurs. The degree flexibility allowed me the time to focus on what I wanted, instead of what the university wanted.
Surroundings: As I mentioned before, I come from a family of artists, so that part of the equation was natural, especially in my fondness for people like David Byrne and Takashi Murakami. I also grew up constantly listening to music, especially hip-hop (I grew up in the suburbs, who didn't?). The hip-hop artists I listened to had a unique way of gaming the system, or at least pretending to. Either way, from a young age, I identified the existence of the hustler's advantage. Meaning, I recognized a way to win a system not by conning or trickery, but by using your mind.
The path of entrepreneurship didn't pop out of the blue. It was a long equation of factors, some described above. I remember one of my first businesses, perhaps marking the start of the journey, was when I was 11 or 12 years old and CD burners were released into the market. I recall scanning computer store pamphlets in the mail identifying where I could purchase the cheapest device, reviewing listings for blank discs and finally raping my 56K modem limitations as I downloaded every Billboard Hot 100 song on Napster. I then sold discs for $5 to $10 a piece. The lower range was for copies of complete albums I owned and the higher range was for customized mixes. I always charged girls less. Since then, I've become less sympathetic to gender, while more sympathetic to the viability of the music industry.
I've experimented with other projects, including failed startups and even working on a trading desk at an investment bank on Wall Street. Like any skill, making money takes practice, especially if you want to enjoy what you're doing. Occasionally, this may mean leaving a piece of your dignity at the door. Like you said, artists often begrudge the economic process by saying "eww, the market wants that?" But, when you look at the guys who have won, they've all partially "gave in" at some point or another to get where they are now.
My journey was a combination of me doing what I wanted, people telling me I couldn't, trying something else, not liking it, and again doing what I wanted with the maturity and empathy to make it work. I assume I'll go through this cycle a few more times as well. Ultimately, I have realized I enjoy working on startup businesses. It's not because startups are entrepreneurial; it's because they are vehicles for entrepreneurial people.
Colin Marshall: And thus, as we continue down the "entrepreneurial people" subject, we arrive at one the ideas that prompted this whole conversation in the first place: Entrepreneur's Disease. What, third parties reading this might ask, could this awful-sounding malady be? Simply put, Entrepreneur's Disease is how I've bannered an affliction of which I was once vaguely aware, but which I've come up against several times in my efforts to interview entrepreneurs on The Marketplace of Ideas.
Any reader of mine knows that I find entrepreneurs to be some of the most interesting people around. Hell, any reader of this post alone could have figured that out. As an interviewer, I'm thus extremely interested in interviewing entrepreneurs. One of my very first guests on the program, a certain young entrepreneur named Ben Casnocha, turned out to be interesting enough to give me hope for much future entrepreneur-interviewing. Authors? Artists? Broadcasters? Musicians? Scientists? Sure, all solid guest material, I thought, but give me more of these entrepreneurs!
But alas, the dream remains unrealized. I've since found that many entrepreneurs -- if not most of them -- aren't exactly chomping at the bit to be interviewed, and the ones who submit to my questions tend to be either unwilling or unable to answer them with much richness, detail, clarity or connection to other elements of the human condition. When I try to scout out entrepreneurs to talk to, I usually find they can't say much about anything besides their current project's core mission. If that.
I remain at a loss as to why this Entrepreneur's Disease seems to have afflicted so many, to such a degree. When I brought it up with you in an e-mail exchange, you sounded as if you recognized it. So what's your take on the Disease? Is it a real thing, or am I making it up? Is it as bad as it sounds, or do I exaggerate? Can we hope for a cure?
Alex Mann: The entrepreneurial path, shrouded in startups, is life entangling. It's an obsessive journey, especially in the early stages of a company, entrapping the chosen traveler like a giant vampire squid in the hopeful progress of their venture's success. It's truly a selfish establishment where the entrepreneur and respective organization take precedent over most other things in life. It requires ego, aggression, an appetite for risk and probably a few loose screws.
Given the listed symptoms, your coined Entrepreneur's Disease is less a hyperbole and more an actual condition. I mean, what type of nut would choose to put themselves through that? I've never met an entrepreneur who would not be deemed a bit "crazy" if they were let loose in the "business as usual" setting. To use a personal example, a few years ago when I was heavily involved with finance, I wasn't hired for a hedge fund job because they thought I'd "try to takeover the company." And, it wasn't a positive thing. Crazy or not, you really have to love the entrepreneurial process to remain determined on its path. The deck is not slanted in your favor.
The Disease is a real thing, but probably more explicit for the outside observer than it is for even the most self-aware entrepreneur. Articulation of the craft in respect to the human condition is not an easy task. To echo reasons you've already mentioned: it's hard for an entrepreneur to look past their own project and mission. It's a tunnel vision where anything besides the venture is blindly distracting. It's a cruise control of the mind. Careful articulation of "what do you do?" is not in line with how an in-the-moment entrepreneur thinks. This is why one entrepreneur explaining to another entrepreneur "what they do" is painless. They can fill in between the lines, while other people can't.
The rationality for the self-acceptance of the Disease, of course, is the home run. The "fuck you money." The golden relief of success. The result of stuffing an entire career's worth of accumulated wealth into a pot at the end of a startup's life of three to four yours, or in the case of certain companies, one to two years. The method entrepreneurs use to articulate their process, in terms of vision and mission, isn't a crutch; it's their way of viewing their world at any given time. It's not that they don't care about anything else; it's just that caring about anything else takes their eyes off the prize.
Articulation is a hurdle because the entrepreneurial process, again using the example of a startup, is completely ambiguous. Picture a 360 degree circle of arrows pointing outwards, each one beginning with the input of the entrepreneur at the center and ending in a different output at the edge. With each output, the process begins again with an unlimited amount of potential inputs and respective results, each one affecting money available, time-to-live and morale. Knowing the "right" path to take is impossible without the ability to compile the relevant information. This is why an entrepreneur builds a startup with a balanced team, advisory board and investors. It's so they can make the best decisions possible with the most information, improving the odds at any given time.
With that being said, how could a single entrepreneur accurately articulate what they do? The best, most sensible answer would result from an interview with everyone influential in a given entrepreneurial organization.
If I can take a step back, or maybe I already did by attempting to explain the Disease, I'd like to admit, with the chance of contradicting myself, that the majority of the Disease is in the head of the entrepreneur. The work of the entrepreneur--the actual operational work--could be completed during normal work hours and not during the daily twenty-hour time period classically described. As we discussed before, a large aspect of the process is experimentation. With experimentation comes questioning, panicking and even some dreaded freaking out. Most entrepreneurs work the same way they articulate, which is a bit all over the place. So, your exaggeration accurately reflects the Disease, because an exaggerated reality is exactly what the mentality is.
Is it curable? No, I believe it's embedded into the entrepreneurial culture. But can it be alleviated? Sure. Entrepreneurs -- take a deep breath and chill the fuck out. The entrepreneurial paranoid disillusionment has no merit on the success of a venture; it just makes the narrative more dramatic, exciting and egotistic.
What role have you observed ego playing across the fields of art, science and business? Does the inability to explain "what one does" make an interview guest more or less interesting? Do you recall a pattern of successful guests attributing a portion of luck to their personal success? Thirty years from now, what do you envision your body of work to look like?
Colin Marshall: I suspected that Entrepreneur's Disease might be not just a correlated affliction, but a condition springing out of the very nature of the entrepreneur itself. I've heard over and over again that "startups will consume your life. No, really, they'll totally consume your life, and you can't even envision the extent of the utter completeness with which every non-startup aspect of your existence will be decimated and the earth beneath it salted." Sounds like the victims of Entrepreneur's Disease have not just heard that but embraced it, internalized it and loved it.
As unappealing as the life of someone in the heady midst of Entrepreneur's Disease might superficially sound to me -- and probably sounds to many readers -- I must admit my unquashable attractions to (a) bold, audacious moves, (b) complete self-determination, whether it leads to success or failure, (c) endeavors the odds are against and (d) the amassing of fuck-you money. Especially (d). So I probably front like I understand entrepreneurship less than I actually do.
And even though I haven't done much classically-defined entrepreneurial stuff -- yet -- I can tell that your urging fellow entrepreneurs to "take a deep breath and chill the fuck out" is well-advised indeed. Taking a deep breath and chilling the fuck out represents, in fact, a cornerstone of my own approach to life, so I've learned its advantages firsthand. Of course, to take a deep breath and chill the fuck out requires one to rein in the old ego a bit, since a roiling internal demand for self-aggrandizement does not mix well with chilledness.
But some amount of ego is necessary, I would submit, or at least extremely helpful, whether the arena is art, science or business. Though he's perhaps not the most sterling example, I remember once hearing Donald Trump ask, in response to a confrontational Larry King Live caller question about his big ego, "What successful person doesn't have a big ego?" I don't feel that anyone I would consider "successful" lacks an ego, but maybe that's because they all have -- or, more realistically, need -- a high public profile.
I do fear that working to satiate one's own ego, while it could result in some impressive feats, risks turning into the short road to madness. Trump had a solution to that, too: in the same interview, he revealed that, no matter how big a deal he's doing, he constantly reminds himself that "it doesn't matter." He said that, in a world where an earthquake in India, say, might kill thousands of people in a day, it makes no sense to freak about the business gamesmanship you're engaged in, even if it goes south. So there you go: a couple unexpectedly wise lessons from The Donald. Just avoid adopting his tonsorial weltanschauung and you're set.
I've run into surprisingly few totally egotistical interview guests, which surprises me now that I think about it since they tend to be so accomplished, and can usually articulate their motivations intelligently. If I gave them more of an opportunity to chalk those accomplishments up to luck, I could probably separate the humble from the, uh, less humble. But I've never liked the concept of luck, not because I don't believe it exists at all but because I find it so sloppily thought about. Many seem to consider it a purely random absolute determinant of success, but the sharpest people I talk to appear to treat luck more like something they can use rather than something that has its foul way with them. Brian Eno, whom I'd give my left buttock to interview, said it best. I've quoted it before, and I'll quote it again: "Luck is being ready."
Thirty years on, I'll ideally have created as many interesting things as possible in the aforementioned realms of text, film, broadcasting and sound (and, if possible, domains yet unenvisioned). My mandate increasingly consists only of creating interesting things, since creating interesting things leads to making connections with interesting people. That leads to collaborations with said interesting people, one of which I work on as I type right now. That leads to the making of even more interesting things, which leads to even more connections with even more interesting people, all of which makes my life, and those of my collaborators and the fans of the stuff we make, more interesting.
As you can surely tell, what can be created in this manner involves many unpredictable variabled and thus rapidly becomes difficult to envision. Theoretically, I should be able to measure my accomplishment not just by what out there in concrete reality owes its existence to my hand, but by how connected I am to others who make stuff.
Let me turn this around on you. Give me -- give us all -- the bigger picture, as you envision it, for the long-term enterprise that is Alex J. Mann. Let's say you've managed to accrue all the fuck-you money you'd ever need, and you can ignore existing markets with impunity, if you so desire. What sort of project do you start up? I don't need any specifics, and besides, any specific would be incorrect. Freed from any restrictions to which you might currently be subject, what do you start working on?
Alex Mann: In an ideal world, The Project will defy a fine line of craftsmanship between what's traditionally viewed as work and play. The thoughts I'll carry with me out of bed in the morning will remain fluid until I crash restfully at night, all pulsing to the beat of The Project. The Project will remain dynamic to global markets, solving a problem deemed by most as unsolvable. The pride of The Project will be contagious, igniting entrepreneurs to start building and luring corporate drones to quit their jobs to join them. The Project will disperse political laughing gas, surprising the liberals and scaring the shit out of the conservatives. The Project will be remarkably simple, in both design and structure. And regardless of the size of my bank account, I'll strive to make The Project immensely profitable, because profit is the way the invisible hand of the market signals capitalism is working as intended.
To be honest, I have no idea what The Project will be.
You see, my problem is always having too much. To put my finger on what The Project will be still feels, like you said, entrepreneurially incorrect. However, I can briefly chronicle three, admittedly broad, problematic theses that bug me enough to work on:
the social media marketplace by developing an intelligence platform
that helps organizations improve and accurately measure their decision
- Accounting for individualized learning styles at the crossroads of education and technology, specifically at the university environment;
- Compensating artists across all aspects of media, including journalism, music, film and art, with revenue streams -- not marketing streams -- fueled by their content.