Frankly, one of the dirty little secrets about growing old is that it’s actually fun to piss, moan, crank, and curmudgeon about what the young folk are up to. As it happens, it’s also fun to watch them get to experience and enjoy it all, whatever “it all” is going to entail for them. It’s just that the latter fun is always couched with a bit of wistfulness, a bit of envy, while the former fun is just brim full of cane-shaking, eye-rolling, gleeful spleen.
Thus, I find myself cane-shaking and eye-rolling about a lot of the useless things – make that useless apps, as no one actually makes things, useless or otherwise anymore – that “the kids” are producing. When, IMHO, they should be focused on useful apps that will keep oldsters independent (and, thus, off their backs), improve the environment, make our consumer-crazed lifestyle more sustainable, and just make the world a better place (and not just a better place for rich folks).
So I was heartened to see the list of startups that will be taking part of the Mass Challenge accelerator program this summer.
Bravo to Grove Labs, which focuses on hydroponics and aquaponics. (Hey, I’ll be able to grow my own tomatoes in my greenhouse kitchen!)
And to the Disease Diagnostic Group, which makes a diagnostic device for malaria.
To H2OnlyBattery which has a rechargeable, water-activated battery, and Hexfuel the reduces emissions and increases MPG for diesel. These are among a raft of clean tech ideas.
Go, clean tech!
Worksafe Technology focuses on worksafe technology. (Don’t you love a company that says what it does?)
iDropDiasnostics: blood tests anywhere!Atlas5D is developing an “activity and fall detector for older adults that runs on Android.” On behalf of future trip, stumble, and falling geezers, I salute you. (Note to self: make next smartphone an Android.)
I’m not a cat person, but what’s not to love about Litter One’s odorless catbox system that lasts 4-6 weeks?
And Zootility Tools – “American made multi-tools that fit in your wallet” – Something useful! Something tangible!
DREAMLAND MEDIAS is “launching a collection of therapeutic and interactive films for dementia patients and caregivers.” As the Boomers age (and become more demented) this will surely make life better.
noonee’s making a portable chair that walks with you, something we’ll all need if we live long enough (like a couple more years).Oncolinx “chases the diseases that no one wants to catch by safely and effectively treating the most aggressive forms of cancer.” I have no idea what that means but, having lost two near-and-dears to cancer in the last three months, I like the sound of it.
Oh, some of the stuff doesn’t sound all that wonderful and useful. Is it just me, or does the world really need a throwable microphone? And AirPooler is going to make “flying private irresistibly affordable and easy.” Do we really need this?
Some of the things are, at least at the tagline level – which is where I am – just plain confounding. As in “Dimples: It’s like printing money.” O-kay…
AWR Ideas is going to take “contextual advertising outside the internet to the physical world.” No thanks.
But, on balance, very few were of the “Goolge Adwords for billboard advertising” – talk about no thanks - and help “women connect with guys another women has recommended” – talk yet again about no thanks – variety.
Mostly, the stuff on the list sounds well worth accelerating.
It makes me very happy that the young folks are focused on a lot of meaningful, important things.
Bless you, my dears.