Monday, May 2, 2016

Indigogo... Making the World More Beautiful One Nail at a Time

Preemadonna's Nail Art Robot, The Nailbot: Part 1 Crowdfunding

Here's a trio of videos that strike me so positively. As a career educator and lifelong observer of the human condition, so much of what I come across illustrates the bad shape our species is in and intimates a prognosis for more of the same or worse. Here, though, I've stumbled across something so innocent, but with such implications for hope; hope that healthy creativity will carry us down a better path. And I'm happy to say that it is the concerns and efforts of girls and young woman that are highlighted here. Surprising? I don't think so...

True, although it is ubiquitous, nail polish is not the most important enterprise we humans engage in. Heart Surgery, issues of law and governance, food production and the like are infinitely more important. At least from the view point of immediate impact on human prosperity and well being. Still, these videos make us witnesses to expressions of human life that merit our attention and appreciation. And it is in the serendipity of  finding laudable qualities in such a naive field of endeavor that makes our watching and paying attention to these all the more encouraging.

These videos are all about technology, innovation, communication, visual expression and above all entrepreneurship. One of the oldest and truest dictums of business is the eternal chestnut "Find a need and fill it!" and to that we can throw in "Build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a path to your door!" Sage wisdom from a bygone age, but that's what I see in these videos.

With the nailbot we see a couple of young women (early 20's) who are swimming with grace and competence is the churning sea of contemporary business start-ups. So clear is their vision, though, so strong the energy and enthusiasm that they muster and apply to winning at this that they had me at "Hello, Indiegogo!"

Indiegogo, by the way, is the brilliant web-based service that catapults entrepreneurship into the 21st Century allowing those with a great idea, a passion to apply it to changing the world, and in general the 'right stuff' to reach out to masses of total strangers inviting them to invest in their item or service... 'Crowd Funding!' Part of this is personal; investors want explanations of what they are to put their faith and money into and want to see who it is who's behind it. YouTube is the tool of choice 'gogo-ers' use to make their pitch and this video is one of those pitches. A damn good one. True, I'm a sucker for a pretty face, an articulate voice, a great story, and a winning idea, highly prejudiced in favor of them, in fact :)

Nailbot: Instant Nail Art 

In this video we see the same young woman further along in the process. Having developed the  product, the company are now releasing it, announcing it to the world at the Tech Crunch 2015 event. This one includes a demo and explanation and communicates the excitement of a live event.  (For more details see the online article from Tech Crunch: ) Want to buy the nailbot? As of this writing the only offer I could find is from the website of the company itself which was taking names for its waiting list. Pretty cool, I think!

Easy Nails Nail Spa | Tutorial | Kids Toy Review 

This final video is quite an eye opener. And small wonder that it's scored more than 9 million views in the half year it's been up on YouTube.  Has this kid thoroughly been inculcated into the slick, 'look at me' culture of the kind of commercial television epitomized by The Shopping Channel? And no, asking that question is not a stealthy way of expressing distaste for that truth. After all, children become aware of the world they find themselves maturing in and have to figure out what to do about being there. Seeing the world as a wave to catch and ride is as legitimate a response as any, I suppose. At least in part.


 At any rate, here we have a TV spokesman for a product (9 years old? 10?) whose done a bang-up job of introducing and demoing this product. This product, while bearing the aesthetics of a toy intended to be marketed to pre-teens, is actually a real working robot that is quite capable of doing a little girls nails. Our kids are growing up in a world that is already highly impacted by robots. Understanding robotics and its impact on a variety of dimensions of human life is a crucial and almost completely overlooked aspect of the education we are currently offering our kids. Whether you like the colors offered here, think that adding silver glitter to still wet polish is beautiful or not, I think that this is very much the sort of thing we need to be offering our kids as they figure out the world we are all inventing on the fly as we grow into it. Does your kid have a robot? Why not?

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