Bum-a-cigarette app idea: “Smoke Buddy”

It’ll have to be location-based, showing you smokers in your area. In your building, in your block, nearby. (Note the side-benefit here: you can find smoking buddies! Yay for social lubricant, at the expense of personal health.)

Smokers can set a price on the cigarette that they’re willing to sell. Say a pack costs $10, or 50 cents per cigarette. You could easily charge $1, $1.50, even $2 or $2.50 per cigarette. Cigarettes are price-inelastic. So smokers should want to use this app, because it means they’ll have their cigarette habit subsidized by desperate trying-to-quit-but-damnit-I-just-need-one smokers. Most of us have been there, we empathize. The desperate smokers will pay to be spared the indignity of buying a pack themselves, which is just a resignation to failure.

The smokers benefit, the please-just-one smokers benefit, the tobacco companies benefit. The app can take a small cut of the sale. I suppose public health suffers.

Business Ballet


I don’t really know anything about dance, but I know that I appreciate good dance when I see it. I also feel like dance is a lot about movement, about expressiveness, about communicating how you feel inside.

I find it interesting to juxtapose the idea of a ballet with the idea of a strict, rigid corporate life. I’m not sure what format it would take. Maybe it would be an actual ballet show, done by corporate folks. Maybe it would be a love story, played out as our hero or heroine breaks free from his or her corporate shackles into dance.

Either way, I feel like there’s something in this juxtaposition that would be very interesting to explore. To bring a little more soul and fun and joy to this stodgy corporate setting, and to challenge dance to be something other than baggy pants and the usual uniforms that dancers tend to wear.

Desi playing cards


This was a picture a friend took of a bride’s hands– the decorations made me immediately think of playing cards. I don’t have the time or energy to devote to this, but I’m pretty sure that there’s a market for very tastefully designed, high-quality playing cards with this sort of desi/henna theme. There are some competitors, I looked, but they’re all quite sloppy. You have to sell this one with a lot of class.

East Meets West Art Exhibition

Ideas include:

  • Superman as interpreted by various Asian cultures
  • Western weapons made out of Chinese porcelain (AK-47, range of guns)
  • Michelangelo’s David, but with acupuncture points all over him
  • Paintings and sculptures of Eastern figures in Western styles (eg. if Michelangelo sculpted Samurai)
  • Paintings and sculptures of Western figures in Eastern styles (eg. Chinese brush painting of New York)

Friend Meetup App

Over the past couple of years I’ve often tried to organize coffee and dinner with friends. What’s interesting is how low the success rate is, even when we’re talking about two friends who do really want to meet each other, but can’t quite schedule things properly. There’s a lot of inefficiency in this system.

1- Scheduling in advance feels good, but sticking to a scheduled date with a friend can feel like an obligation, rather than fun. This is annoying for both parties, even if you know that ultimately you’ll enjoy yourself. Especially if you also have work to do, etc. People don’t like feeling obligated (and we don’t like making other people feel obligated).

2- Spontaneous meetups are the most fun and exciting, but they’re also the hardest to initiate. It needs a double opt-in.

I imagine a superior solution (to messaging people one by one, putting them on a calendar, reminding each other of the meetup, feeling bad if you have to cancel) would be something like Tinder.

1: First, you signal that you’re “maybe free” tonight.

2: Everybody who’s “maybe free” gets to see everybody else in their friends list who’s “maybe free” tonight.

3: Chat with whoever is ALSO maybe-free. Once you make plans, toggle it off.

Basically the solution is– we should all have readily accessible information about who is free tonight for spontaneous dinner/kopi, before we bug them about it (because we don’t wanna bug people who aren’t free).

I think an MVP solution on FB’s end might be to have an option other than “green” for online. How about a blinking light for “talk to me” or “ask me out”? “Available” doesn’t tell us a lot about each other. What if we could have either “Present” and “TALK TO ME”?

TLDR: none of the messaging platforms seem to be optimized for setting people up for spontaneous IRL meetings and I think this is a waste; it should be easier to meet friends w/o all the tedium

Lighting Fires: Productivity app

Most productivity apps are basically checklists – they’re helping you fill buckets. What I really need is something to light a fire. Something with prompts to remind me what’s important to me, what I care about. To remind me why I’m working on what I’m working on.

Periods are Metal

I’ve always thought that there ought to be a black metal themed tampon/pad company. It wouldn’t have to take itself too seriously– maybe there’s an ad of a woman in an office at work and she finds out she’s having her period and then crazy screamo metal music plays. I’m sure there’s a market for it.

Women have been metal af for thousands of years. This usually frightened and intimidated men, who called them witches and burned them alive for it.

Elaboration of idea: Set it in a Game of Thrones type setting, an axe maiden just going around slaughtering villages.

‘Suicide Pact’ – a todo app

(Requires at least 2 people to play.)

1. Each person selects one task that needs doing.

2. When everyone’s accomplished their task, there’s a “group win” event – everyone gets points. Critically, you DON’T get points unless everyone does the task.

3. When everyone’s accomplished their task except you, you’re gonna feel the pressure, and people are probably going to harass you about it so they can trigger the group win rewards.

4. Leaderboards, so some people in the group are visibly ahead of others.

5. Save-a-friend: Allow some people to do extra tasks to save a friend from slipping on their task. This might have to be limited.

(This dynamic is present in military boot camps and in MMOs like World of Warcraft)

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