Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Cleaning out my closet; reheating old visions

Taking advantage of the semi-annual quiet time, I've been cleaning out my flat and unearthed my business school application that I made almost exactly 7 years ago. That fact alone is pretty scary. It's always fun to look back and see what one writes on these things. Happily, we're not held accountable to these flowery missives, constructed to flatter and to please - after all, the forward looking statements about ones own future are anything but modest. Heck, this is an American school I was applying for, so darned if I wasn't going to big it up with the best of them.

Anyway, what has struck me as odd is the way that the vision that got me excited way back in 1999, is still pretty accurate as a description of my goals, and is actually getting closer. I bought the URL, and had the idea of an interactive visual / geographic search engine that would let you zoom around the world and then 'rightclick' on a person or place to discover more info, and that would [abracadabra] solve world peace. I wasn't very specific on just how it worked or led to world peace, but the remarkable thing to me is i) that I would still sign up to this vision if I could, and ii) we seem to be very close to reaching it.

Here's what I wrote, as an intro to the "career aspirations" section.

10:00am, Feb 23, 2010
Flying back from New York to London, I receive a call from my 6 year old daughter to my Geva (Global-Eye Virtual Assistant) who shows me her latest toy. Global-Eye, the company I started three years after graduating from Harvard has just reached a partnership agreement with AmericaOnTime - another information company. We have just launched Eye to Eye - a project that promotes understanding and economic development around the world. Citizens, handily equiped with a Geva handset, have unlimited access to data or people, using an interactive visual search engine linked to the virtual world.

I hope that sick bags were provided in the flight, cos it is rather slimey (and that's after I edited out the bit about coming top in my class. Yeuck.) And this shows that I'm clearly failing on the social and professional goals (no kids, no startup, no Big Deals) that I set for myself. But more interestingly, perhaps they're still the right ones. I do find it amusing that I've ended up working on how to innovate around Internet services on mobile devices, and of course creating my own startup, and having kids is still part of the Grand Plan. Up to this point I had absolutely no technology experience, had been working in trade policy for the previous 5 years, and Nokia meant nothing to me apart from a Japanese sounding phone company. I think I'll check back on this aspiration on a regular basis as the time comes for yearly evaluations of my own progress.


Anonymous said...

Robert Browning said it better than I could: "Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp. Or what's a heaven for?"

Stephen Johnston said...

nice. such insight and lyricism makes me suggest that that griffin is jim?

Anonymous said...

Of course! Hope yours was a Cool Yule and that you have a Funky First. The best is yet to come!

Anonymous said...

Yes, perhaps this display name will display more accurately! Cool Yule, Funky First, hoping these are yours ... Bulgaria? That's where you're passing the Eve, eh? Sounds great!