Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Stupidest Idea Ever

So ... 6 1/2 years after the internet bubble, that's a mighty claim. And, I've poo-pooed some successful ideas before; for example, I didn't think any of ICQ's competitors would get anywhere, but their lock-in ideas more or less succeeded. But, Ben Way, who made his name developing a search technology called Waysearch, which later became a business-to-business product called Pulsar [and] went bust during the dot.com crash, has bilked his presumed elderly lovers* out of enough money to start another company.

The core technology -- and I think I need a derisive portmanteau word like 'spinovation' -- is POIP, post over the internet. Now, I know I've just separated you into two camps -- those who thought 'Isn't that the same as email?' and those who thought "Isn't that the same as digital faxing?" And I'll let you fight out amongst yourselves who has better points. But, the point is that it -- the practice of having local printers print out your documents and mail them on -- is an idea whose time will never come, because it's stupid.

I'm stuck reading British newspapers when I go out, and I saw a laud to Viapost (as well as a column by disgraced American journalist Judith Miller) in today's Daily Telegraph. So, maybe we don't have the most credulous media establishment in the world. Do you see how broadening travel is?

* -- hey, I've seen The Producers

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