by • September 7, 2011 • FoundersComments Off66

I met a real live visionary!

Yesterday, at seedcamp, I was privy to something extremely impressive.

While mentoring a founder of, it quickly became apparent that he was miles ahead of me as a founder in every regard.

That’s not the impressive bit though. Lots of people do that!

What blew me away was the way he presented his product in terms of serious vision rather than incremental improvement. He said (paraphrasing): “If telephony was invented today, it wouldn’t look like a phone network, and it wouldn’t look like skype.” He said it would borrow more from the web, and the ideas of pages and anonymity and instant-on-demand.

He pointed out, astutely, that (paraphrasing again): “Most of the time when you call someone, you end up on voicemail or with no answer. It makes more sense to send them a phone in a box and let them call you back sometime after it arrives and you know you both want to talk.”

He went on to talk about use cases which we all suffer through without thinking about, because we take the restrictions of telephony for granted.

And he points toward a useful exercise. What would your industry look like if it sprung fully formed from the skull of Zeus? Instead of thinking about the telephone, think about communication, and then think about how people would like to communicate 10 years from now. Does a repeatable process exist for being “visionary” and having vision? Who knows! Couldn’t hurt to try though.

It’s the first time I’ve seen a [semi-]public pitch and immediately thought “IPO”. Can’t wait to see how this one evolves.

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