The personal website of Edward Yu.

Startup Ideas

As they say, startup ideas are worthless. I’ve decided to release my list of ideas that I’ve been keeping.

Idea: Deep learning applied to summarizing audio
Notes: Record lectures with a smartphone, get notes emailed to you.

Idea: Quantum consulting service
Notes: Wouldn’t your business in 20 years need experts to implement quantum algorithms to optimize your work?

Idea: Internal StackOverflow for companies
Notes: Companies have proprietary information and languages. This can be how programmers get help internally.

Idea: App that visually represents the most important people in your life
Notes: Bubbles for each person grow and shrink based on how often you communicate with them. If you see people becoming smaller, maybe that’s a hint to contact them more often.

Idea: Take picture of item and get it shipped to your house
Notes: Frictionless shopping.

Idea: Professional social networks based on endorsements. Only experts in a field can endorse others as experts.
Notes: LinkedIn endorsements don’t mean much. Seed the userbase with hand chosen experts in fields, and only they can vet others as experts in that particular field.

Idea: Programming problems with ELO ratings, users also have ELO ratings
Notes: Problems can adjust to your skill level.

Idea: AI personal assistant that can order food, book flights, etc.
Notes: I came up with this before Facebook M was a thing.

Idea: Random ticket purchasing service that gives you random event at a discount.
Notes: Vendors need to sell seats at events, and you are not picky about what you want to do this weekend.

Idea: Deter shopaholics by making them wait a day before purchasing anything.
Notes: A Chrome extension might work.

Idea: Reddit like site but you have to read the article before you can comment
Notes: Perhaps with an AI generated quiz. This should allow for better discussion of articles.

Idea: Turnitin.com for code
Notes: Catch those cheaters!

Idea: Backwards Kickstarter - crowdfund ideas and pay whoever builds it.
Notes: I think I’ve seen this around somewhere, but I’m not sure where.

Idea: Website that lets people create MOOC degrees and course schedules
Notes: MOOCs are great, but they have no continuity. This site should let people track their progress towards a virtual degree.

Idea: Unified messenger: Facebook, Text, Email, etc.
Notes: Impossible without demanding people’s passwords.

Idea: Service that redirects a link to the URL, or if the URL dies, the archived version of the URL.
Notes: It’s like goo.gl meets archive.org.

Idea: News service that emails you when a story is resolved
Notes: Read once and forget is how I (and many Americans) approach news.

Idea: Personalized Reddit based on what you upvote
Notes: Perhaps as a newsfeed?

Idea: Crowdfunding lobbyists
Notes: A platform for people to donate money to issues they care about. This money is then used to fund lobbyists in Washington, because funding lobbyists has returns of 22000%.

Idea: Free mail delivery service, sponsored by ads.
Notes: Send and receive letters for free.

Idea: Use bitcoin to mail people letters.
Notes: Upload document, pay with bitcoin, send snail mail anonymously.

Idea: Bookmarks for Quora answers
Notes: Why don’t they have this???

Idea: Sign up for $1 / day and get random ebay stuff shipped to you
Notes: See http://xkcd.com/576/. I’ve implemented this at rrandomize.com!

Idea: Stock market analysis via Twitter sentiment
Notes: There are a lot of companies in this space.

Idea: Internet radio that plays the top song, sorted by votes
Notes: Perhaps people at the same event can vote on what songs to play next.

Idea: Trade an email address for a file download
Notes: Person that uploads content can build a subscriber list.

Idea: A send feedback service similar to Google+’s
Notes: One button to send feedback, with ability to highlight issues on a screenshot of the page you’re seeing.

Idea: Get directions via text message.
Notes: Implemented by Yahoo.