One Startup Per Child

I once had the grating and nervous fortune to have semi-wittingly witnessed an “app jam” where “disadvantaged urban youth” were given the chance to come up with an idea for an app. This of course would whisk them out of the ghettoes and council estates and propel them directly on to the cover of Wired. Riches, fame and glory were all soon to follow. This was during the salad days of when apps could make you rich.

I had a friend growing up. He dropped out at 15, smoked pot, drank, fought and hung out doing what we Clevelanders like to call “jack shit” for a couple of years. He then did a two year course in heating and cooling repair. He made more in his early-20s than I did with a masters in my thirties. While not having the cover stealing and status update domination like winning the lottery or being the 1 in 450,000 to actually make money from apps, it was damn reasonable and exceptionally respectable.

What the world needs is not necessarily not for people to make apps, but for people to do things reasonable and respectful. While one could say that me suggesting that anyone without a number of degrees under their belt should go into trades is disrespectful, I would say that its even more disrespectful to say that the Ponzi Scheme balloon of riches and glory or the loansharking masquerading as venture capital as the only way to get ahead in life if you’re “disadvantaged” is much worse.