A couple of years ago I saw an HUD helmet for motorcyclists called Skully. Here. One of the videos has been taken down I guess. I thought this product was really promising. Or else I would have never blogged about it.
Sadly, it looks like the founders basically looted the company. And about 3000 people who pre-ordered will not get their helmets. At a price of 1500 bucks a pop, this is roughly 4 million dollars? Don't pre-order things people! This is the nice spin on the whole thing. Reddit seems to have a few threads that go more into detail on what happened. Bad management, and a Marissa Mayer style of running a company. Throw lavish parties. You get the idea.
To tell you the truth I don't remember a time ever that Silicon Valley put out as much complete shit for products as they have these last 10 years. You used to actually have a product to sell. Not a crowd funded product that doesn't exist at all. Everyday I wonder when crowd funding will die. But I guess people are still losing money lending other people money on Prosper. People just have a deep seated need to gamble I guess.
I am a little bitchy about this right now because I bought a lot of Nest products and I basically live in fear of them now. My smoke alarms try to go off randomly. Which is so frustrating because my family's house burned down and we lost my cousin in the fire. So I'm super twitchy about this whole thing. And just yesterday people were reporting that they couldn't get to the nest thermostat server. The whole country is in a heatwave. And I have a pet again - so keeping the house cool is super important to me. Not to mention they disabled the feature that made me buy them in the first place.
Also yesterday I was reading about the failure of Makerbot. The whole 3D printing sector is in a wipe out. Sometimes Silicon Valley just disappoints me. Crowd funding is definitely not helping. It's only enabling all of this bullshit. There is almost nothing to show for the past 10 years of effort.
Last night I was actually at a talk at a LIDAR company. I wont name them because while it was an open talk, I don't know how public the information is. They said they were going IPO. I've been watching them forever and wondering why they hadn't already. But it was so refreshing for a company that is many years old(not a startup), and actually has a product, go IPO. It's like the old days. Instead of stupid companies selling social media "likes". That whole sector is like a dumpster fire to me. Sure it can make money... but when the kids turn.....