While most of us remember Neil Armstrong, the first man on the Moon, not a lot of people remember the second man. As a society made up of people who worship winners, be it with inventions or discoveries, we always celebrate the people who come in first. Despite remembering the first man who invented the telephone, or the man who discovered electricity, we seem to conveniently forget the people who failed with their products. To make your weekend entertainingly educative, we give you a list of inventions which failed to take off the right way!
1. Radioactive health products
Back in the day, when Radium was first discovered, the side effects weren’t as widely known as they are today. This particular element was considered to be a magic drug, a miracle of sorts. From healthcare products to medicines, everything was made better with Radium. In fact, drug companies went so far as to say that Radium would increase even your libido! People first started questioning this “Super Medicine” when a man used the Thor Radium powder to increase his sexual prowess. He ended up drinking not one, not two, but 1,400 bottles of the stuff. What was the drastic side effect, you ask? His jaw falling off! This was when people realised the radioactive stuff was actually more dangerous than positive for you! Oops.
2. Portable record players
Back when radio players were the deal of the century, a lot of companies tried making them portable. Which means they tried producing record players which could be used on the go. If you have ever used a record player, then you have probably already guessed the problem! Record players are fragile. You have to make sure they are kept at a steady level and not in a position where they can be knocked over. Despite record players being on a rise again, this invention is probably never going to see the light of the day. Boo.
3. Scent enhanced movies
Hans Laube, the inventor of Smell O Vision, wanted to create a new method which let theatre goers experience interesting smells while watching a movie. When it was launched in the New York, Chicago and Los Angles cinema halls in the year 1960, Laube thought this method would be used worldwide. However, it wasn’t meant to be. The scent was accompanied by a strange and ominous hissing sound as well. Furthermore, a lot of people complained saying the movie sounds and the smells were completely out of sync. Along with a similar innovation called AromaRama, Smell O Vision was swiftly abandoned and consigned to the scrap heap of history.
4. Car boats/boat cars
Boat cars, where first invented back in the 1770’s and where widely used during the Second World War. However, soon after the war ended, they were set aside for recreation. The car boats are now primarily used for water sports and as collector’s items!
5. Palm pilots
Palm pilots were the first gadgets which actually fitted in the palm of our hands. When they initially came out, they sold a million pieces in the formative year. Therefore, one would think to call this particular invention a failure, would not be fair. However, when Microsoft rescued Apple with a $ 150 million investment, the iPods and iPhones of the world took over, making the palm pilots obsolete!
With every great invention being recognised and revisited, we thought it was only fair the not so greats were remembered with respect as well! if you happen to remember who the second man on the Moon was, or who the first or second Indian cosmonaut was, then comment and let us know!
When Kickstarter Was Kickstarted!
The summer of 2009 was quite remarkable for Perry Chen, Yancey Stricker and Charles Adler. It was that time of the year when their dream website Kickstarter was launched! Kickstarter is a New York based public benefit corporation known for building a global crowdfunding platform. The company brings creative projects to reality and is the go to platform for many entrepreneurs! There ain’t no middlemen, no loans and no grants. Sounds cool, right?
The inception of Kickstarter!
Back in 2005, the mastermind Perry met Yancey Strickler and they became good friends. In a friendly conversation, the duo started scribbling on a whiteboard their exceptional thoughts with regard to a crowdfunding platform! Later, Perry convinced his friends to give him a little bit of money. Months later, Perry was introduced to Charles Adler and so the rest you know! The three of the great minds started working on their ideas and turned it into a website.
After years of research, they finally launched the website in 2009 which was then flooded with tons of investors and projects.
Perry Chan, along with the American media editor, Yancey Stricker and American Web designer, Charles Adler came up with the idea of launching a website for the purpose of crowdfunding. Post the launch of their website, the founders spread word about Kickstarter in their friends circle. However, projects started coming in and people stepped up to support projects consequently. In January 2010, the team moved into a tenement building in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. From 3,910 successful projects and $ 27,638,318 pledges in 2010, the firm was reaching new heights already! This was followed by 18,109 successfully funded projects and $ 319,786,629 pledges in the year 2012. In the year 2013 Perry stepped down from the position of the CEO and went on to become the Chairman. He was replaced by Yancey Strickler. The year of 2014 brought the company a huge raising $ 13.28 million, which became the most funded Kickstarter project in history!
Here’s what makes Kickstarter so interesting!
Kickstarter does not rely on affluent investors. The company opts for crowdfunding, in which loads of smaller investors make contributions. The investment could be as little as a $ 1 and there are basically no restrictions. The company generated its revenue by assessing a fee of 5 percent from projects that reached or surpassed their funding targets. Projects that did not meet their funding goals within a specified time period did not receive any money pledged to them, and they were not subjected to the fee. The company so far has funded thousands of projects from investor donations resulting in several hundred million dollars. Isn’t that huge?
Kickstarter has become extremely important in the startup ecosystem! From entrepreneurs to investors, Kickstarter is one damn platform that could get you what you desire!
Get Ready To Say Goodbye To Yahoo Messenger On 17 July
Let us take a dig at those nostalgic days when Yahoo instant messenger was a big thing! Remember those funky emojis? Oh, yes! How could you forget those stylish yet cute avatars that you could change instantly! Well, get ready to say a final goodbye to Yahoo messenger on 17 July.
According to the latest reports, Oath, the subsidiary of telecommunications giant Verizon, who operates Yahoo, announced the final wrap up of Yahoo Messenger. Yahoo’s spokesperson said,
Yahoo Messenger will no longer be supported after July 17, 2018. Until then, you can continue to use the service normally. After July 17, you’ll no longer be able to access your chats and the service will no longer work.
The current users who are still clinging to the old messaging service will be redirected to the new group messaging app Squirrel. Users will have six months to download their chat history! For more than a month now, Yahoo has been testing beta testing the Squirrel app. It will be open to the public once the Yahoo Messenger shuts down. However, those who are looking to try out the Squirrel app right now can request for beta access.
Yahoo on its official website said,
We know we have many loyal fans who have used Yahoo Messenger since its beginning as one of the first chat apps of its kind. As the communications landscape continues to change over, we’re focusing on building and introducing new, exciting communications tools that better fit consumer needs.
The Yahoo Messenger was launched in 1998 and was a big hit with the users! However, with time, the app appeared to lose its captivation as the competition got intense. Over the years, the app came up with a lot of updates to keep its users hooked to it. From redesigning the app, to bringing up new features, Yahoo did try surviving in the messaging platform but, couldn’t make it. The users did not find the messenger fascinating enough and eventually switched to other apps. Anyway, It is time to say goodbye to our once favourite messaging app, Yahoo messenger!
You will always be our first and favourite messaging app.
Another bet slips off Amazon, PremjiInvest takes 6% Stake In Future Retail
The year 2018 has been quite famous with a number of deals and acquisitions taking place in the Indian business market!
Speaking about the much hyped Flipkart-Walmart deal, that took place recently had everyone glued to the news. With regard to the Flipkart-Walmart deal, the e commerce giant Amazon Inc., lost its bet on Flipkart to the US retail behemoth Walmart. The Indian business market recently noticed an interesting investment between two firms!
The famously known Czar of the Indian IT, Azim Premji’s firm PremjiInvest, bought 6 % stake in Kishore Biyani’s Future Retail Ltd., for a whopping $ 251 million! The acquisition happened in a bulk deal! PremjiInvest, bought the stake in a bulk deal from Cedar Support Services Ltd., a subsidiary of Bharti Ventures Ltd., It purchased the stake from Bharti Group, which owns a 9 % stake in Future Retail.
Kishore Biyani, the Founder and CEO of Future Group, said in an interview,
PremjiInvest is one of the larger investors in the consumer space in India. They are also investors with us in Future Lifestyle Fashion (4% stake.)
The value of the transaction is around $ 251 million, of which Future Retail, will get up to $ 85.2 million through a clawback provision. A clawback is a provision which is a special contractual clause, typically included in employment contracts by financial firms, by which money already paid must be paid back under certain conditions.
In an interview, with regard to the e commerce giant Amazon Inc.,
Mr. Biyani said,
We are not in discussions of any stake sale at the moment
Earlier this year, there were talks about the CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos aligning with Mr. Biyani to discuss the strategic alliance. Alongside, back in March, there were reports that Amazon was about to acquire a 10 % stake in Future Retail! Well, looks like the ball is not in Amazon’s court!
As of now, Future Retail owns, the Indian hypermarket, supermarket and home segments with other significant brands such as Big Bazaar, Easy Day and Foodhall.
With the two major acquisitions already slipping off, let us see what else is in store for Amazon in the future!
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