A Start-Up Trek – Introduction

Geek Culture

Huntsville, AL overlooking the U.S. Space and Rocket Center image: Bryce Edwards, Creative CommonsHuntsville, AL overlooking the U.S. Space and Rocket Center image: Bryce Edwards, Creative Commons

Huntsville, AL overlooking the U.S. Space and Rocket Center. Image: Bryce Edwards, Creative Commons

I’m starting a business. That’s a difficult thing to say out loud, much less announce to the entire internet (or at least the intelligent, sophisticated and lemony fresh corner of it that reads GeekDad). For years I’ve contemplated this fateful step to build a thriving enterprise – depending only on my own hard work, creativity and willingness to take risks. This blog post is my way of committing to this new adventure.

Until now I’ve had other things that have prevented me from taking this entrepreneurial leap of faith – finishing school, having a son, climbing the career ladder, and all other life events. But really, those were excuses. I didn’t start a business before now because of my own fear of the consequences. It’s hard enough for me to stand up in front of a room and present something I’ve created. Starting a business is making myself vulnerable writ large. Any entrepreneur risks ridicule and condemnation not just from friends or colleagues but complete strangers as well. To add injury to insult I risk my future financial security. It’s a wonder that anyone starts a new business.

So why do it? I could repeat all the arguments you’ve undoubtedly heard before – meeting a need in the marketplace, a chance to be creative while unfettered by a boss, the potential financial gain, etc. All of these reasons resonate with me. But there is one reason, rarely stated, that is worth talking about here at GeekDad. Starting a business is a chance to build something with my son, and for him to receive a very valuable education in how the world really works.

My son lives with me only part time, and here is a chance for me to do something with him where we can connect. I have a day job that the GeekDad readership might find very cool. Ironically my son isn’t terribly interested in what I do. He does, however, find this start-up very compelling. I casually mentioned this venture months ago, he still frequently asks me when is it going to open, does he get to work there, will kids be allowed to come, etc. I’ve taken to calling him my Junior Executive Vice President.

So now I’ve announced to the world (our little corner of it, at least) that I am creating this start-up. I invite all of you to watch me walk down this path, share in my successes and learn from my mistakes. I’ll post here weekly, discussing developments in as much detail as I can without impairing my competitiveness. I’m glad to have this venue to talk about this project. After all what is more geeky than diving into the ‘great material continuum’ with only my wits to help me navigate the stream? And what is more fatherly than taking my son along for the ride, so someday he will do better than I have done?

So post a comment if you wish me well on this journey, or knew what ‘great material continuum’ was without having to Google it. And in case you’re wondering, my business will be a prototyping lab patterned after the fab lab concept, but with my own twists.

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