Some Thoughts on Unicorns

As far as I can tell, all developers have a notion of getting ridiculously wealthy by starting the next big thing - Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. These have gone by various names, but I am going to continue referring to them as ’ Unicorns’ as they are extremely rare.

That said, I think we all walk around with ideas that every now and again grab us as a potential unicorn. I do not have these sorts of ideas often, but when I do I run them past a colleague of mine who is particularly good at shooting them down. I have come up with some ideas that he has not immediately shot down, but have not struck me as the unicorn - just a different business I could get into.


I am starting to think what I should really be searching for is actually simpler: a tech business that just does something simple really well. I remember a million years ago learning about email service providers and thinking “why would anyone pay for that?” Today, no respectable online business operates without an ESP.

So, I started trying to come up with simple services that I could provide. Something-as-a-service is not new; in fact, it seems that I am probably late to the goldrush. That said, there are so many fields that it seems impossible that there does not exist some untapped vein. The problem, as I see it, is identifying the demand.