Dating fairbiz biz meditation service software software
SM: I thought I’d design something for high school districts to address mental well-being for teenagers.For my master’s thesis — which had to be a design project — I’d designed a kind of mini curriculum for high school students that any high school teacher could implement. I thought it might be hard for teenagers to buy into meditation without meaningful bio feedback, which is at the root of what we’re building. But I didn’t have anyone who was in on this idea with me, so it was like finding someone to marry without dating them.We checked in with her this week about how far along she has gotten, the obstacles she wasn’t expecting and where she goes from here. SM: [Laughs.] In high school, I used to walk to a gym that was open at all hours of the night and play until my parents were like, ‘You have to come home.’ But I’ve always loved math and education, too.TC: When you graduated, you went home to Seattle to work for Microsoft for five years.I was also networking constantly through my Stanford classmates and previous coworkers, saying, ‘I’m looking for help with PCB manufacturing.’ or ‘Do you know someone who has invested in hardware before and can help us out.’ I was asking for a feedback as a way to get meetings. Then we just started working on a prototype that was just functional enough to put in users’ hands and get feedback. We’d ask for feedback from Stanford professors who’ve invested before, contacts I’d made, angel investors.TC: You’ve raised a tiny bit of funding so far, from the hardware-focused venture firm Bolt and Bose, the speaker and headphones company. SM: Kate Mc Andrew, [a VC at Bolt] runs these women-in-hardware meetings and that’s kind of how I found my way into the community. We are going to create an awesome Chat/Dating App that will include features like push notifications., real time updates, find and chat with the people nearby. After outlining the challenges we are facing when creating a messaging application we are going to compile all the resources we are going to need to create our JChat App.The core of our JChat App is of course a great user interface for exchanging messages.
’ He eventually took that leap, and I’m incredibly thankful to have him.
How did you get from there to launching a startup that makes it easier for people to meditate?
SM: I spent my last year at Microsoft on its social responsibility team, working on global education initiatives, and on a work trip, I visited a university in South Africa that was incorporating meditation into its curriculum.
I’d also started thinking about using a physical object that could help younger students practice mindfulness. I posted on collaboration boards at Stanford about the skills I was looking for — electrical engineering, app development for an early prototype.
But the more research I did, the more I realized that adults really struggle with meditation. I figured I’d find someone with the skills, then work with that person for a few hours a week and see how things went.
Mc Devitt didn’t anticipate being in this position five years ago when she was making a generous salary as a product manager at Microsoft, working a stone’s throw from where she’d grown up in Seattle.