The Unexplored Gold Mine of Startup Ideas and Inspiration

ʟ ᴜ ᴄ ʏ
17 min readJul 7, 2022

In 2017 I joined the 1000 Digital Startups Movement (Gerakan 1000 Startup Digital) created by Ministry of Communications and Informatics (MCI), Republic of Indonesia, and from there I learned a lot about the startup world. In my previous article, I’ve explained what a startup is and what must be prepared in the beginning. Here I will focus on providing raw ideas that might be processed into better products.

Image by macrovector on Freepik

Intro

In making a better startup starts from a problem to be solved. These can come from issues concerning the environment, economy, energy, transportation, logistics, maritime, forestry, livestock, education, tourism, law, arts and culture, communication and information and many other fields. But what I want to emphasize here is that everything I wrote is just a basic idea (as inspiration) and needs further mapping and validation whether this idea is feasible or not. Learn the steps to build a startup in order to get maximum results when your startup launches.

Another important things that I learned from Adrian Gunadi (Investree Co-Founder) as a Founder or Co-Founder must be willing to hold the position of CEO (Chief Everything Officer). That means making your own proposal, managing your own finances, making your own appointments… basically everything is independent. Then be the best in your field, and the best people will come to you. It’s easier than actively seeking — additional advice from Andy Zain (Kejora Capital Founder).

Description

To help better understanding from your idea, try to answer this following questions:
- Describe your idea/application
Maximum 1000 characters.
- Background
Explain the reasons that prompted you to realize the idea/application.
- Objective
Explain the expected goals of the creation of the idea/application.
- Solution
A solution that tells your idea can be the right solution for the problem at hand.
- Uniqueness
What makes your idea/app unique?
- Market share
Who are the people who need and are looking for your idea?
- Marketing Ways and Business Models
What is the best way to sell your idea and what is the business model?

Talking about ideas, not everything written here can be used as a startup. However, it is intended to create new creativity and see things from different angle.

Ideas

#Application

1. In the medical world, students are ready or not to be directly involved in the practice of operating on their patients. Applications that can provide training for future doctors to recognize parts of the body’s organs and their placement in the human/animal body will be very useful. In the advanced stage, the application can be programmed according to need with various methods so that future doctors can practice the steps that must be taken when operating patients according to their disease. If they made a mistake, they would have to repeat the procedure all over again. That way, future doctors will be more confident and minimize mistakes when they have to go directly to the field.

2. VR (virtual reality) technology makes it easy for users to see 3D space even if they are not there. Later this technology was used to sell properties digitally and potential buyers could see the inside of the property and even the contents of the room. But every technology has its weak points. For robbers, it is like a gold field making it easier to find treasure. The use of VR can be more useful for prospective students so that they can see the campus and its facilities. Places to stay can also take advantage of this facility in order to better sell their products to the market.

3. What do retail entrepreneurs need to maximize the products they sell? Certainly the sales data of the products that are most in demand by the public. By making sales statistics based on product and brand/type, entrepreneurs don’t need to be confused about stocking goods in large quantities.
Walmart first adapted this system by computerizing its operations, stock was recorded from the factory to purchase so that its tracks were traced. Meanwhile, suppliers can immediately “pick up the ball” as needed based on products sold out through the Retail Link system.

4. Failing to marry is something to be avoided. But if it had to happen, the loss would be like the proverb “rub salt into the wound”. In America those who fail to marry can resell their purchased jewelry at a less costly price to other brides-to-be via the I do Now I don’t website.
If there are people who want to cancel the wedding and want the down payment to rent the building and the dress back, then there are also other people who want a wedding with certain conditions such as a date that doesn’t have to wait long and get the expected building. Create a marketplace for both parties so that they can do DP take over.

#Games

1. Like the maze in the movie, players must immediately get out of the maze they enter or within the next 3 minutes the shape of the maze will change/shifted so that players must change the strategy of the path they must pass. After a few levels the maze time to transform will be shorter.

2. A treasure hunt is a game where we can find hidden objects by following a series of clues. Now the system used here is a little different, namely combining several sponsors in one vessel, and players can choose which game suits them by seeing the prizes.
As example, let’s say X-mart as one of the sponsors, providing riddle or puzzles to find other clues for the location of the treasure in their shop. The player can use GPS to locate the location and scan it to find some points/secret password using AR (augmented reality) feature, after accumulating enough points player can immediately exchange the earned points to claim the prize. Player can also collaborate with other players in the environment so that the chances of success are even greater.

3. Ever heard of the game Where’s Wally? Where’s Wally brings up an image with a lot of objects that is very dense with several characters like Wally where we have to find real Wally, his friends and the object that is requested. Inspired by it, make a game with a map going around various places where players have to look for some objects that are requested to be used later in the next level.
For example, the player is in a mansion in the style of an Egyptian royalty where many items are scattered randomly and the player must find the 5 requested objects. In the room there are also some regular tickets, pass tickets and gold tickets that can be taken for safekeeping, as well as a carpet attached to the wall that can also be stored but not asked to search and turns out to be a flying rug that can be used to cross/jump to a different desired location.
Regular tickets are spread out more because they can be exchanged for lives or buying items. At a higher level, you can add a black ticket which, if taken, will reduce the regular ticket you get. There are also objects that can explode, so the items that have been collected at that level will come out and scatter again. The time given to search is 2 minutes, if the time is up the player can exchange a ticket to buy an extra time.

#TVprogram

1. At the airport there are various visitors who come with different purposes. Asking random tourists to cover their daily lives, live for 1 or 2 days in the city will be something interesting to watch.

2. There are many professions in this world. For carpenters, cooks, lawyers, the description of the job desk must have been known. What about the daily routine of HRD (Human Resource Development), do they only recruit new employees? Many people do not know how to become a CEO, CMO, COO, CFO and CTO and other positions in a company. Giving a little picture about the profession of a Program Officer in an NGO can help many young people to make decisions in their lives about what profession they want to achieve.

#StampsCreations

I am a philately collector and of course I know that stamps are only issued by the government. Even so, I hope that the stamps that are published can be more creative so that they have more value.

1. Thermochromic pigments (leuco dyes) are becoming widely known by the public because of their unique character. By applying the pigments in black and white batik stamps as an example, and when it touched (given a hot temperature) the black color will be transparent and display the basic colored color.

2. In 2012 the Liechtenstein Post issued a stamp with laser art technology in the form of a Chinese zodiac. Likewise Belgium (Bruges Market Square 2012), Taiwan (Swallow Tail Butterfly 2009) and others. Learn from it, why not make a stencil with the face of the current president or king/queen, for example.

3. Each country must have its own characteristics, such as Taiwan which issues stamps made of silk and bamboo. Find out what is the history of your country and make creations from it. Using traditionally made paper such as washi (Japan), hanji (Korea) and daluang/saeh (Indonesia) can also be a way to introduce the culture of that country.

4. Garbage has always been a major issue in life. One thing that can be done is to use it as recycled paper — bagasse, banana fronds or corn husks — for stamp material.

5. In 2006 the Austria Post issued a postage stamp containing 0.03 grams of meteor dust. The dust came from a 19-kilogram meteorite that was found in Morocco in 2004. Gibraltar had previously placed the famous icon of their country — The Rock of Gilbraltar — on postage stamps in 2002. Then what is so attractive and abundant about your country? Take, for example, in East Java, there is a lot of mud (Lapindo mud). Making stamps by sticking dry Lapindo mud will be an attraction. Umm okay, maybe mud is not something interesting, but maybe we can replace it with red sand found at Pink Beach, East Nusa Tenggara.

#PostcardCreations

1. Postcards with map images are popular because they can show the location of an area and make searching easier. Combining laser cutting technology in road map patterns; using paper with a thickness of 200 grams that has been perforated and then pasted on plain 400 gram paper as a writing medium. Laser cutting maps are also useful for those who have vision problems.

2. Pieces of traditional cloth and tucked into the face of a postcard can be a medium for promoting regional art.

3. Placing a thin canvas or plain paper on the front of the card gives the sender the opportunity to be creative in expressing their imagination.

4. What is the residue from crops in your area? Cork lids, corn husks, rice husks… whatever it is can still be reprocessed into recycled materials for making postcards.

5. Have you ever seen a bookmark filled with dried flowers? Cover the outside of the postcard with clear translucent mica and insert the dried flowers there. If you are afraid the flowers will be lost, you can glue them a little so they don’t fall off or prepare an envelope for the postcard.

6. Wood material may have become a common thing, instead we can try a copper plate with a thickness of 0.2 mm which is embossed with an image and then attached to a postcard as a writing medium.

7. Pulp from used paper is usually shaped into a place to put eggs, cellphones and even styrofoam substitutes for wrapping food. Form a smooth paper pulp on the plate with the desired image — take the Golden Gate bridge landmark for example — and then paste it on your card.

8. Promote your perfume on a postcard. Paste dry perfume on the front side of the card with the image of the perfume, when people rub their hands the aroma will be smelled.

#Tour #Travel

Tourism has various forms of tourist activities that can be customized to the interests or needs of tourists. The tourism activities have a specific purpose that brings its own benefits for each tourist.

Therefore, let’s first identify tourism in terms of intent and purpose:

  • Holiday Tour is a tour organized and followed by its members to vacation, have fun and entertain themselves.
  • Familiarization Tour is a trip that is intended to get to know more (survey) areas that are related to their work.
  • Educational Tour is a tour that is intended to provide an overview, comparative study or knowledge of the field of work visited.
  • Scientific Tour is a tour whose main purpose is to gain knowledge and investigate a field of science.
  • Pilgrimage Tour is a tour intended to perform religious worship.
  • Special Mission Tour is a tour carried out with a special purpose, for example trade missions, arts and others.
  • Hunting Tour is a tourist visit that is intended to organize animal hunting permitted by local authorities as entertainment only.

So every aspect of human life can be transformed into tourism potential. The following are examples of activities that can be carried out:

1. By carrying out the humanitarian theme and collaborating with NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations), it can be a good choice for those who want to experience volunteering. Indeed, from this activity the earning profit is not that big, but look at the impact on the environment.

2. Tired of the city atmosphere and need some peace? Meditation tourism can be the solution. There are many beautiful places in this world that can help humans forget for a moment the stresses of their lives. Guided by a certified yoga/meditation teacher, tourists can learn to get rid of the negative air they have brought with them.

3. Anyone want to visit the prison? Not all prisons are accessible to outsiders, but certain prisons, such as those for children under 17 are still allowed to be visited. This kind of tourism usually carries a social mission to help mental inmates to achieve a better future.

4. How many of you have visited the factory for a tour/study tour? The study tour referred to here is an activity outside of school (for ordinary people who have finished their studies). Not everyone while in school used to get the opportunity to visit factories, or other places of work to embassies to learn and find inspiration.
In Japan, several companies such as Shoyeido (incense maker) and Royce (chocolate maker) open opportunities for those who want to visit while educating how their products are made.

5. Viewing from the educational aspect, develop tourism potential that has not been developed such as astronomy and archaeology tourism. So far, astronomy tourism has only been facilitated by a handful of astronomy enthusiasts and participants. Meanwhile, in terms of archaeology, in Indonesia there are more activities that focus on site preservation and to be involved in these activities, they must attend a series of training that take up a lot of time for office workers (not everyone can take a sabbatical from their routine). Activities with a focus on archaeological tourism currently only provide a limited choice, whether held by a community of history and culture enthusiasts or included in a series of regional tours.

6. Have you ever wanted to experience firsthand how a film is made or to see your favorite artist rehearsing in their private studio? Tours like that are a good opportunity to inspire young people who want a career in the entertainment world.

7. Want to pamper your pets so they don’t get stressed? Many pet owners don’t have time to take their pets for walks or give them fancy treats. Services like this really target the upper class, because the services are quite exclusive.

8. A slightly eccentric idea by providing tours for “fictitious” couples or objects they want to take to certain places. This need came from the existence of some people who marry inanimate objects or even with animals and they want to make their “partner” happy, also those who have died and still keep their ashes.

#MISCideas

1. Fashion has become a lifestyle, so it is not uncommon for people to continue to explore new resources to use. The use of frog skin may be familiar, but what about the skin of chicken claws, geckos, snake skin casings, mice, bats and fish skins? Well.. need a little hard work indeed.

2. With the increasing scarcity of world fuel sources, people are starting to look for other alternatives to meet their energy needs. One of the renewable energy that has not been processed optimally comes from sound. Based on research, noise that occurs in an environment can be more valuable, namely into electrical energy with the Batechsant system (Battery Technology Of Sound Power Plant). Researchers from South Korea are harnessing the vibrations of sound energy to recharge batteries in cell phones with a technology called Sound-Driven Piezoelectric Nanowire — based on Nanogenerators.
The Batechsant system can produce electrical energy that can be used for street lamp lighting, as well as energy reserves for aircraft and ships because it takes advantage of existing noise levels. In addition, utilizing the sound from the waterfall can supply energy to areas that are difficult to reach.

3. A New York Times reporter from America once stated that IQ does not guarantee success. So far, our education system focuses more on IQ (Intelligence Quotient) and rarely pays attention to EQ (Emotional Quotient). It is said that EQ is a type of human intelligence to recognize and process the dynamics of his emotions in interacting with others (including interacting with oneself as well); and this EQ is then suspected as the source of success whose portion is bigger than IQ.
Seeing this potential, the EQ training model can get more attention to achieve one’s success. Efforts that must be prioritized in optimizing the EQ of students are “role models” or examples from school stakeholders, teachers and parents themselves.

4. So far, teaching is more focused on theory and only a few percent is practiced, so that students are less motivated to explore more and easily to forget if they pay less attention to the lesson. Take a look, has there ever been an engineer who knows how to make bricks from red soil in an arid location? Builders in Morocco who have not attended college can make bricks from red soil as a building material without the help of machines and can withstand the weather.
What about mechanical engineering graduates, can they make a simple water pump to solve the problem of water shortages in areas far from water sources? Art graduates can also be more creative than just drawing so as to create new innovations. With so many experiments being carried out, artists can produce works that are not static like kinetic sculpture.
Sciences like this should be taught to the younger generation so that they can learn to be more creative in exploring their potential. Offer these activities as extra-curricular activities in High School and activities outside of formal education at the University.

5. Since a long time people have started looking for ways to recycle agricultural waste so that it has economic value. One of its uses is as a replacement material for tiles and bricks that are light and not easily crushed, with the help of mycelium (a collection of hyphae like in the manufacture of tempe). With a note that the waste used must contain lignocellulose.
Reflecting on this idea, there are many other forms that can be produced, such as making anti-mainstream painting canvases. The point is not only to make the canvas square or round, but with the shapes we want and irregular like amoeba outline. The resulting canvas is also lighter and does not require wood as a frame.
So what if you don’t have the skills? Make your idea open source so that it create a community, as Precious Plastic does. By spreading this idea, many people who have knowledge in this field will contribute their abilities to improve your product, so become better quality and has a big impact.

6. With the development of technology and the ability of humans to adapt, more and more fraud is committed. Making fake doctor’s letters to trick superiors, fake certificates to be accepted for work, fake land certificates to make profits, to fake news (hoax). The existence of a Wikimedia that can provide comparison information which is fake and the original can certainly help the community so as not to be harmed.

7. Do any of you often experience impasse in dealing with life’s problems? Because the “Doraemon bag” has not been produced until now, it is better to make an “Idea Bank”. In here all problems are written and everyone can contribute to help solve it. But how do you get people to help out? Of course it must be provoked with a reward. Either those who contribute the most can level up to become a moderator or get free tickets to take part in TIA (Tech in Asia) conferences.
Other concepts related to Idea Bank; in connection with the rise of startups that are mushrooming but are not based on a strong foundation, this causes an age that is only as old as corn and does not continue. It’s a good idea for those who have an idea to build a startup to describe the concept here so that it can be validated by other users whether it’s feasible or not. Other users can also provide input if there is a similar concept made so that improvements can be made to highlight the advantages of the product or should it be merged. If there are users who have similar ideas, they can ask for collaboration to become Co-Founders.

8. Inspired by digital farming, why not trying to invest in fruit/vegetables for example? The advantage from the land owner’s side is that also gets free fruit without having to spend a large amount of capital to maintain it. When harvesting, investors can get these fruits/vegetables in larger quantities, fresher and cheaper than the market price. Don’t forget to pay attention to the location, because fruits & vegetables are easily damaged if they take too long during delivery.
But for wealthy investors who don’t want to be bothered but have limited land, they can try investing in teak, agarwood or other types of trees. When harvesting, investors can choose to get the raw results or direct profits from the sale of the wood. What must be considered is that wood investment is long term, like teak itself to be harvested at least it takes 7 years; and the risk for all these types of investments is the possibility of crop failure.

9. As we know in remote areas there are still many teenagers who cannot count, read and write. There are many conditions that make it difficult for local residents to thrive. One of them is the demands of life that require them prefer to work rather than study. There is a way that might be tried to attract the younger generation to learn, namely by creating a “playground” for learning. For example, make a skateboard park at school. Everyone who wants to play skateboard must go to school and learn first in class. The skateboard itself can be obtained from donations.

10. The term online taxi-bike is known globally. Yes, by renting a motorbike/car online, people no longer bother traveling if they don’t have their own vehicle. But what if you want to go across the island or to certain areas that are difficult to reach? Is it possible to rent a boat or helicopter online like the concept of online taxi-bike? So far, such a rental process has been carried out independently, so it has not been centralized and cannot be done suddenly.

11. With the current outbreak of startups, what do they need the most? A consultant of course — either for the startup itself or for its investors. Try, how many startups fail to become Unicorns and go out of business. Many of the founders do not understand how to manage funding from investors, so they only “burn money” for promotional purposes and other less important things. Likewise for investors, because many of them only know how to invest but cannot provide direction when the startup they fund has problems.

12. Those who are actively surfing the internet must often receive SPAM emails. Some offer products, scams to threats. The reason for the spread of email addresses is not only because of carelessness in using public facilities (internet cafes, office/someone else’s computer), but also because the websites they normally use have been hacked/pwned. This means that the identities of users are leaked, so that their data is misused by outsiders. How to solve it is still a homework for white hats or maybe some of the readers are moved to give the solution.

13. For those who sell live pine tree for Christmas, what would you do with the dry pine tree that hasn’t been sold? We can still sell it by informing that the tree can be used for firewood after Christmas is over. Therefore the dry pine tree is not wasted.

“In times of crisis, the wise build bridges, while the foolish build barriers.” — T’Challa [Black Panther]

Folks, don’t chase money. Money is a result that comes from a process. If our goal is to seek profit, we will be stressed by it. Observe market needs and create opportunities from there. Please write your ideas in the comments column if you have something to share. Thank you.

This article is for informational purposes only. Please do more research first before implementing the ideas.

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ʟ ᴜ ᴄ ʏ

I'm a part time (artist) who lives 17% in the digital world, 3% in the dream world and 80% in the real world.