You are not just looking for good ideas, you are looking for good new ideas Find a problem where you an emotional attachment and solution where you have your passion
We will focus mainly on the startup ideas What's special about startup ideas? Startup ideas are ideas for companies, and companies have to make money. And the way to make money is to make something people want.
In a way, it's harder to see problems than their solutions. Most people prefer to remain in denial about problems. It's obvious why: problems are irritating. Most of the dot coms that failed did so not because they were bad ideas, but because they didn't solve anyone's problem. Whether you're starting up an online company or opening a brick and mortar store, finding a need and filling it is key to your success. Of course, the most obvious breakage in the average computer user's life is Windows itself. But this is a special case: you can't defeat a monopoly by a frontal attack. Windows can and will be overthrown, but not by giving people a better desktop OS. The way to kill it is to redefine the problem as a superset of the current one. The problem is not, what operating system should people use on desktop computers? but how should people use applications? There are answers to that question that don't even involve desktop computers.
Look for what ppl Need and what they want. They might not buy what they want! There's nothing more valuable than an unmet need that is just becoming fixable. If you find something broken that you can fix for a lot of people, you've found a gold mine. As with an actual gold mine, you still have to work hard to get the gold out of it. But at least you know where the seam is, and that's the hard part. http://www.flickr.com/photos/cobalt/143494929/in/faves-49119347@N06/
One way to make something people want is to look at stuff people use now that's broken. Dating sites are a prime example. They have millions of users, so they must be promising something people want. And yet they work horribly. Just ask anyone who uses them. It's as if they used the worse-is-better approach but stopped after the first stage and handed the thing over to marketers.
Another classic way to make something people want is to take a luxury and make it into a commmodity. People must want something if they pay a lot for it. And it is a very rare product that can't be made dramatically cheaper if you try. When you make something cheaper you can sell more of them. But if you make something dramatically cheaper you often get qualitative changes, because people start to use it in different ways. For example, once computers get so cheap that most people can have one of their own, you can use them as communication devices. Making things cheaper is actually a subset of a more general technique: making things easier. For a long time it was most of making things easier, but now that the things we build are so complicated, there's another rapidly growing subset: making things easier to use. This is an area where there's great room for improvement. This was Henry Ford's plan. He made cars, which had been a luxury item, into a commodity. But the idea is much older than Henry Ford. Water mills transformed mechanical power from a luxury into a commodity, and they were used in the Roman empire. Arguably pastoralism transformed a luxury into a commodity. http://www.flickr.com/photos/tambako/3247996613/
What Big companies should be doing? another source of ideas: look at big companies, think what they should be doing, and do it yourself. Even if they already know it, you'll probably be done faster. http://www.flickr.com/photos/sirwiseowl/192437150/in/faves-49119347@N06/
The most productive way to generate startup ideas is also the most unlikely-sounding: by accident. If you look at how famous startups got started, a lot of them weren't initially supposed to be startups. the best way to get a &quot;million dollar idea&quot; is just to do what you enjoy doing anyway. http://www.flickr.com/photos/gretyl/54301880/in/faves-49119347@N06/
You need two things to assist you in thinking of ideas: Technology & people Keep and eye on new technologies http://www.flickr.com/photos/markkelley/1022720488/
Once you have the problem you would like to work on. Go out and talk hundreds of people. The right kind of people It's obvious why you want exposure to new technology, but why do you need other people? Can't you just think of new ideas yourself? The empirical answer is: no. Even Einstein needed people to bounce ideas off. Ideas get developed in the process of explaining them to the right kind of person. You need that resistance, just as a carver needs the resistance of the wood. http://www.flickr.com/photos/treatycouncil/3302109206/
The most common mistake entrepreneurs make as they develop their ideas is they take an inward view. Instead of exploring what people may need, they focus on what they themselves want to do. It’s a simple trap. A common mistake. And it’s deadly. http://www.flickr.com/photos/ejazasi/253032421/in/faves-49119347@N06/
Is your solution catering to the top 5-10 problems for your customers http://www.flickr.com/photos/cheetara/162922684/
Summary: Let me repeat that recipe: finding the problem intolerable and feeling it must be possible to solve it. Simple as it seems, that's the recipe for a lot of startup ideas. An idea for a startup, however, is only a beginning. A lot of would-be startup founders think the key to the whole process is the initial idea, and from that point all you have to do is execute. Venture capitalists know better. If you go to VC firms with a brilliant idea that you'll tell them about if they sign a nondisclosure agreement, most will tell you to get lost. That shows how much a mere idea is worth. The market price is less than the inconvenience of signing an NDA. Another sign of how little the initial idea is worth is the number of startups that change their plan en route. Microsoft's original plan was to make money selling programming languages, of all things. Their current business model didn't occur to them until IBM dropped it in their lap five years later. Ideas for startups are worth something, certainly, but the trouble is, they're not transferrable. They're not something you could hand to someone else to execute. Their value is mainly as starting points: as questions for the people who had them to continue thinking about. What matters is not ideas, but the people who have them. Good people can fix bad ideas, but good ideas can't save bad people.
Google's plan, for example, was simply to create a search site that didn't suck. They had three new ideas: index more of the Web, use links to rank search results, and have clean, simple web pages with unintrusive keyword-based ads. Above all, they were determined to make a site that was good to use. No doubt there are great technical tricks within Google, but the overall plan was straightforward.
It seems that, for the average engineer, more options just means more rope to hang yourself. So if you want to start a startup, you can take almost any existing technology produced by a big company, and assume you could build something way easier to use. http://www.flickr.com/photos/70033227@N00/308574228/in/faves-49119347@N06/