G2: Two money-making pieces of software that will change the world for the better/worse [delete where applicable]
(Guardian (UK) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Rather than writing a column this week, I'm using this space to pitch two software ideas I've had: ideas I'd turn into real programs if I had either the expertise or patience to do so. My hope is that a talented programmer will stumble across this page, make them a reality, and then be forced to give me a cut of the profits, absolutely none of which will be donated to a good cause. I'm fishing for coins, basically. If you don't like that, leave. If you're ambivalent, continue.
Idea 1: BlackmailrTM
Let's face it, efficiency is boring. Nine times out of 10, you can let almost anything slide until it reaches crisis point. Not only will you get to meet all kinds of interesting bailiffs, your life overall becomes more exciting. Of course "more exciting" also means "more stressful", which is only a positive if you can't get enough of crushing chest pains and premature death.
Still, only the most tedious nazi finds it easy to complete chores without some kind of sword of Damocles hanging over them. What everyday slackers require is an app that lends a sense of instant, palpable personal crisis to almost any task they wish to complete.
Enter the ultimate productivity app - Blackmailr. The first time you boot up Blackmailr, it unceremoniously locks your computer until you agree to pose for a series of photos, each automatically snapped with your laptop's in-built camera. Fairly tame images to begin with - just a few silly faces and the odd bit of upper-body peek-a-boo - gradually building into explicit and intensely graphic unpleasantness, in every case including your face somewhere in the image (even if partially hidden by your thigh) so everyone will know it's definitely, unequivocally you.
Having compiled this humiliating gallery, the program immediately encrypts these pictures and stores them in a secret corner of your hard drive where you can't reach them. Once this sordid preliminary ceremony has finished, it turns into a fairly standard "to-do list" app, with hidden teeth.
You tell it what you want to do, anything from writing the first chapter of a novel to filling out an insurance claim form, and what your deadline is.
Then and only then do you actually start working. Blackmailr will monitor your progress, but be warned: should you fail to complete the task in the allotted time, it will start decrypting and tweeting the photos, one by one, until you either give in or begrudgingly accept your new life as an online laughing/wanking stock.
This program is guaranteed to increase your productivity by a factor of 85%, while lending even the most mundane tasks a sense of danger and purpose sorely lacking from modern existence. Forget religion: only Blackmailr will leave you feeling truly alive.
Idea 2: Super GoodinatorTM
Videogames are all very well, but they don't do much for your self-esteem. Even the rush of triumph experienced after successfully completing a game is tempered by a vague sense of shame at having wasted all that time, and it's this constant level of cognitive dissonance that makes gamers so defensive when you corner them by the toilets and jab them in the ribs and tell them their hobby is pointless and disgusting and come back here, come back here and listen to me for Christ's sake.
Super Goodinator wipes away that inherent sense of futility and replaces it with a feelgood philanthropic glow. It's a game for the XBox Kinect in which the player has to construct a school in a developing-world country, in real time, across several weeks. Using strenuous physical motion, all of it picked up by the motion sensor, players must level the ground, dig the foundations, lay every brick, construct the roof, plaster the walls and lug all the equipment into place before cutting the ribbon and declaring the school open - at which point all the delighted local children jump up and down while cheering the player's name, assuming they entered your name correctly at the start and didn't just call themselves BUMKING or something.
Ideally this moment would be so realistically rendered, it would move the player to tears. Maybe they could even be invited to say a few words for the grateful locals, speaking into the same mic they usually use for meaningless karaoke, using it this time to recount an emotive speech whose words scroll up the left side of the screen, earning an extra 50 points each time one of the kiddywinks is inspired to become the best person they can be. Then the game ends, leaving the player with the warm satisfaction of having done their bit for the good of all humankind.
The sole downside of Super Goodinator is that the school isn't real, so no real children benefit from the player's actions. But as people like to say at Christmas, it's the thought that counts.
There you go. I'd just like to point out that I own the full intellectual property rights to both these ideas, and that simply by reading them, you've just "run" my software on the "operating system" that is your mind, which puts you in breach of copyright. You're a thief - a common thief - and you disgust me. Now get out. Go.
No ideas You need BlackmailrTM
(c) 2013 Guardian Newspapers Limited.
[ Back To Technology News's Homepage ]