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[ venture] What is a mask for sustainability? What is the vision?

Hi This is Takeshi CEO of

It's already been about three months since I started teaching my weekly Friday-sustainability education with Clark High School, and today students gave speeches on masks that contribute to sustainability.

Eight brave souls pitched their ideas. Some of the ideas and presentations were pretty enjoyable. The second youth who presented was already like a manager who could be a star salesman in TV shopping in no time. When he gets to be that old, he could sell anything from nuclear power plants to 100-year-old antique pencils. But the problem with his presentation was that it was too much technology-oriented without a clear problem.

His presentation was "A mask to protect with air". It is a mask that protects people from viruses by spraying air from around the ears. He said the reason for his vision was because he was "sick of finding thrown disposable masks on the street". But, there was a more interesting story in his presentation. He said that he was watching a TV debate, there was a sort of plastic sheet between debaters and therefore the viewers would find it distractive to watch because they would not feel a sense of unity.

He could go through this path, solving the "problem of ununified TV debate with air curtain", instead of "reducing disposable masks". If there is an air curtain, it will prevent the transmission of the virus by blocking the space between the debaters with air. The air curtain technology already exists and is already good enough to go as we do not need to miniaturise the technology to place it on the ear. The better vision would be "to make TV debates more interesting" and "air curtain" would be a solution. People pay for the improvements, but not for the technology. In other words, the company organising the TV debate may be paying for this " improvement of air-blocking" to make the TV debate more interesting. We can reduce the number of disposable masks thrown away with much simpler ideas instead of this air curtain technology, e.g. biodegratable masks, reusable masks, awareness-raising, etc.

Quite the opposite, another girl started her pitch with "I don't have a solution" and explained her thought process about "masks that everyone wants to wear all the time". I was never getting tired of her story. She was upset with "a middle-age who usually wears a mask but takes it off when he sneezes". Similarly, she was angry at "another middle-age who gets drunk when he goes out to eat and forgets about his mask". It was a headache for me as a middle of middle-age, but I laughed hard (^^;). Her upsets came from personal experience, so there was a lot of energy in her desire to make "a mask that everyone wanting to wear all the time". As she said, she didn't have a solution, but if she teamed up with other students presented "addicting masks" and "stylish masks of steampunk", I think they could achieve the "masks that everyone will always want to wear". Not everyone needs to be a visionary, in fact, it's far more important to have followers to support the visionary. There's a limit to what one person can do alone, and it's important to have a team of people who can support you. I would be happy if I see the prototypes and a team to make them next week.

What do you see and which makes you think so?

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Nov 29, 2020

It's interesting to see different examples of how people think based on the vision. We should know the vision to analyse the problem and give solutions.

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