Friday, June 20, 2014

Our Newest Patent Has Issued -- A Look at What It's All About.

Our newest patent issued this week on June 17.  U.S. Patent No. 8,756,124 “Systems and methods for tracking and tracing products through a supply chain utilizing unique URLs”.   Most people wonder what it’s all about.  If asked to describe it in one word, well I had to make one up – infotory.  Infotory is about combining information and inventory management to improve supply chain outcomes and that’s the essence of what we’ve claimed in our most recently issued patent. 

Our cloud-based technology is building a layer of information on top of pure inventory to ensure up-to-date digital information is available in the right context for the relevant party in the supply chain.  We make it possible to know not just if you have something or if you’ve used it, but who used it, where, when and even how.  Our platform allows manufacturers to improve a customer’s relationship with not only the product but also the manufacturer itself.

Imagine your company manufactures high chairs.  Whether you have a child using one today or not, you likely sat in one at one time in your life so I expect you can understand why ensuring high chairs are used properly and safely is important.  With our technology a manufacturer can deploy micro-sites that ensure easy and direct access to the instructions to properly assemble the high chair.  Our geolocation rules ensure the user gets the instructions in the right language.  Providing all information in one website, we can also provide registration forms for the product – no more postcards to mail back.  The digital experience also allows the company to show the parents other products.  Most special of all, the platform allows safety notifications to be pushed to the website, so if there’s a problem the customer can find about the moment they access their direct website for the product.

Our technology is focused on improving supply chain outcomes and more importantly customer experiences.  If you have an idea for how your technology could use a platform like the one I describe, please drop me a line at

Monday, February 11, 2013

Seed Round Closed! Recruiting in Earnest!

We recently attended the Cornell College of Engineering Start Up Career Fair in Ithaca.  In talking with various job candidates I realized we were overdue for an update on our blog.  Just to get this out of the way, no we did not get picked for the final round of Boston Shark Tank.  But that's okay because we closed a seed round of $500K which is five times what we'd have won through Boston Shark Tank!

The closing of our seed round comes on the heels of an exciting pivot.  We are going to use our technology platform to provide a track and trace platform for pharmaceuticals and medical devices. We are engaging in discussions on using 121nexus to dynamically track products and provide information about them. It can be used to protect against counterfeiting and also to make product recalls more efficient.  We call this version of our platform - PharTrack, Track long and propser!

We are still going to continue offering 121campaign, but our primary development focus going forward will be on making PharTrack a super awesome platform which will not only save companies millions of dollars but also save lives (by making recalls more effective). 

Now that we've closed our seed round and have a new vision for the next phase of our company we need more people! We're now recruiting full time employees and summer interns.  Here's a little bit of an idea of what it was like to intern with 121nexus last summer. We are serious about getting things done, but we're also serious about having a good time while we're working. If you want move to Providence or spend your summer in Providence making awesome technology, taking on new challenges and working with other bright, high energy people then email us at!  

Friday, November 9, 2012

How our Personal Media Technology Helped Obama win Ohio

In September we launched our Personal Media solution with the Obama for America Campaign in Ohio.  As we now know, Barack Obama won the State of Ohio's electoral votes.  I'm not going to say our technology was the reason and take responsibility for the victory.  The reason was most certainly the tremendous staff of Obama for America - Ohio. Not only was the staff filled with quality people but they also were willing to give my company and our technology a chance.  They allowed us to launch with them in Columbus, Ohio the state's largest city and whose county went for Barack Obama. They were excellent to work with and provided us with a tremendous opportunity to validate our technology in the space of politics. 

To understand how our 121campaign technology works, read this earlier blog post.  The Obama campaign had content a wide variety of issues they were ready to provide to voters. That's a perfect fit for our technology which is focused on providing Personal Media, meaning that we want to allow people to see the content that really matters to them personally.

Approximately one in five people that received a personal media card from Obama actually visited their landing page. We were very pleased with the results and we remain very grateful to the staff in Ohio for working with us and giving us the opportunity to validate our technology on this level.

With the big races over until 2014, we'll be taking our focus on how to leverage the 121nexus platform in other areas.  Stay tuned for announcements on new applications of our platform outside of politics!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Boston Shark Tank - Pick Me Already!

I very much want to be on Boston Shark Tank where I'll have a chance at a $100,000 investment as one of six entrepreneurs pitching their company. I'm hoping my last post got their attention.  But until such time as they make a selection I figure I might as well keep promoting my company as a great choice for the tank!

When I applied for Boston Shark Tank I decided to take some liberty in describing our team as a way to get their attention.  I mean how many times do you have founders that met each other in school or at a previous start up?  A lot, right?  So I thought why not spice it up.  Some of it is true after all... [Portions redacted for good reasons... just trust me].

About the Team
Foster and Albert, a classic hustler/hacker duo, met at the United States’ secret training facility for genetically modified humans.  They escaped from the facility in 1995 using parts from a Sony Playstation, a cassette tape recorder, a koosh ball, a flannel shirt, a Black's Law Dictionary, a TI-81 calculator and three packets of Fire Sauce from Taco Bell.  Foster went on to study International Politics and Japanese at Penn State en route to a law degree from Florida State while Albert went on to study Electrical Engineering at Cornell.  The duo reunited in an effort to stop a former MIT professor and likely sociopath from ruining the hopes and dreams of impressionable young entrepreneurs.  After succeeding in defeating the evil "Professor" the two decided to develop a to-scale prototype Mobile Suit Gundam.  However, after seeing the mountain of paperwork required to put their Mobile Suit Gundam into full production the two decided they wanted to renounce war anyway and work on a project that would "bring people together."

In case they forgot this from my application... Here's a reminder of just the top ten reasons they should pick and invest in 121nexus.

Top Ten Reasons the Sharks should Invest in 121nexus
10. They need teams which can be readily casted on their other show Dancing with the Sharks
9.  They like big returns on investment
8. They believe that the way people consume media is rapidly shifting away from live TV and is an area ripe for disruptive media distribution solutions.
7.  121nexus trademarked Personal Media™ (crazy, right?)
6.  The CEO of 121nexus was on TV, so these guys must be for real!
5.  They want to democratize democracy
4.  They have ever wanted information but were turned off when they were asked to opt-in in order to get it or wished they could have remained anonymous.
3.  They like that two guys with zero major political connections managed to get the Obama campaign to use their technology
2. They believe personalization is the future of the internet
1.  Their mamas didn't raise no fools.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Boston Shark Tank - Let's Do It!

I am one of seventy entrepreneurs vying for one of the final six spots in the Boston Shark Tank.  Here's a few reasons why I deserve a shot:
  • Since we did our launch with Obama for America in Columbus, Ohio I've been mum on this blog about the results.  Part of that has to do with confidentiality.  The rest is that I applied for Boston Shark Tank before we did the launch.  More details will come out if I'm selected!
  • We had no political connections at this company when we decided to test our personal media solution in the space of politics.  We simply saw it was a great opportunity to validate our technology.  Selling to political campaigns as an outsider is impossible.  But we achieved it anyway, all the way to the highest level of politics.
  • We now know how our personal media performs against non-personalized media and it's better!  Just how much better I'll feed to the sharks.  But rest assured, we're on the verge of a groundbreaking new marketing tool.  
  • Finally, I want this!  Everyone at 121nexus works their butt off to defy the odds to be one of the few startups that actually makes it in this world.  Getting a shot at the Boston Shark Tank will go a long way with all the tenacity that we have in ensuring this company's success. 

Everyone tweet this blog with the hashtag #bostonsharks so I can get their attention.  Thank you for your support! 

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Bringing Personal Media to Politics

Say Media has done a great job making the case for why it's time to bring Personal Media to politics.  

"Nearly 45 percent of likely voters prefer other video sources to live TV. Politicians must adapt their ad campaigns accordingly."

I couldn't agree more. That's why 121nexus is bringing Personal Media to politics with 121campaign.  Despite the fact that dumping money into TV has worked the last fifty years for campaigns, the reality is that the landscape of media consumption is rapidly shifting.  More and more households have DVRs and fast forward through commercials.  More and more people are accessing media on their mobile devices (smart phones and tablets).  That's why are 121campaign solution makes so much sense. 

With 121campaign the campaigns can reach voters and reach them with the most relevant content possible to engage them at a personal level. Let's review how 121campaign works to illustrate this.
  1. First a campaign assembles the different issue focused content they want to get to voters. 
  2. Then the campaign orders how ever many cards they want to distribute to voters. Each card has a unique QR code and link on it to serve as a voter's individual portal into the campaign.
  3. The campaigner meets a voter, scans the QR code on the card with their smart phone (launching the 121campaign app) and then records the voter's preferences. 
  4. The voter then scans the card and is taken directly to content related to the issue that they personally care most about.
The goal with this Personal Media solution is to provide campaigns with a means to get voters engaged while allowing the voter the choice to remain anonymous if they chose and to not be forced to opt-in to campaign content.

TV will be relevant for the foreseeable future, but now is the time for campaigns to start thinking about Personal Media as a new tool to reach voters.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Personal Media

I recently appeared on TV to talk about 121nexus, our political application 121campaign, our dating application Shall We Meet Again, and Personal Media™.  Personal Media™ is really what this company is about and so I want to elaborate on what we mean by that more in this blog post.

On the TV program, I talked about the evolution of the web.  Web 1.0 was the "Read Web" where you could read information on the internet.  Anyone have a GeoCities webpage back in the day?  Web 2.0 is the "Read/Write Web" where you can not only read information but also "write" or publish information.  Blogs erupted onto the scene as part of Web 2.0 which added vasts amount of information to the internet. Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter are all great examples of Web 2.0 websites where users can publish statuses or upload photos and videos.  Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are also well-known social media companies.  In fact Web 2.0 and social media are almost synonymous.

So what's next for web?  What will Web 3.0 look like?  That's certainly a point of debate. However many focus on the needs that have arisen out of Web 2.0. The results of Web 2.0, users being able to publish content, are that there is a tremendous amount of content and information on the web today.  This is problematic because users now have difficulty trying to find information and make sense of it.  That's why many believe that Web 3.0 will be focused on making information relevant to users by curating the content or personalizing the information.  Here is a good explanation of Web 3.0 concepts where the author, Amit Aragwal states Web 3.0 will be about the semantic web (or the meaning of data), personalization, intelligent search and behavioral advertising among other things.

We agree with the assessments that personalization is going to be a big part of Web 3.0. In fact, we believe that our platform is the perfect example of what is next for the web -- Personal Media™.  We believe in it so much, that we have in fact applied for a trademark on the term which is why you see the TM symbol with the words in this blog.  But I digress, Personal Media™ means serving content and information (media) to individuals on a person to person basis, changing it to meet the personal preferences of a given user.  Instead of sending everyone to the same content, you curate it or configure it to be relevant to the individual. 

With our platform you can customize what your clients, customers or even friends see when you bring them on to the web.  Because Personal Media™ is tailored to the individual it's going to be more engaging than the static, generic content that would normally be viewed by them. 

Personal Media™ -- it's for business, for politics,  for YOU!