Nobody is Going to Pay You For Your Ideas

by Tim Berry

Yesterday somebody posted an interesting comment on the bottom of my post ‘How to Sell an Idea to a Big Company.’ Sadly, that post explains to people why they can’t sell their ideas to big companies. Most of the 70-some comments there are from people who ignore what the post says and share how great... Read More »


Q&A revisited: Really, How Do I Sell My Idea to a Big Company. Part 2.

by Tim Berry

Irony: This post from about a year ago explains why you can’t sell an idea to a large company, and recommends not even trying. And dozens of reader comments ask how to do exactly what the post itself says they shouldn’t even try. And I get more comments all the time, plus emails on my... Read More »

Free the Numbers

Free the Numbers for Simple Lists and Tables

by Tim Berry

This is me giving back, making it up to all the spreadsheet haters. It’s a non spreadsheet: lists, tables, yes; but no formulas, functions, or programming. It just adds the rows and columns automatically. I call it Free the Numbers. I’ve been a spreadsheet guy since 1979. I wrote three books on how to use spreadsheets... Read More »

Paradigm Shift

Paradigm Shift: Sramana Mitra 1M/1M

by Tim Berry

I liked this one from Sramana Mitra’s !M/!M Youtube channel: Actually I liked several of them. Sramana has 10 cartoons like this one available as a Youtube playlist. Nice work. And if you don’t see the video here, I apologize. You can use this link to go to the source in Youtube. Read More »


Guess What Percent of Ideas are Really Opportunities

by Tim Berry

This monday I posted ideas vs. opportunities in this space. The point was filtering all those ideas for the subset that are actually opportunities. Overnight I got an email from Rick Holdren, chief evangelist for Medi-code, with this delightful additional story: As a angel investor in over 25 startups I tell a different story: A... Read More »


What Business to Start? Look in the Mirror

by Tim Berry

So you want to start a business, but don’t know what kind? Sure, you can get a list of franchises or ask the experts what are good businesses to start. That works for some people. Lists of businesses to start are easy to find. My advice, however, is don’t look for a list of good... Read More »


Really Great Ideas Seem Obvious

by Tim Berry

Amazing fact (to me at least): the first wheels on suitcases appeared in the 1970s. My wife and I, both baby boomers, have asked ourselves: how is it possible that we all dealt with suitcases without wheels all the way through the 50s and 60s? What was wrong with all of us? And sliced bread first appeared... Read More »

Q&A: How Do I Sell My Idea to A Big Company?

by Tim Berry

This is another email question I received via my ask-me-a-question form on my timberry.com site. I’ve edited it slightly: I recently read your article protect your ideas and I have an idea that I want to protect and want to pitch to a company. I don’t know if I can turn my idea into a... Read More »


The Critical Mass Problems

by Tim Berry

Sometimes I’m intrigued by what I call critical mass problems, meaning businesses based on ideas that work only if masses of users adopt them. These make intriguing startups sometimes, because if they go big, they go really big. The best example in my lifetime was the fax machine. I dealt with the precursor in the... Read More »


Ideas: Evolutionary Computing and Internet As Brain

by Tim Berry

Call it coincidence, serendipity, synchronicity, or just random, but last week I was accidentally exposed to two seemingly unrelated ideas that ended up seeming very related to me. And they gave me a fascinating whack on the side of the head. I thought artificial intelligence had run its course, but computers that learn could be... Read More »