Thoughttrail - A Seedcamp finalist sneak preview

The CEO of Thoughttrail, 21yr old Luke Stanley, got in touch with me after seeing my brief post on the Seedcamp finalists and related links. His venture was included in the list but no information was available at that time.

They have now put a landing page up to capture sign-up requests and to provide a brief intro to the offering. However, he was kind enough to provide me with some additional information on their Seedcamp entry and it was impressive. At the outset, he emphasised that it represents an illustration of technology that Luke and his colleague have been working on for some time. I agree with him that it's easy to see other potential arenas and applications for it.

The fastest way to see what grabbed my attention is with the canned demos accessed here , here and here.

In some ways, the facilities reminded me of Zemanta, a Seedcamp winner last year, which provides blogging authors with relevant links and pictures whilst creating blog posts. It achieves this by scanning the text of the post you are type. In similar fashion, Thoughttrail is providing contextual search facilities, in real-time, that can enhance your IM conversations. Significantly, the development roadmap already foresees drawing source material from personal and universally available repositories with gmail as an example in the former and Wikipedia as an example in the latter category.

Encouragingly, Luke has given thought to a business model and thankfully it isn't Google Ad-words, which seems to be a stock answer from many startups. Presently, he is looking to generate revenues from commissions on transactions made after clicking on links the service identified e.g. links to music and books on Amazon. I am doubtful whether this can generate significant revenues, but I can certainly imagine this offering getting widespread adoption if the underlying technology can scale. Moreover, I can enviage this being appealing to the larger IM network providers, in the same way that Xobni was apparently appealing to Microsoft.

Based on what I was shown, Thoughttrail should be being a strong contender for a place on the Seedcamp podium. It's not presently shown on Sam Sethi's Seedcamp Winner prediction market list here, so perhaps it might be worth a punt on "Other", especially since the Judges have past form of picking this kind of solution.

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posted by John Wilson @ 4:13 PM Permanent Link newsvine reddit


At 11:54 AM, Anonymous Sean Park said...

Agree what they are doing is interesting but I'm not sure they are targeting the right market. Need to think about it a bit more but I have a few ideas of how you might really be able to exploit this technology.


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