It's the end of the year, time for school fairs to give every class an opportunity to raise funds for whatever projects or activities they want to do next year. Renting the building is free as the entire school spends all weekend decorating, having a fair and putting things back in their place so lessons can continue on Monday morning. Everyone gets to meet each other, kids have some rooms to play, grown-ups get to find neatly crafted presents, have a cup of coffee and lots of food. Take your time to feel fine, nothing out of the ordinary.
Really? All the way in the back, computer class A-level managed to take me by surprise: they rebuilt ordinary waffle makers to have a temperature sensor so an Arduino could precisely target the waffle's core temperature after a custom-built motor pump had injected the right amount of waffle batter (one of vegan, gluten-free, garlic or meaty) so the student behind the counter only had to open/close the waffle maker and serve the waffle. To put a little more shine on it, people put cash on the table and were explained about Ethereum while the cash they put on the table was exchanged for ETH and shared between a Waffle Wallet and a Tip Wallet (no change returned unless you had your own wallet address at hand). Once the transaction was logged, the Arduino would read the transaction data and automatically create the selected waffle. A very impressive piece of tech built by teens, absolutely amazing.
What's the catch? I took my family to the girls' café instead, old-school coffee and cake served from behind the counter to the table with no more tech involved than an ordinary coffee machine and a pencil. I watched the guys with their fancy Arduino-and-Ethereum-powered waffle makers and realized: within the course of 45 minutes, not one of them waffles reached the color or consistency of what I'd expect a waffle to look like. Those brave enough to try a bite were, quite obvious, not enjoying it. With all the exciting tech involved, Research&Development forgot about the one thing customers wanted: get their hungry bellies filled with something tasty.
Accounting was happy, though, within a few minutes, all the tax records were filled and filed.
You've got a brilliant idea, that's cool. But before going public, take a step back and check if what you do is what the customer wants; take a few hours to check if you can partner up with someone for an enhanced experience.
This time, it's been waffles and a couple of bucks. Another time, it may happen to be copying machines not getting the copying right: What bad may happen if oil rigs, military or medical staff get an 8 where there should have been a 6?
If I may ask you for one thing: if you ever do a project involving cryptocurrency, take a moment to get your job done right. Other people may entrust you with serious amounts of cash. They might get upset if a couple of million dollars go missing (unless you had done your ICO on WaffleCoin in mid-2017) ;-)