(Just a note: ‘Shipping’ is Seth Godin’s term for ‘Launching a project’)

Today I learned an important lesson in why it’s important to ship–not just ship, but ship FAST!

For 3 months now, my two friends and I were working on this idea we had about a collaborative site that promotes creativity and fearlessness of thought which hopefully leads to innovation. We called it wutif, as a wordplay on what we believe to be the spark of innovation: “What if?”

I remember 3 weeks ago, I mentioned that if we only met up once a week, it’d take too long. But we had lots of other commitments at the time, so we couldn’t really get past meeting once a week. We went along and kept planning–we had our mission and vision, who we were, who we weren’t, who our market was, our site pegs, etc. We were getting into operations next week (with this week’s meeting postponed due to schedules; my friend is getting married this Saturday!), until I saw this tweet:

“@ideo RT @brucenussbaum Open IDEO–an open platform for innovation for the social good. This looks pretty cool. What’s your DQ? http://vimeo.com/13707896”

Of course I checked it out (IDEO is, in fact, my dream company). IDEO to me always means new, and fresh. I watched the video. You bet I was surprised at IDEO (who wouldn’t be, if they’re always new and fresh?). Their new platform is called OpenIDEO, and it is “An Open Platform for Innovation Where We Create Better, Together.” Surprise number 1.

The concept behind the platform seemed to familiar. It hit me: “This is what we wanted wutif to be, except they had a better launch and a name behind them.” I was both hammered and in awe, almost getting teary-eyed. It was our idea’s long lost twin, only it was born way ahead. Surprise number 2.

The Design Quotient concept? Nothing short of brilliant. Similar to our concept of a new-age resume, and specialization badges for your field of work/ideas. Surprise number 3.

I felt bad because we had the idea but weren’t able to ship. But I felt good,real good, because IDEO (no less) was thinking about it, too. This taught me that valuable lesson in shipping. Shipping is everything, especially in innovation. There is no innovation without shipping.

I feel much better about it now. Now I talked it over with one of my friends and we discussed new ideas to pursue. I’m thinking of a new blog, too. I haven’t posted in a while because I’m losing my corporate touch. Anyway, if you’re curious about the video and the platform, please, take a look. It might be something society needs. The video is here.

Also, their website is: http://openideo.com. (I’ve been trying to get a copy of their logo to place in this entry, but it changes every time you refresh the page.)