The ghost howls

A blog of virtual reality, startup and stuff



Immotionar post mortem: goodbye and thank you

In these days I’ve written a lot of words about my startup Immotionar that is shutting down. I tried to explain you what errors we made that lead to our shutdown and I also tried being of help in telling you how to recover from the psychological downtimes of seeing your company closing. Today I want just to thank all people that have been part of the project and recall some good memories to close this serie… from the next post on, I’ll return talking about VR reviews, tutorials and so on.

First of all I want to thank Gianni, for having taught me so much in these three years and for having been the one starting this virtual reality journey. Actually it was more an augmented reality journey at the beginning, since our first idea was to use Google Glasses to do amazing AR applications… then we tried them and… cough cough… they were really terrible! Right eye had to look at this little display while left eye should look forward… only derp could use such a hardware!!

Derp’s eyes are the ideal ones for Google Glasses (Image by urban dictionary)

Continue reading “Immotionar post mortem: goodbye and thank you”

Immotionar post mortem: how to recover psychologically from your VR startup failure

In this third episode relative to my startup failure (first one was the failure announcement, while the second one talked about the errors we made that led to our failure), I want to tell you how you, as a startup founder, can help yourself in recovering psychologically from your startup failure.

Seeing your startup failing is fucking hard, trust me. It’s like losing a person you love. When you start your startup adventure, you know that you have 90% chances of failing (these are the startups statistics), but you think that this won’t regard you, since your startup is based on a great idea and you’re super-determined to work to make it become a great success. When things become hard, you keep pushing and you continue think that they’ll get better in the end. You don’t realize it is failed until the moment of the final shut-down decision. Continue reading “Immotionar post mortem: how to recover psychologically from your VR startup failure”

Immotionar post mortem: what errors we made in our VR startup and how to avoid them for yours

In my last post I told you that my startup has just shut down. If you don’t know it, its name was Immotionar: our purpose was to offer full body virtual reality to every kind of headsets, mixing VR HMD with body tracking sensors like Microsoft Kinects. An innovative product, that has failed nonetheless.

With today’s post I want to highlight some errors we made, so that you can avoid them in your startup journey (if you plan in becoming an entrepreneur).

So, this is a list of the main keypoints I want to higlight. Continue reading “Immotionar post mortem: what errors we made in our VR startup and how to avoid them for yours”

Immotionar VR startup shuts down: f**k you all.

With the classical “thank you all” post, the adventure of my virtual reality startup Immotionar has closed. We tried to push virtual reality beyond its limits for 3 years, adding full body of the user in the virtual world without worn sensors, but in the end we lost the battle.

I made such a strong title for this post not because I hate you (I love you, my readers!) but to mock all those thank-you-posts that are all full of hypocrisy: when you close your company, the last thing that you want to do is be kind and say “thank you to everyone”. When you close your startup, you feel sadness, anger, shame, emptiness: a mixture of all the worst feelings… the ones your mum has told you not to feel in your life. “F*ck everyone” is the title that every shut-down post should have… it would be more honest.

I’ll try to not make this failure useless, explaining you what I’ve learnt in these hard times. Especially I want to explain you:

  • The errors we’ve made, so you won’t make them as well;
  • How to recover psychologically from such a failure;

My next posts will be about that. It will hurt, but I hope that will help someone else in his/her journey for becoming an entrepreneur. Stay tuned.



Concentrate on solutions, not on problems

Sometimes I like blogging about productivity stuff and the right mindset to have when you’ve a startup. Today is one of those days.

In your startup journey you will be overwhelmed by problems. Really. If you want to run a company and you think that everything will run smoothly… well, I’m sorry to say that this won’t ever happen. Even if you’re in the miracle conditions that you have not problems (what business are you running? Seriously, I’ve to consider changing my job…), surely you will be overwhelmed by too many things to do: meetings to attend, events, development of the product, answering emails, writing a business plans, etc etc…

Keeping a healthy mental attitude in your startup journey is really fundamental or you risk to become completely mad. Sincerely speaking there is no secret and I’ve still not found this right attitude. But day after day I discover little tricks on how to get less mad, so I’m mad but still not completely insane :). The funny part of this tricks is that they seem to be pronounced by Captain Obvious, but in the end, when you finally start applying them, you understand that Captain Obvious was right. Continue reading “Concentrate on solutions, not on problems”

4 things that this year have made me improve the most

Last post of the year: 2016 is going to end and here comes the time we make a balance of the past year. For me 2016 has been crazy, like every year for every startupper: you have lots of stress, lots of things to do, lots of problems and an emotional rollercoaster that never ends. We of Immotionar had made lots of steps further in our vision for providing full body virtual reality: our suite has come out in private beta in July, then went public last month. We made our first event. We developed Hit Motion, the first cross platform full body VR and had reviews even in Chinese!

But the most important thing is that I personally made lots of steps further in becoming a better person, a better startupper, a better developer. I could write lots of words about what I learned and give you advices and I surely will do it, but not now. I think you just want to briefly read this post and then start the New year’s eve party 🙂 … so I’ll just give you some 4 short hints! Continue reading “4 things that this year have made me improve the most”

The greatest part of being a startupper is having supporters

Today I just want to talk about some thoughts that came to my mind after I had a call with our supporter and beta-tester Sasha. It has happened last thursday: I was really tired, stressed, late for everything and I had to have a call with him to talk about our ImmotionRoom system and what was wrong with it. During the call I had to help him with the setup and listen to his feedbacks to all the problems our product has inside… but the thing that I loved a lot was seeing his support, the fact that he truly wants us to succeed, he truly believes in us. And we have no idea of who he is: he’s not a relative of ours, neither a friend (well, now he actually is, but he was not before he discovered our company), he’s not even from our same continent! He’s just a man that believes in us, in what we do and started supporting us. And he’s doing it in a great way… like giving me this great moment during our Skype call…

Continue reading “The greatest part of being a startupper is having supporters”

Some tips on public speaking (part 2)

Today I’ll give you some more tips about public speaking, continuing that bullet list that I started yesterday. Hope to help people among you that are going to go on a stage for the first time. So, new tips for today:

  • Find your style: everyone of us is very different from the others. And everyone of us has its own style he fits in, that makes him feel confident. You have to find the style of public speaking that fits you the best, that you feel truly yours. For example, I’ve discovered that I’ve to talk as I do in this blog: saying serious things, but in an informal way and with a smile on my face, showing enthusiasm. I’ve tried to be more serious in the past, but this did not fit me… and I ended up being un-natural and awkward. When I started using this style, I felt like being truly me and now I’m ok with public speaking. So, try different styles and find the one ideal for you;
man suit
Speaking is like dressing: someone like suits, someone else like t-shirts…

Continue reading “Some tips on public speaking (part 2)”

Some tips on public speaking

Public speaking is not easy. I discovered it the first day they made me say something in front of lot people. 2 years ago we as Immotionar made our first talk at the InternetOfThings event and Gianni at a certain point took the mic and put it in my hands… and I almost choked out. Not as Eminem in 8 mile… but I did say something like “eeeeh I’m…eeeh Antony… and we’ll talk about virtual reality…” and then immediately gave the mic back to Gianni, that was (and still is) more calm and experienced!

In this years lots of thing have changed and now I’m decent in having public speeches, so I can give some hints to you, hoping to be helpful to people that have to make one of their first speeches. So… bullet list of advices! Continue reading “Some tips on public speaking”

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