Those of us with the dexterity of an inebriated giraffe are prone to rejoice at innovations that make at-home manicures less of a catastrophe. The Nailbot, a new machine from San Francisco-based company Preemadonna, is one such invention — it enables you to apply nail art simply by using your smart phone. But CEO and Co-founder Pree Walia hopes that the Nailbot will achieve a loftier goal: introducing girls to technology.
When NPR’s Laura Sydell spoke with Walia about the product, she got the impression that the Nailbot was like “a gateway drug for girls to the world of technology: Preemadonna is trying to meet many young girls in a place where they can express themselves and have fun.”
The Nailbot will sell for roughly $199 and, according to Walia, will be “[pitched]...as both a beauty device and a sort of arts and crafts tool.” She claims that both boys and girls are fascinated by its machinations, but emphasizes its role in inspiring girls’ creativity and innovation. As Walia tells Sydell, “It’s really a mobile platform for art with uses well beyond fingernails.”
Preemadonna is an all-female startup company, and they are committed to mentoring young girls, both on and offline. They’ve even launched an Ambassadors program where “young girls can learn social media and digital storytelling, computer programming and hacking, or digital and graphic design.”
Sydell remarks that “a part of her” wishes women making waves in start up would focus their efforts on “heavier” issues, like curing breast cancer or documenting assault. But inspiration sometimes derives from unexpected places. Perhaps a Nailbot manicure will be one such source.
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