A couple months ago, I was at a tech conference and asked another startup founder how big her company’s team was. “We’re 8 people and one dog,” she told me.
Up until that conversation, I was not aware that dogs could be part of the startup team – and according to our accountant Donna, they can’t actually be on payroll. That said, I figured we at 7 Generation Games should get one. (Well, actually I already had one and when we went the Live/Work route, he obviously came with us.) So introducing Edison, the 7 Generation Games wonder dog.
So you get acquainted, here are some things you should know about him.
- He’s a pug/chihuahua/(possibly) lab. He was born in a shelter and we got him through Much Love Animal Rescue (shout out to people saving dogs), so they know his mom was a chug, the official portmanteau – aka name mashup – of a pug and a chihuahua. They kind of guessed on the dad, but when you see him, it kind of seems right.
- He has no real employable skills. My sister Ronda lives not too far from some working tigers, who actually earn their keep and bring in a paycheck. Eddie knows a total of zero tricks and only comes if there is a treat involved.
- He is named after Thomas Edison. When I was six months pregnant with my third child, my husband suggested we go look at the puppies across the street from the Farmer’s Market. Before I knew it, we somehow had also decided to bring home a puppy. (I’m not even one of those “dog people.”) However, in the waiting/home check period that the rescue shelter required, we had time to think of a name. Our then 7-year-old and 3-year-old had lots of suggestions, all of which my husband hated. And my husband had many suggestions, all of which our 3-year-old and 7-year-old hated. (I was 6 months pregnant, I decided to sit this battle out.) However, after going through a list of innovators/entrepreneurs for name inspiration – apparently foreshadowing his eventual rise to startup dog- we went with Edison. After all, Edison wasn’t a very good student and was the kind of kid who teachers had basically written off (something that really resonated given the work we’re doing at 7 Generation Games) and he invented LOTS of things – including the phonograph, the incandescent light bulb, a motion picture camera – holding over 1,000 U.S. patents and 1,000-plus more around the globe.Plus Edison the person said lots of profound quotes, like,
“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”
“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
“Nearly every man who develops an idea works it up to the point where it looks impossible, and then he gets discouraged. That’s not the place to become discouraged.”
He had almost as many great quotes as he had inventions. Our developer Jose thinks we should rename Edison Tesla, but that’s not going to happen.
- He has never pulled a travois. If you’ve played our game Making Camp, you would know that Native Americans from several Plains tribes used dogs to pull a kind of sled – because horses had not yet been brought to America. Given his size, Edison likely would not have been that great at pulling a travois. Also given the fact that he immediately tried to pull off his BB-8 costume last Halloween, it seems unlikely he would have enjoyed wearing a harness.
There you have it – so now we have moved from the next stage of the startup evolution cycle to startup with a startup dog. So next time you hear us mention Edison – or he ends up featured as our Instagram photo of the day – you’ll know a bit more of his backstory.
While Edison is 7 Generation Games’ real dog and you can’t have him, we do have a digital dog that can be all yours. Just play Making Camp or Making Camp Bilingual and check out our dog mini-game – where you can get, name and take care of your own dog while you solve multiplication problems! It’s a game we created in direct response to feedback from kids who tested our games.
For some reason, I always name my digital dog Buttons.