The first time I used the presentation software, Beautiful.ai, I could sense a deep conversation with the tool, a kind of a push back everytime I wanted the deck to look in a particular way, and the software didn’t agree. It didn’t stop there. It provided me with options, sometimes a handful, and at times, just one, or even none at all. Almost like negotiating with a human connection.
So when I recorded this conversation with Mitch Grasso, the founder of Beautiful.ai, I wanted to learn more about his journey and how things work behind the scenes.
“The genesis of this really came from science fiction, and it’s from watching IronMan. Tony Stark is sitting in his man cave talking to J.A.R.V.I.S. (Just A Rather Very Intelligent System), an AI, and asking J.A.R.V.I.S. to paint the IronMan suit. And he was like that’s too “hot rod”, make it little more classy or something like that. And Jarvis gave him another set of colour options,” Mitch tells me in this podcast.
“And I was like, wow, what will it take to build that. What would it take to build a software that could do that for you, make aesthetic decisions. That’s the vision. The science fiction view is you tell a computer to build a product roadmap presentation, and it’s done.”
It’s amazing how some entrepreneurs connect with the problems they solve so deeply, and so relentlessly. These founders build newer startups, keep experimenting, failing, all towards the same mission–solving a problem in the most perfect way. To them, every new startup is a journey.
There is a certain doggedness in this approach, at least that’s how it appears from the outside. But for these founders, their relationship with the problems they pick to solve is a beautiful experience.
While growing up, Mitch Grasso watched his father hustle and build his precious metal refinery company, and later worked at a music store to find his spark of entrepreneurship.
Mitch has been trying to build a great presentation software for nearly a decade. Before starting Beautiful.ai, he founded two startups–first, a digital signage company, and then SlideRocket, a presentation company that he sold to VMware.
“Every project is a series of lessons, it’s full of execution, vision, and how you emotionally approach the work. You obviously become mature and mature, and things become less intense, less serious as you have done more of them,” Mitch says.
“Everything is design for me, building products, company. That’s what my father did and that’s what the guy at the music store did. It’s always appealing to me whether it’s successful or not, the process is fun.”
Listen to this podcast conversation to learn more about building, staying inspired, and having fun on the way.