We’ve Got This Whole Unicorn Thing All Wrong!
Tim O'Reilly

Maybe it’s even simpler

I like the direction, but attempting to redefine the established Silicon Valley term seems like an uphill battle — and if popularized won’t it lead to confusion with two similar but differing meanings? VCs are always going to be focused on profitable technology — ideally companies positioned to capture the upside as exclusively as possible (contradicting your 3rd condition).

Larry Page’s term “magic moments” is essentially your conditions 1 and 2. I would say that these small innovations are themselves a worthy goal of innovation — leave the money making aspect to investors. (A favorite example of an older magic moment is Microsoft Word squiggly underline spell checker: now that’s how it works everywhere. While Office makes huge profits it’s hard to attribute profits to this feature, cool as it is.)

Generalizing your condition 3 liberally, I suggest that simply having impact is a more interesting definition.

3. It has enormous impact.

I am interested in world-changing technologies whether or not money is even involved: isn’t requiring monetary gain just an arbitrarily limited view the possibilities?

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