Graphical Food Recipes - Marinó Páll Valdimarsson & Herdís Helga Arnalds of Gracipe

Our brains are optimized to process information in picture form far better than writing… so it follows that information that can be meaningfully presented in graphical form shouldGracipe co-founders Marinó Páll Valdimarsson and Herdís Helga Arnalds have brought this axiom into the kitchen. Gracipe is the happy medium between a standard written recipe and a cooking show. Like a recipe book, you can call up the recipe on your mobile device and cook at your own pace; but like a cooking show, the recipe is presented graphically in an easy-to-follow, cross-cultural format.

It’s truly one of those “once you do it this way, you’ll never go back” experiences. Check out their website and try the beta. Some of the most brilliant technologies aren’t necessarily solving some big problem (the written recipe has been working all right so far), but rather taking something that ain’t broke and making it better.

While the tendency among entrepreneurs is to overestimate the scope of their target markets, Herdís confides that initially she underestimated the potential appeal of Gracipe. “But talking to more and more people,” Herdís told us atStartup Iceland, “we’re realizing that the group that’s going to use this idea is a lot broader than [we thought]. So now we’re thinking, this could be a big group of potential users.”

Will this better way to create and share recipes catch on? Marinó says they’re about to find out. “We’re planning on launching the product… in a couple of months. Soon we will be exposed, and everybody can access the platform. And then the real test of whether these graphical recipes will catch on will be obvious.”

If Gracipe is successful (we’d be surprised if it didn’t exceed expectations), they may owe it to good ol’ fashioned networking skills. “Like every entrepreneur says, the resource that we’ve found most useful is the network,” says Herdís. “We’ve [been] going to every conference, meeting, every get-together we’re invited to. Whether it’s relationships or knowledge, [networking] has benefitted us.”

A lot of people have contributed to their startup success, but for Marinó, one stands out:

“I remember one guy I was studying with in the Netherlands,” he says. “He had different kinds of questions than the usual questions that business people are usually asking you, like ‘what’s your business model and how are you going to make money?’ But he asked more about ‘what do you need to start?’ And I said, ‘maybe a thousand recipes or something.’ And he asked, ‘how long does it take to make one recipe?’ And I said, ‘maybe 5-10 minutes.’ And he said, ‘okay, you can finish this in one month? Why don’t you do it?’

“Hearing something like that from people who have done it before drives me. I went and programmed through the night and developed my product as much as I could.”

Gracipe is clearly maturing well, and will soon be fully unleashed into kitchens around the world.

You can find Gracipe on Facebook here.

Underwriter: Promogogo

Interviewer: Thubten Comerford
Article: Eric Inman

Producer: Hrefna Helgadottir
Video Editor: Jacob Curtis

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