'Foolish' small business idea: A computer game designed to help children learn maths. Judith's idea was to fuse an adventure story with math quizzes. She called the game, 'Math Magic'.
Start-up Capital: Unknown.
How small business idea was Launched: Started own business in 1986 - Mindplay. Sold Math Magic and went on to develop several more computer games.
Sales: Sells mostly to Schools - by mailing.
Earnings: Tucson-based company, Mindplay earned $1.4 million in revenues in 1 yr.
Judith Bliss was born into a family who were 'dirt poor', as she says. Her dad was a compulsive gambler, who went to jail for writing bad checks, when Judith was 11. Her mother had to take in laundry, and slave for 12 hours a day, just to make ends meet, barely.
So, Judith grew up realizing how important a good education is. She studied hard and after getting a degree in maths at College, she got a job as a computer programmer. She married and life was good until her marriage turned sour when David was only 4.
Judith continued to work hard and look after her son. But, her son was complaining he found school boring, while his teachers insisted that he just couldn't learn. However, Judith noticed her son, spent hours at his computer. It gave her an idea.
What if she could create a software program, which combined adventures with solving mathematical equations? A computer game which made learning maths fun?
So, she worked on a new program, where the object is to get terribly cute little creatures out of mean Queen Grudgeon's dungeon, by multiplying and dividing a series of fractions. Its the only way to get the creatures out, otherwise they stay locked up forever!
It worked. Her son, David, loved the program and after just 3 months his grades improved. This made Judith Bliss think if the game had helped her son, it would help other children. So, she started her own business, selling her game - which she called Maths Magic - by mailing to schools. David Bliss eventually became an honors student and his mother enjoys a six-figure income.
Visit Judith S. Bliss at http://www.mindplay.com/ She believes that everyone has the right to read, and provides products which have been proven to produce significant gains in reading.