Buried in Dean Takahashi's seemingly endless interview with WebTV founder Steve Perlman for VentureBeat is this glistening nugget: Among the startups his Rearden incubator has launched is a website called Women of Action TV. Perlman has an elaborate explanation for why he started it:
[It's a] community service site with videos of athletic women like Jackie Joyner-Kersee or Florence Griffith Joyner. But it is also a technology site. It was one of the very first sites with high-definition video being distributed on the Internet. As people used that site, we saw how well it ran on different machines. We looked at the algorithms. WOA TV was a complete test bed for us and a cool site for something that wasn't covered enough, like women in sports.Pay attention, folks: This is what makes Steve Perlman a true entrepreneur.
Most heterosexual men would just troll YouTube for clips of sporty women. Perlman? He started an entire company around the concept of female bodies in motion, and developed an elaborate creation myth for it. If he can persuade the likes of Takahashi that his collection of videos of women running in spandex is a massive technological step forward as well as a politically correct celebration of female athleticism, he can sell anything to anyone.