Afonso Barbosa - From music, to tech to end extreme poverty by 2030
Afonso helped to create Paredes de Coura Music Festival. He also worked for Facebook, owns a patent for multi-touch screens and co-designed the First Capacitive Spherical Multi-touch Device screen. Now he wants to end extreme poverty by 2030.
For Afonso Barbosa, entrepreneurship is something as natural as breathing, and he’s been able to mix that innate skill with his passion for music. A jazz pianist, he has successfully correlated music with his creations, talking about it very naturally.
One of his first endeavors was a Music Festival. Paredes de Coura Music Festival is, nowadays, after 26 years of existence, part of music history in Portugal and very much due to Afonso and his friends who had this idea as a plan to bring more visitors to the town and, therefore, more business.
A few years later, Afonso co-invented Displax, a large format capacitive multi-touch screen, way before iPhones were even a thing. The way this idea crossed his mind is a funny story. Afonso was working in design, Web2 product development, and research at Edigma, something already ahead of his time, when his partner told him about the movie Minority Report and how Tom Cruise controlled screens with his hands. As a pianist, the multi-touch concept was familiar to him, and the idea took off. This brought Edigma a 2.5 million investment, clients from all over the world like Microsoft and NASA, and more than 11 Innovations Awards.
By the time they became worldwide industry leaders, they received the unannounced visit of a multimillionaire challenging them to create an exclusive multi-touch screen for his yacht, a spherical one. No one else was accepting the challenge. It took them a year and many many challenges to build it, but they finally did.
Eleven years later, the willingness to create new things re-sparked, so Afonso left Edigma to further his entrepreneurial spirit. He created quite a few more startups, such as Seatwish (a Social Ticket Marketplace w/ 360VR Live streaming) and QUANTA, his first professional experience with blockchain. Unfortunately, the cryptocurrency entered a bear market one year later, so Afonso decided to move on and accepted a job as a Senior Product Designer at Meta, previously Facebook.
During the pandemic, two years after joining Facebook, Marco Barbosa, co-founder of ImpactMarket, challenges Afonso once again, this time to join him at the social impact startup. As the Tetris expert Afonso is (really! He can play for hours without ever losing a game.), he likes seeing pieces falling into their place. So the idea of building a project that allows people worldwide to have a Universal Basic Income (UBI) through Blockchain was irrefutable.
ImpactMarket, based on the Celo Blockchain, it's a decentralised poverty alleviation layer-2 protocol; this means it allows people with no access to the traditional banking system to receive a UBI through donations. As it has no intermediaries, 100% of the donated money goes to those in need. It has its own coin ($PACT), which means its users are able to participate in the protocol and, with a team of 25 people working remotely from all over the world. The company, which will eventually become a DAO, has raised 2.1-million-dollars in investment and has already reached 33 countries, and has helped 38k people.
Afonso’s motto in life is to learn something new every day. Now that he is fully adapted to this new way of working brought by Web3, he is focusing on accessibility and usability. After all, his designs are reaching people with low-quality phones and, probably, not even computers.
From Talent Protocol, Afonso expects to find more people believing in his mission. He seeks any kind of support, like contacts, ideas, and contributions. He offers calls about Web3 Product Design or feedback on your Product Information Architecture as perks. The perk for those giving a big enough contribution to accelerating his mission in ImpactMarket is gaining a friend for life.
From our conversation, we believe being Afonso’s friend will mean listening to him playing jazz, talking about design for social good, learning to see stereograms, and meeting his wife and their cute Yorkshire. One thing is for sure: you’ll have a grateful friend.
🪙Tokens in Circulation: 11,949.00 $AFONSO
💰Market Value: $1,194.90