There is a pervasive problem in America that plagues everyone: boredom. In normal times, boredom is something to be expected, something that people distract themselves from with social media or streaming services. But after a year in his 40s scrolling the Instagram reels and watching old TV shows online, those distractions don’t cut him off anymore.
People aren’t just bored in their free time either. Boredom pervades everything from work at school to lazy Sunday mornings doing nothing. Studies show that 87% of adults are bored at their jobs, while 90% of students are bored every day. And boredom can be a dangerous thing-studies also show that teens who are often bored are 50% more likely to start smoking, drinking and using illegal drugs.
James Pratama saw the problem of boredom and set out to find a solution. Pratama is an entrepreneur and product manager who is developing an innovative solution to solve what is arguably a pressing problem in the world. Together with fellow entrepreneur Leo Liu, Pratama has developed Alohub, a platform that lets you find a variety of fun experiences in your city with just a few clicks.
Pratama and Liu came up with the idea for Alohub together after attending a pottery painting class in Boston. Seeing what a creative and unique experience she was hiding under their noses, they quickly realized that there were many experiences like this just waiting to be found. The problem to be solved was, how could they help people discover new fun experiences when those experiences tended to be buried under unrelated online products and services?
This is where Alohub comes in. Alohub is a platform that brings together all of your city’s fun experiences in one app. Think of it like Netflix for in-person experiences, a way to browse salsa dancing, ax throwing, and kayaking tours as you browse your favorite TV shows. can browse an organized catalog of between 50 and 100 fun experiences run by local businesses, literally choosing their own adventure, “says Pratama. Alohub also benefits businesses by allowing them to better market their experiences directly to interested people.
Alohub even helps its users meet new people, as it gives them the opportunity to join social time slots to have experiences with people they have never met before. Other apps have attempted to introduce people to new friends, but have done so with limited success. While swiping for friends on Bumble Friends may seem unnatural and forced, Alohub allows new people to meet in a much more organic and natural way through shared experiences. Rock climbing is much easier to bond with than endless texting. And because these experiences are hosted by companies and carried out in groups, safety and comfort are guaranteed for everyone.
As for James Pratama, this is not the start of his entrepreneurial journey. Since his childhood in Indonesia, he has a gift and obsession with solving problems in the most creative way. Pratama has seen the many problems prevalent in developing countries, including poverty, inequality and pollution. While enrolled at Babson College, he started a social enterprise called Orange Papaya which has helped Indonesian women living in disadvantaged areas earn a salary by hand-making recycled newspaper notebooks sold in the United States. Orange Papaya then sold hundreds of hand-woven newspaper notebooks, raise $ 4,777 with 96 backers on Kickstarter.
From there, Pratama became interested in using technology to solve problems. He had the opportunity to work at DataRobot, where he worked on product management in artificial intelligence. There he became Senior Product Manager for DataRobot Pathfinder, a public use case library that helps organizations understand the business problems they can solve using artificial intelligence. Pratama has led the product from inception and development through launch and maintenance, and it has now grown into the market’s most comprehensive public library of practical AI use cases.
But Pratama did not stop there. His time at DataRobot inspired him to try to find ways to use technology to improve the decisions people make every day. Having identified boredom as a major problem affecting people of all ages, he decided to start Alohub with fellow entrepreneur Leo Liu to make it easy for people to find new and fun experiences.
Pratama’s mission is to make it as easy and simple as possible for people to find things to do with their friends, a date or new people. Thanks to Alohub, he declutters the way people decide what to do and who to do it with. During the design of Alohub, Pratama spoke to hundreds of users and dozens of companies to find out their weak points so that they could create a product that could finally satisfy both sides. Whether people are looking to enjoy a hot yoga class with their partner or meet new people in a shared mini-golf session, Pratama offers people an easy way to do it.
Tackling a problem as pervasive as boredom takes an incredible amount of skill and creativity, and it’s clear that James Pratama has it all. Since Alohub launched in February 2021, he has worked with dozens of businesses in Boston and created a shared community of hundreds of people who love to do adventurous things. It remains to be seen what the next step is for James Pratama and Alohub, but if the past is any indication, the future looks bright.
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