This time it’s not a new member we are welcoming. We realized we were missing some portraits in this series of introductions! Sébastien Heymann is Linkurious’ CEO and one of its co-founders. Discover him in 6 questions.
Who are you?
I’m an explorer who got hooked by graph visualization. I do whatever is legally possible to play with this toy one more day: open source community leader, PhD in network science, or CEO of a company.
Can you tell us about the products you love?
I love the warmth and softness of the light produced by old light bulbs.
What do you expect to learn at Linkurious?
I expect to learn how to build a profitable technology company from scratch. It involves learning how to lead people, how to take decisions, and to keep dreaming with the end in mind.
I also hope that we’ll discover the secret tricks of fraudsters and criminal organizations. It may be useful someday… 🙂
Which superhero or fictional character would you be?
Jack Rackham in the TV show called Black Sails. So much karma! He is smart and proud, he never gives up, and is dedicated to his close friends. Yet he is an anti-hero and his weaknesses puts him in stupid dangers. The historical character is awesome too.
What is one thing few people know about you?
I tried to create a company at 20 to distribute Libre music through blogs and it failed. The relationship with my associate had become unbalanced when starting to talk about money, so I quit with no other option in sight. Ironically, this choice led me to graph visualization: after a call to the engineering school that I had rejected the month before because I had decided to drop out, they accepted me again. Web mining was one of the first classes I took, and I’ve met amazing people from there like Franck Ghitalla, Dana Diminescu, or Mathieu Jacomy.
I tried to create a company on graph visualization analysis at 23 and it failed. I applied for a big French innovative startup contest right after the final exams of the engineering school. I remember writing the proposal in the car of my dad while moving to my next place. The proposal was accepted but I got burnt out. It took me a year to recover from it, losing my business partners and my girlfriend along the way.
Linkurious is my third attempt at creating a company, and this time I feel lucky. From my failures I’ve learnt how to better choose the people I’m working with and how to manage my energy. I’m curious to see how far we will go.
What is your favorite piece of music at the moment?
When I’m sad I listen to the beautiful song The Sound of Silence by Simon & Garfunkel. When I’m happy, well I have a crush at the moment for the Fred Falke remix of Gregory Porter – Don’t Lose Your Stream.