The RECESS tour has wrapped up and Neon Roots was there letting young entrepreneurs and product owners in on our new storycarding service Rootstrap.  But we didn’t just want to talk about the service, we wanted to put it into action.  That’s why we offered a free Rootstrap session worth $20,000 to the “Best Idea Not Yet Built.”

Well, we found that product and it came from the bright minds of Delara Fadavi and Danee Kenyon.  Their idea for USKey was not only innovative but addressed a problem that many of us face in an incredibly smart way.  To say these entrepreneurs are new to the game would be quite an understatement.  They’ve only been at it for a few months, but that shouldn’t take away from their accomplishments.  If nothing else, it should serve as a testament to how truly great their idea is.

They came up with USKEY, a simple solution to prevent laptop theft.  It’s a motion-activated USB plug-in that is equipped with an on-board speaker.  If you’re in the library and on that fifth cup of coffee, you’re probably going to have to head for the bathroom soon.  But what about your laptop?  You can just plug in USKey and activate it through a password.  The USB is motion-activated so if your laptop is moved, an alarm sounds and can only be disabled through another passcode.

The small team of UCSD students that developed USKey include founder/CEO Delara Fadavi, founder/CTO Danee Kenyon, COO and chief marketer Aditi Gupta, and hardware and software developer Jorge Landaverde.  They participated in the RECESS Pitch Contest where they made it to the semi-finals in downtown Las Vegas at the annual Up Summit conference.  It was there that they caught the eye of us here at Neon Roots, and we had to give them the prize for ‘Best Product Not Yet Built.’

With Rootstrap, we’ll bring our knowledge of new product development to help the USKey team collect market data, assess profitability, and make a blueprint for the creation of their product.  We look forward to helping them put the development of USKey into full swing and making sure it finds success in the marketplace.

A big congrats to everyone at USKey!


CEO and Co-founder of Rootstrap Ben Lee is the co-founder and CEO of Rootstrap, a digital development agency with a mission to destroy the development model and rebuild it from the ground up. After a brief correspondence with Fidel Castro at age nine, Ben decided to start doing things his own way, going from busboy to club manager at a world-class nightclub before he turned 18. Since then, Ben has founded or taken a leading role in 5 businesses in everything from software development to food and entertainment.