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What would be the right time for an idea that involves some technical depth to apply to YC?

In other words, hypothetically, if YC had existed during the 90s, at what stage should Google Guys have applied to YC (Between 1995-1998, A) when the idea struck (mid 1995) B) When it started crawling the web (around 1996), or C) when they bought the domain (1998). Thanks!

Some idea that is (a) technically complex enough to baffle most PhDs but (b) practical enough to constitute the core of an amazing demo.

An idea with technical depth, plus practical feasibility does provides an all-important barrier to entry, a shield against execution

A or B.

Any advice on differentiating such idea in the YC application, from the herd, building services (an app/website where good design, paired with user traction stands out)?

Shall we focus on? A. Research side (the actual research ideas, tough to explain in 300 words, can be discussed in brainstorming session) B. The product it will enable. (UI based concept demo, with product/market fit that will it will enable)

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