PopSLATE cover adds additional eInk Display to your iPhone

PopSLITE is a project on Indiegogo.com that collects crowd funds in order to design a second eInk screen cover for your iPhone. According to the fact that eInk displays need much less energy that traditional LCD type screens, this cover is a cool idea for consuming ebooks and reading material. eInk screen also offer perfect contrast in direct sunlight without the glean effect. Since the popSLATE screen is ultra-low-power, it is always on. This opens up a bunch of new application possibilities, such as urgent notifications, sports scores, maps, notes, calendar, talking points—you name it—will now be available at a glance.
I especially love the idea of constantly showing a street map on the back of your phone.

$150.000 for creating Open Source Shared Learning Projects

Shared Learning Collaborative logo

At the inaugural Shared Learning Collaboration (SLC) Camp in Chicago that was launched past weekend with over 100 attendees participating in content tagging and coding applications, $75,000 bounties for 2 open-source applications were announced. The Shared Learning Collaboration Camp was started by Stephen Coller, who heads up SLC Vendor and Developer engagement and blogs regularly on this spot, delivered the vision of the SLC and the opportunities it further creates for personalized learning. The keynote was followed by a lively panel discussion with four teachers that shared the challenges they faced in today’s classroom using data and technology. You can find all the Camps slide presentations on slideshare.

Announced on Saturday morning by partner lead Victor Alcantara, SLC launched a bounty program for two open-source applications at $75,000 each.  These two apps were identified through teacher and school administrator focus groups across multiple school districts.  The first application, Student Data Aggregation Calculator, gives teachers and school administrators a tool to create views of aggregate sets of student data based on a flag that they can define and put in the data set (example flags might be “Honor Roll” or “After School Program Graduates”).  The second application, Student Groups Tool, would help teachers to create groups of students and then view the data for that group.  Proposals are due October 2, 2012 and the selected applications will be announced at the SLC Camp in New York the weekend of October 20th and 21st, 2012.  The applications themselves should be completed no later than January 15, 2013.  More details about the SLC bounty program can be found here.

TangiBot – MakerBot 3D Printer Clone

capture taken from kickstarter.com

TangiBot, the latest clone design of the popular Makerbot 3D printer, should offer the same performance and features as the original printer, by 33% reduced costs. Matt Strong, the creator of the clone MakerBot 3D printer Kickstarter pledge, tries to rise 500K $ for his project. Matt describes himself as an 3D printing enthusiast who is creating and printing stuff since several years now. TangiBot is one of the latest initiatives in the hyped area of desktop fabrication. Citing Kickstarter you can TangiBot for 1.254 bucks directly shipped to your door worldwide. The TangiBot prints anything you can imagine out of ABS plastic (and PLA).  ABS is the same plastic used in Lego. You can design your own parts using free tools like tinkerCAD.com or Google Sketchup.

Platforms like Tingiverse offer thousands of open source 3D printing designs for all kind of purposes, ranging from play figures to machinery parts. Screw-On Steves HotEnd Bowden Clamp

Beside the hyped 3D printing technology other similar projects try to establish desktop assembly and fabrication. PopFab for example implements a portable multitool robot for assembly and processing steps such as drilling, painting or even customized toolheads.

Help GeoGebra crowd source for the iPad

Remember my recent post on GeoGebra, the innovative and open source mathematics learning software that has attracted a global community of school teachers? GeoGebra is the best interactive software for explaining and teaching mathematic examples. And the best thing is that you can get and distribute GeoGebra for free.

Now the creators of GeoGebra started a Kickstarter pledge for porting this cool piece of software to the iPad platform.

We want to make GeoGebra available for the iPad. An html5 version of the software is already available and partly working on tablets without Java. But this is not enough, we want a real iPad Application. A GeoGebra app free to download for everybody from the Apple AppStore.

The reason why we want to keep the iPad application free is because GeoGebra itself is free and keeping it so we want it to be available for everyone. If we reach the desired 10,000 dollars, we can support the development.

I think the team around GeoGebra really deserves a huge crowd of backers for their enthusiasm to bring maths and MINT topics to children wordwide!



1Q – Flexible High End Bluetooth Sound System for Smartphones

1Q in natural Bamboo
image source: kickstarter.com

David Laituri’s first Kickstarter project 1Q is a very flexible Bluetooth wireless sound system that allows smartphone users to play their music on high-end speakers. According to long lasting akku power this wireless speakers are able to operate more than 10 hours without reload. 1Q offers a nice and tight design, as you can see in the video below, as the speakers are built with either Bamboo, Walnut or limited edition Red Beach. 1Q takes Bluetooth v2.1 as input signal or alternatively an 3.5mm Aux In plug for external cable bound sources. It offers full 6.5W of high-end sound power while it offers more than 10hours of operating time. It weights around 8 oz (226g) and comes with a size of 3 x 3 x 3 (76mm x 76mm x 76mm).

I think he will be surprised by his success as he easily crushed his pledge limit of 10.000$ (at the moment he has 40.000$ and still 18 days to go).

Quite nice sound system, although there are plenty of Bluetooth sound systems available, some of them really cool, as this public park bench Bluetooth speakers:

Indiegogo: Go International Crowdsourcing

I really love the idea of crowdsourcing, as it completely opens the door for sozial funding of  innovation and creativity. Through sozial funding or community share funding many projects can be realized, that otherwise we would never have heard of. Getting an initial funding for a creative idea often fails because of visionless and traditional bankers or greedy investors. By letting the people (crowd) directly select and fund projects they are interested in, really opens the door for bank and big investor independent community shares. This crowd decision method reminds me on my previous post on ‘The Wisdom of Crowds’.

One of the most popular Web platforms for rising crowd sourcing and funding is Kickstarter. Kickstarter really is a great platform but unfortunately it is limited to US creators, which quite limits the possibilities to get international crowd funding.

Another really good platform, which is open for international crowd sourcing and funding is indiegogo. It offers similar features and funding schemes as many other crowd funding platforms but is open for international funding.

screenshot from indiegogo.com


Mobile Ad Startup StrikeAd

strikead logoThe mobile advertising startup StrikeAd implemeted a Demand Side Platform specifically dedicated to mobile. The startup helps advertisers and agencies manage and optimize their mobile campaigns. The new StrikeAd Fusion is a proprietary mobile-specific platform and single console through which agencies can plan, execute and evaluate hundreds of mobile campaigns, minute-by-minute, on a global basis. This startup shows impressingly how important the mobile advertising business is at the moment, as StrikeAd was able to rise funds of around 500.000$ as an addition to the $3 million Series A led by DFJ Esprit that the startup already announced in January.

StrikeAd’s advertisments reach over 12 billion monthly pages on mobile phones, which is quite impressing.

Malaysian ICT-Park Cyberjaya

In my series about worldwide startup and incubator programs, this time we look at the  Malaysian ICT-Park Cyberjaya: Established in October 1996, Cyberview Sdn Bhd, a Government owned company and landowner of Cyberjaya, has been mandated to spearhead the development in Cyberjaya. To this end, Cyberview put its utmost effort towards ensuring Cyberjaya continues to progress in line with the Government’s aspirations. Within this ICT campus lies the SME Technoentrepreneur Center, which supports the grow and development of innovative Startups.

Sensordrone – the 6th sense for your smartphone

Sensordrone is an external sensing device, which adds some interesting features to your standard sensor phallanx of your smartphone. Sensordrone is a Kickstarter project which pledges for your support in order to publish this useful device. Sensordome is designed to run many different applications, such as monitor the carbon monoxide and air quality, find gas leaks, measure your child’s temperature, log the weather, and much more. For me it could be interesting to use sensordome as a home weather station in combination with an Android based central house touch panel.

LeanInvestments Summer Challenge

Lean Investments

If you have a great idea for a web or mobile app and you and your team is able to implement this idea and you come from a European university, then maybe you’ll want to enter the Lean Investments Summer 2012 App Challenge.

In the contest, you build an application or service – for iPhone, the web or Android (by yourself or with a team we connect you with). The winner gets £10,000 (€12,500) of investment, three months of office space, six mentoring sessions with our founder, and introductions to three seed and venture-capital investors.

This isn’t a business-plan or pitch competition, where the winner is the person with the best slides or the most persuasive presentation. It’s about building something – a simple and quick prototype – that actually works and is useful. Real users are a bonus, but not required.

If you plan to return to full-time education after the summer, don’t worry – you can still enter. If you win, you can work on your killer app part-time while we assemble a team of people to help you take it forward.

The final deadline for app submission is at the end of the summer, but to enter you will have to have registered by 15 July 2012.

Lean Investments LP is a seed fund which invests in early-stage Internet and other technology startups based in Europe. The fund is the private vehicle of Tim Jackson, a leading figure in the European technology scene as a venture capitalist, entrepreneur, angel investor, commentator and technology journalist.