Sure, you can slap a battery-driven motor on the gears of a bicycle and call it an e-bike, but that's ignoring all of the other great stuff you can cram in there once you go electric. The Faraday Porteur, designed by Adam Vollmer and currently rising on Kickstarter, is one e-bike that's not afraid to let its electric side shine.
Pretty much everyone I know listens to music on their tablet. Most listen with earphones, which are great when you're going mobile. But for those of us who are chained to our desktops and looking for a way to amplify our tunes with some retro charm, the Sounder will do the trick.
You won't find a dollhouse like "Roominate" at your local toy store. Right now, it's just a Kickstarter project — one that's already funded — but it promises to give young girls with a genuine curiosity for tech a playground to tinker and learn.
We've been writing a lot recently about how the private space industry is poised to make space cheaper and more accessible. But in general, this is for outfits such as NASA, not people like you and me. Today, a company called NanoSatisfi is launching a Kickstarter project to send an Arduino-powered satellite into space, and you can send an experiment along with it.
Motion controllers (such as the Wii, Kinect, and the PlayStation Move) have created an entirely new way to interact with video games. But somehow, they've all failed at what we really want them for: virtual sword fighting. Neal Stephenson is going to fix that with a new video game called CLANG, and it's on Kickstarter right now.
Joseph Schlesinger wants everyone to be able to build a robot. What's stopping all of us? Laziness? Maybe, but it could also be the required grasp of basic engineering principles, not to mention the associated cost. With Hexy, a cheap, easy-to-build 'bot, Schlesinger hopes to offer a new starting point for budding hobbyists. We spoke Schlesinger to learn how he wants to serve up a robot cheap and easy enough that it could find itself on anyone's workbench.
Editor's Note: Author Rusel DeMaria recently turned to Kickstarter to fund the third edition of his book, High Score: The Illustrated History of Electronic Games. Here, we turn to him as co-author of The Crowdfunding Bible for tips on how geeks without funding from Silicon Valley can make their dreams come true through crowdfunding. "Simply put, crowdfunding is the process of asking the general public for donations that provide startup capital for new ventures." — The Crowdfunding Bible Speaking as a grateful recipient of crowdfunding and contributing author of "The Crowdfunding Bible," I want to speak to you directly. My name is Rusel DeMaria. I had an idea. I needed money. I turned to Kickstarter and I got the money I needed and more. How did I do it? I'll offer some hints on how I did it, but first, let's talk about you. What's your idea? Do you have a product, invention, event or vision you want to realize, and all you need is money to make it so? If your answer is no, read on anyway. You might get inspired to change your answer.
It's not an easy proposition to design a novel light aircraft from the ground up. In the case of Synergy, even Kickstarter wasn't willing to give it a shot until fans of the project got the crowdsourcing site to reconsider. Now, Synergy is $50,000 away from crossing that dangerous gap between concept and reality.
The Pebble smart watch epitomizes the crowd-funding success story. After the creators raised $375,000 from angel investors, the flow of money came to a halt, with venture capitalists wary of financing a hardware startup. That's when the team — the same guys behind the Blackberry-compatible InPulse smart watch — decided to turn to Kickstarter for funding. Their goal was ambitious: $100,000 to produce a slick smart watch compatible with iPhone and Android devices. An elegant watch face, integration with email and social networks, fitness tracking features and an open SDK inviting new apps appealed to the crowd. A little after the first day, the project reached its goal and then some, raising $1 million. Thus far at over $7.5 million (and counting), it is the highest-grossing Kickstarter project ever. Users have put their faith backing numerous useful, innovative and quirky projects since Kickstarter's founding three years ago. That's saying a lot because there's no such thing as a guarantee on the crowd-funding website. We've rounded up 10 well-designed Kickstarter blockbusters that far exceeded their funding goals. Got a favorite Kickstarter success story of your own and don't see it here? Let us know in the comments below.
Women have been stuffing their bras for as long as bras have been around. This Kickstarter project is counting on women everywhere wanting to continue this trend, only with their smartphones, credit cards and IDs so they don't have to carry purses while out on the town.