Here at Startacus we are avid and enthusiastic supporters of all things crowdfunding. For the startup and self-starter it is perhaps one of the most useful of tools to have grown from the digital revolution. Never before have the enterprising and innovative folks of this world had such a marvellous opportunity to secure vital funding, but also to inspire so many people with the work that they're doing.
Following on from our first ever crowdfunding highlights of the week just seven days ago we are delighted to return with a few more fab little crowdfunding gems we have discovered on our daily ramble through our favourite crowdfunding platforms.
Sit back and relax with a nice cup of tea and be inspired by some of these great little campaigns…
VocaliD- Custom Crafted Voices
It’s a problem that the vocally-abled will rarely if ever think of; what it must be like to have to rely on a computer voice box to speak for you. Of course it is wonderful that such technology exists, (can you imagine if we were unable to share in the wisdom of professor Stephen Hawking?) but current systems lack an individuality which means that for many people without a voice, a major part of their unique identity remains unexpressed. This is where VocaliD plans to make a change by creating the first-ever custom computer voices that are unique to each individual.
How the team, headed by Rupal Patel from Boston Massachusetts, will achieve this is rather technical and complicated, but as we understand it, they will use cutting edge technology to merge vibrations in the recipients voice box with the vocal tract filters of a donor; the result of which will be a voice which resembles the donor’s but is unique and distinguishable as the recipients.
With a very well put together campaign and an impressive Ted Talk by Patel, in 4 days they have already raised $14,000 of their $70,000 goal! It’s a fascinating project and well worth a look
Phree- Make the world your paper
If you're interested in the growth of the internet of things, or just like it when technology merges with simplicity then you will quite enjoy this. Phree is a little computerised mobile input device that lets you write on any surface; basically it’s an inkless pen that allows you to write electronically.
What you write or draw is transferred in high definition to wherever you would like it to go; be it an app, a word document, an email, or other computer software… that’s pretty much it!
They are doing rather well so far having exceeded their $100K target by almost $200K, proving that sometimes reimaging something we are all familiar with, can be a great way of sparking people's interest and helping them to look at technology in a different and more practical way.
If you are interested in all of the complicated techy stuff about how it works, it’s rather well explained on their Kickstarter campaign.
Weather Point - The World’s Smallest Weather Station
Keeping on the theme of internet of things; have you ever wished that you had your very own weather station that you could carry around wherever you go? No probably not, but Weather Point is a new crowdfunding campaign that will allow you to do so anyway.
This little weather station key ring is the brainchild of Mind Lab, a team of UK designers and engineers based in London who work on designing, mechanical parts, electronics and circuits. When complete Weather Point will serve as a thermometer, humidity meter, UV index & atmospheric pressure meter, to give accurate readings of what the exact weather is like where you are at any time. It connects directly to your phone and loads the information into an app that comes along with it. What’s really interesting about it, and marks something of a current trend in consumer hardware for mobile devices; it doesn't have a battery and doesn't need an internet connection or wires in order to connect to your device.
We imagine that it is intended for people who need to keep a very close eye on the current weather conditions around them such as certain athletes, fishermen, astronauts and so forth, but for many an amateur meteorologist, or simply anyone with an interest in the weather, this could be one to watch.
Optonaut- The Instagram of Virtual Reality
Optonaut is a rather intriguing app that will allow you to use your smartphone to capture 3D images and share them with your friends. What’s really interesting about this campaign is the very fact that it exists, because it highlights the enormous progression which has taken place in image capturing technologies.
The main idea is that the software allows you to use your smartphone to take 3 dimensional pictures of the places that you visit, allowing your friends to experience a ‘virtual reality’ visit to these places and see them as you see them. It’s intended to common problem that travellers experience, when showing their holiday snaps proves less than thrilling, because 2D images simply don’t do justice to the true beauty of the places.
With 22 days to go the campaign has already raised over €5K of its €15K target.
The very best of luck to all these crowdfunding campaigns, we'll be back next week with another look at some interesting projects being funded at the moment.