- The Lowline, an on-going project to turn an abandoned street-car garage in NYC into an underground park.
- Rosie's Fine Food, reviving a desolate part of Detroit by opening a restaurant.
- CHIP, the worlds first $9 computer.
- The Most Mysterious Star In The Galaxy, Tabetha Boyajian's project to monitor brightness changes in star KIC8462852.
- Scanadu Scout, a pocket-size gadget that measured blood pressure, pulse, temperature and blood oxygenation. Alas, it didn't get through the FDA into production, and my now-irreplacable unit has just expired after about four years of daily use.
- CODE: Debugging the Gender Gap, a wonderful movie about gender issues in technology.
|Chibitronics Circuit Stickers
- Jie Qi's amazing Circuit Stickers.
- ORWL, a physically secure computer to defend against the "Evil Maid attack".
Ethan Mollick's 2013 paper The dynamics of crowdfunding: An exploratory study showed that:
the vast majority of founders seem to fulfill their obligations to funders, but that over 75% deliver products later than expected, with the degree of delay predicted by the level and amount of funding a project receives.Mollick found that:
The majority of products were delayed, some substantially, and may, ultimately, never be delivered. Of the 247 projects that delivered goods, the mean delay was 1.28 months (sd = 1.56). Of the 126 projects that were delayed, the mean delay to date was 2.4 months (sd = 1.97). Only 24.9% of projects delivered on time, and 33% had yet to deliver.
I find strong evidence that project size and the increased expectations around highly popular projects are related to delays. ... even controlling for project size, the degree to which projects are overfunded also predicts delays. Projects that are funded at10× their goal are half as likely to deliver at a given time, compared to projects funded at their goal. ... project delays were attributed to a range of problems associated with unexpected success: manufacturing problems, the complexity of shipping, changes in scale, changes in scope, and unanticipated certification issues were all listed as primary causes of delays.
we arrive at the startling conclusion that novelty and usefulness are not viewed as synergistic by the crowd. While crowdfunding pledges are boosted when the project is said to be useful (or alternatively, novel), claiming that it is both reduces the total amount of pledges by 26 percent.This conclusion is based on analyzing the text, video and images of over 50K Kickstarter projects in product-oriented categories such as Hardware and Technology using machine-learning tools:
Our data show that claims of novelty or usefulness, taken separately, do increase the total pledge amount. As a matter of fact, they have a very large initial effect, meaning that even one claim for usefulness (or novelty) greatly boosted the total pledged sum (as compared with projects devoid of either claim). However, it is also important to pick one or the other, not combine them.
The resulting number of occurrences of the word “novel” and its synonyms served as proxy for novelty claims. Conversely, the sum of occurrences of the word “useful” and its synonyms became the measure for claimed usefulness.The authors ask:
our findings are consistent with the literature on idea screening but not that on consumer evaluation of innovation, as modest innovations are more likely to get funded than more extreme innovations, i.e., innovations that are high on both novelty and usefulness. What is a possible reason for this inconsistency, given that backers in a crowdfunding context typically receive the product in exchange for their support, thus making their decision more like a product choice decision than a typical idea screening decision?The authors speculate that:
this may be due to the high degree of uncertainty associated with the choice in a crowdfunding context, compared to a consumer purchase context. In the prototypical purchase context, consumer protection laws guarantee receipt of the purchased product. In the crowdfunding context, however, there is much greater uncertainty regarding (a) receiving the product and (b) features of the product, than in purchasing, for the following reasons. First, a project may not successfully reach its funding goal. In this case, backers are refunded but do not receive the product. Second, a successfully funded project may be delayed or may fail (the creator may be unable to follow-through). For example, a recent study ... found that more than three-quarters of successfully funded projects (on Kickstarter) are either delayed or failed. In this case, backers are neither guaranteed refunds – they may lose the entire amount pledged – nor guaranteed receipt of the product. Third, projects on Kickstarter are proposed blueprints, rather than descriptions, of the final product. ... we speculate that the higher level of uncertainty in the crowdfunding context drives backers to choose modest innovations and shy away from more extreme innovations, i.e., innovations that are high on both novelty and usefulness.
It is important to note that, as far as I can see, almost all the research on crowdfunding is restricted to product-oriented projects. Products are only about 2/3 of my backings.
|Rosie's Fine Food