Tag Archives: startups

17 smart crowdfunding campaigns you may want to back this week


Every Friday, we take a look at some of the smartest, most innovative projects that caught our attention on Kickstarter and Indiegogo over the last seven days. 


Droppler

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This unobtrusive monitor uses advanced audio recognition technology to track water consumption in real-time. Nascent Objects is currently seeking $70,000 on Indiegogo.

CoDrone

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This drone can be easily programmed to do whatever you want, whether that’s following you, engaging in laser battles or navigating its way through a maze. Robolink has already soared past its goal of $50,000 on Kickstarter.

ZAR

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This lightweight, foldable electric scooter is ideal for those needing to travel short distances quickly. Crazyfire Technology has almost doubled its initial $50,000 Kickstarter goal.

Tinylab

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This tablet-sized, fully-integrated platform makes prototyping a breeze. Bosphorus Mechatronics is nearing its $25,000 goal on Indiegogo.

Teslasuit

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This full-body haptic suit enables you to touch and feel the future of VR and gaming. Tesla Studios is currently seeking $369,009 on Kickstarter.

Gestor

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This sleek air mouse is equipped with touch ring buttons that let you control your smart TV or computer using hand motions. Gestor Devices is currently seeking $39,550 on Kickstarter.

BASE by Wiivv

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These 3D-printed, body-perfect insoles are designed from 2D snapshots taken from a smartphone. Wiivv has just about doubled its $50,000 goal on Kickstarter.

dokiWatch

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This smartwatch is exclusively made for kids and features things like video calling, GPS and fitness tracking. Doki Technologies has already well surpassed its $20,000 goal on Kickstarter.

ChameleonMini

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This freely-programmable, standalone tool for NFC security analysis allows you to emulate and clone contactless cards, read RFID tags and sniff RF data. Kasper & Oswald GmbH has garnered more than $25,000 on Kickstarter.

FitPal

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This continuous heart rate monitoring  and activity tracker patch will take your fitness and health to the next level. FitPal is currently seeking $100,000 on Kickstarter.

Hobby Hand

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This 3D-printed, Arduino-driven robotic hand mimics the natural movement of its human overlord. Biomechanical Robotics Group is currently seeking $30,000 on Kickstarter.

Orilamp

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This origami-inspired, Bluetooth-connected lamp boasts a wide range of applications, from accent to outdoor to emergency lighting. Orilamp is currently seeking $50,000 on Indiegogo.

Mu

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This sensor add-on acts as a smart eye and brain for your existing remote-controlled toys. Morpx is currently seeking $100,000 on Indiegogo.

AromaCare

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This smart essential oils diffuser allows you to configure your own aromatherapy sessions right from your phone. AromaCare is currently seeking $59,507 on Kickstarter.

AlphaTechBlocks

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This set of alphabet blocks combines the charm of yesterday’s learning toys with the powers of modern-day technology to teach preschoolers letters in both English and Spanish. AlphaTechBlocks is currently seeking $90,000 on Kickstarter.

Arduino PLC

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This industrial-grade, Arduino-based PLC is perfect for home automation, security and HVAC systems, as well as robotics projects and 3D printing. Team IoT is nearing $5,000 in funds on Kickstarter.

Blaze

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This stackable, mini development board includes a high-res 1.6″ display with capacitive touch and a 32-bit ARM Cortex-M4 MCU. Kevin Webster is currently seeking $7,380 on Kickstarter.

1:1 interview with TinyArcade creator Ken Burns


TinyArcade is the most adorable video game console you’ve ever seen.


Recently, we had the chance to sit down with TinyCircuits founder Ken Burns, who just wrapped up a successful Kickstarter campaign for the TinyArcade. Here’s what he had to say…

Ken Burns of Tiny Circuits

Josh Marinacci: Hi Ken. I’m one of the original Kickstarter backers of TinyCircuits and I love it. Could you tell us a little bit about TinyCircuits, why you created it, where it’s based?

Ken Burns: Thanks! TinyCircuits started as a side project while I was working at a contract engineering company. We would help other companies (from one person startups to Fortune 500 companies), develop electronic products, and prototyping was always a huge part of what we did. However, to create working prototypes usually involved creating a custom PCB (somewhat expensive and time consuming), or hobbling together a number of different development boards to create the proto, which was always ugly and usually too big.

So that’s what started the idea of a small modular system with a number of different sensors and options, and around the same time Arduino was becoming very popular so I decided to base it around that, which was the birth of the TinyDuino system. At the time it was just me in a spare bedroom of my house in Akron, Ohio, working on this and prototyping it up, but I showed it to a number of people and got a lot of great feedback, and decided to launch it on Kickstarter in the fall of 2012. The initial TinyDuino Kickstarter campaign did great, enough to convince me there was potential to create a business around it, so I left my job and committed to TinyCircuits full-time.

Three years later we’re still going strong, with a staff of 8 people and our own electronics design and manufacturing operation here in Akron, Ohio.

JM: One of our talented engineers recently built a Bluetooth wearable smartwatch using TinyCircuits. Have you seen a lot of adoption in wearables? What things do people build with it?

KB: That’s definitely a great project! Wearables is definitely something people use our stuff for a lot, it’s very small, compact, and easy to use, which makes it perfect for wearable applications. We launched the TinyScreen last year, which is a small OLED display that fits onto the TinyDuino and allows users to create add a very cool compact display to their projects.

Jewelry is one that a number of people have done, and some friends of ours are actually building out a 3D printed jewelry product based around our TinyScreen that should be launching early next year. Others are using our circuitry for wearable sensors, like for athletic and healthcare monitoring. And an eight-year old launched his own smart watch, the O Watchon Kickstarter to teach kids 3D printing and programing earlier this fall that is built around our stuff!

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JM:Has anyone used your boards for a shipping product?

KB: A few small companies have used our products for very low volume items, but a few are designing products that integrate in the TinyScreen which will be higher volume. For low to mid volume items (one to a few hundred) it makes a lot of sense to buy products like ours to integrate with, since it saves the need to design a custom PCB and do the upfront engineering. After a certain volume it’s more cost effective to design a custom board, and we actually have helped a number of companies do that with our in-house design partner.

Josh: TinyArcade is absolutely the coolest thing ever. It’s a shame it won’t be ready in time for Christmas. Why did you decide to build this product, and why run it as a KickStarter instead of just selling it like your other boards?

Ken: Thanks! We would have loved to have it out by Christmas this year, but we needed to take our time over the summer to get the design right. The TinyArcade is really an outgrowth of the TinyScreen project we did last year, one of the things people really liked about it was that you could play games on it, and a number of our users started creating games for it, like Space Invaders, Outrun, Asteroids, etc.

In the spring we saw a really little arcade cabinet candy dispenser, and thought it would be cool to put a TinyScreen in it and play games, but the size wasn’t quite right. But the idea stuck with us, and we have a designer friend (Jason Bannister from mechanimal.com) design a 3D printed cabinet which came out looking incredible. We started showing this off at different shows, like Maker Faire Bay Area, and it was a huge hit, and people kept asking to buy it. So we decided to turn it into a product.

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We redesigned the TinyScreen to bring the cost down and way crank up the performance, and add things like audio, joysticks, and an SD expansion slot. The 3D printed cabinet is also fairly complex and something that needs a commercial printer to make (it can’t be printed on a Makerbot), so the prints are expensive. So we came up with a laser cut enclosure that could be made for much less but still look like a cabinet, so we could offer this at a low price.

We’ve had great luck on Kickstarter in the past, and one of the big reasons we did this again is so we can buy the components in bulk. We’re still a small startup and cash flow is always an issue, so using Kickstarter lets us buy some of the major components (like the OLED, joysticks, etc) in volume to keep the cost down. If we did it without Kickstarter, the price per unit would have to be a lot more.

JM: Where did you find those tiny joysticks?

KB: Those are super cute, aren’t they?! We used some PSP type joysticks in the past for our joystick board, but these were too big for this. These joysticks are made by CTS and actually available at places like DigiKey, and work amazingly well. They’re great for very precise analog movements. They are one of the more expensive components in the TinyArcade, but definitely worth it.

The top of the joystick is actually a knob that we designed ourselves and is a high-res 3D print, using a resin printer, so we can make it just like an old style arcade joystick.

JM: Does the TinyArcade have room for expansion? I’d love to make one connected to the internet through Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. Will you support those options?

KB: It certainly does! This is still a TinyDuino type product and maintains expansion capability, and there is room to add another board in the cabinet. Bluetooth and Wi-Wi are the two that we definitely consider the most likely, and since the platform is completely open source, it’s really up to the user’s imagination as to what they want to add. Based on how well the Kickstarter goes, and if there is community support, we’d love to see the ability for some multiplayer games over Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.

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JM: With a Wi-Fi board, is it possible to do OTA updates?

KB: Right now we don’t have that capability, it really comes down to support in the bootloader. However we do support loading games and videos off a microSD card if it’s present, so it would definitely be possible to create a program to download files over Wi-i and save them to the SD card to use.

JM: What’s next for TinyCircuits? Any new products in the pipeline?

KB: We have a huge list of things in the pipeline that we would like to do, we actually have about 15 new expansion boards designed that should be hitting production early in 2016. One of the big push is into micro-robotics, so tiny servo drivers and motor drivers, new radio options, an ESP-based Wi-Fi board, many more sensors, and of course rolling out the TinyScreen+ board and the TinyZero processor board (basically the Arduino Zero, 32-bit ARM platform) which brings a new level of horsepower to the platform.

JM: Tell us a little more about the Kickstarter campaign and when do you expect it to ship?

KB The TinyArcade Kickstarter (successfully) ended on December 17th and we plan to start shipping in March 2016. The big reason for the delay is due to getting some of the key components in, like the raw OLEDs, this takes 8 – 12 weeks from our supplier, we plan to have the other items ready to go (the PCBs built, and the cases made), before then, so we can get shipping the moment they come in.

This interview originally appeared on PubNub’s blog

Rewind: 50 gizmos and gadgets that made us say ‘wow’


2015 was quite the year. Here are just some of the awesome devices with mainstream appeal that caught our eye over the last 12 months. 


Buddy

The first social robot that connects, protects and interacts with each member of your family.

Bistrobot

If you give this automated machine $2, it will craft a peanut butter sandwich on white bread with your choice of honey, blackberry jam, sweet chili or chocolate sauce.

Keyboardio

Finally, there’s an open source ergonomic keyboard that gives your overworked pinkies a break and puts your thumbs to work.

Voltera V-One

Tired of delays and unnecessary expenses? Then you’ll love this laptop-sized printer that can turn design files into prototype circuit boards in minutes.

PancakeBot

Design, print and eat your own pancakes.

PicoBrew Pico

Why head out to the package store when you can brew your own fresh, personalized craft beer right at home?

Forever 21 Thread Screen

The team of BREAKFAST and Forever 21 developed a massive, one-ton machine that turns your Instagram photos into thread artwork.

DrumPants

From hip-hop to dubstep, this wearable kit lets you play music right from your body using 100+ sounds and 300+ music applications.

Prometheus

While it may look like a 3D printer, this PCB milling machine enables you to prototype circuit boards right from your desk.

Tech Tats

Chaotic Moon Studios have devised a cutting-edge tattoo kit, which allows for the monitoring of your own body activity.

Layered Fabric 3D Printer

Who needs a toy store when you can 3D print your own soft and deformable stuffed animals from layers of off-the-shelf fabric?

BeachBot

Sand castles are so 2014. This turtlish autonomous robot can create large scale art on the beach.

OpenROV Trident

Whereas most drones are made for the sky, this remote-controlled, camera-equipped ROV is meant for underwater exploration.

Reality Editor

What if reprogramming your devices was as simple as drawing lines between them? Thanks to MIT’s Fluid Interfaces Group, it may soon be.

ONAGOfly

Sorry selfie sticks, your days are numbered. This palm-sized drone features GPS auto-following and a high-res camera.

BeON Home

There are smart lights, then there are out-smart lights. This system will make having a safer, smarter home as simple as screwing in a bulb.

PowerUp FPV

Your old-school paper airplane just got a whole heck of a lot cooler with a live-streaming camera.

Phree

A revolutionary pen that turns the world around you into a notepad.

The Things Network

Make your city smart with this global, crowdsourced and decentralized IoT network.

Ripple Maker

A 3D printing-inspired device that can etch art on the foam of your coffee.

FarmBot

Grow my gosh! This 2015 Hackaday Prize entry is the world’s first open source CNC farming machine.

Alpha 2

Could this humanoid robot become the newest addition to your family?

LifeQ

By tapping into the human sensor, this intelligent technology can significantly improve decision-making for anyone’s health and well-being.

Sesame

Replace your keys with your smartphone in just seconds.

UnaliWear

Like OnStar for seniors, this all-in-one, voice-controlled wearable will help keep the elderly independent, active and safe.

ShiftWear

The most adaptable shoes you’ll ever own, customized straight from your smartphone.

Flic

A wireless button that can control your favorite smart functions.

C.H.I.P.

A $9 computer. ‘nuff said.

DrinkMate Mini

Have you had a couple of drinks? Don’t worry, this tiny iPhone breathalyzer has got your BAC!

Opal

Love nugget ice? Hate buying bags? This affordable gadget is for you.

Dobot

This high-precision, Arduino-based desktop robotic arm can do pretty much anything.

RePhone

BYOD: Build your own device! Piece together your own phone and give inanimate objects the power of cellular communication.

Mycroft

Based on the Arduino and Raspberry Pi, this open source A.I. system plays media, controls lights and more.

Spinn Coffee

This appliance can whip up anything from drip coffee to espresso, depending on how fast the brewer spins.

Tempescope

Who needs weather apps when you can recreate the forecast from right inside your living room?

Makerarm

A complete personal fabrication system crammed into a single, sleek robotic arm for your desk.

Fibonacci Clock

Think reading an analog clock is tough? Tell time using glowing lights and the Fibonacci sequence.

Electroloom

Design and create seamless, ready-to-wear garments based on custom 3D geometries.

Fleye

Could this soccer ball-shaped drone be the safest flying bot to date?

Naviator

A drone that can fly and swim.

RoboHon

Sharp unveiled a new smartphone in the form of an adorable robot.

Dancing Paper

Bet you’ve never seen a bunch of origami bust a move.

jamStik+

A portable guitar that teaches you to play and lets you jam on the go.

Nexpaq

This modular case for your smartphone gives you the ability to add and remove physical modules whenever necessary.

OWOW

A new breed of instruments that can drop the beat at home, in the studio or live on stage.

Oval

What if you could play a handpan like an electronic musical instrument?

SensorWake

The world’s first olfactory alarm clock wakes you up with your favorite scents instead of sound.

Ario

This smart lamp learns your habits, syncs to your body clock and keeps you healthy through natural lighting patterns.

CMYK 4.0

If you’re looking to make your commute from home to the office a bit more efficient, then this foldable electric bike may be for you.

Musio

The world’s first artificially intelligent companion bot, designed to engage and grow with you.

LineFORM

This shape-changing soft robot can be a phone, a wristwatch, a keyboard, a lamp and more.

Cord UIs

Imagine if you could control your gadgetry using cords and cables.

Bruno

There’s finally an automated smart trashcan that not only opens with a wave of a hand but vacuums up dust and restocks itself.

Netflix

These smart socks will pause your binge-watching session when you fall asleep.

Pixelio

Goodbye, shaky hands! Transform your smartphone into a 3D scanner.

 

27 smart crowdfunding campaigns you may want to back this week


Every Friday, we take a look at some of the smartest, most innovative projects that caught our attention on Kickstarter and Indiegogo over the last seven days. 


LattePanda

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This $79 Windows 10 mini computer features an Intel Atom Cherry Trail processor and an Arduino-compatible MCU. LattePanda is currently seeking $150,858 on Kickstarter.

Fleye

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This spherical drone is not only safe, fun and autonomous, it’s fully open and programmable. Fleye is currently seeking $185,837 on Kickstarter.

Wio Link

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This open source, ESP8266-based dev board lets you build IoT projects through plug-n-play Grove modules. Seeed Studio has already doubled its $20,000 goal on Kickstarter.

ShiftWear

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This pair of sneakers can display custom designs on its e-paper exterior, right from your smartphone. ShiftWear has well surpassed its $25,000 goal on Indiegogo.

playDXTR

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This collection of building blocks adds a layer of technology to make the old-school way of learning much cooler, and smarter. DXTR Labs is currently seeking $50,000 on Kickstarter.

SmartEgg

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This egg pairs to your smartphone and allows you to control any infrared device via Bluetooth. AICO Tech is currently seeking $50,000 on Kickstarter.

Skriware

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This one-click machine wants to make 3D printers as ubiquitous in our homes as more conventional 2D printers. Skriware is currently seeking $50,461 on Kickstarter.

Wuvo Spot

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This unit simply sticks to your keys, wallet, glasses, luggage, headphones or whatever else you don’t want to lose, and takes care of the rest for you. Wuvo is currently seeking $15,000 on Indiegogo.

EverLights

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This set of sleek, permanent and weather-resistant holiday lights are installed only once and managed straight from your phone. EverLights has more than tripled its goal of $20,000 on Kickstarter.

Brick Sound Kit

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This entirely programmable toy adds motion-activated sound effects to your LEGO and Mega Bloks projects. Eight-year-old Chase and his father Chuck Freedman are currently seeking $18,000 on Kickstarter.

RaceCapture

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This plug-in gadget enables you to track autocross, drift and drag racing with your friends in real-time. Autosport Labs is currently seeking $50,000 on Kickstarter.

Mokakam

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This super small 4K camera features a rotating screen and magnetic snap-on battery. Raymond Wang has already well surpassed his goal of $50,000 on Indiegogo.

Pound Nine Wire

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This newswire sits on your desk and continually streams headlines from your pre-selected content sources. Pound Nine is currently seeking $40,000 on Kickstarter.

YoCam

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This tiny, all-in-one, waterproof camera has set out to replace your GoPro, DropCam, baby monitor and dash cam. MOFILY is currently seeking $80,000 on Kickstarter.

AON

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This industrial-grade 3D printer boasts a massive heated build area and independent tool heads. AON 3D is currently seeking $48,678 on Kickstarter.

The Rever

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This inexpensive and easy-to-use 3D printer will bring the joy of creativity into any household. Qubea is halfway to its goal of $120,000 on Kickstarter.

Creator Ci40

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This complete IoT kit includes all the hardware, software and cloud infrastructure necessary to quickly build a wireless system. Imagination Technologies just hit its $30,000 Kickstarter goal.

QTemp

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This battery-free wearable weather station measures UV and temperature while displaying the safe sun time on your mobile device. Comfable Inc. is currently seeking $26,184 on Kickstarter.

nOb

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This knob precisely controls a wide range of applications. NOB CONTROL is currently seeking $55,220 on Kickstarter.

BotBotix

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This open source, 3D-printed, modular robotics platform is ideal for Makers looking to explore their imagination. Rocketship Systems is currently seeking $15,000 on Kickstarter.

DuoTrac

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This portable, motion-tracking, sensor-laden device can analyze and help improve swing performance and footwork with its accompanying app. Coach Labs Inc. is currently seeking $25,000 on Kickstarter.

Lola

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This home automation solution lets you to command your connected objects through voice and 3D mapping. Vivoka is currently seeking $105,870 on Kickstarter.

Mantis Drone Claw

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This beautifully-engineered, lightweight accessory allows your drone to automatically grab and lift small objects. Ben Kardoosh is currently seeking $7,514 on Kickstarter.

Mimoto Watch

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This smartwatch is being touted as the “most reliable one for under $100.” Mimoto Tech is currently seeking $25,000 on Kickstarter.

Versa Prima

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This portable and wearable LED strip is controlled via Bluetooth. Lumafi is currently seeking $25,000 on Kickstarter.

Eyesynth

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This audiovisual system for the visually-impaired enables wearers to indentify shapes and spaces in unprecedented ways. Eyesynth is currently seeking $106,193 on Kickstarter.

Multi-Function SSD Shield

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This shield for the Raspberry Pi 2 combines SSD, Wi-Fi, a real-time clock with battery and high-power USB. Pi 2 Design is closing in on its $15,000 Kickstarter goal.

40 smart crowdfunding campaigns you may want to back this week


Every Friday, we take a look at some of the smartest, most innovative projects that caught our attention on Kickstarter and Indiegogo over the last seven days. 


Prometheus

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This milling machine quickly carves, drills and shapes your PCBs so you don’t have to wait for a delivery truck. Zippy Robotics is currently seeking $95,000 on Kickstarter.

Tiny Arcade

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This mini arcade cabinet lets you relive the golden age of video games right in the palm of your hand. Tiny Circuits is currently seeking $25,000 on Kickstarter.

FUSAR Mohawk

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This helmet-mounted accessory allows you to capture photos and videos, talk to friends, call for help, track your rides and more. FUSAR has already reached its goal of $100,000 on Indiegogo.

NX1

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This super fast, revolutionary 3D printer can create objects in minutes, not hours. NEXA3D is currently seeking $170,133 on Kickstarter.

QUBE

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This $19 bulb is being billed as the “world’s most affordable” multi-colored smart bulb. Qube Smart Home is currently seeking $50,000 on Indiegogo.

MyTree Bonsai

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This portable device will remove harmful pollutants from the air that you’re breathing. Purair MyTree is currently seeking $131,317 on Kickstarter.

uCella

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This smart home portal allows online shoppers to receive, return and manage their packages like never before. ComingSoon-Tech is currently seeking $25,000 on Indiegogo.

GeoThings

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This Arduino-compatible, GPS-equipped, solar-powered platform can bring your outdoor IoT ideas to life. GeoThings is currently seeking $190,000 on Kickstarter.

TinyGlo+

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This ATtiny167-driven board lets your imagination run wild with three programmable, full-color LEDs. JACK Enterprises is currently seeking $5,000 on Kickstarter.

LIVALL BH60

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This smart helmet lets you signal turns, make calls, listen to music, send out an SOS for help and more. LIVALL is currently seeking $65,396 on Kickstarter.

Phazon

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This pair of one-size-fits-all, wireless earbuds promise that they’ll never fall out. Phazon has surpassed its goal of $80,000 on Indiegogo.

Spot

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This gadget is more than just a smart camera, it serves as your home’s eyes and ears. Zac Sutton just passed his goal of $50,000 on Indiegogo.

Bad Elf ADS-B

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This affordable ADS-B weather and traffic receiver features universal app compatibility for pilots. Bad Elf is currently seeking $500,000 on Kickstarter.

Walli

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This intelligent wallet connects to your phone and sends you a notification wherever and whenever you leave it behind. Walli Wearables has hit its goal of $25,000 on Indiegogo.

Elephant Door

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This security system can detect when someone’s attempting to break into your home before entry has been gained, and alerts you in the process. Elephant is currently seeking $40,000 on Kickstarter.

Volta Flyer

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This DIY airplane kit is solely powered by the sun. ToyLabs is currently seeking $39,000 on Kickstarter.

Clair B

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This portable purifier utilizes dual filtration technology to provide you with fresh air whoever you go. Clair has garnered over $30,000 on Kickstarter.

AfterMaster TV

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This unit makes TV dialogue louder and clearer, while making everything else sound fantastic. AfterMaster Audio Labs is currently seeking $200,000 on Kickstarter.

TrackR Atlas

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This small device maps out your home and pinpoints where lost items are located. Chris Herbert has already well exceed his goal of $50,000 on Indiegogo.

The Luminous Electric Bargraph Clock

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This beautifully-handcrafted clock automatically changes between three modes based on its position, giving you endless hours of vintage entertainment. Nuvitron is currently seeking $15,000 on Kickstarter.

Zoyo Baby

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This Bluetooth-equipped wearable senses your baby’s vital signs and relays that information to you in real-time. Zoyo is currently seeking $50,000 on Kickstarter.

KeyDuino

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This development board is like an Arduino Leonardo with built-in NFC. Pierre Charlier is currently seeking $10,723 on Kickstarter.

JamBlaster

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This accessory enables you to play music with others live remotely, record professional-grade audio, broadcast video performances and more. JamKazam is currently seeking $20,000 on Kickstarter.

Juvo

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This sensor mat slips under your mattress to track and manage your sleep. Juvo is currently seeking $50,000 on Indiegogo.

Pura Scents

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This plug-in dispenser allows you to control the aroma of any space from your smartphone. Pura Scents is currently seeking $50,000 on Kickstarter.

Femometer

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This connected basal body temperature thermometer syncs to your phone, tracks and predicts your cycle, and alerts you to important natural changes in your body. Snow Li has already achieved her goal of $35,000 on Indiegogo.

smartBAT

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This smart bat provides you with real-time data, speed and contact analytics on each swing. RIP-IT is currently $30,000 on Kickstarter.

The Kodiak

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This lightweight, expandable backup solar system will ensure you’re never left in the dark again. Jared Grover has passed his $50,000 goal on Indiegogo.

RedBear Duo

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This thumb-sized dev board designed combines Wi-Fi, BLE and a powerful Cloud backend, all in a compact form factor. RedBear has generated great popularity so far on Kickstarter, nearly doubling its $20,000 goal.

FireSat

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This network of 200 satellites equipped with temperatures sensors can detect wildfires and oil spills as they start. Quadra Pi R2E is currently seeking $280,000 on Kickstarter.

FLOW

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This smart, filtered water bottle has the ability to tailor a unique personal hydration program depending on your age, height, weight, activity level and environmental conditions. FLOW is currently seeking $30,000 on Indiegogo.

LifePrint

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This portable printer, along with an accompanying app and social network, enables you to create augmented reality pics, then instantly print them directly from your phone. LifePrint has stormed past its $30,000 Kickstarter goal.

OXY

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This Android smartwatch is fully customizable and works with virtually any phone. OXY is currently seeking $250,000 on Indiegogo.

NeverLose

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This ultimate sports tracker mounts to skis, snowboards and bikes to prevent loss and theft from occurring. NeverLose is currently seeking $30,000 on Indiegogo.

Thermoco

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This coin-size smart gadget measures and records room, fridge, cooler, camping tent, body temperature and much more. KSOLUTION is currently seeking $10,000 on Kickstarter.

The STARFORCE PI

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This tabletop mini-arcade boasts microswitch controls, video and audio, all crammed into a portable form factor. Marcel J. de Haan is currently seeking $204,654 on Kickstarter.

EcoQube C

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This fish tank uses plants like basil and mint to keep your water clean.  Aqua Innovations has just about doubled its $15,000 goal on Indiegogo.

LightCan

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This versatile LED light, which is no larger than an energy drink can, is capable of running at least eight hours on a single charge. Ape Labs is currently seeking $26,583 on Kickstarter.

CAT Clutch

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This chic bag displays LED pixel art which can be changed via a companion mobile app to show off your style, while still holding lipstick and charging your phone. C.A.T. is currently seeking $20,000 on Kickstarter.

Did you happen to miss last week’s notable campaigns? If so, you can check them out here.

1:1 interview with Tristan Bel of NYDesigns


“There’s no better place for hardware prototyping and building in New York City.” 


We recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Executive Director Tristan Bel from Long Island-based NYDesigns to discuss how his company is helping Makers get from the MakerSpace to MarketPlace. In our 1:1 conversation, we also addressed how NYDesigns and Atmel can jointly help do-it-yourselfers get from the lab to the fab. You can find our entire interview below!

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Atmel: Tristan, can you tell us what NYDesigns does and how it fits into the MakerSpace to MarketPlace theme that we’ve been promoting for the last year?

Tristan Bel: NYDesigns is dedicated to the success of design and hardware tech startups in NYC. Companies in our incubator get three years of private studio space and access to a network of mentors and advisers. Makers can prototype their design ideas in our safe, secure 5,000-sq-ft fabrication lab. We also produce events and programs for a thriving community of creators and innovators.

Our purpose is help entrepreneurs turn an idea into a product and coach them through every growth stage; that clearly resonates with the MakerSpace to MarketPlace initiative. One never knows where the next good idea will come from, and more importantly, who will have the skills and stamina to lead it through to a viable company.

Atmel: What was the model behind opening NYDesigns in the middle of one of the most expensive areas in America?

TB: We opened in 2006 as an initiative of LaGuardia Community College to promote NYC’s economic development after 9/11, so we existed before incubators were cool and numerous. NYC is teaming up with people with ideas. The density of the city naturally favors connections and exchanges. It is also the home of many headquarters of large corporations that can become clients or partners. In my opinion, that mix is one of the main reasons why tech entrepreneurship here is catching up with Silicon Valley.

Software startups tend to congregate around Union Square. Hardware startups need more space, and still benefit significantly from our proximity to Manhattan — that’s why our large studios, which are located in Long Island City just 15 minutes away from Midtown and are more affordable than other spaces even in the neighborhood, are so attractive to cash-strapped young companies.

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Atmel: We understand you attended the World Maker Faire New York back in September? Are there any key findings you can share with us?

TB: It’s inspiring to see hobbyists of all ages gathered around making. I was impressed by the amount of resources available to anyone with an idea, and how inexpensive these are becoming. Prototypes that required a team a highly skilled engineers and specialized equipment can now be made by a couple of passionate techies on their time off. That opens up so many possibilities!

Atmel: With so many Makerspaces popping up around the United States, let alone the world, why would a Maker go to NYDesigns versus a local Makerspace?

TB: If you want to start a company in the design or hardware tech industry, it’ll be hard to find a beautiful space with amenities, close to Manhattan, and open 24/7 (the lab is open during regular business hours) as affordable as NYDesigns. You’ll have the 5,000-square-foot fabrication lab in the same building, and be part of a community that will help you grow and overcome the obstacles you’ll inevitably be encountering.

If you are a tinkerer or simply need good fabrication resources, the NYDesigns FabLab is equipped with an array of tools both analog and digital, including traditional hand and power tools, a vacuum former, an FDM rapid prototyper, and a large format industrial laser cutter.

Atmel: How can Atmel partner with NYDesigns to help Makers get from the lab to the fab?

TB: Actually, this is great timing! We are about to start a series of workshops around Arduino for tinkerers; we’d love for you to spread the word. Also, we are expanding our development tools for AVR and ARM development. For example, resident companies Vengo, which designs and manages high-tech vending machines, BotFactory, which makes a desktop electronics-circuit printer with conducting ink, and Boston Biomotion, which is developing an intelligent rehab and sports performance device straight out of the MIT lab, would all greatly benefit from such a partnership.

Lastly, we have large spaces within our walls in Long Island City in which we regularly host events related to entrepreneurship, hardware technology, and design. We’re happy to hold joint events or make that space available to the MakerSpace community.

Atmel: Is there anything else our Maker audience should know about NYDesigns?

TB: There’s no better place for hardware prototyping and building in NYC. Email info@nydesigns.org or call us at 718.663.8404 — we’d love to meet you and show you our space. Come build your side project or your company!

25 smart crowdfunding campaigns you may want to back this week


Every Friday, we’re taking a look at some of the smartest, most innovative projects that caught our attention on Kickstarter and Indiegogo over the last seven days. 


BLOCKS

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This modular smartwatch lets you piece together various links on its strap, each with their own function. BLOCKS has accrued well over its initial Kickstarter goal of $250,000.

Raise3D

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This series of high-res, upgradable 3D printers provide Makers with a touchscreen user interface, remote monitoring and print job management via Wi-Fi and Ethernet. Raise3D has already well surpassed its goal of $50,000 on Kickstarter.

Antelope

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This lineup of embedded sportswear stimulates each of your major muscle groups to help you achieve your fitness goals faster than ever. Antelope Club has blown right past its $50,000 goal on Indiegogo.

CellRobot

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This DIY kits empowers Makers to assemble, configure and control their own robot. KEYi Technology is currently seeking $75,000 on Kickstarter.

Glassy Zone

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This wearable device tracks your surfing activity as well as your exposure to UV rays. Glassy Pro is currently seeking $35,000 on Indiegogo.

Waylens

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This beautifully-crafted camera system empowers drivers to easily capture, edit and share interesting moments right from the road. Waylens has already quadrupled its goal of $55,000 on Kickstarter.

Shammane Smartwatch

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This elegant wearable packs all of the technology and connectivity you’d expect from a smartwatch, without sacrificing style. Shammane is currently $55,000 on Indiegogo.

monkey

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This upgrade for your existing intercom allows you to enjoy all the benefits of a smart lock without having to change a single thing at your door. LOCUMI LABS just hit its goal of $56,860 on Kickstarter.

Solu

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This innovative, cloud-linked computer will make it so that you never again have to worry about your hard drive, backing up files or installing software. Solu Machines is currently seeking $227,812 on Kickstarter.

Skybuds

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This set of wireless earbuds features a battery-boosting smartphone case for charging and storage. Alpha Audiotronics is currently seeking $200,000 on Kickstarter.

Readybox

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This reliable, high-speed desktop 3D printer spits out objects six times faster than other consumer machines. Readybox has successfully attained its $12,000 goal on Kickstarter.

Amino

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This countertop-sized biolab enables you to grow living cells and to create new and interesting things, such as fragrances, flavours, materials and medicine. Amino Labs is currently seeking $12,500 on Indiegogo.

Felfil Evo

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This open source 3D printer extruder lets you produce your own filament ranging in color, diameter and material. Collettivo Cocomeri is currently seeking $34,172 on Kickstarter.

Helixee

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This connected unit backs up the content from all your devices, either automatically or upon request. Novathings is currently seeking $79,605 on Kickstarter.

Tracksoar

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This small, lightweight and ready-to-fly APRS tracker will diminish the headaches and costs associated with high-altitude ballooning. Mike Bales is currently seeking $22,000 on Kickstarter.

meeba

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This smart, customizable and extremely fun doorbell allows you to select from various modes, and to monitor the doorstep right from your smartphone. meeba is currently seeking $40,000 on Indiegogo.

Elbee

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This pair of earbuds lets you to enjoy high-quality sound, all while accessing your smartphone with simple voice commands and slight head movements. LBTECH is currently seeking $250,000 on Kickstarter.

SizeGenie

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This body scanner can quickly and accurately take your measurements to ensure you always get perfectly-fitting clothes when shopping online. Tom Brooks and Pietro Veragouth are currently seeking $30,000 on Kickstarter.

Howz

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This unobtrusive system analyzes electricity usage and sensor data to learn an elderly person’s daily routine and notify family members know if things don’t seem right. Howz is currently seeking $91,981 on Kickstarter.

HÜD

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This medical-grade lens attaches to any smartphone camera, enabling you to take crystal-clear images of the moles on your skin. First Derm is currently seeking $25,000 on Indiegogo.

SFC-Mini

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This Arduino-compatible, USB MIDI controller bridges the gap between hardware and software to offer you a complete synthesizer experience. Soudforce Controllers is currently seeking $17,036 on Kickstarter.

DigiRule

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This 15-centimeter interactive binary ruler not only lets you draw straight lines, but boasts seven logic gates, four flip flops and a four-bit binary counter. Bradley Slattery is currently seeking $2,935 on Kickstarter.

Tinker Tie

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This hackable, Arduino-compatible LED bow-tie can last over 20 hours on a single charge. Atom Computer is currently seeking $1,000 on Kickstarter.

Lumen

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This nifty little gadget converts your body heat into everlasting light, without any external energy source. Rost is currently seeking $5,000 on Kickstarter.

Did you happen to miss last week’s notable campaigns? If so, you can check them out here.