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Archive for the ‘Contests’ Category

The “Create the Future” Design Contest is Open for Entries!

Posted by Plish on March 12, 2013

Have an idea for a cool new product, something that screams, “This is the FUTURE!”?  Then the Create the Future contest is for you, and you have until July 1, 2013 to enter!

There are eight different divisions you can submit entries to:

◦Aerospace & Defense — Product innovations with applications in the aerospace, aviation, and/or defense markets.

◦Consumer Products — Products that increase quality of life in the workplace, at home, during leisure time, or while traveling.

◦Electronics — Products that improve computing, communications, and other fields that rely on advances in electronic components and systems.

◦Machinery and Equipment — Products that speed and improve work, manufacturing, or scientific research processes.

◦Medical Products — Products that improve the efficiency and quality of healthcare.

◦Safety and Security — Products that enhance the security or safety of individuals, businesses, communities, or nations.

◦Sustainable Technologies — Products that help reduce dependence on non-renewable energy resources, as well as products designed for other purposes using environmentally friendly materials or manufacturing processes.

◦Transportation & Automotive — Products that enable movement of people and goods from one place to another.

Your entry will be judged on:





The Grand Prize is $20,000 plus publicity.

So, give it go and good luck!!


Posted in Contests, creativity, Design, innovation, NASA, The Future | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Is Art Always Accessible? Help us Research This and Maybe Win $25.

Posted by Plish on September 12, 2011

I had some conversations recently regarding Bonsai.  Yup, the living art-form where trees are planted in pots and grown (metadesigned?) to look like aged, mini-versions of full size trees.

We spoke about multiple aspects of Bonsai, but one of the topics that stayed with me was the popularity of the artform.  How accessible is it to most people?  What do people really think about it?  Can it ever be as popular as say,  scrapbooking? 

Being who I am, I couldn’t simply let these questions go unanswered so I figured to get the ball rolling and start by getting at some basic perceptions about Bonsai.

I’ve created a very basic, two question survey to get at perceptions of the art of Bonsai.  You can check it out here.

So, whether you’re in to Bonsai or not, take the survey and you’re entered for a chance to win $25.  Be honest and upfront.  We’ll analyze the responses and repost on this topic in the beginning of October.

I could say more but I don’t want to impact your thoughts in any way.

Thanks for taking part in this project!

Posted in Authenticity, Contests, creativity, Design, imagination, innovation, nature, Surveys, The Human Person | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Tackling an Obese Nation – Making “Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution” a Design Competition!

Posted by Plish on April 8, 2010

I’ve been watching Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.  At first I wasn’t too keen on the show.  I didn’t like the premise: Guy from a different country comes to the US to make the US healthier as part of a reality TV show. The motive is good but it’s still Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.  Deep down I feel that for this to be uber-successful it needs to be called something like, “The USA’s Nutrition Revolution – Living Life!”  Revolutions belong to the people, never to one person. (Yes, I realize that one person often starts a  revolution and that others join in – yet, I think this might get more traction if  the focus were changed.  I do need to point out that it seems clear to me that Jamie isn’t in this for his own glory.  He genuinely cares about the issue of obesity, especially in children)

Well, I’ve seen a couple of episodes, and I have to say that I’m intrigued and actually enjoy watching.  I’m shocked though by what I’m seeing: Kids that can’t name basic vegetables, bureaucracies that favor cheap pre-fab food over fresh foods, parents that have given up providing their kids with healthy food.  Every episode reveals something new and not always flattering about the nutritional delivery system in this country.

It also struck me that this show/movement  could be viewed as a design project. 

What do I mean? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Best Practices, Case Studies, children, Contests, creativity, Design, design thinking, Education, Food, Health Concerns, innovation, Life Stages, Parents, Politics, problem solving, Social Networking, Society, Stories, The Human Person | Tagged: , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Designing the Future – Check Out These Two Contests!

Posted by Plish on April 1, 2010

It’s that time of year again – time to Think FUTURE!

If mobile communications is your think then  the Design the Future of Mobile Communication Competition is for you.  Ssponsored by LG Mobile Phones in conjunction with CrowdSPRING and Autodesk, they’re offering over $80,000 of prizes  and Autodesk is throwing in a 15-day trial version of Sketchbook Pro so you can polish up your final submissions.

Prizes are as follows:

First Place: $20,000 Cash Award + 1 Wacom Intuos4 medium tablet (ARV of $349) + Autodesk industrial design software (ARV of $500)

Second Place: $10,000 Cash Award + Autodesk SketchBook Pro software (ARV of $100)

Third Place: $5,000 Cash Award + Autodesk SketchBook Pro software (ARV of $100)

Prop Master’s Choice: $3,000 Cash Award + Autodesk SketchBook Pro software (ARV of $100) + 1 non-working concept mock-up creation (ARV of $4,000)

37 Honorable Mentions: $1,000 Cash Award

Start and End Dates: The competition ends on April 26, 2010, at 9:00 a.m. PST

For more info click here.

The other competition is the Create the Future Design Contest sponsored by PTC, COMSOL and Tech Briefs Media Group.  Submit your design in six categories: Machinery Equipment and Component Technology, Consumer Products, Medical, Safety and Security, Transportation and Sustainable Technologies.  It runs through June 30, 2010.

Prizes are as follows:

Grand Prize (1)-$20,000 USD

First Prize in Each Category (6)-A workstation computer provided by Hewlett-Packard

Popular Vote Winners (10)-A SpaceNavigator 3D mouse from 3Dconnexion

Top 100 Entries (100)-Certificate of Achievement suitable for framing

All qualified entrants will be included in a random drawing for NASA Tech Briefs T-Shirts. Minimum of 1 per 50 entrants will win.

More info here.

Best of luck and may the best innovators win!

Posted in Contests, creativity, Design, imagination, innovation, Science, Society, Sustainable Technology | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Innovation Inside a Train – The YouRail Design Contest

Posted by Plish on November 9, 2009


Trains, it seems, have always been a part  of my life.  When we went to visit my dad at work we took the train; going downtown – took the train; festival- took the train.  Even when I wasn’t on the trains I was (and still am!) fascinated by the tracks, the crossing gates, the speed at which they blasted by, the papers swirling behind the last car, the lateral green glow of windows streaking by in the night…

Then there was the Tyco electric train set-up that I built in my basement in which I designed an entire world for my trains.



The words are meant to be together.

If you believe this, then check out this great design contest by Bombardier.  Design a cool train interior and you may make yourself a couple thousand Euros , a netbook or a trip to InnoTrans 2010 in Berlin.

All aboard!!!

Posted in Contests, Customer Focus, Design, imagination, innovation, Sketching | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Slipping of Writing Skills in Those Under 40

Posted by Plish on May 19, 2009


I was reading about the Winterhouse Awards for Design Writing and Criticism and looking for what I needed to do to submit to the competition.

I was reading the eligibility section and came across the following requirement:

“At the time of submission, the writer must be under the age of 40.”

Whoa! What? Under 40?  What the????

I was stunned. 

I clicked on the FAQ page to see if perhaps there was some explanation.  There it was:

“In recent years, AIGA has noticed that younger designers seem not to share the same inclination that earlier generations had in articulating their reactions in reasoned essays. Educators who have encouraged students to express themselves report the same phenomenon. “

The article continues:

“We believe it is important to encourage design writing and criticism, both for the strength of the profession and to explain design to other audiences. Our particular concern is to encourage a new generation to write. Hence, we have developed an award program aimed at designers under 40 as of this year’s deadline: June 1, 2009.”

At a time when the world is in need of creative solutions, it’s mind bending to think that those under 40 are under-equipped to partake in a global innovation dialogue.

Good writing is thought provoking, compelling, inspiring and challenging. 

Good writing can seed innovation and elicit creativity.

While one can complain that those under 40  over-utilize other communicative modalities (texting, etc.), this phenomenon is also the responsibility of those over 40 who have shaped curricula and systems in which their students and children received less than optimal creative preparation for their lives, and the world’s future.

While I don’t think things are beyond repair, it does sound an alarm for educators and parents everywhere.  It is important that we do not further the ‘culture of the inarticulate writer’ (Plus writing is good for you!). 

  1. Don’t underestimate the power and value of the written word.  Encourage writing – descriptive, inspiring writing.
  2. Encourage the reading and writing of poetry – three lines of poetry can often say more than three pages of prose.
  3. Encourage reading period.  Reading is a school for writing.
  4. Encourage the penning of logical and spirited disagreement over designs/issues.
  5. Try writing without a computer

What are your thoughts on this?  What would you suggest be done?

Posted in children, Contests, creativity, culture of innovation, Design, Education, imagination, innovation, The Human Person, Writing | Tagged: , , , | 6 Comments »

Check out the ZINK Imaging’s ‘Zero Boundaries'(TM), Design Challenge

Posted by Plish on April 26, 2009

ZINK technology, the cool way of printing without ink (the ink is in the paper!) is sponsoring a contest with $15,000 worth of prizes. 

You can enter in one or both of the following challenge options:

Option 1: “Printing to die for”

Create a ZINK ecosystem that will make today’s youth crave ZINK products in the context of their digital and mobile world.

Option 2: “In a Perfect ZINKTM World”

Re-imagine printing by envisioning new and innovative ways that ZINK Technology can be utilized “in a ZINK world”.

 Your designs will be viewed and judged by a pretty illustrious panel:

  • Paul Bradley, Executive Creative Director of Industrial Design, Frog Design
  • Kate Greene, Technology Editor, Technology Review Published by MIT
  • Tom Hughes, Chief Design Officer, Idealab
  • Brian Lam, Editorial Director, Gizmodo
  • Darren Murph, Associate Editor, Engadget
  • Mary Tripsas, Assistant Professor, Harvard Business School
  • Richard Watson, Co‐Founder and Partner, Essential Design
  • Irma Zandl, President, Zandl Group

You have until June 5th, 2009 and enter as many ideas as you like! 

This looks like fun and I’ll be entering it as well!

May the best design win!

Posted in Contests, creativity, Design, Disruptive Innovation, innovation | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

LG Design the Future Competition – The Future is Only a Phone Away

Posted by Plish on April 21, 2009


Did you ever look at your cellphone and wonder, “Why can’t it find my keys, it does everything else?”

Now’s your chance to design that key finding, ultimate phone of the future and make some money as well!

The Design the Future of Mobile Communication Competition is sponsored by LG Mobile Phones in conjunction with CrowdSPRING and Autodesk.  Over $80,000 of prizes will be awarded and Autodesk is throwing in a 15-day trial version of Sketchbook Pro so you can polish up your final submissions. Yes – submission*s*!  You can enter as often as you like!

Cash awards are as follows:

First Place: $20,000 Cash Award
Second Place: $10,000 Cash Award
Third Place: $5,000 Cash Award
40 Honorable Mentions: $1,000 Cash Award + 1 LG U.S. Phone (A.R.V. of $300)

How will this be judged?

Need Fulfillment / Market Potential (40% weight): How well does the phone address general consumer needs / frustrations?
Creativity / Originality / Innovation (30% weight): Is the idea / design unique? Does the concept convey WOW or game-changing characteristics?
Feasibility (20% weight): Can this idea / product be realistically implemented with current or near-future technology?
Polish and Appeal (10% weight): Is the idea easy to understand and aesthetically appealing? Does it have images illustrating usage scenarios?

LG is even providing cool innovation assistance with this  “How to Innovate” page to help you generate ideas.

I would also suggest (beyond the obvious of perusing this blog’s articles and references) that you visit this site that contains 160+ creativity techniques (which incidentally is taken from my resource links on the right side of this page).

You need to be 18 or over and it runs until June 7th.

Best of luck and may the best innovators win!

Posted in Contests, Creative Thinking Techniques, Crowdsourcing, idea generation, innovation, Innovation Tools | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Toyota’s “Why Not?” Innovation Contest

Posted by Plish on January 17, 2009

Click the pic to check out Toyota's "Why Not?" Contest

Check out Toyota's "Why Not?" Contest

Always looking  out for the next best thing, Toyota has developed an innovation webportal where people can suggest innovations and possibly win a tour of their Kentucky plant plus a meeting in NY City with some of the most influential innovators in the country.

The website is pretty cool and it’s nice to just listen to the sounds of nature there…

The contest ends March 31, 2009.

Posted in Contests, innovation, nature, Sustainable Technology | Tagged: , , , , | 9 Comments »

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