I find myself going to Kickstarter and Indiegogo on a regular basis these days because they have become real innovation marketplaces. As far as I'm concerned, this is where a lot of cool new products and ideas are surfacing — not in VC-backed companies, as they used to be.
If I look at my credit card bill, it's a rare month if I haven't contributed something to a crowd-funded product. I first got hooked with the Pebble Watch, which I have had in my possession for about two years now, and it's still ticking!
I know that not all of the products out there are going to make it — I have purchased a few duds over the years — but the broader point is that this is a new and entirely viable way to get innovative new technologies to market.
These crowdfunding platforms can also be used for charitable or artistic projects, and that's a game-changer for non-profits and struggling artists. So I was particularly taken with this fundraiser for Tesla. No, we aren't talking about the car company, we're talking about the great man himself, Nikola.
Not too long ago in the EE community, anything to do with Tesla referred to the last century and the wonders of AC current. Any story in EETimes about Tesla generated huge traffic, invariably including a few fringe comments from the Tesla conspiracy theorist crowd. I'm sure many of these folks would fit well in Max Maxfield's foil helmet brigade, but they are always fun to read.
As a resident of the Bay Area/Silicon Valley, I can tell you that around here Tesla is very much about the electric car — I found myself surrounded by three of them on Highway 280 last week, and you see them everywhere, but we digress…
To read the rest of this article, visit EBN sister site EETimes.