Elizabeth Stark writes, "We're pleased to announce the Device Freedom Prize: a crowdfunded reward for the first developer(s) who release an open source iOS 7 jailbreak. Providing users the ability to control their devices is crucial in an age where we're increasingly dependent on our mobile phones. An open source jailbreak provides users the capability to install what they want on their own devices, the ability to audit the code they're using to do so, and enables disabled users to more easily use their devices."
"We've assembled a judging panel of awesome folks that care a lot about these issues, including Boing Boing's own Cory Doctorow; Kyle Wiens, CEO of iFixit; Biella Coleman, Professor and Author of Coding Freedom, and Chris Maury, Accessibility Advocate. Contribute to the prize to help make an open source iOS jailbreak a reality."
Is iOS7 jailbroken yet?
Benjamin writes, "I've always been fascinated by pictures of the Internet. However, I usually find that they aim to visualize the connections between the screens rather than the people behind them.
This drawing experiment is about trying to create a more human representation of the web made up of requests from people around the globe. You can ask me to draw anything you like. Pledge a minimum of one dollar through Kickstarter, message me your request and I'll add it to the final drawing."
Internetopia - the supersized Internet drawing.
Anders writes, "I've launched a Kickstarter campaign to publish my novel the Jörgits as a hardcover book. It's an all-ages illustrated novel about a group of aliens whose planet has become too cold for them. Fortunately, they've discovered a planet nearby which is rapidly heating up - Earth. The novel is set to the backdrop of global warming and introduces the reader to this complex environmental issue with humor and tact. In April of 2012, I ran a successful Kickstarter to raise $25,000 to publish the Jörgits as an Ipad app. The app went live in March of this year and has been critically well received. I'm currently raising $7000 to finance a first print run."
$40 gets you your own copy.
The End of Winter: Jörgits Printed Book
Laura sez, "Circuit Scribe is a rollerball pen that draws with conductive silver ink-it makes building circuits as easy as doodling. Electroninks just launched a Kickstarter to fund the pen. They make low-cost, high-quality electronics for STEM education. The pen could replace breadboards and lets you prototype instantly. The pen only costs $20 plus they're offering kits for kids and Makers. You can use it with Makey Makey and Arduino. It's pretty cool, check out the video! I love their utilitarian vibe."
Looks like a good team, too! $30 gets you the basic kit.
Circuit Scribe: Draw Circuits Instantly
Noah Swartz writes, "Jie Qi from the MIT Media Lab and Bunnie Huang of Hacking the Xbox fame have teamed up to make LED stickers! Using adhesive copper tape you can turn any notebook into a fantastical light up circuit sketchbook. I got to play with them myself at FOO Camp and they're as easy to use as the look, and in the time since Ji and Bunnie have gone back to the lab and made a number of sensor and controller stickerss that give you loads of options of what to make. They're running a fundraiser to do a big production run of these over at Crowdsupply, and while they have funding I'm sure lots of people will be kicking themselves if they don't manage to grab some of these while they can."
sez, "The goal of Inscription Magazine is to publish diverse short science fiction and fantasy for teens.
We want to make sure every young reader can find themselves in their fiction, to enter worlds full of all the kinds of people they know, and all sorts of people they've never met. And we want to make it available for free, online, accessible to everyone. But we need your help.
We're running an Indiegogo campaign
now to help us get started."
We recorded a special live episode of The New Disruptors in Brooklyn's fantastic DUMBO district in the Galapagos Art Space as part of the Nearly Impossible conference in which we talked about the joys, challenges, and surprises in prototyping, funding, producing, and distributing products. On stage, we had Che-Wei Wang and Taylor Levy of CW&T, Tom Gerhardt and Dan Provost of Studio Neat, and Jessica Heltzel of Kern and Burn.
The New Disruptors: RSS | iTunes | Download this episode | Listen on Stitcher
This episode is sponsored by Shopify: use Shopify to create your online store. Everything you need to start selling online – today!
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Jason sez, "Ralph Kipniss is a master puppeteer who has fallen on hard times. In 2005, he lost both his life partner (after a grave illness) and his puppet theater (in an accidental fire). In the years since, Kipniss has had to move out of Chicago, but hundreds of his specially-created marionettes are still in storage in his old apartment building. Local filmmakers Joseph R. Lewis and Lew Ojeda are running a Kickstarter campaign to help reunite Kipniss with his puppets and hopefully help him get back into performing regularly."
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Amy sez, "Every 98 minutes in the USA, a dog is shot by law enforcement. (In the past fifty years, no police officer has been killed by a dog, and yet evidence suggests the police use lethal force as their one and only response when dogs are present - even lying down, tales wagging, or running away.) This new indie documentary explores an untold story. Everyone should check it out!"
PUPPYCIDE: The Documentary
My new Locus column, Collective Action, proposes a theory of corruption: the relatively small profits from being a jerk are concentrated, the much larger effects are diffused, which means that the jerks can afford better lawyers and lobbyists than any one of their victims. Since the victims are spread out and don't know each other, it's hard to fight back together.
Then I propose a solution: using Kickstarter-like mechanisms to fight corruption: a website where victims of everything from patent trolls and copyright trolls, all the way up to pollution and robo-signing foreclosures, can find each other and pledge to fund a group defense, rather than paying off the bandits.
It's the Magnificent Seven business model: one year, the villagers stop paying the robbers, and use the money to pay mercenaries to fight the robbers instead.
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Cheapass Games is one of my favorite games publishers -- they stripped games down to their smallest, indivisible units (rules) and assume that you had enough dice and pawns and stuff to play. They've made great use of Kickstarter to launch some new games, and they've got a new one coming
Carol from Cheapass Games writes, "We've just launched our Kickstarter for Get Lucky! This is Cheapass Games' third Kickstarter campaign. Get Lucky is a brand new card game, based on our classic board game, Kill Doctor Lucky. Get Lucky will be smaller, faster, cheaper, and even more awesome than the original.
You should check out the Kickstarter campaign just to watch the video. If you've ever wondered what it looks like when six people try to kill Doctor Lucky in a sweet Victorian mansion, it looks exactly like this."
They're already funded. $20 gets you a set of cards.
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The Sugar Skull Spoon finally provides a good reason to dip your wet spoon into the sugar-bowl (yuck). Their kickstarter is fully funded, but there's still time to get one for £8. It comes from London's Hundred Million, who have a good track record for successfully shipping, so there's probably a good chance you'll get what you pay for here.
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Afate is a Togolese hacker who uses the WoeLab makerspace in Lome, Togo (the first makerspace in west Africa). He's invented a 3D printer made out of the ewaste that is piled high in neighborhood-sized ewaste dumps in Agbogbloshie, near Accra, Ghana. He's raised money on Ulule to standardize the printer, called the W.AFATE, so that anyone can turn ewaste into a 3D printer. The W.AFATE design has already won NASA's Space App challenge with a concept for building trashbot 3D printers on distant planets.
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Infinite Crypt, a Kickstarter project aiming to raise £6,000, is a system for building relatively cheap tabletop RPG terrain in quantity, using snap-together, laser-cut materials.
The pieces are architecturally ambitious and the accompanying photos show how great they look when painted. I don't buy a lot of RPG terrain stuff, so I can't really tell if £59 is a cheap price for the materials to build "a large room, a colonnade or a key intersection." But what's immediately obvious is that these pieces are gorgeous and well-designed, and that the project itself has pretty modest and sensible goals -- give us money to buy a laser. More money? We'll buy another laser. More money? We'll make more stuff.
As with all crowdfunded projects, you should be prepared for the eventuality that nothing will come of it, and you'll lose your money. That said, project founder James Wallbank runs a successful hackspace in Sheffield, and seems to be a together sort of dude. So caveat emptor, but also, FWOAR.
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Michael from Muckrock sez, "The Wall Street Journal reported today that the National Security Agency's massive data storage center in Bluffdale, Utah has melted down at least 10 times in the past 13 months. While many details regarding the center are classified, MuckRock has been doggedly pursuing documents that pry open its operational details, including its electrical bill."
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