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5 innovations powered by the people


by Jonathan Kevin Castillo

There are credible places to get funds for a project that you’ve been dreaming for decades to accomplish. We don’t here much about them, but it’s probably the best place to get a chance to campaign something innovative, catchy, and just that thing that you think people would want and would feel that they need. Recently, a couple of campaigns have been successfully funded and these projects are soon to hit the market.

Evo One
Evo One
Let us just say the obvious right now. It is a basketball with all sorts of micro-sensors embedded on it to monitor the player’s performance. Just looking at it gives off some Rocky IV vibes. It’s more of a practice ball for all levels of basketball players. But we figured this has more emphasis on newbies, especially players having trouble with their shooting skills. The ball has an audio feedback that sounds off when a backspin or two revolutions per second is achieved. According to the Kickstarter campaign, based on their research, a good backspin increases the chances of going through the hoop when it hits the rim. Since the ball structure may seem a little different than a real ball, the company has made sure the Evo One’s engineering is exactly as a regular ball that bounces normally. And through enough practice, players can build muscle memory and skills, which all fires up with reflexes during an actual game. It may not be a great replacement for coaches, but it looks to hold some potential for players.

Lost and Found
There’s nothing more annoying than misplacing something. Worse if it takes hours, days, weeks, or Heaven forbid, years before you find them nicely tucked underneath the sofa. Well, those days will soon come to an end as a small handy-dandy tracking device will be hitting the stores sometime in the near future. Tile is a Bluetooth device the helps people find old, lost stuff in a jiffy. It’s a small waterproof device that comes with a downloadable iPhone app. In a 50-150 feet range, the Tile will “beep” as you come closer and closer to the device. The Tile is a tiny waterproof tag that you can strap in to your wallet, TV remote, keys and practically any other stuff you can think of – the company developing this device claims it can help locate things people did not expect that could be located – whatever that means, it sounds pretty cool and we can’t wait to try it out for ourselves.

Ever since batteries burned out after a couple hours, people have been scouring how to preserve energy for their devices – that would at the very least, get them through the day, just in time for dinner. We’ve experienced carrying extra batteries, charging stations, and power banks. Here’s a new one. It may not be as fancy, but it sure sounds practical. It is called SolePower. This successfully funded Kickstarter campaign aims to spread mobile charging. It doesn’t rely on electricity to charge your devices. Instead, it charges as you walk. It’s quite dandy and cool. Basically, it’s a device that you slip into your shoe; have the connecting wires with the laces, and the device itself could either be attached on the ankle or on top of the shoe itself. You can head for remote places and let your own footwork power up your gadgets. The company developing this has sent some beta for actual testing, and so far, all seems swell. And you don’t have to worry about it getting wet; it’s waterproof. The estimated product launch is around Q4 of 2014.

Power Shorts
Okay, this one’s kind of fun and while watching movies like Step Up or Footloose can be recharging in many different ways – these short-shorts have charging pockets. Let us clarify that, you hide a device, like a smartphone, in the Power Short’s pocket, and the smartphone will start charging. How does it work? Well, according to the developers, it works through kinetic energy. Body movement generates power to charge your device. It doesn’t charge very fast, four hours or so. It’s slow charge but it’s a lot better than not having one onboard. And we kind of think this could be popular among girls. We can’t say how comfortable they are, but we can assume they’re nice enough to wear and maybe start hoping for a Levi’s edition. There doesn’t seem to be a male version. Personally, this writer doesn’t know if that’s a good thing or not. So, running low on power? Start dancing.

Have you seen the movie, In Time? Characters in the movie check their wrists every now and then to see how many minutes they still have to live. Pretty creepy isn’t it? The appeal to that deathclock-something website is just as creepy; almost haunting that either wrecks or pumps up your carpe diem extravaganza, which is just as scary. Tikker posted their tagline, that they made a watch that counts down your life in order to make the world a better place. Basically, the idea here is to see how much time you’ve got, and they encourage you to do something – something instead of sitting in front of the computer most of the day. Ever seen The Bucket List? When the two protagonists believed they were going to die soon, they spent their remaining time living life, experiencing things they normally find absurd, only to become some of the best memories in their lives. That’s what Tikker is trying to do. Seize the moment! The simple fact this was a successful campaign in Kickstarter, proves that many people believe that too, and are taking action into their own hands. It’s pretty much a motivator to do something productive in life. But it’s still creepy to see a timer counting down to the last second of your life.