Can you build a cool gadget that you think you could sell? If so, check out this forum for aspiring inventors: The MAKE/Design News Gadget Freak Design Contest, sponsored by Alibre, Allied Electronics and Texas Instruments. The idea is to create a gadget, which incorporates electronic components and involves sensing, motion, timing and/or networking elements and document your build. The contest winner gets $1,000 and a chance to sell their gadget in kit form in the Makers Market (with setup and monthly fees waived for six months). So come on–what have you got to lose? Go to for official rules and to see examples of some of the coolest projects DN gadgeteers have come up with and good luck!
The engineers and inventors of the post WWII period turned their attention to advancements in electronics, communication, and entertainment. Breakthrough inventions range from LEGOs and computer gaming to the integrated circuit and Ethernet -- a range of advancements that have little in common except they changed our lives.
Neil Fromer is the executive director of the Resnick Institute, a program for energy and sustainability at the California Institute of Technology, working to develop new ideas and research technologies related to providing a sustainable future. He spoke to us about the severity of the current drought in California and how solar energy can help prevent such situations in the future.
From home enthusiasts to workers on the manufacturing floor, everyone's imagination is captured by the potential of 3D printing. Prototyping, spare parts creation, art delivery, human organ creation, and even mass product production are all being targeted as current and potential uses for the technology.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.