In this issue we have an amazing article by Senior Editor Chuck Murray about Larry Miller, an inventor who overcame enormous technical obstacles, funding problems, and outright institutional resistance to create a life-saving device. Today, it's used by emergency personnel to administer fluids through the bones of patients who have lost significant amounts of blood.
I found Larry's story particularly compelling because it showcases the degree of technical expertise, creativity, and dogged perseverance that all great engineers possess and, frankly, require to get a new product to market — whether you are designing products that save lives or products that simply make someone's life easier.
It's the latter type of product that we have been recognizing for the past seven years through our annual Design News Golden Mousetrap Awards, which showcase some of the best and most innovative technologies and tools that help design engineers do their jobs better and faster. In fact, I am extraordinarily proud of the efforts of the Design News team and the companies that have supported this program and the work they've put in to improve and expand it each and every year.
Since we introduced the program in 2003, we've recognized the achievements of literally hundreds of engineers and developers who have created everything from leading-edge motion control systems to sophisticated electronic components to the latest software tools for engineers. The stories behind the development of these products and the designs themselves are always compelling, sometimes quite entertaining, which is one big reason our editorial team especially looks forward to reviewing the entries, which continue to increase in number each year.
So, frankly, I am delighted to announce that we've moved the 2010 Golden Mousetrap Awards timetable ahead by a few months. The call for entries is now open and we will be accepting submissions through Jan. 15, 2010 (better hurry!). All finalists and winning entries will be announced in our April 2010 issue and on our website, giving the award winners more time to promote their victory in the same calendar year they've received the accolades. Plus, winners will be getting a very cool plaque — complete with 3-D mousetrap — suitable for hanging in a place of honor in their company lobby.
This year Golden Mousetrap Awards will be given in four major categories: Design Tools; Electronics; Materials/Fastening, Joining and Assembly; Motion Control/Automation, plus 20 sub-categories. Entries will be judged on the significance of the product to design engineers, the uniqueness of the design, and the creativity and innovation applied in the design effort.
So, please, don't wait to tell us about the spectacular new products your company has designed in the past year and the chance to get your engineering team some great recognition. You can get all the details — including the entry form, full contest rules, a list of previous winners and an FAQ — at www.designnews.com/mousetrap.
This year, we've even added information on how former winners have effectively promoted their winning status. Read the article, for example, that Lori Appel, manager, Marketing Communications at Custom Sensors & Technologies and Kavlico, wrote on a finalist in this year's Golden Mousetrap Awards and promoted in a company E-Newsletter. It generated the highest number of clicks in that installment of the E-Newsletter.
Have questions? Our capable Executive Editor Liz Taurasi is heading up the 2010 Golden Mousetrap Awards so please feel free to ping her at firstname.lastname@example.org.