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A simple kit to build a watch has raised over $675,000, as well as raised the profile of a website called Kickstarter.
Kickstarter is a site that lets people pledge money to projects involving film, music, design, art, food, technology, publishing and more. It is not an investment site. In fact, the creators of the particular projects keep 100% ownership and control over their work. Instead of offering those who pledge on the projects a piece of the company, they receive a unique product or experience.
Another interesting wrinkle: the funding on projects is all or nothing. So if a project doesn't reach its funding goal before time runs out, then the pledges don't go through. That way, creators don't have to try to take on projects without the level of funds they need.
The project that has the tech world buzzing right now is an iPod Nano watch kit, created by a Chicago design firm called Minimal. Scott Wilson, the founder of Minimal has been overwhelmed with the positive response to the idea on Kickstarter. "It just seems to keep on going ... I had expectations that we would get $15,000 in funding from Kickstarter, but by the second day of sales we had quickly passed that," Wilson told The New York Times.
Minimal created two different watch kit designs, the TikTok for $25 and the LunaTik for $50.
More than anything, Wilson seemed enthusiastic about the freedom that Kickstarter provided his company. "I'm most excited about using this platform to give creative control to the designers and experiment with the product without having to enter a complicated corporate deal to produce it," Wilson said, reports The New York Times.
So, if you've been hanging onto a good idea, maybe you should take a look at Kickstarter.