The Gadgets And Games Of Kickstarter – February 5th 2013 Edition

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kickstarterlogo   The Gadgets And Games Of Kickstarter   February 5th 2013 EditionIf you’ve never heard of it, there is a website called Kickstarter where anyone can financially support projects that they’re interested in. These projects can include all sorts of amazing technologies, gadgets and more.

Each Kickstarter project is its own vision and mission. Will it succeed? Will it fail? It’s impossible to know how it’s going to go until the campaign starts off and the money starts rolling in – or doesn’t. So let’s take a look at some awesome Kickstarters to watch.

The Up-And-Comers

Harvest Geek

harvestgeek   The Gadgets And Games Of Kickstarter   February 5th 2013 Edition

Do you like to garden? Are you also a geek? Then Harvest Geek just might be your ultimate gadget. It is essentially an all-in-one control and monitoring box for a greenhouse or garden that can gauge current conditions and perform certain actions, such as adjusting a thermostat or starting a sprinkler.

Some of these functions are similar to what Sense can accomplish, but Harvest Geek is custom-tailored for gardeners with a more intuitive and focus user interface. The goal of $25,000 is reasonable, so hopefully it will see success.

Stoic

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Stoic promises to turn any spreadsheet into an app. Now you may wonder – why? Ease of use is the answer. With Stoic, a spreadsheet can be converted to an app that simultaneously works as a calendar, organizer and map. Going on a business trip and want to keep track of your appointments? Stoic stores everything in one place – and you won’t need to be online to access the data.

This project has a goal of $25,000 and is already more than halfway there.

StormFly

stormfly   The Gadgets And Games Of Kickstarter   February 5th 2013 Edition

The oddly named StormFly doesn’t have much to do with storms or flying. Instead, it’s a small computer mounted in a durable wristband. StormFly’s creators envision the device as a useful tool for users who want to access their data and programs on computers owned by others. For example, a kid could use his father’s computer to run games without a guest account and without posing risk to the files on the PC.

The idea is interesting, but the goal of $100,000 is fairly high. We’ll see how it does.

The Contenders

Flatlight

flatlight   The Gadgets And Games Of Kickstarter   February 5th 2013 Edition

Flatlight is the solution to a problem that I didn’t know existed, but now seems obvious – flashlights are big! The Flatlight, by contrast, is small. It’s flat. It can fit into a purse, pocket or billfold. It may not be as exciting as a new game console, but it is useful, and that’s been enough to attract over $10,000 of the project’s $15,000 goal. There’s still time left to make up the remainder and I hope that it sees success.

MAUZ

mauz.   The Gadgets And Games Of Kickstarter   February 5th 2013 Edition

This ambitious project seeks to turn your smartphone into the ultimate computer mouse. By snapping on the MAUZ peripheral a phone can enable multi-touch gestures, motion control and much more. All of this is made possible by custom software that runs on both the phone and PC. The only serious flaw is the fact that MAUZ currently is working with only the iPhone 4/4S, not the iPhone 5 or Android devices.

Backers have been slow to appear as a result, but the project still has a month to gain support.

Sense

This one isn’t over yet, folks – but it’s not looking good. The project, which promises an ecosystem of sensor peripherals that work with other devices like a smart thermostat or a PC, currently sits at just above $10,000 of its $150,000 goal.  I’m not sure why so few backers have appeared, though I suspect many are unsure how they’d use the sensors.

The project promises integration with other electronics but doesn’t hash out the details. Sense will need a small miracle to make its goal in the few days that remain.

Wildman

wildman   The Gadgets And Games Of Kickstarter   February 5th 2013 Edition

Shortly after my last column the studio behind Wildman, Gas Powered Games, laid off most of its staff. Chris Taylor, the lead developer and founder, explained in a video update that money had run dry and waiting until after the Kickstarter would, if the project failed, completely sink Gas Powered Games and force him to lay off everyone without severance pay.

Now the fate of both the game and the studio rides on project – if successful, the developers are brought back. If it fails, Gas Powered Games may struggle on but will still most likely shut down. The project could still go either way.

The Losers

Emergency Mobile Device Charger

emergencymobiledevice   The Gadgets And Games Of Kickstarter   February 5th 2013 Edition

I liked the Emergency Mobile Device Charger. I really, really did. It’s one of those weird gadgets that I’d probably never use but might end up buying only because it’s one of the biggest, most complete devices of its kind. The project bit the dust hard, however, coming in at just over $21,000 of its huge $179,000 goal. Project creator Kevin Maloney says he’ll be back with a new project in the future.

Let’s hope that one has a more obtainable goal – and a better name!

The Winners

Leikr

leikr 590x393   The Gadgets And Games Of Kickstarter   February 5th 2013 Edition

I really didn’t know if this project would make it, and it did come down to the wire. The final burst of funding required for success came in around 24 hours before the project closed. Runners, bikers and other athletes looking for a slim GPS, rejoice – Leikr is scheduled to ship this summer.

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5 Comments - Write a Comment

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Elodie

The flashlight one is really cool. One you did not mention and that I like is habit RPG.

Habit tracker app which treats your goals like a Role Playing Game.

kickstarter.com/projects/lefnire/habitrpg-mobile

Reply

NullOp

This product looks amazing! Love the fact it uses OpenStreet maps. I hope this device monitors AND tracks heart rate and not just displays it.

Reply

Robert Owens

About the “Wildman” Kickstarter project mentioned in the article…

The most recent episode of “Matt Chat” on Youtube features an interview with Chris Taylor, Founder and Creative Director of Gas-Powered Games, the developers of “Wildman.” The video is heartbreaking, as Mr. Taylor laments how poorly the Kickstarter project is performing, and how the failure of the project will probably mean the end of Gas-Powered Games! He is very raw and emotional about the whole situation. You can’t help but root for this guy, and by extension the game “Wildman.”

The video is very emotionally gripping, but it also is very informative on how the video game industry operates, and how cut-throat and competitive it is. This “Matt Chat” episode #182 is well worth watching, especially if you’re interested in video games.

Reply

Mac Witty

I like the StormFly. A bit to expensive to step in but I hope they will get it

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