Bug Labs and The Long Tail of Gadgets
\nEarlier in the week, I had the unique opportunity to hear Peter Semmelhack, CEO of New York-based Bug Labs, describe how his start-up company was radically disrupting the traditional consumer electronics industry. Using a modular, open source approach, Bug Labs is focused on bringing the Long Tail of Gadgets to everyday consumers. Instead of developing a few devices for millions of consumers, the business model is to make millions of devices available for relatively few numbers of consumers. His company has already generated buzz on gadget blogs like Gizmodo, and now Bug Labs is featured in this week's issue of Springwise:\n\n
"For a while now, web developers have been mixing and matching web\nservices such as Google Earth and Yahoo Weather to create mash-ups that\nperform useful new functions. Likewise, programmers have grown adept at\ntweaking the code used by open-source software programs. The result in\nboth instances has been unique applications the developers of the\noriginal technology likely never dreamed of. \n\n\n\n
US start-up Bug Labs wants to\nharness some of that same creativity by enabling tech-savvy\ndo-it-yourselfers to create their own mobile devices. The company has\ndesigned several basic hardware modules that snap together like\nbuilding blocks to perform whatever mobile function their owners can\nthink of. âThere are so many great gadget ideas that haven't been\nthought of yet,â the founders note. âWe want to unlock and inspire the\ndiscovery and creation of as many of these devices as possible.â\nBesides letting them add whatever they want, the snap-together\ncomponents also let consumers leave out what they don't want, which is\na far cry from many pre-packaged mobile phones and PDAs that come\ncrammed with features their buyers have no use for."
By the end of 2007, at least a few of the modules should be available for sale. According to Semmelhack, the plan is to make the modules available online first, before extending availability to big box retailers like Best Buy sometime in 2008. If you check out the Bug Labs website, you're probably thinking, "Wow, those products doesn't look at all like a phone or camera that I own." That's the whole point. As Springwise points out, "Gadgets built with Bug Lab's block-like components may not satisfy\nthose who lust after branded mobile devices poured into seamlessly\nsleek designs. It will, however, appeal to people who enjoy making\nthings, and like having control over elements of a product's design."\n\n
This is a company to watch. Mad props to Peter and team at Bug Labs!
Former president of the ACLU Nadine Strossen discusses whether our society should always defend free speech rights, even for groups who would oppose such rights.
- Former ACLU president Nadine Strossen understands that protecting free speech rights isn't always a straightforward proposition.
- In this video, Strossen describes the reasoning behind why the ACLU defended the free speech rights of neo-Nazis in Skokie, Illinois, 1977.
- The opinions expressed in this video do not necessarily reflect the views of the Charles Koch Foundation, which encourages the expression of diverse viewpoints within a culture of civil discourse and mutual respect.
The reason one diet does not suit all may be found in our guts.
Strangely, the sun showed no sunspots at the time the photo was taken.
- The photo shows the International Space Station as it orbits the Earth, as it does every 90 minutes.
- The photo is remarkable because it offers a glimpse of the star at a time when there were no sunspots.
- In November, astronauts aboard the ISS plan to grow Española chili pepper plants.
July 16, 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the mission that first landed a man on the Moon.
- The website includes lets viewers experience the mission through 11,000 hours of audio, thousands of photographs and multiple camera angles.
- Apollo 11 lasted just over eight days.
- Only 12 men have walked on the Moon so far. NASA plans to return to the lunar surface in 2024.