Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Everyone wants to be part of a team: The value of crowdsourcing (Apologies for a link-laden blog post)

Success principles are everywhere.

I joined Kickstarter today so I could back (ok, so I could get one of) these nifty 3Doodlers -- it's a cross between a 3D printer and a pen.  Today is its first day on Kickstarter too. It's almost 400% funded already. Everyone wants to be part of something big.*

*Doesn't hurt that I don't know anyone who doesn't want a 3D printer, but similarly I don't know anyone who has actually shelled out for one. Isn't this COOL?

I also read recently about the success of Y Combinator as opposed to a typical venture capital being that Y Combinator alumni help support new launches. As with so many things, it's the family you build.

Even in laying fiber optic cable to create super high speed internet across a community, crowdsourcing comes into play. In rural Lancashire England , computers are getting 500Mbps once they dug up their own trenches across their own land and laid down fibre**.

**Yes, I can spell. In the opening statement, I was writing for an American audience. By the end of the paragraph, I was explaining what the Brits did. Brits don't lay fiber, they lay fibre. They don't colour like Americans color, either. But that's not a matter of crossing the pond. I believe Canadians also colour in their neighbourhoods.

In short, we're living in a world that is getting smaller all the time and we need to depend on each other all the more. So why not have fun with it? Isolation kills. Dreams grow when they're shared and encouraged. I leave you with a remarkable documentary on THON, which I never heard of before moving to Central PA, and which is so much bigger than I realized. It's run entirely by Penn State students to support families of kids with cancer, both covering medical expenses that go beyond what insurance covers, and also to provide music therapy and activities and research monies to the Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital. Organizations can also adopt a particular family to really build relationships throughout the year, not just at the hallmark dance marathon which just a few weeks ago raised $12M+, for a cumulative total since 1978 of $100M, "for the kids". Why We Dance .

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