New Opportunities for Hardware Innovators
In a world where VCs often shy away from funding hardware inventions, entrepreneurs are finding new ways to ensure hardware innovation makes a comeback. Start-ups were afforded new flexibility in how they raise funds when the JOBS Act was signed last year. There's now greater potential to fuel entrepreneurs inventing new devices, especially when considered with the growing power to build even the most complicated prototypes in an easy, affordable way. Not only are hardware entrepreneurs leading the maker movement, but they are also getting noticed thanks to makerspaces like TechShop workshops that provide members with affordable access to prototyping tools, classes and design software like Autodesk. Those same hardware inventions built at TechShop locations are also getting off the ground with crowd-funding support from sites like Kickstarter, proving that with the right mix of creativity, community, and tools, innovators everywhere can find new opportunities in hardware.
Adam Ellsworth co-founded 8 Bit Lit, which makes retro video-game themed lamps, and ProtoTank, a startup focused on rapid prototyping and product development.
ProtoTank, which is based at Techshop San Francisco, helps companies and individuals turn their ideas into working prototypes.
Position: Maker Advocate @ Autodesk
Enabling makers, tinkerers and hobbyist to discover Computer Aided Design.
Jesse Harrington Au is a fourteen-year veteran of using CAD for engineering, Design and animation. Jesse speaks, blogs, writes curriculum, gives workshops and makes creations of all kinds through his work with Autodesk.
Mitzi M. Montoya (PhD Marketing and Statistics, BS General Engineering, Michigan State University), is Vice Provost and Dean of the College of Technology & Innovation. She is responsible for advancing the mission of the College of Technology & Innovation and providing leadership at the ASU Polytechnic campus. The mission of the College of Technology & Innovation is to develop innovative learning models and interdisciplinary educational programs in engineering, applied sciences, management and entrepreneurship. The college partners with industry through capstone projects and the faculty are deeply engaged in integrative and applied scholarship.