These Twenty Designs Just Won $1000 in The Hackaday Prize

Today we’re excited to announce the winners of the Design Your Concept phase of The Hackaday Prize. These projects just won $1000 USD, and will move on to the final round this fall.

Hackaday is currently hosting the greatest hardware competition on Earth. We’re giving away thousands of dollars to hardware creators to build the next great thing. Last week, we wrapped up the first of five challenges. It was all about showing a design to Build Something That Matters. Hundreds entered and began their quest to build a device to change the world.

There are still four more challenges to explore over the next few months. So far the results have been spectacular. But we’re only a fifth of the way through the Hackaday Prize. So as you celebrate and congratulate the twenty projects below, there’s ample opportunity to get in the game with your own project.

The winners for the Design Your Concept portion of the Hackaday Prize are, in no particular order:

Design Your Concept Hackaday Prize Finalists:

Entry is Still Open for the 2017 Hackaday Prize

If your project didn’t make the cut, don’t worry. There’s still an opportunity for you to build the next great piece of hardware for The Hackaday Prize. Right now, we’re neck deep in a challenge to build the Internet of Useful Things. This is the second challenge for the 2017 Hackaday Prize, and we’re looking for useful connected devices that hopefully won’t become nodes in a botnet. If you think you have the chops to build something more useful than an Internet-connected toaster, get your project started.

The Internet of Useful Things phase runs until June 12th, after which we’ll select 20 projects to win $1000 USD and move onto the finals of The Hackaday Prize. From there, one project will be awarded the grand prize of $50,000 USD and five other top finalists will receive prizes ranging from $30,000 to $5,000.

35 thoughts on “These Twenty Designs Just Won $1000 in The Hackaday Prize

    1. That’s a great question. Just awesome. You can check out the official rules for the answer to this.

      You’ll notice the difference between the ‘prize details’ and the official rules is small, but it’s there. The rules make a distinction between (all rounds) and (rounds 2 through 5). This is because the first round is the ‘design your concept’ round, where we’re basically asking for a concept, not a completed project. It’s the fair thing to do. Great question, and thank you for pointing it out.

      But thank you for pointing that out. We have a lot of respect for our community members, and we couldn’t do this without people like you. Thanks for pointing this out.

      1. It’s interesting point as there several products/projects last year that were entered and use the competition as a means of advertising their product. One even made it to the top ten. (https://hackaday.io/project/9461-lifepo4weredpi) It is my feeling that these projects were only entered to gain exposure and never had any intention of open sourcing the project or meeting the minimum requirements. It seems like a bit of a flaw in the competition rules but sadly I do not have any suggestions on how to fix it.

      2. There is no difference between the “prize details” and the “official rules”. See the prize details https://hackaday.io/prize/details :

        Minimum entry requirements [for “Design your concept”]
        Idea + image + documentation

        1. Discuss the challenge the project addresses
        2. Discuss how the project will alleviate or solve the problem that the project addresses
        3. Discuss how the project might be world changing
        4. Publish at least one (1) image illustrating how the project might be used. This may be a sketch, schematic, flow chart, rendering, or other type of image.
        5. Link to any repositories (e.g., Github)
        6. Document all open-source licenses and permissions as well as any applicable third-party licenses/restrictions
        7. Submit the Project to 2017 Hackaday Prize using the “Submit project to…” option found on the published Project Profile.

        Official rules https://hackaday.io/prize/rules-en :

        i. Required for ALL Challenge Round Entries (Challenge Rounds 1-5 [this includes “Design your concept”]):
        a. Personal Profile. Create a personal Profile on hackaday.io, completing all required fields and following all instructions (required of each Participant, including each member of a team).
        b. Project Profile. Create a project profile on hackaday.io, completing all required fields and following all instructions (“Project Profile”).
        1. Discuss the challenge the project addresses
        2. Discuss how the project will alleviate or solve the problem that the project addresses
        3. Discuss how the project might be world changing
        4. Publish at least one (1) image illustrating how the project might be used. This may be a sketch, schematic, flow chart, rendering, or other type of image.
        5. Link to any repositories (e.g., Github)
        6. Document all open-source licenses and permissions as well as any applicable third-party licenses/restrictions
        7. Submit the Project to 2017 Hackaday Prize using the “Submit project to…” option found on the published Project Profile.

        Points 1 to 7 are exactly the same and they are required for all rounds (see my remarks in brackets], and some projects don’t fulfil the requirement 5 or 6.

        1. Hi Frank,

          Please look at the official rules under section 5, heading “Challenge Rounds 1-5”. There are six evenly-weighted judging criteria. One of them asks how thoroughly the entry requirements have been satisfied. So projects were judged based on these requirements, in addition to the five other criteria.

          1. You are right, 5.i. says this is one criteria, but it is not clear that this is independent of section 4. Someone could interpret it like this: first a project must fulfil all requirements of 4.i. to be a valid entry (because it says “The steps listed below must be completed … for an entry to be considered.”), and then the judges check only considered entries for how thoroughly the requirements of section 5 are fulfiled.

    2. If you make hardware open source, probably someone else will make a lot of money with it.
      You will find your boards on Ebay for a few bucks, because there is always someone with ressources who will mass produce it.
      If it´s ok for you – fine. But these 80% probably want to keep the option to commercialize their ides by themselves and therefore keep the project essence closed – fully understandable.
      IMHO the Hackaday Prize schould not focus on how open the project is but how much info the creators share that others don´t.
      A valuable bit of information is always a help for others – without the need of losing any option to bring the project eventually to the market by yourself.

      1. @Movax… I could not have said it better myself. I don’t think there should be a penalty for not showing all your private parts, especially if you are planning to share your towel. Both parties are still getting something great out of the project.

        1. “So, what are the rules for ?”
          I think they must have had that meeting where we all discussed the “best way to annoy Rodrigo Piol”. Everyone was there, did you miss it???
          ;-p

          1. I do not want annoy everyone. I work for the government and such thing I see every day. If some contract (or rules in this case) exist, you have to follow him.
            If some company offer X, and they can not supply X, it is simple as GTFO! ;)
            I think you get the point now.

            Best Regards,
            R. Piol

        2. Those rules, to me, mean this:

          5. if you have published source code in a repository such as github, provide a link

          6. tell us if you are using any open-source licenses, and tell us about any licenses under which you are using other people’s work

          The words “any” and “all” in the rules do not necessarily require the thing being discussed. (If I have no eggs, then “all my eggs” is zero eggs)

      2. Looking at all these hobby stores that sell modules they designed which end up being sold on ebay for less money, you would think they are losing by making things open source. I think that most of the things they are selling have no complex design worth hiding or which cannot be reversed engineered in a matter of minutes. Even if they were closed source, there is no big effort for an engineer to design something similar. By posting the design files they just make the cloner’s life terribly easy..

    1. Wait, what?

      How can something that won last year, be “just in idea” this year? It isn’t even a very well developed idea. It’s something a drunk hacker would throw out at a swanky Silicon Valley party to try to sound cool.

  1. Congrats to the winner!

    I wish there was a feedback on why my project didn’t win. My project is “Low-cost Active Battery Balancer” and I believe it is very useful to the EV community and promotes environment-friendly transportation. It is also the first of its kind.

    1. There’s only 20 winners out of hundreds of entries… It’s simply the judges’ choice, and they had some great candidates to choose from.

      Many good projects didn’t win. Like mine ;)

    2. There were a lot of entries and the majority were really great, there are other rounds coming up you can win in them too. Just make sure you explain well in your project how it manages to overcome a problem etc. It’s about as much as selling your idea at this point as a lot of the projects judged were not finished.

  2. I want to encourage everybody who did not “win” in this round to keep going with your project. YOU define success for yourself – remember that others (i.e. the judges) have their own sense of what is important and what is cool. The guy who started FED EX got a bad grade on his proposal for the company when he was in business school. If you like your project and you think it’s important, keep going ahead with it.

    1. Well said. :-) [stands up and applauds]

      I left school in 1985 and was told to be a chef. I wanted to be a games coder. They said I could not coupe with what was required of me because of being dyslexic. I ignored them, and now it’s 2017 and I have had an excellent career as a coder. :-) This was in the UK where all the kids had a far higher level of IT expertise than the teachers, some of which, I kid you not, thought computers were a fad……

  3. I was extremely excited to see I was among the twenty chosen this time around. Can really get my project to the next level now. Congrats to the other winners in this round.

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