Bright new ideas from Seedcamp

Written by Clive Webster

August 16, 2011 | 08:42

Tags: #business #funding #innovation

The Guardian brought SeedCamp to my attention the other day, which is like a European KickStarter for entrepreneurs. Lord Sir Alan Sugar would be proud.

The idea is that small startup companies with big ideas can pitch to SeedCamp and get the funding they need to develop or launch their product or service. Or, In SeedCamp’s own words, ‘Seedcamp is an early-stage micro seed investment fund and mentoring programme… For the winning companies of any event where we choose to make an investment, Seedcamp’s standard investment is: €50,000 for 8-10% per cent of the company.
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What caught my eye the most were some of the Guardian’s top 20 picks, which look genuinely fun, useful or some combination thereof. Here are my picks of their picks:

Crowd is in private beta, but is a photo sharing service where users can share images in real-time, allowing people to experience other locations via geo-tagged image taken there.

EnergyBob is just a placeholder URL for the company that aims to make energy metering smarter. The EnergyBob server ‘talks to Google's Latitude's API to determine when you're on your way home, and when the heating needs to come on’ for example. The appliance is set to cost €99 for installation and €9 a month thereafter.

CityMapper is a service that connects the various and many ways to travel around London into one map-driven interface. CityMapper integrates everything from the Tube and buses to the Boris bikes and just walking into one application; it also tells you how much you’ll pay for your journey, or how many calories you’ll burn off. You can use the service now.

Myows stands for ‘My Original Works’ and is a way to share and distribute your creative work while maintaining control over it. Users store their copyrighted material (which can be images, video, music, artwork or whatever) with Myows, which allows the copyright holder to prove ownership, manage their rights and chase copyright infringements. ‘[i] Myows is already storing 18,000 registered works and has solved 72 infringement cases.[i]’

opensignalmaps is a simple idea: overlay the strength of mobile reception on a map. You can select your operator and what level of network you’re looking for (ie, just 3G reception). You can use the service now, and it might come in handy for holidays in remote locations.

Travelstormer might come in handy if you’re arranging a trip with friends, as it helps organise a bunch of people’s travel needs. Once you’ve ‘brainstormed’ the best plan, you crowdsource travel tips from other Travelstormer users before finalising your plans.

There are more interesting ideas in the Guardian's SeedCamp story and on the SeedCamp site itself.
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