Products > Crowd Funded Projects

Thinking of starting your own Crowdfunded project? Ask me anything!

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jmole:

--- Quote from: andyturk on May 12, 2013, 10:35:45 pm ---Don't get a corporate tattoo on your forehead quite yet (if you can avoid it). I bought one of your boards because I thought the product was cool, but also because I'd rather spend my dev board $$ on a "little guy" who's making a go of it than a public company that's pushing one of their product lines.

--- End quote ---
Yep, yep, that's why I manufacture in America instead of outsourcing. I want to build the highest quality tools for making things.



--- Quote from: andyturk on May 12, 2013, 10:35:45 pm ---I've watched the videos on your site, and you're a great presenter--you should do more of that. Get your face out there. Sell some boards that plug into freeSoC. Show people how to solve some real-world problems with the platform.

Where's *your* t-shirt design?

--- End quote ---

Thanks, I'm hoping the videos will help get a community going around PSoC Development. I mean, there are some other forums out there for PSoC, but there is a lack of good tutorials. Definitely need to change that.

I think the expansion board market is interesting, and I've been kicking around some ideas in that area, especially considering how difficult it can be to create cheap prototypes when you want to use devices that only come in fancy SMD packages, like MEMS stuff, high quality audio DACs/ADCs, etc. But, the kicker is that you need a big market for the target dev kit, which is why Arduino shields are so popular, and why all the "hobbyist-focused" dev kits are using Arduino compatible footprints.

As for a T-Shirt design, we'll have to wait and see...  O0

krenzo:
Did you have to do any FCC certification?  I want to eventually do a Kickstarter, but the thought of having to go through certifications and for different countries sounds very daunting and expensive.

snoopy:
Hello jmole

As soon as I saw a proper IDE with single stepping and breakpoints you got my attention. Not to mention drag and drop of extra analog and digital hardware and I think Cypress is on a real winner. ;) With the advances in micros and tool sets I'm starting to think that engineers are starting to become an obsolete species :(

I'm not sure if this has been asked but what about IP property protection in the Psoc ? Is there some kind of security bit for both the code and hardware blocks ?

Also do you know if Cypress is thinking of doing something with a Cortex M4 for DSP apps etc ?

Anyway well done with your project. I'd only wish kickstarter was around 20 years ago. Getting funding for tech projects in Australia is like getting blood out of a stone  :(

regards
david

envisionelec:

--- Quote from: jmole on May 10, 2013, 04:33:30 am ---
--- Quote from: amspire on May 10, 2013, 03:42:30 am ---If you were doing a new electronic design project, what work would you attempt to complete before starting the fund-raising?

--- End quote ---

In terms of planning the reward structure and project costs:

* Prototype (obviously)
* Cost Estimates -- Pick some random quantity of boards you'd like to sell. Let's say 100. So get a complete BOM estimate, production estimate, assembly estimate, etc, for 110% of the quantities you're building.
* Packaging -- This means, go to uline.com, pick out your packaging materials, add to cart, and write down the total with shipping
* Shipping -- Are you going to ship this stuff yourself? For 100 orders, it's feasible. Above that, you're gonna be screwed unless you have some help.  I had ~600, so I used a fulfillment service called Shipwire.
* Shipping Costs -- For domestic, you can figure about $5, for a small product like mine. International, about $30.
* Total per unit costs -- Now add up all the totals above, divide by your number of units, and figure out what it will cost you.
* Markup -- Figure out what kind of markup you want on the product. This should be around 2.5X, at a minimum, or you will probably end up losing money. It's funny how fast unexpected costs can creep up.

Also, you're gonna need a bunch of copy for the Kickstarter page, a good video, yada yada. Don't underestimate these things. You've gotta pitch your product well. Emulate the most funded projects. Look at their videos and how they sell the idea, and do that for yours.


--- Quote from: amspire on May 10, 2013, 03:42:30 am ---Also do you think you can get the money if you are totally honest and conservative in your estimated delivery. In your case, if you had quoted, say, 4 months until the first deliveries, do you think you would have got the backers? Is quoting delivery based on the most optimistic assessment of the project a required part of the game in order to raise decent money?

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This, I can't say for certain.

In my case, I don't think I had any real complaints that the ship date was so delayed. It was clear that I was iterating on the design, and making progress and that kept the confidence of my buyers.

I've backed a few other projects, and in a few, this has not been the case.

CruxSkunk, a laptop-type case for an iPad, has been seriously overdue (project finished about when mine started), and there are tons of people complaining about it. I couldn't care either way, because I can see that he's making progress and I will get it eventually.

Memoto, a lifelogging camera, had an estimated delivery date of March 2013, which has come and gone, but the creators have been very good about keeping us up to date, and I'm certain they will deliver a great project.

That said, I think time overruns are part of the game. It's pretty much expected by anyone who's not a first time kickstarter backer.

Now, will someone back a project if the delivery date is "realistic" (assuming that you can actually hit the mark)? I think so. Take a look at all the video game projects. Millions of dollars for a release date 1-2 years down the line. The key is to be honest. I honestly thought I would be able to deliver the product in a month. We had just finished a first run of 100, and I was ready to pull the trigger on the next 1000. Then the design change requests came.... Then I realized I could make a better board by listening to my backers. And they supported me through it. So be honest. If you have a great project, the good people of the internet will help you make it work.

--- End quote ---

The information in this thread applies to any kind of funding. Honesty is absolutely key in an online design relationship. I have done two major projects ($20k +) without even meeting the project backers. My most recent project got totally derailed by an engineer who ran into money problems and just stopped coding my project (I am not a software engineer). I had to do a full 180, borrow more money and promise new dates. I thought for sure that I'd run into trouble - but nope. My past history of honesty and ability to deliver results more than made up for the stumble. I am forever grateful to those that willingly extend financing to my projects. It sure beats the bank and I have a lot more fun doing it!!

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