Category Archives: Edison Nation

Free, User-friendly CAD Applications to Improve your Submissions

Although Edison Nation does not require submissions to include CAD drawings, professional sketches, and orthographics or even require submitted product ideas to be progressed to a point where these types of drawings are applicable, they oftentimes can be a great asset and help during product selection.

Perfect Bacon™ Bowl CAD drawing

Perfect Bacon™ Bowl CAD drawing

If you have been following our room5 posts than you already understand how important being  “first to market” in the ASOTV industry is. Product ideas with CAD drawings, in some cases, can help streamline the development process and shorten the time it takes to get a product to market.

The thought of creating CAD drawings may seem daunting to the everyday inventor but there are a few free and user friendly solutions available to everyone that may be worth exploring:

 

Google SketchUp Logo

Google SketchUp – Google SketchUp gives users an easy-to-use interface as well as easily accessible help features such as instructional videos, a community blog and self paced training guides. SketchUp can also be integrated with other Google product such as Google Earth. From landscape architecture to urban planning and product design, SketchUp is a fabulous free CAD application for professionals to hobbyists.

DraftSight CAD Logo

DraftSight – DraftSight is a very versatile 2D CAD application that comes with some attractive shortcut features such as offsetting and dimensioning. Though, perfect for beginners looking to create basic sketches, it does have certain limitations when trying to do more complex design work.

LibreCAD Logo

LibreCAD – This open source application features 2D drafting capabilities and is targeted for use by industrial designers and graphic artists. LibreCAD features a straightforward interface and impressive array of tools for a free program. In addition, LibreCAD offers support and documentation from a large community as well as integrated help tutorials.

Blender CAD Logo

Blender – Blender is considered to be a little more complex and offers a great, full-featured 3D CAD application with a wide array of tools. The interface is a little non-traditional for those that have experience in other CAD application but features a wide user base and helpful forum.

Even if you don’t have formal training in engineering or product design, CAD drawings may not be out of reach thanks to these free programs. If you feel that your product idea has progressed to the point that a CAD drawing will help us better understand your product idea and streamline the development process we would love to see it!

Do you have a favorite free CAD software that you would recommend to fellow community members? Have you had good experiences working with any of these solutions? Let us know in the comments below!

 

Guy Gadgets Search: Quick Tips

guy gadgetsWith just a few weeks left in our search for the next “must-have guy gadgets,” we want to offer you some quick tips to help you keep your ideas on the right track.

As a reminder, we’re looking for items such as (but not limited to):

  • Desk toys and tools
  • Bottle openers
  • Corkscrews
  • Travel items

 

Think of the types of items you would use as “stocking stuffers” and “add on” gifts for guys.

Remember the “cool factor” – something that would stop any guy in the middle of a store and make him think, “Man, I want that!”

If you have an idea that meets this criteria, submit it before the May 15 deadline!

Meet the EN Team: Heyward Moore

Heyward Moore

It’s no secret that our in-house engineering team plays a huge role in what we do. This month, take a little time to get to know Heyward Moore, one of our Enventys/Edison Nation engineering staff members.

Q1. What is your position and what does it entail?

    A. I am a project engineer; I help bring the idea from concept on paper to a manufacturable product.

Q2. What is your favorite product you’ve worked on at Edison Nation/Enventys?

    A. Wine Shark because it was a mix of mechanical and electrical systems.

Q3. If you could be doing anything else right this moment, what would it be?

    A. Learning to fly if the weather is nice. If not, driving my rock crawler Toyota pickup.

Q4. What’s your hidden talent?

    A. I can touch my tongue to my noise.

Q5. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

    A. Started out as an astronaut, but then changed to mechanical engineer. I guess I could still do the astronaut thing.

Q6. If you could experience someone else’s life for just one day, who would it be?

    A. I’m going to go outside the box on this question.  What I would like do is to spend 1 hour of my day in a given age of my grandfather’s life, for example, my grandfather lived to be 93, so divide his age by 24, and you get 3.875.  So I would spend my first hour as him at the age of 3.875 years old, then the next hour would be 7.75 years old, and so on for 24 hours.  The reason for this crazy idea is, during his life time he saw many first and world-changing events that I have always wanted to experience.

Q7. Who are you often told is your doppelganger?

    A. Patrick Bailey, he is another EN project engineer in the office next to mine.

Q8. You’re only allowed to eat one food for the rest of your life. What would it be?

    A. Rare Steak

Q9. What’s a goal you’re most proud of accomplishing?

    A. First place at Odyssey of the Mind world competition

Q10. What do you think is the greatest invention in your lifetime and why?

    A. Facebook… 1 billion users in less than 10 years. I know there are much greater inventions out there that save lives and make the world a better place, but Facebook has changed the way the world communicates and interacts with each other.

Want to meet other members of our staff? Catch up on past Meet the EN Team posts!

Meet the EN Team: Patrick Bailey

Patrick Bailey

Every day at Edison Nation is seen as an adventure to some, but for Patrick Bailey, this extends to his life outside of work, as well. This month, take a moment to get to know Patrick!

Q1. What is your position and what does it entail?

    A. Design engineer.  Most of my time is spent designing products and building prototypes, but I am involved with new products from preliminary research through manufacturing.

Q2. What is your favorite product you’ve worked on at Edison Nation?

    A. The test apparatus for the slow pull dog leash from Everyday Edisons Season 4 was a fun one. Weighing hundreds of pounds, it can automatically collect data while repeatedly (and violently) crashing the test sled.

Q3. If you could be doing anything else right this moment, what would it be?

    A. SCUBA diving, hands down.

Q4. What’s your hidden talent?

    A. I can whistle a tune while smiling. I know it will come in handy someday….

Q5. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

    A. Superman, and my family does not let me forget it.

Q6. If you could experience someone else’s life for just one day, who would it be?

    A. Anyone currently on a kayak tour through the Galapagos. Exploring and diving those islands is at the top of my list.

Q7. Who are you often told is your doppelganger?

    A. Heyward Moore, the design engineer with the office next to mine. Coworkers in other departments occasionally get us confused. Coincidentally, our parents now live only a few blocks from each other.

Q8. You’re only allowed to eat one food for the rest of your life. What would it be?

    A. Sushi or a rare steak, depends on the day.

Q9. What’s a goal you’re most proud of accomplishing?

    A. Probably my mile time back in high school track. It represented a lot of hard work.

Q10. What do you think is the greatest invention in your lifetime and why?

    A. Digital cameras. I take a lot of pictures, mostly nature and underwater shots. Digital cameras make the hobby substantially easier and cheaper.

A little behind on getting to know us? Catch up on past Meet the EN Team posts!

Meet Perfect Bacon Bowl inventor, Thom Jensen!

Thom Jensen1_blog

You’ve seen the infomercial, you’ve laughed at the quips on late night TV – and admit it – you’re DYING to have one of your own! The Perfect Bacon Bowl has recently taken the foodie world by storm thanks to the Edison Nation As Seen On TV submission of one Mr. Thom Jensen!

By trade, Thom is a Research Histologist living in Salt Lake City, but when it comes to food, he’s a breakfast-lover with a creative mind. In fact, that’s exactly how the Perfect Bacon Bowl came to be!

“I was cooking breakfast one Saturday morning for my family and was playing around trying to create a bacon turtle,” Thom shared. “I wove a basket out of the bacon trying to make the body and through the process I thought of the Bacon Bowl pan. I made a crude prototype and submitted my Bacon Bowl pan idea to Edison Nation.”

The Perfect Bacon Bowl TV spot began airing nationwide in December 2013 and has been the subject of bacon-lovin’ chatter ever since! Be on the lookout for this product to debut in a retail store near you next month.

Please join us in a HUGE congratulations to Thom on all the buzz surrounding the Perfect Bacon Bowl! And In case you’ve been living under a rock, check out the Perfect Bacon Bowl TV spot!

 

Plus, see what celebrities are saying about Perfect Bacon Bowl on social media and TV:


Think you can come up with the next “gotta-have-it” ASOTV product idea like Thom? Submit your idea for consideration.

Meet the EN Team: Carlos Perez

Carlos Perez

When discussing the beginning stages of product development, we’ve often highlighted the engineering process of building prototypes — but one other key piece to that puzzle (and the yin to engineering’s yang!) is industrial design. This month meet one of our talented industrial designers, Carlos Perez!

Q1. What is your position and what does it entail?

A. Good question… I am an Industrial Designer. This means many different things depending on the project. My responsibilities can range anywhere from initial market research and human factor studies, all the way through 3D modeling and Rapid Prototyping of a concept. I frequently work together with the engineering staff to develop an idea sketched on a Wacom Cintiq, into a functioning/marketable product.

Q2. What do you enjoy most about working at Edison Nation?

A. The variety. There is never a shortage of unique ideas coming through the doors, each one at a different phase in its life. This definitely keeps anxiety interest at a high level.

Q3. If you could be doing anything else right this moment, what would it be?
A. Easy, walking on another planet/moon. Few things could be more exciting and terrifying.

Q4. What’s your hidden talent?

A. I get punched and kicked a lot while training MMA, without showing too many cosmetic injuries.

Q5. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A. A Veterinarian/Astronaut that occasionally chased tornadoes. I still have plans to accomplish this…

Q6. If you could experience someone else’s life for just one day, who would it be?
A. Neil DeGrasse Tyson. Thinking of how smart this guy is makes my head hurt.

Q7. Who are you often told is your doppelganger?

A. Honestly, no one. My brothers and I do look quite similar though.

Q8. You’re only allowed to eat one food for the rest of your life. What would you choose?

A. Super-hot chicken wings.

Q9. What’s a goal you’re most proud of accomplishing?

A. Graduating college and not being buried in debt.

Q10. What do you think is the greatest invention in your lifetime and why?

A. ‘Open source’ and ‘open-to-all’ digital services like LiveLeak, Wikileaks, Wikipedia, Linux, etc. Digital services that are controlled and edited by everyday people have the power to change the world, and on many occasions, have.

If you enjoyed learning these fun, random facts about Carlos, get acquainted with other members of our staff by checking out past Meet the EN Team posts!

Meet the EN Team: Lea LeFebvre

Lea Lefebvre

As our As Seen On TV division becomes more and more successful, the team responsible for discovering, vetting and marketing those ideas is growing, as well. This month, get to know one of our ASOTV staff members, Lea LeFebvre.

Q1. What is your position and what does it entail?

A. I am a Marketing Manager in the ASOTV division of Edison Nation. I help manage the products that are selected for commercialization from implementation through deployment in the U.S. and beyond.

Q2. What do you enjoy most about working at Edison Nation?

A. We do everything ourselves — from the time an idea is selected for commercialization to product deployment. It’s always something different!

Q3. If you could be doing anything else right this moment, what would it be?

A.  At a live concert of one of my favorite bands — cold IPA in hand.

Q4. What’s your hidden talent?

A.   I have double-jointed thumbs?

Q5. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A. It was always changing, but for a really long time I wanted to be a Forensic Psychologist.

Q6. If you could experience someone else’s life for just one day, who would it be?

A. Grumpy Cat.

Q7. Who are you often told is your doppelganger?

A. Someone once told me I looked like Jennifer Lawrence — I was pretty okay with it.

Q8. You’re only allowed to eat one food for the rest of your life. What would you choose?

A. Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter.

Q9. What’s a goal you’re most proud of accomplishing?

A. Graduating from the best university in the world, Clemson University.

Q10. What do you think is the greatest invention in your lifetime and why?

A. The Internet. See answer to question 6.

Want to meet other members of our staff? Catch up on past Meet the EN Team posts!

Introducing Room 5: A new benefit just for Edison Nation Insiders

Room 5 image

In 1884, Thomas Edison moved his laboratories from Menlo Park to West Orange, N.J. in order to maintain the utmost secrecy regarding his ideas. He dedicated an exclusive area for the development of his newest inventions, and only a select few were allowed entry. This area was known only as “Room 5”…

Beginning Thursday, December 12, Edison Nation is creating a special online space just for our Insider members. There, Insiders will be the first to learn exciting news and updates and other goings-on behind the curtain at 520 Elliot Street. This new area will be known as “Room 5.”

How Room 5 will work:

  • A new bulletin containing the week’s exclusive information will be posted at EdisonNation.com/Room5 every Thursday at 2pm EST.
  • The information will only be available to view for 24 hours from the time it is posted.
  • What is reported in Room 5 must stay in Room 5 and should not be shared in the forums, via email, or anywhere outside of the room.
  • Remember: This is a special feature for Edison Nation Insiders ONLY.

Join all the cool kids and get your exclusive invitation to Room 5. If you’re not an Insider yet, but want into the room this Thursday, learn how to upgrade your membership.

We want to do MORE for our community: Introducing our new crowdfunding support program

We believe in the inventive nature of our community and in each of our members’ potential. At Edison Nation, we’ve worked with inventors who’ve come to us with a raw idea and a sketch, and we’ve worked with inventors who have a patented, prototyped product. Our goal is to get great products to market. We’ve pitched your ideas to some of the best retail and manufacturing partners out there. While often these companies believe in an idea enough to license a concept and oversee development, occasionally we hear such feedback as “I love this idea, but we need to see more.” Well, we want to do more.

We’re launching a pilot crowdfunding support program to help products that need to get over the development hump beyond raw concept and ideation. There’s interest and there’s potential – now, we’re going to work to get the product fully developed. We’re excited to explore this new avenue as a part of our continued mission to bring everyday inventors’ ideas to market.

How our crowdfunding program works

In instances where we have significant interest from a licensing partner, but they require more development in order to offer the best possible deal, Edison Nation will provide our expertise to assist the inventor in creating a crowdfunding campaign for the product. We will assist with:

    • Prototype Development
    • Video Editing
    • Graphic Design
    • Photography
    • Public Relations and more…

Many of you have likely seen the Kickstarter campaign by fellow Edison Nation member, Peter Goncalves. Peter came to us with his idea for Stem Light and we were thrilled to find that several potential licensing partners were interested – there was just one problem – they all wanted to see more. As a result, we assisted Peter in developing the components of his Kickstarter campaign and we are now helping him to promote it. If the campaign is successfully funded, Stem Light will be developed and the licensing partner will have a finished product that they can easily incorporate into their offerings, with no additional work required. As a result, Edison Nation will be able to secure a much more lucrative licensing deal for Peter.

Below are just a few thoughts from Peter on his experience through this process:

“I could honestly say that my experience with Edison Nation and the Kickstarter Program has been overwhelmingly positive so far… much more than I ever expected, to be honest. The collaboration on the part of the team in Charlotte has been phenomenal! They’ve been flexible and patient with me as I sent feedback and worked with them from many miles away. I owe a debt of gratitude to everyone from the office to the engineering room!”

If this campaign is successful, we hope that Peter will be the first of many inventors that we are able to help through this initiative. We’re invested in your success and we want to do all that we can to help you bring your ideas to market. We believe that this new program could be a game-changer for many of your ideas, and we hope you’re just as excited as we are.

Want to show support for Peter’s campaign? Visit here and share with your friends and family on Facebook and Twitter.

Meet the EN Team: Mike Starkey

MikeStarkey-headshot

This month, take a moment to get to know one of our Edison Nation/Enventys engineers, Mike Starkey!

Q1. What is your position and what does it entail?

A. My position is product engineer. This entails overseeing a product’s life cycle from the start of the project to its transfer to manufacturing. I help in conceptualizing directions for a product, testing functional ideas and constructing prototypes to demonstrate end functionality.

Q2. What is your favorite product you’ve worked on at Edison Nation?

A. Products are much like children, it’s hard to pick favorites, but, if I have to, it would probably be the Stark Hand.

Q3. If you could be doing anything else right this moment, what would it be?

A. Sailing

Q4. What’s your hidden talent?

A. I enjoy building custom electric guitars

Q5. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A. Actually, what I currently do is what I have looked forward to doing since I was very young.

Q6. If you could experience someone else’s life for just one day, who would it be?

A. Probably Richard Branson

Q7. Who are you often told is your doppelganger?

A. Numerous people have mentioned Josh Radnor (aka Ted Mosby), but I don’t see it.

Q8. You’re only allowed to eat one food for the rest of your life. What would it be?
A. Chicken Tikka Masala

Q9. What’s a goal you’re most proud of accomplishing?
A. Obtaining my masters

Q10. What do you think is the greatest invention in your lifetime and why?
A. The actuator mechanism I developed for my masters’ work. I believe it has potential to make robotic mechanisms smaller and lighter

Want to meet other members of our staff? Catch up on past Meet the EN Team posts!