All posts tagged awesome

Awesome Foundation Berlin: ACPad Guitar

A modded acoustic guitar snapped up the most recent Awesome Foundation Berlin grant. The €1000 cash was handed over in a brown paper bag to Rainer from RobinSukroso to further develop his stringed axe meets drum machine, the acpad guitar.

Rainer spent the last 3 years kitting out his guitar and now, with the experience behind him, he wants to build a mod that lets musicians play the acpad without having to completely rip up their guitars. The grant will help Rainer get his tool market-ready.

Awesome Feedback

During the betabreakfast, we also received good feedback for the next rounds of the Awesome Foundation.

Firstly, some previous applicants told us they’d appreciate a heads-up about the status of their application and the invitation for feedback on why they weren’t selected. Unfortunately, it’s too much effort to write an email responding to every application, and to be frank that sort of admin is exactly counter to the Awesome Foundation, but the sentiment is duly noted.

In the future, we the trustees want to invite all applicants to the final demo round and offer feedback if they show up and ask us in person. We see this as an opportunity grow a network of creative projects and collaborators, and these grant events are perfect for talking about ideas and finding other people who are interested. If we can facilitate more match-making, beyond just the one grantee, than all the better.

Also, for the next round we’ll invite past grantees to demo what they’ve made since receiving the money. This provides a chance to see how the projects have grown, or where they’ve run into trouble, and hopefully spark even more collaborations and awesome projects. ^^

€1,000 from Awesome Foundation Berlin – Apply by July 10


It’s been one helluva few weeks for Awesome Foundation worldwide. Our fearless founder, Tim Hwang, was awarded $244,000 from the Knight Foundation to:
experiment with a new funding model for local journalism, The Awesome Foundation: News Taskforce will bring together 10 to 15 community leaders and media innovators in Detroit and two other cities to provide $1,000 microgrants to innovative journalism and civic media projects.
This is brilliant and underscores earlier thoughts on how more traditional funding bodies can take advantage of Awesome’s machete-cutting-through-red-tape funding approach. As Knight itself noted, the typical grant application process is lengthy and “inconsistent with the rapid pace of innovation and affects applicants’ ability to respond to market opportunities.” Awesome is fast, and no-strings-attached, which means you can turn around applications like whoa. Which is what we want to do in Berlin. So, get cracking. Apply by Sunday, July 10 with your most awesomest idea for a chance at a brown bag stuffed with €1,000 cash to make your project a reality. Make sure to select “Berlin” from the chapter menu. With our recent €1,000 grant, Agent Scott and the Graffiti Research Lab could purchase a bike and a heap of electronics for their latest adventure, blitzTag + Light Rider. [vimeo]

1000EUR for your awesome idea

A Street Named Awesome by moonlightbulb available under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0

Spring has sprung, and the Awesome Foundation Berlin is springing 1000EUR cash money for a mindblowingly awesome project.

The setup is simple: visit the online application form, write a short summary of your idea (better to explain what your idea is  rather than list all the awesome things you’ve done in the past), and please please please select “Berlin” from the chapter drop-down menu.

Afterward the trustees will comb through the ideas over multiple bottles of wine and decide on one submission that will receive 1000EUR in a brown paper bag — no strings attached.

Applications will be accepted until April 8. The grantee will be announced on April 14 at the betahaus breakfast.

What’s the Awesome Foundation all about? Read about our first grant that sent ice skaters to the Plexiglaswald or about other awesome projects the world over.

Ready, set, peer-fund!

Awesome Foundation Berlin sends skaters to the Plexiglaswald

Back in December we opened the first call for the Awesome Foundation Berlin. We received over 40 applications of truly awesome ideas, and after much wine and deliberation, we announced the winner at a yummy breakfast served up in betahaus.

Konrad received the inaugural 1000EUR in a brown paper bag for his concept: a winter thrill-ride on a sled. One of the Foundation’s trustees, Gabriel Maria Platt, proposed a possible course inspired no doubt from one very memorable ride in his hometown.

Alas, the wintery blanket of snow melted before this dream could be a reality. Nevertheless, Konrad put the funds to good, awesome use. He rented skates, bought some rations, and bussed a group of folks out to skate along a frozen forest. It’s an incredible landscape. Trees bursting out of the ice, and you can see skaters pirouetting around the trunks and peering through the transparent sheet below to see the tangle of roots and leaves. Quite beautiful.


But perhaps the most exciting outcome from our first grant is that so many people were inspired by the model. Around ten more individuals offered to join us in contributing their own money to support awesome projects in Berlin. Although we initially decided to hold the grants every quarter, the new group of trustees will take on another cycle and hand out 1000EUR cash in months that we don’t. Also, other initiatives like the Emergence Collective picked up on the scheme and developed a peer-grant program as well.

The most promising outcome of the Awesome Foundation is indeed its simplicity and replicability  — what can peer-funding projects teach more established institutions about distributing resources and supporting culture, innovation, and overall awesomeness? Can we influence cities and public bodies to think more creatively about handing out cash? And can more people be encouraged to think about projects they’d like to fund and develop models to make it happen?

Nice radio coverage from WDR.