Innocentive, connects small businesses with problem solvers via the web. Whoever solves the problem gets cash for solving that problem.
An example from the web site involved a small oil company in Alaska that had a problem with its oil pipes freezing in cold temperatures. After the company posted its problem online, a construction developer solved the problem in hours because his construction sites had the same problem with freezing concrete pipes. The solution was to vibrate the pipes to keep them from freezing. After drawing a proposal and calculating a few other technicalities, he submitted his answer and received $20,000.
Is there a place for students to go to that connects them to real problem solvers. I don’t mean Dr. Math, eHow, or any other homework helpers site, but real people doing real stuff that connects them? That would be a pretty useful network for kids, it would be similarly to how I and many other peers use twitter I think for coalescing the social and professional spaces of our lives.
What structure would need to be in place before his could be used? Would it be a redundant space, that already has outlets via facebook and twitter?