Only one design will survive!


Yawn … you will say … yet another contest…

Well, look again! This is not like anything you have seen before. At least in terms of engineering challenges … this was never done before to my knowledge.

It is the first true web 2.0 (social networking) kind of challenge out there, where it is the community to decide which design is going to stay, and which design is going … well home.

The web site at has just been activated and is far from perfect today,  but the basic functionality is there and I know that the designers are working hard to get all the details just right…

The contest plays out in four stages, and in the current one, called “Paper” that will last an entire quarter, all that matters is getting registered, (I just did as “PIC32explorer”, but could not upload my avatar/picture) then come up with a cool idea for a design with the new 32-bit PICs and put it in an abstract or a simple block diagram with just enough detail to convince the “community”, that is, other registered members like you, to give you their vote.

No purchases required, no coding or actual hardware design required, just yet. No rush except for the opportunity to win one of the many prizes that are draft every week. By the way, once registered, you can decide to be just a voting member, participating to the weekly drafts, without necessarily submitting any entry in the contest.

At the end of the quarter (July 15th), 128 designs, the most voted, will be selected to continue to the next phase, called “hardware”. The lucky 128 will receive a basic set of tools from Microchip, including PIC32 starter kit, I/O Expander board, and even a webcam, theirs to keep no matter the result of the next phase.

As you might guess the webcams are  going to be used during this stage, but in general videos play a large role throughout the entire contest…

Then to the “software” phase with the top 32 selected once more by the community and after that only 8 designs will survive to the “final” round that will see them in the grand finale at the ESC 2009 in S. Jose in front of a live audience and a panel of judges who will determine who is going to be the ultimate survivor!

Useless for me to say more here, check by yourself the web site for all the details. Check the forums, the blogs, and the ideas submitted by the participants. Vote your favorites but also check periodically the list of weekly prizes in case your name was picked!?

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