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US Spurs Plethora of Problem Solving Prizes

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the gaming-the-system dept.

Government 140

coondoggie writes "Got a complicated problem? Hold a prize competition to solve it. That's the basic idea behind the America Competes Act, renewed by Congress this week. According to the White House's Office of Science and Technology, the Competes Act gives every department and agency the authority to conduct prize competitions. Prizes and challenges have an excellent track record of accelerating problem-solving by tapping America's top talent and best expertise."

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140 comments

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$1,000,000,000,000 prize (-1, Flamebait)

MichaelKristopeit330 (1963782) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647784)

get us re-elected

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34647806)

wow this time you are just flamebait

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (-1, Troll)

MichaelKristopeit329 (1963778) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647822)

ur mum's face are just flamebait.

why do you cower? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34647856)

Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit323 (1963764) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647984)

cower some more, feeb.

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34647996)

we are Anonymous and we assfuck you

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit325 (1963768) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648018)

you are NOTHING.

i live at 4513 brittany ct. eau claire, wi. 54701. my phone number is 715-514-0916

cower some more, feeb.

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648094)

You are a homo, sir.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit327 (1963772) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648198)

ur mum's face are a homo.

why do you cower? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648248)

I'm afraid of nuclear war and carnies. This is why I cower.

You are a homosexual for various other reasons, and are pathetic in ways that science has yet to understand.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit330 (1963782) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648296)

your fears are hypocritically ignorant of the fact that a claim of responsibility for a claim could never alter the necessary response to body of the claim.

considering i have children with my wife who will testify as to their conception, an attempted claim of bisexuality would not as quickly be contradicted.

you're an idiot.

cower some more, feeb.

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648424)

There's nothing more hilarious than when a infantile cretin with a tenuous grasp of the English language attempts to sound smart.

i have children with my wife who will testify as to their conception

Yes, and I'm sure they're very proud of their father at this moment.

Troll some more, nub.

You're completely retarded.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit325 (1963768) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648470)

you're just going to leave your lies behind you? not only do your claims provide no individual taking responsibility, they don't even take responsibility for themselves.

you're an ignorant hypocrite.

ur mum's face're completely retarded.

cower some more, feeb.

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648604)

Troll some more, nub.

You're completely retarded.

I lol'd

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

DocHoncho (1198543) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648450)

Who's Rachel, your mom? Are you a basement dweller? You certainly do seem to have an awful lot of time on your hands to go around telling people "ur mums face ", creating dozens of slashdot accounts and generally being a nuisance.

Does your mom know you're a renowned internet troll? Maybe I should call and tell her...

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit326 (1963770) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648484)

who's your mom, Rachel? did she teach you to make irrelevant threats to people capable of delivering justice?

maybe you should present yourself to me and admit what you've done. maybe i'll bring upon you the ultimate punishment for your transgressions.

why do you cower behind a chosen pseudonym? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

DocHoncho (1198543) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648520)

And there's the money shot. Right on cue.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648536)

who are you wrong? Is you'r'e'e muom a money shot? why are you not responsibility for cower?

cover some more feeds.

your complete pathy.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit326 (1963770) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648602)

you're an idiot

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

windcask (1795642) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648662)

you're an idiot

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the sound of victory. *bows*

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit328 (1963774) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648736)

did your mother name you "windcask"?

why do you cower behind a chosen pseudonym? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

windcask (1795642) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648762)

Honestly, I don't know. Why did your mother bother to conceive you? Why do you eat your own feces? Why do you rape cats, moles and other small vermin? Why is your penis so small it warrants measurement with a micrometer?

There are some questions to which there are no good answers.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit327 (1963772) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648774)

ur mum's face eat your own feces.

you're an ignorant hypocrite.

cower some more, feeb.

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

windcask (1795642) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648818)

What a coincidence! That's exactly what I said when I was penetrating your sister's tiny asshole last night. Strange she kept calling out your name. Were you watching, you naughty boy?

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit324 (1963766) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648942)

my address is 4513 brittany ct. eau claire, wi 54701.

present yourself to me; admit what you've done, then i will bring upon you the ultimate punishment for your transgressions.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Mindcontrolled (1388007) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648176)

Your script is failing. You used to be grammatically correct. You should that have checked out.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit327 (1963772) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648252)

did your mother name you "Mindcontrolled"? why do you cower behind a chosen pseudonym? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648704)

did your mother name you "Mindcontrolled"? why do you cower behind a chosen pseudonym? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit327 (1963772) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648740)

no. i don't. i'm not.

my name is Michael Kristopeit. i live at 4513 brittany ct. eau claire, wi. 54701. my phone number is 715-514-0916.

you're an idiot.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648796)

This reply proves it is a bot. QED.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit324 (1963766) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648800)

ur mum's face proves it is a bot.

JZF.

you're an idiot.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34649206)

You're apparently having a bad day.

Take a breather?

(I'm not the AC or midcontrolled, just a passing observer who sometimes finds it interesting to click the links to see how far these name calling contests go.

Sorry for the noise. Carry on.)

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit330 (1963782) | more than 3 years ago | (#34649236)

ur mum's face're apparently having a bad day.

why do you cower? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648892)

You are a child molester.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit330 (1963782) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648952)

you are a pathetic coward attempting defamation through the act of broadcasting lies.

i live at 4513 brittany ct. eau claire, wi. 54701.

present yourself to me; admit what you've done, then i will bring upon you the ultimate punishment for your transgressions.

cower some more, feeb.

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

spazdor (902907) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647836)

govern according to the actual interests of your constituents.

You can make my cheque out to "cash."

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (3, Insightful)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648382)

Huh? That's exactly what American politicians do: they govern according to the actual interests of their constituents, the Corporations, who provide them with generous "campaign donations".

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34647838)

Fuck-off, ye Troll with dozens of consecutive /. accounts:

http://slashdot.org/~MichaelKristopeit300 [slashdot.org]

... 300 -- 320 ...

http://slashdot.org/~MichaelKristopeit320 [slashdot.org]

and now beyond 320.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit324 (1963766) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647990)

i have no more accounts than i CAN have.

you have yet to demonstrate an ability to create a single account.

you're exactly what you've claimed to be: NOTHING.

why do you cower? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648262)

I back your ability to create as many accounts as you can but you do realize that you're a loon, don't you? A total nutjob.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit330 (1963782) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648372)

ur mum's face're a loon.

why do you cower? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit322 (1963762) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647972)

ah yes, pointing out a very obvious flaw of a capitalist government in control of a fiat currency offering arbitrary cash prizes for solution contests where no payment is guaranteed even if a valid solution is provided is "flamebait"... not 100% THE TRUTH

slashdot = stagnated

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

JonySuede (1908576) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648026)

slashdot should regex ban you MichaelKristopeit[0-9]*

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit326 (1963770) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648102)

you think the implementors of this internet web site chat room message board are capable of such things? perhaps they are too lazy.

why do you ask others to not allow me to speak in a public forum? why do you believe those others do not similarly wish you would not announce your desires of what others "should" do in the same channels? do you believe you would be exempt from such a policy if JonySueda, JonySuedb, JonySuedc, and JonySuedd all started pointing out logical contradictions and ignorant hypocrisy?

the ability to silence me is not within you.

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

Mindcontrolled (1388007) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648160)

I am still not sure if he is for real or a horribly failed AI experiment. He could be replaced with a very small shellscript, however...

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648438)

Two lines, actually.

head -c 200 /dev/random
echo "you're completely pathetic"


At least, I hope I'm not the only one with an insulting /dev/random. That thing can be down right mean.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit322 (1963762) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648454)

,.. however.... you're too lazy and unskilled to do such a thing.

cower behind your chosen pseudonym some more, feeb.

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648230)

Then he'd have won, as he only created the accounts to discredit the original. And apparently to provide an outlet for his NPD.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

JonySuede (1908576) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648376)

ok then ban MichaelKristopeit[0-9]+

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit326 (1963770) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648530)

keep demanding it of others.

keep pathetically crying for my silence as you hypocritically and ignorantly spew nothing of value.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648756)

you forgot to say: your athletic

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (0)

MichaelKristopeit325 (1963768) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648782)

ur mum's face forgot to say: your athletic.

why do you cower? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648860)

I think the original had a number in his name too though. I can't however remember, nor do I really care enough to research it. If he wants to waste his life like this, let him :)

Re:$1,000,000,000,000 prize (1)

MichaelKristopeit329 (1963778) | more than 3 years ago | (#34649248)

perhaps one day i could aspire to respond to such a person and spend my life doing as such.

you're an ignorant hypocrite.

did your mother name you "somersault"? why do you cower behind a chosen pseudonym? what are you afraid of?

you're completely pathetic.

History repeated. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34647794)

Prizes posted by royalty were used in previous centuries to solve things like finding longitude whilst navigating at sea.

Only one winner! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34647826)

Only one winner - the government. The vast majority of those who enter will be wasting their time and money - you don't get paid for coming second.

Re:Only one winner! (3, Insightful)

windcask (1795642) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647876)

Yes, but one could argue incentive for critical thought and problem-solving skills among today's youth pays dividends down the road.

Re:Only one winner! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34647878)

you don't get paid for coming second

IME first, second, or third doesn't matter. You still get paid so long as you can come on cue.

and lowest expense (3, Insightful)

vux984 (928602) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647842)

"Prizes and challenges have an excellent track record of accelerating problem-solving by tapping America's top talent and best expertise." ... and are cheap too because instead of paying people to solve it, you let a multitude of people do it in their free time, and then you pay the winner a set amount regardless of how long it took or what it actually cost. Everyone else gets nothing, regardless of how much time they spend, or what their expenses were.

I'm surprised scientists get sucked into this stuff, its about as sensible as playing the lottery, and self-destructive to the viability of one's own profession.

We're already seeing prize models for logo and website design...

Re:and lowest expense (4, Insightful)

femto (459605) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647924)

A critical question is: Who owns the result? A prize should be about promoting development, and NOT about acquiring ownership. Any prize recipient who transfers ownership is a bunny. The sequence should be:

  1. Win prize (prize posted to promote development.)
  2. Use prize money as seed funding for business
  3. PROFIT! Prize giver has a solution and developer has money.

The reward for the 2nd, 3rd, .. place getters is the opportunity to still develop a business, albeit without the benefit of the prize money as funding.

Re:and lowest expense (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648064)

I just asked the same question.

And the answer is:
"The Congress shall have Power ... To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;"

Although that also means that Congress has the power not to do that...

Re:and lowest expense (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648286)

The patent office also have the power to do it, and are a lot less capable of screwing you over.

Re:and lowest expense (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648414)

Er, not quite sure I follow. That line I quoted is from the Constitution and it is the one that allows the Congress to set up the Patent Office to that thing there with the writings and discoveries and authors and inventors and science and arts...

I wonder if anyone ever challenged a copyright on the basis that the work of art it purported to protect was not "useful"...

Re:and lowest expense (1)

dakameleon (1126377) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648820)

I wonder if anyone ever challenged a copyright on the basis that the work of art it purported to protect was not "useful"...

Unfortunately we're now bound by the Berne Convention [wikipedia.org] which pretty much explicitly states copyright is automatic, regardless of merit, and applies 50 years posthumously.

Re:and lowest expense (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648850)

I thought you were quoting from the rules of this prize giving malarkey. I'm not American just in case you think I should have learned this stuff in school.

Re:and lowest expense (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34649198)

The prize submitter owns the result, unless specifically stated otherwise.

The crux of this policy is to limit the endless milking under a contract or grant with no or limited results. In other words, the trust in the grant review boards and contract award protocols has evaporated. Instead of paying for action, action, and more action that leads to nowhere, we pay for results.

As the inventor/innovator/producer, you are still free, unless specifically stipulated by entering the competition, to protect and commercialize your investment.

Re:and lowest expense (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648272)

What if the solution to the problem has no direct business application?

Re:and lowest expense (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648404)

Then you should think carefully about that, and your chances of winning, before investing any time into attempting to win this prize (i.e., don't bother).

Re:and lowest expense (5, Insightful)

drb226 (1938360) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647956)

I'm surprised scientists get sucked into this stuff, its about as sensible as playing the lottery, and self-destructive to the viability of one's own profession.

Some people actually *enjoy* their profession, and do not need to be paid for *everything* they do (e.g. open source?). Plus, even if they don't win, they at least strengthen their portfolio and skills.

Re:and lowest expense (4, Interesting)

vux984 (928602) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647998)

Some people actually *enjoy* their profession, and do not need to be paid for *everything* they do (e.g. open source?).

So your argument is that people will compete for a cash prize because they aren't motivated by money?

Re:and lowest expense (1)

sea4ever (1628181) | more than 3 years ago | (#34649170)

They may not be competing for the prize at all.

Maybe they decided to participate because it's enjoyable to them. The prize is just a bonus that happens to be there. If there were no prize they would most probably still do it.

This can happen, because people regularly participate in projects like this with no prize at all. (see open source projects) as a hobby.

Re:and lowest expense (3, Insightful)

apoc.famine (621563) | more than 3 years ago | (#34649190)

It's not necessarily a bad argument. I've seen plenty of college clubs/programs that would happily apply their chosen talent/focus to a problem. They would even budget/fund-raise to make sure they could successfully pull it off. Why? Personal pride, sense of purpose, but often, if there is a cash prize, there's a round of photographs, news articles, and coverage in magazines and other media forms dedicated to their personal niche.

The money may not be the motivation, but if there's an oversized check for $50,000, you can bet that someone's going to take a picture or two and write about it somewhere. For a lot of groups, that exposure is worth far more than the cash. Although the cash might be seed money for the next venture they jump into.

Re:and lowest expense (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648516)

Unless someone has a fat trust fund or something, or is retired, they still have to earn a paycheck to put food on their family's table and pay the rent/mortgage. So, how much time they can devote to what is essentially a hobby (even if it does intersect with their professional abilities) is usually limited. Contrary to myth, many, many open-source developers (and most of those working on big, important projects like the Linux kernel) are indeed working on these projects as their day job, for pay. Those that don't obviously spend less time on it, but these projects are still all ones where no special equipment or facilities are needed (other than a typical $500 PC and a place in your home to put it). Computing is quite special that way, so it has an extremely low barrier to entry, and someone wanting to do some coding in their spare time can set aside a couple hours every night to go in their room and work on it.

These government prize-funded projects aren't like that. FTA, one prize is for technology to clean up devastating oil spills. That probably isn't something you can work on in your garage. Kevin Costner worked on some technology for that, but he's got a lot more disposable income than the average engineer. Another is for a treatment for Type I Diabetes. Even if you're a biomedical researcher, you still need all the facilities at your workplace to work on a side idea you may have, and your employers may take a dim view of that.

Design and Implement a new 20-year Copyright (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34647928)

Design and Implement a new 20-year Copyright, to be implemented retroactively.

Prize will be access to an enormous amount of works of cultural significance (sorry, only 1990 and earlier).

Re:Design and Implement a new 20-year Copyright (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648656)

That would be great... well, except for the Mickey Mouse porn.

Welcome to the casino gulag state (2)

benjamindees (441808) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647988)

It was pretty much inevitable that reward of government contracts would eventually devolve into hand-to-hand combat.

Ave, Caesar, morituri te salutamus.

Re:Welcome to the casino gulag state (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34649088)

It was pretty much inevitable that reward of government contracts would eventually devolve into hand-to-hand combat.

There's enough material in your post for a scene in Idiocracy II.

Tap that Talent, but more Talent to Tap? (2)

FatalChaos (911012) | more than 3 years ago | (#34647992)

I'm sure having problem solving competitions accelerates the process of solving a particular problem, if for no other reason than drawing more attention and prestige to that problem. However, I'm curious if competitions really have an effect on the number of people who pursue careers in math, physics, etc. I mean does anyone really go "man, I'm going to become a mathematician and get rich through these competitions." I know people often go into the sciences for love rather than money, but I don't see how these competitions would make people love science and math more.

Who owns the results? (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648030)

So I'm supposed to do a year's worth of work for a share of a dinette set instead of the $150K it should be paying me?

Re:Who owns the results? (4, Insightful)

physicsphairy (720718) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648134)

No you're supposed to do it for a share of a dinette set plus the personal satisfaction you get from solving problems and the prestige and recognition of being the guy who beat everyone else at doing it.

Fyi, people actually pay for the opportunity to compete in triathlons, and most of them aren't even expecting to win. The ones who do don't receive much in the way of compensation for the time they've invested in it. And yet hundreds of people still show up to do it.

If you're not in the spirit of the game then it may not seem very equitable to you, but good news! It's 100% voluntary, so no need for you to worry about it.

Re:Who owns the results? (2)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648390)

No you're supposed to do it for a share of a dinette set plus the personal satisfaction you get from solving problems and the prestige and recognition of being the guy who beat everyone else at doing it.

I get all that anyway, but I deserve $150K, not a fucking dinette set.

Fyi, people actually pay for the opportunity to compete in triathlons, and most of them aren't even expecting to win. The ones who do don't receive much in the way of compensation for the time they've invested in it. And yet hundreds of people still show up to do it.

That's nice for them. But the people who win make MILLIONS OF FUCKING DOLLARS doing it and rarely have to pay their own entry fee, besides.

If you're not in the spirit of the game then it may not seem very equitable to you, but good news! It's 100% voluntary, so no need for you to worry about it.

It's not 100% voluntary. The government is sucking the value of innovation out of the economy by paying in dinette sets instead of what it's worth.

Re:Who owns the results? (1)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648608)

Whether it's good or bad, it's not 100% voluntary if it's paid for with tax dollars.

Re:Who owns the results? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648964)

Sponsoring isn't any percent voluntary. But the criticism is that those entering are getting ripped off. Heck - to the degree that that's so, I'd say I'm getting a good return on my tax dollar.

Entering is 100% voluntary, and this is what is relevant to the original claims.

Jefe, would you say I have a Plethora of Prizes? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648060)

I would not like to think that person would tell someone that he has a plethora and then find out that that person has "no idea" what it means to have a plethora.

xcellent track record... (2)

cinnamon colbert (732724) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648068)

You have some data to back this up ?
You have some real data to back this up, like some detailed comparison of 40 problems, with 20 solved by prize method and 20 solved by some other method ?
I don't know if prizes are good or not; I know that argument by anecdote (x prize foundation....) is not a good substitute for thinking
There is also a difference between a "solution" and a "solution" - it is easy to get something to work once for the prize committee; a lot harder to make it work many times, at a reasonable cost.

This is great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648120)

Now, who wants to sponsor a contest to come up with a form of democracy that isn't plagued by lobbyists and short-sighted leaders? I'm in for $50.

Re:This is great! (1)

pspahn (1175617) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648250)

The idea is already there and quite possible to implement in a short time.

The only problem is that not enough people are truly interested in politics for it to make an ideal amount of sense.

DARPA Grand Challenge (3, Informative)

Trip6 (1184883) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648140)

This is a classic example of this trend. Various government agencies spent literally hundreds of millions of dollars trying to get autonomous ground vehicles off the ground (so to speak). For under $50 million, DARPA conducted three events from 2004 - 2007 and spurred technology that is now being deployed in trucks, cars, boats, for 3-D mapping, and many other uses.

They say that to improve your user interface design add a high score file. Everybody loves a competition!

Re:DARPA Grand Challenge (2)

mbkennel (97636) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648598)

Maybe those hundreds of millions of dollars to academic and government research institutions in robotics and machine learning had a wee bit to do with the success of the teams who entered the competitions.

Re:DARPA Grand Challenge (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648794)

Well, yeah, no kidding. There's a huge baseline investment. But for those hundreds of millions of dollars most of what you would have gotten under regular circumstances would be some nice papers written up in the journals, and maybe a few patents and a few prototypes. This way you get a full suite of functional prototypes AND you get to see how they all perform head-to-head under exactly the same conditions and rules that you set. It's that latter part that you probably couldn't get any other way. Not for such a relatively cheap price (e.g., compared to putting it out to tender and funding only the winning bid).

Re:DARPA Grand Challenge (3, Interesting)

Trip6 (1184883) | more than 3 years ago | (#34649100)

Teams were actually prohibited from using any government sponsored technology.

As someone very close to this, I can tell you that most of the notable developments that came out of the race were not derivations of previously funded technology.

Very cool But (1)

gearloos (816828) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648142)

Very cool. I wonder which Chinese Foreign Exchange Student will win?

WTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648168)

I think this would be well applied in the WTF previously announced today.

Reality TV (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648498)

Oh you mean the government caught up with reality TV that's so 5 years ago? I have a problem finding a boy/girlfriend so I'll just make a TV show and have people compete over me!! yearsbehind as usual =/

Greetings Starfighter! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648658)

You have been recruited by the Star League to defend the Frontier against Xur and the Ko-Dan armada...

i herd you like challenges (1)

nimbius (983462) | more than 3 years ago | (#34648668)

so heres an american science competition hosted by the defense department (who else has funding in america) and the rules are simple:

1. no global warming...global warming is a theory, not a fact, and thusly we arent holding any competitions to fix something that may, or may not be occuring, according to american politic...er..scientists.

2. no stem cells...we firmly believe life begins at arousal and will defend this conceptualized interaction of neurons to the death, or next midterm election, whichever we see fit.

3. we're fat...seriously, and we've run out of options that involve us eating food so check out the myhealthypeople application developer competition. mostly this is just trying to improve retention and enlistment rates in the armed forces as well as reduce healthcare expenditures...for us, not you

4. the FCC Open Internet Apps challenge: okay so we know there are at least 2 open source operating systems available with hundreds of thousands of open source programs and lots of creative people already working on this shit but lets ignore that for now....we, the FCC just passed a law that makes us look like shitbags so we'd like you to tie us up to something that makes us look like a worthwhile independent institution established to protect the consumer, not some lapdog for telecommunications conglomerates

5. the NDU press holiday scavenger hunt: aaalright...who copy pasted their google calender.....


.6. augmented reality photo contest: so not really anything as ass-crackingly earth shattering and life changing as our last big invention, the internet, but hey everyone loves photoshop...oh and you'd better have a licensed copy.


7. veterans health wireless challenge thats right, we're openly soliciting as a challenge a project related to a healthcare system so broken, it should be criminal

8. 2011 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Awards:oh, did we mention no stem cells? yeah, no stem cells...i mean dupont and dow corning cant make plastic tron figurines and happymeal prizes out of them, and theres a mighty big gap where BPA will ....uh...i mean its...a great challenge!

9. Digital Manufacturing Analysis, Correlation and Estimation (DMACE) Challenge seriously okay, this one was just left over from some gin soaked napkin at a GOP convention packed with lobbyists...soooo...this is the science of figuring out how much, oh, say, a line of talking tron figurines will cost this year...you know...if you had to guess...

But thats not according to the story... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34648772)

According to the story I've heard for years and years: Corporations create everything. Every good thing that ever came along, came from a corporation. Thats why they have patents and copyrights up the ying-yang. They have total control over every idea, and death to anyone who crosses them. The control is forever, and they have complete control over it. (Didn't you know?) So if the corporations are responsible for every good thing that ever came along, why do we need a prize for people to come up with good ideas? You don't need people, all you need are corporations. In fact, the corporations have people, but I think the corporations would be better off coming up with ideas without people. That way, people wouldn't be tainting the great ideas that the corporations come up with.

Innocentive? (2)

gringer (252588) | more than 3 years ago | (#34649142)

the Competes Act gives every department and agency the authority to conduct prize competitions

Prize competitons, puzzles, solutions. It sounds a bit like innocentive [innocentive.com] , which is a more global thing that has been running for the past 9 years.

plethora means "an excess" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34649262)

as in, "too many", not "a large amount".
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