Each step of conceiving, designing, prototyping, manufacturing, and selling are within reach of just about anyone with a surprisingly small amount of capital. Couple that with bringing in the crowd at any point to help fund or vet ideas and the current situation becomes that much more interesting.
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Article SeriesPart 1: Figuring out crowdsourcing: What does it mean? What's working? What isn't?
Part 2: Crowdfunding, Investing and Donation 2.0
Part 3: Digital Suggestion Box: how big corporations are asking for help
Part 4: The Competition Model
Part 5: The evolution of mass customization and personal manufacturing
Part 6: Expert sourcing for problem solving and innovation
Part 7: Many hands make light work: The atomization of work
Part 8: Collaborative Content Creation; or, Crowdsourcing your way to creativity