These four companies were rewarded for developing groundbreaking technology that will change millions of lives.
The Thiel Foundation was created by Peter Thiel, the billionaire investor and PayPal co-founder. For the past eight years, the fellowship selects 20 people the option to pursue their own innovative technology ideas and start their own companies. Along with the prestige of being named a winner of the Thiel Award, each recipient is given a $100,000 grant over 2 years to pursue their dreams and get their projects off and running.
To date, companies that have been created by the Thiel Fellowship are worth more than $3 billion. That doesn’t include Ethereum, which was created by Vitalik Buterin and currently has a market cap of about $50 billion.
The Thiel Foundation gives 20 young adults the opportunity to get ahead of the curve rather than just going to college. This year, the list of young men and women that were given the chance is very strong. For instance, Danel Ternyak, the CTO of “MyCrypto” is facilitating the transition to a decentralized society by bringing accessibility to Ethereum and other blockchains.
Liam Berryman of Nelumbo is developing a new materials platform capable of significantly increasing the energy efficiency of any refrigeration system. Those are just two of the 16 young adults who are doing good work and innovating their ideas into the tech industry. Here are the four recipients Thiel Awards winners who are developing more groundbreaking technologies with their own companies.
Discovr Labs: Educating the World With Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality
Last week, we discussed the impact that augmented reality is having on education. At Discovr Labs, Gemma Busoni from San Salvador also believes that AR is the future of learning in schools. The company’s vision is to deliver the most effective education and training experiences by using AR and virtual reality because people learn more effectively through AR and VR than through literature and lectures.
Busoni’s company is developing prototypes, thousands of demos, and is working with all types of educators and instructors to bring education into the future now.
Ephemeral Tattoos: Getting A Tattoo Isn’t the Choice of A Lifetime Anymore
There’s a certain fear that comes with getting a first tattoo. The entire purpose of getting ink is for it to last a lifetime, but a lot of people are afraid to get a tattoo knowing it’s meant to last forever. Of course, it can be removed through surgery but that’s an expensive mistake. Others can come to regret their tattoos or outgrow them, but they face the same problems.
From the mind of Josh Sakhai comes Ephemeral Tattoos, a company developing a suite of semi-permanent tattoo inks that eventually disappear on their own. The ink is still applied by tattoo artists, but consumers have the option to choose a tattoo lasts for three months, six months, or a full year if you’re feeling brave.
The innovative concept allows people to try out a tattoo without the risk of it being a lifetime choice. After the time period is over, the option exists to get the tattoo back permanently.
Terramino Foods: Replacing Seafood and Meat With Fungi
For decades, people refusing to eat meat or fish has become the great debate in the food industry without any signs of stopping. People give up eating animals for numerous reasons including health, the treatment of animals, and more. However, a lot of people who have made that choice admit they do miss the taste of meat or seafood.
Kimberlie Le from Edmonton, Canada helped create Terramino Foods for that reason. Their ultimate goal is to establish a food system that sustains people, animals, and the entire planet. The company provides an alternative to seafood and meat that is made of fungi but replicates their taste, texture, and nutrition. Their products are made to satisfy meat and plant-lovers alike.
DoNotPay: Taking the Law Into Their Own Hands
New technology is developed every single day. Certain industries and jobs are becoming more and more obsolete, but the world never expected that artificial intelligence could one day make lawyers irrelevant. DoNotPay is the brainchild of Joshua Browder who has developed the world’s first robot lawyer.
The objective is to make the law free, automated, and instant for consumers. The company wants to level the playing field to make legal aid more accessible to the most vulnerable in our society. As of this writing, the program can only to handle problems with parking tickets and refunds for flights.
The user can appeal tickets with ease for free and gain cash back from their flight when the price drops. It’s far too early to predict how the AI technology will develop, but it’s possible that AI could become pivotal to the justice system over the coming years.
2018 Thiel Award Winners: Just the Tip of the Iceberg
Those are just four of the innovative ideas that can now be developing as a result of the Thiel Foundation. Soon, people should have the option to eat meat and seafood or replicate the same taste through fungi. That will save resources and potentially make the Earth a cleaner planet. The choice to get a tattoo doesn’t come with a lifetime commitment anymore, so people don’t have to be afraid of the process.
Discovr Labs is doing its part to revolutionize education and make the necessary changes to create more creative and effective school for children. Most surprising, it’s now possible to get a refund for an plane ticket or get out of a parking ticket thanks to the world’s first robot lawyer.
Along with those four ideas, another 16 young adults have the opportunity to develop their own ideas that could change our daily lives in other ways. Only time will tell which concepts catch on and if their companies can succeed. Regardless of the outcome, the opportunity to innovate is the gift that keeps on giving.