Monday, January 22, 2007

Source for R&D help

We recently received in the mail a promotional letter for a new website called freeRandD.com. It's premise sounds intriguing. Here's some text from the letter:

"This new site will be of interest to small business owners that are struggling with how to conduct, fund, and staff research and development projects. This may include CAD work, designing a circuit board, prototyping a plastic part or mechanical assembly, preforming high-end design analysis, conducting market research activities, etc.

Not known to many is that there are thousands of university students that are looking for a project of a real world nature to work on. These students are bright and knowledgeable of the latest technologies in design and manufacturing.

That is where freeRandD.com comes in. Our objective is to help bring together talented university students and industry."

Their website allows businesses, government agencies, or nonprofit groups with R&D needs to post (for a small fee) the particulars about a specific project. It also allows university students to post a profile of themselves, including their specific talents. Obviously, it also provides a search mechanism for one side to find the other.

I went to the website. Because it's so new, there aren't a lot of projects that have been posted by businesses. They're in that chicken-or-the-egg phase faced by websites that hope to provide a matching service (like, say, our new signage site [hint, hint]).

They're all about marketing right now, which is why we got the letter in the first place. Keep it in mind should you have a client that might need some low-cost R&D.

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