What’s cool?

“Cool” is a versatile word. And it reflects the diversity of innovation that we try to showcase at each year’s CPX. But that also makes it hard to define. We’ll take stabs at doing just that over a series of posts here.  One approach to communicating complex ideas is through example. Last year’s Cool Product Expo provided some of these. Here’s a small sampling of our exhibitors last year… 

  • 23andMe, a web-based service that can help you read and understand your own DNA.  (Time Magazine agreed with our definition of cool: 23andMe was dubbed Time Magzine’s 2008 Invention of the Year)…
  • BMW, with its Hydrogen 7, whose 260 HP engine produces nothing but water vapour for exhaust… 
  • Bonobos, which produces stylish, affordable fashion with a different kind of business model…
  • d.light design, which produces inexpensive LED lighting that aims to replace dangerous kerosene lighting and bring brighter, safer, more affordable light to millions of people in developing countries…
  • Telsa Motors, with their all-electronic zero to 60 in 4 seconds car, the Tesla Roadster…
  • Whole Travel, a site that helps travelers find sustainable choices for seeing the world without hurting it…  

One of the reasons that drives us to organize the CPX is giving people — from students to VCs to parents and their kids — a chance to experience and be inspired by “cool” and then talk to the organizations that bring these products to life. Seeing people get excited about the future? Also pretty cool.

Tom

2007 Cool Product Expo

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