It was a happy 10th anniversary for Google. Amid new deals promoting its energy agenda, advertising deals with competitor Yahoo that gained it more market share, and the launch of the first smart phone to feature Google's Android OS, the internet giant is riding high.
In order to advance its do-gooder philosophy, Google launched an initiative to reward world-changing ideas. The new initiative is named 10100, after the numeric representation of a googol. People can submit ideas they think could change the world. The ideas will then be put to a vote, and the winners will receive $10M USD to fund their ideas.
Google describes the need for progress, stating, "Never in history have so many people had so much information, so many tools at their disposal, so many ways of making good ideas come to life. Yet at the same time, so many people, of all walks of life, could use so much help, in both little ways and big."
Categories of ideas that users can submit include sustainable energy use, environment, health, education, shelter, encouraging communities, and building opportunities to help people better provide for themselves and their families. There's also an "everything else" catch-all category.
The election process begins on October 20, the deadline for idea submission. From all the submissions, Google employees will hand pick 100 of the most promising ones. The public will then select 20 semi-finalists by voting. Google's advisory board will then pick up to five of the ideas as winners, which will split the $10M USD prize.
To submit an idea, go here. You will have to answer questions like "if your idea were to become a reality, who would benefit the most and how?" and "describe the optimal outcome should your idea be selected and successfully implemented." It is recommended you also submit a YouTube video.
As an example of the type of idea that could win, Google mentioned the Hippo Water Roller, a device which allows 24-gallons of water to easily be transported, easing strain on parts of Africa where clean drinking water is scarce.
Google prefers ideas from individuals over organizations.
Individuals do not have to implement the idea themselves. Google will use public bidding to help find organizations that could implement the ideas for as cheaply as possible. While this means that you might not win a lot of money, Google says the reward is "good karma and the satisfaction of knowing that your idea might truly help a lot of people."