Project Wedge is a hardware start-up out of Olympia, Washington, that aims to solve one of those problems we didn’t know we had: How does one easily display a share content from tablet to a large room and look good doing it? The Wedge is a neat combination of a portable projector, battery system, and lectern (not a podium) that gives the presenter a sort of “command” presence when showing off whatever it is they need to show off.
“The point wasn’t to make a home theater thing, the point is to make it portable and easy to use,” CEO Robb Anthony told me last week. “It should just work, and it does.”
The genius behind the trim-looking Wedge is twofold: The projected image itself looks smart and bright with a charge that lasts up to four hours, and with a targeted retail price is just $150 the device becomes quite attractive to those who make mobile presentations. At that price point, even casual users will find the Wedge inviting. This writer could easily see the Wedge used on a camping trip were he the type who ever camped. He is not.
The LED-based projector uses a technology Wedge claims is proprietary, called SDE (Sexalens Display Expansion). The device works with about any tablet one could throw at it: Galaxies, Kindle’s, and iPads of all flavors are supported with built-in connectors. The construction is solid but very light weight, and the designers have even put together a decidedly retro-yet-awesome case that brings up memories of 70s-style slideshows without the bulk.
To finance the project, the group is supplementing its start-up capital with a Kickstarter-like fundraising project. A pre-order “pledge” of $157 goes to help fund the first run of products and reserves one of the first machines off the line. Much like most Kickstarter campaigns, a card used for a pre-order won’t be charged if the group doesn’t reach its goal, which is $50,000.
That’s a pretty reasonable target, and this writer is happy to see a bootstrapped group of designers attempting to solve a problem on its own with minimal outside help. Olympia, Washington, is known for its DIY attitude, after all.