Meet Our Current Recipients - Fall 2013 Cycle
Open Field Entrepreneurs Fund award recipients are Carnegie Mellon alumni who have graduated from CMU in the last five years. Alumni, their date of graduation and school or college are noted at the end of each company listing.
Download the Fall 2013 OFEF Company Highlights (pdf).
Bistrobot aims to revolutionize fast food. Instead of processed foods being reheated to speed up orders, Bistrobot wants to use robotics technology to create fresh food fast. All food will be prepped and cooked by a chef who will then hand off the ingredients to a robot to assemble made-to-order sandwiches quickly, cleanly and consistently. Your meal will look exactly like it does in the picture and you won't wait in line long to get it. Bistrobot is adding robotics engineering to culinary arts to create an innovative dining experience. (Jay Reppert, 2012, Engineering)
Digital Dream Labs helps children program with their hands. When a child can physically touch an idea, they can easily relate to and build an understanding of that idea. Digital Dream Labs gives children a way to build programs like they build with blocks by using a set of toy instruction tiles called Ludos. Children use the Ludos to guide characters in a videogame through puzzles, learning the fundamentals of computer science along the way. (Matt Stewart, 2012, CMU; Justin Sabo, 2012, CMU; Peter Kinney, 2011, Computer Science, 2013, CMU)
LegalSifter uses Machine Learning to understand legal documents by helping to summarize, sort and search legal information quickly and efficiently. (Elliott Williams, 2008, Computer Science)
Midnight Madness Distilling is a CMU startup company born out of a 2011 entrepreneurship class project. MMD plans to enter the $72.1 billion United States spirits industry with a Swiss-imported herbal liqueur. This flagship brand is poised to fill a void in the nightlife liqueur market as a super-premium alternative to “shooters” like Jagermeister, Fireball and Southern Comfort. MMD will be introducing the brand in United States markets this fall. To generate revenue and increase sustainability during brand development, MMD also sells craft spirits under the brand Fortis, as well as numerous private label spirits across Pennsylvania. (Doug Heckmann, 2013, Dietrich College; Anthony LoRubbio, 2013, Dietrich College)
SolePower develops power-generating shoe insoles for charging portable electronics just by walking. Using the “heel strike” of a normal walking gait, mechanisms embedded inside the insole spin a small generator. The power generated is stored in a removable battery pack attached on top of the shoelaces, which can charge a variety of portable electronics. SolePower is initially developing for the outdoor enthusiast market where users frequently walk off-grid but rely heavily on equipment. They will also enter developing regions where access to power is unreliable, but people walk miles per day. (Matt Stanton, 2012, Engineering; Hahna Alexander, 2012, Engineering)
Trance is a social network for dance, where people can watch, record, and share amazing dance videos. They are at an exciting space where entertainment, technology and talent combine. Trance is the world’s largest dance floor. Watch their 1-minute pitch on TechCrunch. (Harper LaFave, 2012, Computer Science; Marwa Nur Muhammad, 2012, Computer Science; Julien Altieri, 2012, Computer Science)