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The Swap-O-Matic is a vending machine that promotes trading and swapping as a sustainable alternative to buying new.

*Update we got covered by CNN's The Next List!

Overview:

The Swap-O-Matic is a vending machine that allows users to swap and trade, rather than buy. It’s currently located at Ample Hills Creamery, an ice cream shop in Brooklyn, NY. This project co-ops the form of a vending machine, which is usually associated with instant gratification and convenient consumption, to promote a more sustainable alternative to buying things new, raise awareness about conscious consumption, and make swapping fun!

How does it work?

The basic rules of use for the Swap-O-Matic are quite simple. Each of the donated items in the machine is free and there is no charge for using the Swap-O-Matic. The basic currency for a transaction is a “credit”. Credit is earned when the user donates an item, and a credit is required to retrieve an item from the machine. All new users receive 3 credits to start. Users can donate, receive, or swap using the touch screen interface on the front of the machine. Other features, such as a user flag system, are included to prevent misuse and provide occasional curation of the machine.

The machine has a touch screen interface with digital locks.

What we want to do!

We seek Kickstarter funding to fund:

1) The Research and Development phase of building a new Swap-O-Matic with updated features, hardware and sustainable materials.

2) An accompanying web and mobile community to support the newly designed Swap-O-Matic and bring the interaction online.

3)The build, shipping, and installation of 5 Swap-O-Matics to locations voted on by supporters.

Here are some of the highlights of the new features we plan on implementing:

1. Ability to attach messaging with items, so you can send a personal message to the recipient of your item.

2. Integration with social media.

3. Ability to rate your swap finds.

4. See a running list of all items that have ever been swapped.

5. Ability to take a photo of your item at the machine and view it online.

6. Ability to opt-in to get email updates when items get swapped

And much more to be fine-tuned during our R&D phase!

What are the goals of this project?

The Swap-O-Matic is intended to inspire all of us to rethink our consumption habits, strive for conscious consumption, and consider more sustainable methods such as trading and reusing goods. The machine’s retro design and user-friendly interface makes the Swap-O-Matic a powerful, iconic symbol that gets people excited and talking about their own personal consumption habits. On a much larger scale, the ultimate goal is for the Swap-O-Matic to inspire a movement, affecting change for large numbers of people and communities as trading and reusing re-emerges as a means for increasing local sustainability, reducing waste, and reigning in overconsumption. Read more about my personal statement here: http://www.swap-o-matic.com/personal-statement/

History of the project

I created the first Swap-O-Matic while working towards my MFA at Parsons School of Design. This first version was very analog, utilizing combination locks and was installed at the Lower East Side Girls Club and the former Bluestocking Bookstore in 2005, both located in New York City. Since then, using my own personal funding and the help of Rick Cassidy and Ray Mancini, I created a second version that made use of digital locks and a touch screen interface. This version debuted in August 2011 at the Launch Pad in Brooklyn, NY. In December, 2011 the Swap-O-Matic moved into its current home at The Ample Hills Creamery in Brooklyn.

Since then we've got some great press!

Fast Company

LATimes

Good

Gizmodo

and more, see here!

What we want to do!

We seek Kickstarter funding to fund:

1) The Research and Development phase of building a new Swap-O-Matic with updated features, hardware and sustainable materials.

2) An accompanying web and mobile site to support the newly designed Swap-O-Matic and bring the interaction online.

3)The build, shipping, and installation of 5 Swap-O-Matics to locations voted on by supporters.

Here are some of the highlights of the new features we plan on implementing:

1. Ability to attach messaging with items, so you can send a personal message to the recipient of your item.

2. Integration with social media.

3. Ability to rate your swap finds.

4. See a running list of all items that have ever been swapped.

5. Ability to take a photo of your item at the machine and view it online.

6. Ability to opt-in to get email updates when items get swapped

And much more to be fine-tuned during our R&D phase!

Thank you so much for your support!

-The Swap Team (Lina, Rick, and Ray)

Here are the handmade pins you'll get at the $25 tier:

Mug Design for the $62 dollar tier:

Here's the T-shirt you'll get at the $100 tier:

FAQ

Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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162
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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    65 backers

    You'll get an acknowledgement on our site as a supporter + a vote toward the location of 5 new Swap-O-Matics. (see voting details here: http://www.swap-o-matic.com/voting)

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  • Pledge $25 or more
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    25 backers

    In addition to the previous rewards, you'll get 1) a handmade Swap-O-Matic pin brought to you by our partners, Etsy artists Barbara Hauzinger and Cristi Schroeder, 2) exclusive video updates, and 3) access to digital artwork to download and show your support on your desktop, smartphone, or social media pages. (International supporters, please add $5 for shipping).

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  • Pledge $62 or more
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    8 backers

    In addition to the previous rewards, you'll get a specially designed Swap-O-Matic mug made from 100% recycled plastic!

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  • Pledge $100 or more
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    12 backers

    In addition to previous rewards, you'll get a Swap-O-Matic T-shirt made from 100% recycled plastic bottles. (International supporters, please add $10 for shipping).

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  • Pledge $198 or more
    You selected

    3 backers

    Need a few more Swap-O-Matic t-shirts for friends or loved ones? Get 3 t-shirts, plus all previous rewards, with this great deal! (These T-shirts are made from 100% recycled plastic bottles and brought to you with the help from our partner RETH¿NK FABRICS) International supporters, please add $15 for shipping.

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  • Pledge $350 or more
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    2 backers

    Aside from the previous rewards, these special backers get a museum-worthy, poster-sized artistic rendering of the technical schematics from our new version of the Swap-O-Matic, which your donations are helping to create! This printed piece of artwork will be created in tandem with the development of the new machine, and will be signed and numbered by all three creators. Suitable for framing. (International supporters, please add $20 for shipping)

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  • Pledge $500 or more
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    2 backers

    If you own or operate an organization interested in having a Swap-O-Matic in your space, this reward is for you. You will get recognized as an Organizational Sponsor and have the opportunity to fill out a profile detailing why you think your space is the perfect fit. During voting time, all supporters will have the option of voting on your location to put one of the 5 Swap-O-Matics created. For voting details, see here: http://www.swap-o-matic.com/voting. (This reward also includes previous awards, so, international supporters, please add $10 for shipping).

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  • Pledge $740 or more
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    0 backers

    Here's a reward for our "Hacker Backers". In addition to previous rewards (excluding the Organization Reward), you'll get the custom designed Swap-O-Matic Control / Data Acquisition Board, which is being created exclusively for the Swap-O-Matic. This board features: Multiple Connectivity Options: USB, RS232, Ethernet. Can be used with most microcontrollers and personal computers. Configurable via web browser interface. Configurable via on board VGA Port / KB Port. Local Data Storage via uSD Card Slot. Gerber Files and Firmware source included. 64 x Dedicated Inputs - (3.3v, 5v, or 12v). 64 x Dedicated Outputs - (3.3v, 5v, or 12v). 16 x ADC 12bit Resolution. 16 x DAC 12bit Resolution. Ethernet Jack. TV Out. VGA Out PS2 Port. RCA Mono Audio Out. Powered by 5v~26v DC. (International supporters, please add $20 for shipping).

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  • Pledge $1,000 or more
    You selected

    3 backers

    In addition to all previous rewards (excluding the custom Data Acquisition Board and the Organization Reward), you'll get a one-of-a-kind, handcrafted piece of Swap-O-Matic memorabilia, lasercut out of excess materials from new machines you're helping us to create! This original piece will be signed and numbered by all three creators, and suitable for hanging on a wall or showcased within a display for all to see. You'll also get an acknowledgment on the screen display of the Swap-O-Matics as one of our top donators. (International supporters, please add $20 for shipping).

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  • Pledge $10,000 or more
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    3 backers All gone!

    Wow, thank you! You'll get your very own Swap-O-Matic to be put where ever you want! We can even do a custom designed skin just for you!

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Funding period

- (30 days)