LONDON Microsoft Corp. is looking for entries for its Dare to Dream Different challenge, a competition for software developers to design and build devices on the Microsoft .NET Micro Framework, Microsoft's smallest embedded platform for resource-constrained devices.
Developers can submit an entry online via the .NET Micro Framework website. Submissions must describe their dream device, and explain how they would bring it to life with the .NET Micro Framework platform.
Initial entries will be accepted until Dec. 15, 2008. The contest consists of two categories, hobbyist and professional, and the top 50 semifinalists in each category will receive .NET Micro Framework developer kit, which will include the software and hardware needed to build and submit a working prototype of their dreamdevice.
Semifinalists will be required to submit a video demonstration of their prototype, and the top 5 finalists in each category will make presentations on their prototype before a panel of industry experts. Of those finalists, three winners in each category will be announced in May 2009.
The grand prize, first prize and second prize winners in the professional category will receive guidance and tools to help start theirown business as a .NET Micro Framework Microsoft Partner. Total prizes in this category have an approximate retail value of more than $73,000 and include cash, free business and development software, consulting time with Microsoft experts, and promotional opportunities.
Total prizes in the hobbyist developer category have an approximate retail value of $23,500 and include cash, an Xbox 360 console, Zune digital media player (subject to availability) and promotional products. The winners in this category also will receive the opportunity to include their winning solution in a Microsoft marketing campaign.