Hipstarter, Kickstarter, and a Culture of Discovery

I took it on to more deeply immerse myself in the Kickstarter backer experience this past week and weekend to see what I might learn. I ended up creating a site to augment discovery called Hipstarter. It's a curated list of "projects before they're cool". The title is tongue in cheek, but it's a sincere attempt to surface exciting new projects for others who like the thrill of early discovery.

I'm sourcing the projects from the Recently Launched section on Kickstarter, but that will soon cease to be viable for discovery due to volume. Outside of curatorial staff, Etsy has been able to address this problem through a robust API and integration with discovery services like Pinterest, both of which allow sellers, fans, and tastemakers to curate their own collections.

I believe that Kickstarter can similarly capture curatorial passion, increase project visibility, and release some of the burden of filtering from the core business by engendering a culture of discovery. This means creating tools for external developers to build their own views into the Kickstarter corpus. There's an example on the Kickstarter blog, a project called Fundhaus that is a discovery tool modelled on Stumbleupon. I'm looking forward to seeing what other tools are created for Kickstarter project discovery.