Skip to main content

Kickstarter’s new budget tool could save projects from collapse

Kickstarter has come up with a new tool designed to help creators work out their budget more effectively, and also enable them to be more transparent with those who back their ideas.

With some projects collapsing due to a lack of financial planning, the tool, called Project Budget, can provide valuable assistance to creators in the important early stages of their work.

“Project Budget is essentially a budgeting spreadsheet that’s available from the Funding tab in the project editor,” Kickstarter’s Meg Helm said in a post announcing the new feature. “Creators can use it to map out the cost of their entire project, from prototyping and R&D to packaging and shipping.”

While some creators already lay out in great detail exactly how they intend to execute a project, the new tool aims to encourage creators who might not ordinarily offer such information to do so.

Funding Calculator

Project Budget has some similarities to the Funding Calculator that Kickstarter launched in August, but the company describes the latest tool as “much more robust.”

And unlike the Funding Calculator, Project Budget’s custom graph showing estimated costs can be easily shared with potential patrons, which could be what it takes to turn someone from being merely interested in a project into a vital, cash-giving backer.

Helm said the new tool will help to remind creators “of important expenses they may not have considered, such as the cost of paying themselves and team members.”

She added: “We hope that this feature will give backers a sense of where their pledges are going, and how much it actually costs to bring an idea to life.”

The new feature will be available first for projects in the Design and Technology categories, with additional sections added in the near future.

The Cost To Create

Project Budget is part of a suite of Kickstarter tools and content called The Cost To Create, which focuses on the funding needed to turn an idea into something real.

The company said it’s also looking to build a tool that allows creators to share with backers how they’re spending their funds during the “making” phase of their campaign, which, depending on how a particular project proceeds, may be different from the creator’s initial forecasts during the planning stages.

As a backer, there’s always an element of risk when you cough up cash for a crowdfunding project, but hopefully Kickstarter’s new tool can help a campaign meet its goals as outlined in the original pitch.

For a look at some awesome tech projects currently running on Kickstarter and similar sites, be sure to drop by Digital Trends’ popular and regularly updated Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet feature.

Editors' Recommendations

Trevor Mogg
Contributing Editor
Not so many moons ago, Trevor moved from one tea-loving island nation that drives on the left (Britain) to another (Japan)…
Digital Trends’ Tech For Change CES 2023 Awards
Digital Trends CES 2023 Tech For Change Award Winners Feature

CES is more than just a neon-drenched show-and-tell session for the world’s biggest tech manufacturers. More and more, it’s also a place where companies showcase innovations that could truly make the world a better place — and at CES 2023, this type of tech was on full display. We saw everything from accessibility-minded PS5 controllers to pedal-powered smart desks. But of all the amazing innovations on display this year, these three impressed us the most:

Samsung's Relumino Mode
Across the globe, roughly 300 million people suffer from moderate to severe vision loss, and generally speaking, most TVs don’t take that into account. So in an effort to make television more accessible and enjoyable for those millions of people suffering from impaired vision, Samsung is adding a new picture mode to many of its new TVs.
[CES 2023] Relumino Mode: Innovation for every need | Samsung
Relumino Mode, as it’s called, works by adding a bunch of different visual filters to the picture simultaneously. Outlines of people and objects on screen are highlighted, the contrast and brightness of the overall picture are cranked up, and extra sharpness is applied to everything. The resulting video would likely look strange to people with normal vision, but for folks with low vision, it should look clearer and closer to "normal" than it otherwise would.
Excitingly, since Relumino Mode is ultimately just a clever software trick, this technology could theoretically be pushed out via a software update and installed on millions of existing Samsung TVs -- not just new and recently purchased ones.

Read more
AI turned Breaking Bad into an anime — and it’s terrifying
Split image of Breaking Bad anime characters.

These days, it seems like there's nothing AI programs can't do. Thanks to advancements in artificial intelligence, deepfakes have done digital "face-offs" with Hollywood celebrities in films and TV shows, VFX artists can de-age actors almost instantly, and ChatGPT has learned how to write big-budget screenplays in the blink of an eye. Pretty soon, AI will probably decide who wins at the Oscars.

Within the past year, AI has also been used to generate beautiful works of art in seconds, creating a viral new trend and causing a boon for fan artists everywhere. TikTok user @cyborgism recently broke the internet by posting a clip featuring many AI-generated pictures of Breaking Bad. The theme here is that the characters are depicted as anime characters straight out of the 1980s, and the result is concerning to say the least. Depending on your viewpoint, Breaking Bad AI (my unofficial name for it) shows how technology can either threaten the integrity of original works of art or nurture artistic expression.
What if AI created Breaking Bad as a 1980s anime?
Playing over Metro Boomin's rap remix of the famous "I am the one who knocks" monologue, the video features images of the cast that range from shockingly realistic to full-on exaggerated. The clip currently has over 65,000 likes on TikTok alone, and many other users have shared their thoughts on the art. One user wrote, "Regardless of the repercussions on the entertainment industry, I can't wait for AI to be advanced enough to animate the whole show like this."

Read more
4 simple pieces of tech that helped me run my first marathon
Garmin Forerunner 955 Solar displaying pace information.

The fitness world is littered with opportunities to buy tech aimed at enhancing your physical performance. No matter your sport of choice or personal goals, there's a deep rabbit hole you can go down. It'll cost plenty of money, but the gains can be marginal -- and can honestly just be a distraction from what you should actually be focused on. Running is certainly susceptible to this.

A few months ago, I ran my first-ever marathon. It was an incredible accomplishment I had no idea I'd ever be able to reach, and it's now going to be the first of many I run in my lifetime. And despite my deep-rooted history in tech, and the endless opportunities for being baited into gearing myself up with every last product to help me get through the marathon, I went with a rather simple approach.

Read more