2024 Contest Coming Soon!

Get your neurons fired up – the 2024 Create the Future Design Contest will open for entries on March 1. Submit your best new product ideas for a chance at $25,000 and other great prizes.

In the meantime, get up to speed on last year’s winners, honorable mentions, and most popular entries here.

Help build a better tomorrow

Since Tech Briefs magazine launched the Create the Future Design contest in 2002 to recognize and reward engineering innovation, over 15,000 design ideas have been submitted by engineers, students, and entrepreneurs across six continents. You can also join the innovators who dared to dream big and build a better tomorrow by entering this year’s contest.

Read About Past Winners’ Success Stories

Over the past 20 years, many innovators have used the recognition afforded by the contest to advance the development and marketing of their technologies. We highlight some success stories of past winners who have brought their inventions to the marketplace.

Click here to read more

A ‘Create the Future’ Winner Featured on ‘Here’s an Idea’

Spinal cord injury affects 17,000 Americans and 700,000 people worldwide each year. A research team at NeuroPair, Inc. won the Grand Prize in the 2023 Create the Future Design Contest for a revolutionary approach to spinal cord repair. In this Here’s an Idea podcast episode, Dr. Johannes Dapprich, NeuroPair’s CEO and founder, discusses their groundbreaking approach that addresses a critical need in the medical field, offering a fast and minimally invasive solution to a long-standing problem.

Listen now

Thank you from our Sponsors

“At COMSOL, we are very excited to recognize innovators and their important work this year. We are grateful for the opportunity to support the Create the Future Design Contest, which is an excellent platform for designers to showcase their ideas and products in front of a worldwide audience. Best of luck to all participants!”

— Bernt Nilsson, Senior Vice President of Marketing, COMSOL, Inc.

“From our beginnings, Mouser has supported engineers, innovators and students. We are proud of our longstanding support for the Create the Future Design Contest and the many innovations it has inspired.”

— Kevin Hess, Senior Vice President of Marketing, Mouser Electronics

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Ploog'n Power Stand

Votes: 0
Views: 5030

People and their electronic devices are migrating from the desk to rooms with comfortable furniture. Here they work, shop and play in comfort but are still plagued by nagging inconveniences. The low battery alarm demands that we stop, get up and plug in. Electrical wall outlets are scarce and difficult to reach behind heavy furniture. Household extension cords and power strips are hidden from view, forcing the user to crawl around looking for them. Unplugging from obstructed electrical outlets is just as inconvenient, so billions and billions of power supplies remain on wasting enormous amounts of power even if the electronic device is turned off. Unused devices and cables lie around cluttering furniture, vulnerable to damage from heat build up and accidents.

Ploog’n is an evolutionary new extension cord, laptop, tablet ,smart phone & IPod charger, storage dock, and power management device all in one. Ploog’n sits on the floor next to your favorite chair, sofa, bed or desk. It has a long 10 foot grounded extension cord culminating in two surge protected electrical outlets that are raised up off the floor. Illuminated switches control each outlet to reduce wasteful power consumption. A berth cradles one's electronic device safely out of harm’s way. An optional USB charging adapter can be added too. All these features are within easy reach of a person sitting, standing or lying in bed.

Ploog'n rocks forward to plug devices in and back to rest, out of the way of arm movements. Wires are cleverly hidden behind the device. Ploog'n also has a stylish design that can be customized to suit any room's decor.

Ploog'n was designed with the earth in mind. Concern about carbon emissions and rising shipping costs challenged the designer to make Ploog'n as light weight and flat as possible. Standing approximately 24" high (68 cm) during use, Ploog'n collapses to ship, store and transport flat, reducing packaging and shipping waste.

Like lamps, Ploog’n needs a little stabilizing weight in the base. Popular demand, would result in shipping a significant number of weighted Ploog'ns to the detriment of the environment. Our response was to eliminate the base weight but make accommodations for it and ask the end user to supply the weight using common items found in the home. Two dollars worth of copper penny coins in the base, for example, equals the required one pound (453 grams) weight. Banking two dollar's worth of pennies in Ploogn's base costs less than shipping its equivalent to the customer. Asking the customer to supply the weight is unconventional but it helps the environment and saves money.

The household extension cord though ugly looking, suffices for TVs and lamps when the need to plug and unplug is rare. Today people and their electronic devices go everywhere together and they need charging frequently. Crawling around in search of an electrical outlet is terribly inconvenient and outdated for anyone at any age.

Ploog'n is the evolutionary advancement that stands upright for fast, easy electrical connections and much more.



Voting is closed!


  • Name:
    Steven Chayer
  • Type of entry:
  • Profession:
    Business Owner/Manager
  • Number of times previously entering contest:
  • Steven's favorite design and analysis tools:
    Pencil & paper, solid works, CAD
  • Steven's hobbies and activities:
    Off grid power generation,
  • Steven belongs to these online communities:
    linkedIn, Google +, Facebook, Kickstarte, twitter,
  • Steven is inspired by:
    I am an inventor at heart. I believe that form follows function. The pursuit of reduction to simplicity in form and function is paramount. Obviousness and elegance are the result.
  • Software used for this entry:
    Cad, solid works,
  • Patent status: