Instructables: Health by Design competition

Instructables logoInstructables have teamed up with Humana, an American
insurance company, to run a competition to find ideas to help build and maintain health and well-being, as well as adaptive tools and assistive
technology to meet the needs of older people or those living with
disabilities and long term health conditions.

But first a little bit about the fabulous community based how to and DIY website, Instructables. Here people can share inspiring, entertaining and useful projects, recipes and hacks. Created by Squid Labs, who are a team of passionate scientists and engineers, its categories range from ‘Play‘ and ‘Food‘ to ‘Living‘ and ‘Technology‘, among others. I’ve no doubt in my mind that the site could provide hours of entertainment for
anyone at a loose end, whatever their interests, on a rainy Sunday afternoon.

Many of the projects hark back to the days of
make do and mend. Some examples include a post on how to make a hammock from
duct tape or another that shows how to replace the keyboard on a laptop. It also
caters to those who like to be a little more individual, creating a fresh fruit
wedding cake for instance. I liked the in-depth step-by-step guide to making a
programmable LED umbrella – something you can imagine Carrie from Sex and the
City dancing through the streets of New York with.

The ‘Health‘ section is home to all sorts of health
and lifestyle related posts, with ideas including how to make padded crutches
and advice such as how to reduce foot odour, stop gums bleeding and the health
benefits of tea. I can already hear my 8 pints a day, tea-loving Gran saying
“see I told you it was good for you!”

Now back to the competition! So if you’ve got an
idea and you meet the entry criteria (it’s only open to those living in the US
I’m afraid), you can enter it here.

Humana logo

The closing date is 28th November 2010
and prizes include a $5,000 adventure plus others, so good luck!

For those of us in the UK, I think it would be
nice for us to have something similar to this competition. I’d definitely be
one of the first to submit one of my scribbles – my notebook is jam packed with
ideas, so I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed!

by Claire Litt (online community manager)