Applications Open for Mozilla’s Fix-The-Internet Incubator for Early-Stage Startups

2 years ago 419

Mozilla is looking to invest in people, projects, and technologies that shape the internet and have a positive impact without having to only worry about the bottom line. Firefox, Wikipedia, WordPress, DuckDuckGo, Kickstarter, GitHub, Node.js, and Ethereum are some of our favorite examples of the internet at its best. We’ve done it before. We’re going to build 1000 more.

About Mozilla Builders

Mozilla Builders is dedicated to delivering on the promise of the internet, where the people are in control of how the internet is used to shape society and where business models should be sustainable and valuable, but do not need to squeeze every last dollar (or ounce of attention) from the user. 

Over the years and from our work building platforms like Firefox, JavaScript, Rust, WebRTC, Web Assembly, and others, we have been developing a vision for a next internet that is imbued with these values and deployed across tomorrow’s devices, networks, algorithms, and cloud platforms. We’re inviting you to join us with your ideas for how to bring this vision into the world.

Eligible Programs:

This summer, the Mozilla Builders Incubator offers 3 programs.

The Startup Studio: $75,000 investment in early stage startups. SAFE ($2m cap). Apply here by June 5. Rolling acceptance. Program runs July-September. The MVP Lab: $16,000 funding to pre-startup teams. For-profit, non-profit or open source. Apply here by June 5. Rolling acceptance. Program runs July-August. The Open Lab: Up to 10 x $10,000 prize for the best community projects. Program is by invitation from among the applicants to Startup Studio & MVP Lab. 10 hrs/wk commitment. 

Eligible Proposal Categories

We hope to see a wide range of proposals around big categories including, but not limited to:

Collaboration & Society, particularly in view of the current global crisis: (i) Foster better collaboration online, (ii) Grassroots collaboration around issues & emergencies, (iii) Local & neighborhood support networks, (iv) Supporting small businesses, (v) Social money-pooling for issues, people & businesses. Decentralized Web: build a new, decentralized architecture for the internet from infrastructure, communications, media & money, to using the blockchain and peer-to-peer technologies. This summer we are particularly interested in seeing proposals around how to make decentralized storage services a viable + reliable system for building applications upon. Messaging & Social Networking: can we build a new way to communicate online that favors privacy, people, and users’ interests? What needs to evolve? Surveillance Capitalism: whether it’s big tech or governments, everyone’s collecting your data. How do we put the user back in control of their data? Can we build new business models for messaging, social networking, news & information that don’t rely on excessive data minute and hijacking our attention? Misinformation & Content: ideas for services that help us get beyond polarization, filter bubbles and fake news. Artificial Intelligence that works to benefit communities and citizens. Web Assembly: 25 years of evolution and improvement, and the web’s “execution environment” – the Javascript engine in every browser – has now broken free as a remarkably fast, safe way to run ANY code. We’re interested in tools and platforms that leverage and build on Wasm as THE way to run applications connected to the internet. What’s the ecosystem missing today? What new things can be built with it that couldn’t be built before? Where can Wasm have the biggest impact? Search: For most people in the world, search is the gateway to news, shopping, information, and answers that shape the way they live their lives. These searches happen for billions of people from the search boxes in their browsers but also in new and exciting ways like getting a quick answer with your voice from a little screen in your kitchen. For the last 10 years the thought of building a new search experience was left to only the largest companies in the world but with the rise of privacy focused search engines such as DuckDuckGo, the panoply of vertical search engines, cloud platforms, and developer tools, there’s clear evidence that better search is possible. What will be the next major step in making the world’s information open, accessible, and credible for the next generation of users and devices?
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