Machine Design

Backtalk 10/20/2011

Are you a local legend?
Do you have a special talent or expertise? If so, you may want to enter the “Phillips 66 Local Legends” contest. Phillips 66 are gas experts, but they want to find experts in other areas — whether it’s horseshoe tossing, marshmallow eating, or extreme knitting. Entrants should create and submit a short video featuring their “special talent or expertise” and an explanation of why this talent or expertise should be chosen.

Contest prizes are weekly (three $50 and one $200 gift cards), monthly (three $200 gift cards), and there are five grand prizes — 5th place: $500 gift card; 4th: $1,000 gift card; 3rd: Gas for a year; 2nd: Gas for a year and $500 cash; and 1st: Gas for a year and $1,000 cash, as well as eternal glory. Go to to enter. Deadline for entry is December 4, 2011.

Calling all visionaries
If you’re a visionary and a student, here’s a challenge for you: The 5th annual “Henkel Innovation Challenge.” Sponsored by Henkel Corp., Rocky Hill, Conn., students from all over the world are invited to develop innovative ideas in teams of two. Participants can register at until December 12.

The Challenge is open to students in all subjects, including economics, engineering, and the natural sciences. Participants must develop a product concept under a Henkel brand or for an innovative technology that will meet customer’s needs in the year 2030 for one of Henkel’s business areas: cosmetics/toiletries, laundry and home care, or adhesive technologies. A new requirement this year is that all product ideas and technologies must contribute to sustainable development, such as reducing energy or water consumption.

The best teams will be assisted by experienced Henkel managers, who will act as mentors and advisors.

This year’s international final will be held in Poland, the home country of last year’s winners, in April 2012. The winning team will receive an around-the-world ticket and a travel voucher worth 1000 euros ($1,365.80 in American dollars).

© 2011 Penton Media, Inc.

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