Amazon Picks Finalists for $100K Prize

As we reported earlier, the Amazon Web Services team is offering over $100,000 worth of prizes in their AWS Startup-Challenge and yesterday they announced the 7 finalists. Each of the entries are leveraging the Amazon APIs like EC2, S3 and Mechanical Turk to build their businesses. Amazon is going to fly these finalists to an evening event at their headquarters in Seattle to present their idea to a judging panel, VCs and Amazon executives. Here's a rundown of the entries.

  • WeoGeo: "Creates a one-stop marketplace for mapping using Amazon EC2 and Amazon S3." See our full WeoGeo profile here.
  • Ooyala: "Delivers a high quality interactive video experience with specific tools for content owners, advertisers and viewers. Ooyala is built on top of AWS' utility computing services, Amazon EC2, S3, and SQS. Amazon EC2 is used in video development, processing and production while Amazon S3 is used for content delivery and back-up."
  • Is using Amazon web services as infrastructure underlying their "engine for measuring the networks in the brain."
  • "Operates a massively scalable live video Platform serving about 500,000 video streams per day. Their custom server software, Python Media Server, has been written from scratch to perform optimally on lightweight Amazon EC2 instances."
  • Commerce360: "Uses advanced mathematics and statistical analysis in their ClickEquations product to optimize paid and organic search campaigns."
  • "Provides quick and cheap website usability testing. Website owners can access a network of pre-screened testers who are articulate and observant and who meet specified demographics."
  • MileMeter: "Is an innovative insurance start-up that will offer "auto insurance buy the mile". With MileMeter, drivers will be able to pre-pay auto insurance based on the number of odometer miles."

Be sure to read the next eCommerce article: Shopping Mashups for the Holidays