The d.light revolutionizes light in third-world countries
Sam Goldman, a graduate of Stanford's Entrepreneurial Design for Extreme Affordability, decided he wanted to make a difference in the world. He started a company called d.light in 2007 and invented and manufactured the "Nova." This light offered an affordable lighting solution for people in third-world countries, using durable and dependable LED lighting. Instead of using kerosene to light their lamps, which can be unstable and dangerous, Goldman hoped that people in countries like Tanzania and Zimbabwe could use the Nova as their primary lighting source (other than the sun, of course). While building the light, he went over to Africa to get a firsthand look at how he could make dreams of light a reality for each country's citizens. According to Goldman, he made it a priority that each individual he interacted with was treated with respect, not simply as a statistic. "It was never about focus groups and surveys," said Goldman. "It was about going out and living with people, and finding out what matters to them." After coming back from Africa, Goldman had an idea of the type of light he wanted to create. He looked to invent something that was energy efficient, as aesthetically pleasing as possible (without driving up costs) and something that was affordable to people living in very low-income areas. By creating the "Nova," the entrepreneur achieved his goal and provided light to countries where it looked like electricity would never be possible for everyone. The alternative fixture also reduces carbon emissions and doesn't use dangerous lighter fluids like kerosene. Although it may seem like Goldman's on his way to conquering the world, he's setting long term goals. And what's on top of his list? To improve the quality of life for 50 million people using, you guessed it, light.