Invention intervention: 3 steps to making a prototype

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Do you have a great idea -- or what you think might be a great idea, but don't know what to do about it? Thanks where experienced businessman and inventor Brian Fried comes in. Each week, he's going to share a little of his know-how.

This week he explains the importance of prototypes and how to make them. If you have questions and want some help, email us at Yourpix@pix11.com.

3 Steps to Making a Prototype
- Sketch out your idea
- Use parts that already exist
- Create a 3D drawing (computer assisted drawing) and upload file to Shapeways.com

3 Tips for Protecting Your Idea from Theft
- Use an NDA (non disclosure agreement)
- File a provisional patent application. Inexpensive and 1-year to work on and explore idea with "patent pending" status
- Network and use trusted help