In his keynote speech at the [Intel Developer Forum ](http://www.intel.com/IDF)(IDF) on Tuesday, Intel Chairman [Craig Barrett announced](/bus-news/article.php/3766386/Intels+Barrett+Slams+US+Tech+Policy.htm) a contest to award four $100,000 checks for innovation.
The competition focuses on four areas: education, health care, economic development and environment. The contest, called the [Inspire Empower Challenge](http://www.intelchallenge.com), is a great idea. There’s nothing like a little dough to get people thinking big things.
As my colleague Andy Patrizio reports from the scene in San Francisco, Intel has discussed a few innovative ideas of its own this week, from new [solid state drives](/hardware/article.php/3766696/Intel+Sets+Sights+on+Solid+State+Drives.htm)
to closing the gap between humans and machines. Micro-robots in 2050? Long wait, but interesting.