DARPA's Balloon Challenge Over After Nine HoursS

Someone at DARPA's crying over the brilliant "Find these ten red weather balloons and we'll give you 40K" challenge he concocted ending mere nine hours in. It's what happens when you forget about MIT geeks and their little bribes, too.

The winning MIT went about the task in a brilliant way: They offered shares of the prize money to anyone who reported the weather balloons' locations. And what do you know? Tips about the locations came flooding in as people saw green: Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.

This challenge and the way it was won goes to remind us that a combination of the old and the new, viral campaigns and simple cold hard cash, can be unbeatable. Now let's just not run off to use that oh-so-new knowledge for anything potentially evil, please. [Guardian]