Thursday, February 21, 2008

Welcome the latest, greatest gate-crashers...

In the 2005 film "Robots," the father of the young protagonist wisely counsels his ambitious son to "find a need and fill it." With our collective penchants for ingenuity, it's probably safe to assume that all businesses and products are subject to being replaced when something better comes along. Before the renowned business magazine Business 2.0 closed shop late last year, editor-at-large Erick Schonfeld and staffer Chris Morrison compiled a fascinating account of "The Next Disruptors," analyzing over a dozen new businesses that they felt had the potential to radically shake-up industries and marketplaces. I highly encourage you to check-out the full story online to get more details on these companies. In the meantime, below, you can see the top 10 companies Erick and Chris profiled, and the realms where their respective super-disrupting-powers are focused.

. Blinkx: Web video search and ad insertion

. Bloom Energy: Energy generators in homes and businesses

. Expensr: Refined personal financial planning

. Online exchange for the manufacturing industry

. PatientsLikeMe: Online community for patients to discuss and track medical conditions

. Raydiance: Lasers that cut without heating surrounding materials

. Vanu: Software that allows mobile networks to accommodate devices with different standards

. Virgin Charter: Online reservations for the air-taxi business

. Zink: Inkless printing

. Zipcar: Self-serve hourly car rental in urban neighborhoods