You can't eat a pedicure, but for the same amount of money you can provide an AIDS-orphaned girl in Uganda with school materials for one year.
That is (one of) the premise(s) of a site called Tripgiver.org, which was recently created by a team of students in the class at the Stanford d. School that I described in my previous post.
Tripgiver combines a number of interesting elements. The over-arching idea is that you are going on a trip to Africa. You want to show your friends and family where you are going and enable them to support projects in areas you visit.
First, it shows what impact your friends can have in one of the countries you are visiting for the same amount they would spend on everyday items such as books, pizza, or socks. The traveller selects one or more options from a menu.
Then, it allows the user to create a map of her travels using Google Maps.
Third, it allows the traveller to create a widget that combines these elements for posting in a blog or website. It looks like this:
This prototype is rough around the edges, and it may have too many things going on, but it does demonstrate some compelling ideas, a couple of which we are including in our next release.