Kickstarter is a brilliant idea for creatives needing funding for projects. It's a funding platform for artists, designers, filmmakers, musicians, journalists, inventors, bloggers, etc. It works much like fundraising sites you may have used if you've ever had to raise money for events for non profit organizations. A few years ago I used a similar one for Team In Training.

You set up a page stating your mission and the need for funding. On this page you state the monetary goal, and a form allows users to pledge donations at different levels of support. The charges are made via Amazon payments. The project gets 100% of all proceeds minus Amazon's fee for credit card processing.

A filmmaker I recently became acquainted with is shooting a documentary film and set up a fund raising page for the project with levels of support that include special bonuses as an incentive, from tickets to the premiere to inclusion in film credits. I remember Jill Sobule also did something similar to this a few years ago to fund an album, giving people bonus gifts and liner note credit for support.

Seems like a great way for artists to empower themselves by raising funds through peers and fans without the hassle of going to banks or finding angel investors and VCs. I would bet some investors will be watching this space if web app designer/developers start using it.