I just found a fairly interesting project: ChipIn
Not only do I think that it could be a good way of pulling in funds for certain projects, but an excellent way of keeping track of how complete a certain project is. The thing that I find most interesting... Is that ChipIn take zero commission, the funds are sent directly to your PayPal account -- they've not even a single ad in place, yet they're offering such a brilliant service.
Here is a sample page: ChipIn: Laptop -- I might try and find some funds to purchase this. My current laptop is spewing out BSoD's, "internal hard disk not found" messages upon cold boot, the keyboard stops working (i.e. I type "a" and "." appears etc.) whenever I paste something, it takes an average of 15 minutes to boot and cannot go on stand by/restart, nor can it shut down (unforcefully). It's been like this ever since I got it, and has only been getting worse. This is reaching the "tipping point."