Google’s 10th anniversary seems to be driving the company towards more introspection and philanthropy. Today, Google announcedProject 10^100, through which the company is soliciting ideas for projects that have the potential to change the world and help as many people as possible. Google will select the 100 best ideas submitted to the project and then ask users to vote on which ones to fund. These votes will determine the 20 finalists and a group of judges will then choose the five best ideas from this pool. Google has committed $10 million to fund these ideas.

Google uses the Hippo Water Roller and First Mile Solutions as examples for projects it would be interested in funding. These projects provide innovative solutions to large problems – bringing water to rural communities in Africa and providing Internet access to remote, unconnected areas. Google is deliberately not setting any strict rules for submissions to Project 10^100, but the company does explain its selection criteria: reach, depth, attainability, efficiency, and longevity.

Google is definitely using its 10th anniversary to enhance the visibility of its philanthropic efforts. Google has lately been using its official blog to talk about its energy and health initiatives. Just yesterday, Google wrote about its Predict and Prevent initiative, a project that is looking at novel ways to detect the threat of a pandemic before it can turn into a crisis.

Submissions for Project 10^100 are due by October 20.

frederic lardinois