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- 10/03/18--10:59: _Reader Submitted: T...
- 10/04/18--07:36: _Tools & Craft #...
- 10/04/18--07:36: _Steven M. Johnson's...
- 10/04/18--07:36: _High-End Portable B...
- 10/04/18--07:36: _In Praise of Phase ...
- 10/04/18--07:36: _A Smart Design for ...
- 10/04/18--09:19: _Modelmaking Basics:...
- 10/04/18--12:12: _Project Planning is...
- 10/05/18--12:13: _This Leaf-Shaped Th...
- 10/05/18--12:13: _Design Job: Lems Sh...
- 10/05/18--12:13: _Emily Brooke Upgrad...
- 10/05/18--12:13: _Car Design Fans: Ch...
- 10/05/18--16:33: _Sprout Studios and ...
- 10/08/18--10:24: _Pro Tip: How to Eas...
- 10/08/18--10:24: _Hitachi Power Tools...
- 10/08/18--10:24: _Design Job: Develop...
- 10/08/18--10:24: _Muji's Shared Apart...
- 10/08/18--10:24: _Reader Submitted: T...
- 10/09/18--10:01: _Why Tesla's Model 3...
- 10/09/18--10:01: _Design Job: Playwor...
- 10/04/18--07:36: Tools & Craft #109: Testing a Knockoff Tool vs. the Real Deal
- 10/04/18--07:36: A Smart Design for Sturdy Space-Saving Sawhorses
- 10/04/18--12:12: Project Planning is the Key to Creative Success
- 10/05/18--12:13: This Leaf-Shaped Thermometer Changes Color With the Temperature
- 10/05/18--12:13: Emily Brooke Upgrades Laser Projection Bicycle Safety Design
The struggles of brushing a child's teeth are all too familiar for many parents. With the combined power of reading and giggles, Ticklish Teeth tackles tooth brushing in a whole new way. Ticklish Teeth is a two-pronged approach to improving kid's oral care that incorporates a motion-sensitive giggling toothbrush and an illustrated, amusing picture book. Together, the book and brush delight and distract children all the way to better oral care.
When thinking of toddlers, the first thing that springs to mind probably isn’t dental problems, but the reality is that 1 in 5 kids has dental issues that can cause problems in developing adult teeth. Combine that with a tedious (unexciting, boring, not-at-all-fun) daily routine, and you may have a challenge on your hands.
Toddlers are not great at doing daunting tasks like brushing their teeth, and they struggle with the manual dexterity required to brush well. On top of that, children do not understand why good oral care is important—the impact horizon is too far off.
The design challenge was to:
1. Re-frame tooth-brushing into an activity kids love
2. Educate kids about good oral care and how to look after their teeth
3. Incentivize kids' brushing to improve efficacy and biomechanical efficiency
What should tools cost? When does a cheap price represent a bargain -- and when is it only a fool's bargain?
The price of metal is pretty much the same around the world. So except for labor intensive products such as clothing, the main price advantage many Asian imports have is newer manufacturing ability, lower development costs, and a cheaper design.
Newer machinery gives you an advantage because if you are building a new product line to make something, you buy the latest equipment in the competitive markets of Asia, and the equipment might even cost less than it does in America or Europe.
Lower development costs are pretty obvious. While some Chinese companies do innovate, the faster route of a cost-reduced product is to start by copying the original product. At the very least, you saved development costs and probably marketing costs as well.
A cheaper design can knock off a proven winner and use thinner, cheaper, and less accurately machined materials -- and save the manufacturer a boatload.
Why do I care? I get frustrated when generalizations about a knockoff product affect the expectations of the original USA made product. "Why should I pay for your overpriced product when I can buy X for much less?" the customer thinks. That original product may perform much better than the knockoff -- and even demonstrably save time and money -- but the knockoff can redefine the worth of the product.
I recently bought a knockoff bar clamp from Harbor Freight to test it against the Universal Bar Clamp made by Dubuque that we have been selling for over a decade. What are the differences between the original clamp and its knockoff? The results were striking.
Metal thickness: the wall thickness of the original aluminum tubing is almost double the thickness. This means the original is much stronger and not prone to flexing. The knockoff is not nearly as strong as the original, and it flexes if you bare down. All the casting of the original are heavier and better finished than the knockoff.
Length: Both clamps are sold as 24" clamps, but this ostensibly straightforward number means different things for these different products. For the Universal clamp, 24" means you can clamp something 24" wide. The knockoff, on the other hand, has a maximum clamping distance of 20" and another 4" that do nothing. Beware the "overall length" measurement - a bait-and-switch abuse, in my view and a big deal.
Overall fit and finish: The screw on the knockoff is drilled at an angle not straight on. Very annoying. The original has deeply punched slots for a wide range of adaptability and solid engagement. The knockoff has half the slots, which are barely punched in.
The import costs about $10; the Made in USA original costs $26.
I am not categorically knocking cheap tools. I would much rather you do woodworking with the equipment you can afford, even if it's more work, than not do anything at all. That would really suck. But it's bizarre to read an article in the woodworking press that shows a style of clamp with a "how to fix it" hack that unintentionally by omission tars all clamps of that style with the same brush. I would have been much happier if the article mentioned that the flex in the clamps they were using aren't typical of all the aluminum bar clamps you can buy -- just the low end ones in the article.
This "Tools & Craft" section is provided courtesy of Joel Moskowitz, founder of Tools for Working Wood, the Brooklyn-based catalog retailer of everything from hand tools to Festool; check out their online shop here. Joel also founded Gramercy Tools, the award-winning boutique manufacturer of hand tools made the old-fashioned way: Built to work and built to last.
Apparently, well-heeled patrons of the Johnnie Walker House in Singapore--an invitation-only Scotch paradise--can "tap the expertise of a master blender flown in from Scotland, who can create a signature blend to suit their tastes." This master blender shows up with several cases containing dozens of high-end booze ingredients. Though his cargo is precious, this is a bit of a theatrical production, so he can't just throw the bottles into a Pelican case; a more elegant presentation is required. Thus JW hired UK-based Method Studio to create these Master Blender's Trunks:
According to The Peak Magazine:
[The custom blending session is] so exclusive that you can only be invited to take part, and the price of blending your own whisky starts at $260,000, which gets you 50 standard 750ml bottles. Exotic blends, special bottles and customised packaging cost more.
Held in either Singapore or Scotland – your choice – these sessions involve Diageo's Johnnie Walker master blender, Jim Beveridge, conducting an elaborate tasting of up to 40 different whisky samples. After each round of tasting, Beveridge alters the formula in an attempt to understand the clients' palates, and to eventually craft a single Signature Blend that everyone can agree on.
Product Development projects include a lot of uncertainty. Specific design decisions and tradeoffs will be made throughout the development effort that will define the look and feel of a product, the feature set, and the production cost. In early development, there is also significant uncertainty around the amount of time, effort, and money required to fully develop the product. While this presents a challenge to leadership teams, it is important to recognize this uncertainty as inherent to new product development projects: unless a product is well defined, it is impossible to accurately project development costs and production costs. And to define the product, some level of development work must first be executed.
When new clients talk with us for the first time, they often ask two questions: "How much will this cost?" and "How long will it take?". The answer is usually "It depends", but that is typically not acceptable for business decision makers. An initial body of work called "Phase 0" develops the answers to these fundamental questions and frames the broader development project.
When the leaders at BlackBox VR engaged SGW Designworks, they had a clear vision for the user experience they wanted to deliver. Their goal was to re-define the gym experience by creating a virtual-reality based exercise experience. The BlackBox team envisioned developing an entire workout room, with handles in all walls, in the floor, and in the ceiling, all controlled by inputs from the VR system, that users would interact during the workout. The team was anxious to find out how long development would take, and what development would cost.
Through initial exploratory discussions, it became clear that the vision for the system was based on a lot of assumptions that needed to be examined. For example, while the BlackBox team had envisioned over a dozen interface handles, they were open to using fewer, if the user experience was not diminished. But this decision would drive overall system complexity upward or downward significantly. So, this decision would have a huge impact on development time and cost. Producing an estimate for the entire project without this decision being made first would have resulted in an inaccurate quote. Recognizing that a lot of uncertainty around the system existed, we proposed a Phase 0 project.
The first step in the Phase 0 project was to develop a product specification. In two sessions with Black Box VR, the design team developed the product specification document which is used to bracket all subsequent development effort. The spec document captures all critical constraints, requirements, and inputs. Development budget and target product price can be important inputs to the specification, because both things can drive design and project decisions. Product specifications are living documents and will be updated or revised throughout development.
Working through the product specification exercise identified several critical features and characteristics that represented significant development risks. These features and technologies would need to be examined first, as decisions here would be critical to defining future development efforts and scope.
Feasibility Study and Options Analysis
Our initial efforts focused on clarifying the technology options related to the load generation element. If existing technology could not deliver the needed functionality, the product was likely not feasible. The development team identified eight possible approaches, using existing technology. Each had advantages and disadvantages, which were captured in a decision matrix. The team presented the options and recommendations to the client, and a core technology was selected.
Based on the chosen core technology, concept-level work on the most critical system element began. In Phase 0, the concept work is intended to provide a way to think through and debate different configurations with the client. Through quick concept iteration, an initial configuration for a sub-system prototype was defined.
Phase 1 Development Plan
With agreement between the client and the development team on the core technology of the product and a conceptual configuration for the first subsystem prototype, Phase 1 work could be scoped and estimated. It is typical for the findings and decisions made in any phase of work to drive the scope end cost of all subsequent phases. Therefore, it is best to define an imminent project phase based on the results of the prior phase, and not on assumptions.
Twelve months, and five phases later, BlackBox VR took a fully functional late stage prototype, designed and built by SGW Designworks, to the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas to showcase the technology. BlackBox was awarded a prestigious CES Innovation Award and was awarded Best Startup of CES 2018 by Engadget. Just months after that, steady state production of the system began.
Typically, product decisions and research findings that happen in early development have a drastic impact on subsequent development work. In the BlackBox example, decisions made in Phase 0 around the core technology would drive the scope and cost of all subsequent development work. Defining development cost prior to Phase 0 would have been impossible. Even on smaller projects, critical design decisions made in early development have an extreme impact on the overall development effort. The best approach is to scope each phase at the end of the prior phase, with an overall development scope/budget in mind. This ensures that development plans adapt to design decision and findings throughout the process, and stay on track with the overall need and resource level. Deep and frequent communication with client companies through development phases helps ensure that the development work is aligned to business needs, and unwanted surprises are minimized.
Industrial Design 101: From a UX perspective, you want useful things to be around when you need them, and to disappear when you don't need them. Occasional-use items that are bulky ought be designed to fold up or break down. The plastic folding sawhorses in my shop are among the most useful items in there.
I wouldn't have paid for them, however; they were given to me as a gift. Sawhorses are basic enough that you should always DIY rather than buy. You can make a simple pair of folding sawhorses with butt hinges, but if you don't have any handy, J.G. Dean's breakdown design is the way to go. His sawhorses are cheap, useful, quick to build and take up a minimum of space.
"I can't claim to have originated this design for sawhorses," Dean writes in his Instructable. "I've seen similar ones in workshops and on construction sites for many years, but I believe I've made some improvements in their construction and an modification/addition that makes them more useful."
These sawhorses are made of inexpensive 2x4 construction grade lumber except for some scrap plywood, and some screws. They set up and knock down quickly and easily to take up a minimum of space, and provide almost as much support for sheet goods as a large work table.
The entire system can easily be built with a table saw in under an hour for about $30 once the cutting jig is made out of some scrap wood. I based all the dimensions here on sawhorses that are 30" tall and 48" wide, which are both taller and wider than most commercial sawhorses.
Since the top edges of the cross pieces are often cut into during use, I've found that it's better to make them easily replaceable.With these, the top surfaces of both sawhorses can be replaced in minutes for generally about $5-6.
Check out Dean's full Instructable here.
Industrial designer Eric Strebel's video on Cardboard Modeling Basics drew a lot of eyeballs last week. This week he's back with an advanced Part 2, where he covers how to cut perfect circles into cardboard/matboard/chipboard using a nifty tool, shaping and bending tricks, how to paint the stuff to get a nice finish and more:
Starting a new creative project is always exciting—it's a fresh start, a blank slate, and an opportunity to create something really impactful! It's easy to get swept away by those feelings and dive right into the project, but that's not always the best move for the ultimate success of your project. How many times has this happened to you— you're working on a project, everything's going smoothly, and then all of a sudden, you realize you've backed yourself into a creative corner, so to speak.
Once you get stuck on a project, getting unstuck can be really difficult—sometimes so difficult that it's better just to scrap the project and start afresh. Project planning is the key to keeping your creative ventures on track, and in this article we'll cover everything you need to be successful, including:
-Resources for creating a project planning document
-How to plan a creative project
-Ways to jumpstart your creativity in case of an inspiration emergency
Online Content Collaboration Tools for Planning Your Next Project
Before we get too far along—you can't just keep your project plan in your head, so how are you going to record it?
Of course, you have plenty of options—like good ol' fashioned pen and paper and word processors to name a few. However, the creative process often involves some degree of collaboration. Whether your creative project is a collaborative one from the beginning or you simply anticipate sharing your work to get feedback later on, choosing an online content collaboration platform makes sharing your plan a breeze.
When you select a platform, it pays to shop around. Compare features to make sure your online content collaboration platform has everything you'll need. Some even come with awesome features like a built-in project planning template, so make sure you do your research!
The Anatomy of an Awesome Project Plan
Every great story has a good beginning, solid middle, and satisfying ending. Similarly, there certain elements that every great project plan should include. To keep your creative project on track, your project plan should include:
- Summary box
- To-do list
Depending on the nature of your creative work, your project planning document can get pretty long. To keep you (and anyone else you might invite to work on your creative project) sane, include a table at the top of the document summarizing the most basic information about the project. This way rather than digging through pages of detailed work to find the piece of information you need, you will know exactly where to find it.
A summary box should include:
- Description. In 2-3 sentences, what is your project all about? What are you trying to accomplish?
- Status. How far along is your project? Whether you are still in the planning stages, working through the phases in your plan, or done, make sure you keep a brief status in the summary box for reference.
- Team. If you're collaborating with other creators, working with business professionals to get your work out into the world, or otherwise working with different people, create a list. Defining clear roles in the summary box will help keep you organized and avoid confusion later on, especially if you are working with a big team.
- Related. As your project evolves, it will definitely include more files than just your project planning doc. This is another reason why using an online content collaboration platform is a great idea—you can simply link to related documents in this section for easy access.
If you don't give yourself deadlines and commit to keeping them, it can be easy for your project tasks to fall into a never-ending cycle of "I'll get to it eventually." Keep your project from getting stuck by setting the kickoff date, milestones dates, and the deadline at the beginning of your creative endeavor.
Make sure when assigning dates you give yourself ample time. Unexpected things happen, so if at all possible, make sure you give yourself a little wiggle room.
That being said, it's also possible you will need to adjust your timeline later on as your project grows and evolves, and that's okay! However, giving yourself a timeline is a great way to keep yourself accountable and keep your project from losing steam.
This is the fun part of the project planning document because it's so open-ended. This section can include notes from brainstorming sessions, images and videos that inspired your project, tables, lists, and anything else that might be helpful. Include as much detail as you can to capture your vision for the project.
To Do List
This one's pretty self-explanatory. After you have decided what the milestones of your project are and clarified what you want the project to look like when it's done, it's time to break the project down into small, actionable to-dos. If you're working with a team, it's also helpful to include who is responsible for completing each to-do and making sure to-dos are organized in the order that they must be completed.
How to Get Out of a Creative Slump
No matter how well you capture your idea in a project planning document, it is sometimes difficult to keep the momentum of a project going. If you're feeling uninspired, take a little bit of time to refresh your creativity.
Try these strategies for boosting your creativity and getting back on track:
- Take care of yourself. Creative projects are emotionally and physically draining. If you're having trouble keeping the ball rolling, it may be because you need to step back and decompress before moving forward.
- Talk to people outside of the project. Sometimes all you need to get a creative project back on track is a set of fresh eyes on the problem. Grab a coffee with someone who isn't involved in the project—whether you speak directly about your work or not, sharing ideas with someone else can help give you a new perspective.
- Make a small change. If something doesn't feel right about the direction your creative project is taking, there's nothing wrong with changing the plan! Before considering a total overhaul, try making a few small changes and seeing how they affect the project. You might just find the solution you didn't know you were looking for.
Jumping into a creative project is equal parts exciting and daunting, but when you create a solid project plan, it gets much easier to manage. How do you keep your creative projects organized? Let us know in the comments section below!
This is a sponsored post for Dropbox. All opinions are my own.
Designer Hideyuki Kumagai created this Leaf Thermometer, which uses an undisclosed type of materials science to pull off a neat trick: It changes color with the temperature.
When it's a comfortable 20 to 25 degrees Celsius (68 to 77 Fahrenheit), the Leaf is green; hotter than 25 degrees it turns a wilting yellow, and when it dips below 20, an ailing brown.
Made from paper, the Leaf Thermometer comes in two sizes: A five-pack of Large leaves (65mm x 167mm, 2.6" x 6.6") or an 8-pack of Small leaves (43mm x 112mm, 1.7" x 4.4"). Adhesive on the back allows you to stick it to a window or on a co-worker's back.
Lems shoes is a young company located in beautiful Boulder, Colorado. We specialize in minimalist and forward thinking footwear for the outdoors. We were founded in 2011 and are privately owned and operated with a small team of just 9 people. Our first shoes were inspired byView the full design job here
It's been six years since entrepreneur Emily Brooke launched the Blaze, a bicycle-mounted laser projection safety system that she designed while still a student. In the time since she's turned its success into Beryl, a 30-person company based in London.
Technology moves fast in six years, and now Beryl has evolved the Blaze into the Laserlight Core, a smaller, lighter and brighter version:
The Laserlight Core has already sailed across the finish line, garnering $56,406 in pledges on a $50,000 goal. There's still 32 days left to pledge, and at press time there were still a few Early Bird specials left at $69 a pop (it's expected to retail for around $95).
Later this month at the Porsche Experience Center in Atlanta, Sotheby's will be holding a massive Porsche 70th Anniversary Auction. There are a multitude of rare Porsches going up on the block, including the controversial slant-nose 911, misfires like the 914, classics like the 356 Speedster--in both derelict and pristine conditions--and even a 1956 training chassis that Porsche used to teach mechanics.
If all of these Porsche gems were published in a book, it would be horrendously expensive and difficult to attain. Thankfully, Sotheby's has made this treasure trove of images available as a free, downloadable PDF. It's a whopping 372 pages, and you can snag it here.
Each year, technology company Draper hosts an exhibition called Engineering Possibilities at their HQ in Cambridge, MA where some of their work is put on display for both industry professionals and the general public to see. Visitors are invited to participate in interactive demonstrations, including VR experiences, "drone" flying and more. EP18 also offers the unique opportunity to engage with Draper engineers regarding breakthrough technologies that, if successful, will improve lives, change industries and push the boundaries of what is possible.
This year's theme prompted Draper scientists and engineers to dream up solutions that are able to operate under very challenging environments. One of Draper's missions for this year was to spread awareness of industrial design within the company, which is heavily dominated by scientists and engineers. To accomplish this mission, they worked closely with Boston-based industrial design studio Sprout Studios to design three products that are currently on display at the exhibition, which runs until October 6th.
The collaboration between Draper and Sprout Studios resulted in three very different project proposals—a sensor that is able to detect microplastics in the ocean, a device that speeds up the cell-based immunotherapy process, and a milk cooling system that operates using of-grid power sources. Each project aims to make a specific task easier and more streamlined, and they collectively offer a sneak peek into the future of technology.
An Aquatic Sensor that Detects and Analyzes Microplastics
10-15% of all plastics in the ocean are microplastics, which is a scary thought when considering the healthiness of our environment. Draper is currently developing a sensor that works with the ocean to see microplastics, count and identify them so that we can have a better understanding of the sources of the microplastics in our oceans.
Sprout Studios was asked to envision what the body of the sensor could look like. The goal would be to have a whole fleet of these sensors working at once with a single charging buoy nearby that's equipped with satellite to collect information. As the sensor moves through the ocean, it sucks up water and microplastics through the front, keeps the microplastics in that front body area and filters the water out through the propellors.
Speeding Up Cell-Based Immunotherapy
This compact medical device makes the cell-based immunotherapy process exponentially faster and more readily available to hospitals. Patients that need to be treated with cell-based immunotherapy are typically very at risk patients (think cancer or stem cell transplants) that need to be treated as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, the current treatment process requires cells to travel across the country multiple times since there's no one device that can handle all of the necessary steps. This type of transferring of the cells often results in more damaged cells, which certainly doesn't help the treatment process.
When designing this device, Draper provided Sprout with a list of requirements to ensure that all of the steps in the cell-based immunotherapy process would be taken into consideration. Draper designed all of the tech inside of the removable cartridge, and Sprout's job was to then find a way to house this tech. Sprout's team designed and prototyped the above option, which includes an insert housing a shelf for each step in the process. There's typically a ton of waste when using this process, but with this solution, only the removable cartridge will need to be replaced after each use. The science behind the device is extremely complex, so for EP18, Draper created a VR experience for attendees that walks you through the process from a cell's perspective.
A Mobile Cooling System for Developing Countries
We often take our refrigerators for granted and forget they are a luxury. In many countries, lack of access to a power grid eliminates the option to keep perishables cool all-together. Draper recently developed cooling technology that is able to keep milk cool by running off of what is essentially the equivalent of a cellphone battery (which means it is able to run from off-grid power sources). Draper then brought Sprout Studios in to imagine what their dream project with the technology could look and act like. Sprout worked directly with Sheila Hemami, Draper's Director of Strategic Technical Opportunities, to figure out exactly what developing countries actually need.
The outcome is the above mobile cooling system, which is designed specifically for dairy farmers that need to transport their milk long distances. The removable top unit is the actual cooling unit. Since water is a much more efficient heat transfer substance than air, this section uses both water and milk. By putting milk on one side and water on the other, the cooling technology is able to strip out the heat from the milk and transfer it to the water, leaving just cool milk behind. The leftover water can be used for other purposes, such as cleaning.
See these projects and more in person at EP18! The exhibition is open to the public until tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 555 Technology Square in Cambridge, MA.
Whether you're remodeling your home or performing client work in their space, there may come a time when you need to place something on one side of a wall, yet must feed or cut it from the other side of the wall. (Think of wiring that you'd like to precisely line up with an electronic component, or vents for an appliance.) You can try measuring one side of the wall, then walking around to mark the measurement on the other side, but that can be problematic when going from inside to outside, or if there is a level change that alters your reference point (i.e. a room on one side, a staircase on the other).
Here an experienced carpenter shows you the trick he learned from his mentor to transfer a measurement from one side of a wall to the other quickly and flawlessly:
North Americans, the next time you pass the power tool aisle of your local Lowes, you may notice something surprising: Tools in familiar Hitachi green or silver will no longer say "Hitachi," but "Metabo"—complete with the latter brand's accurate font. (After "Metabo," you'll notice a small block that says "HPT.")
The transition started last month with Hitachi's MultiVolt cordless tools, and the rest of Hitachi's tools will be rebranded after December. The question is, why? The answer is pretty dumb, and first we have to give you some background info:
- Hitachi Koki was the power tools subsidiary formerly owned by Hitachi Ltd. in Japan
- In 2016 Hitachi Koki bought Metabo, the German power tool brand
- In 2017 Hitachi Koki itself was purchased from Hitachi Ltd. by KKR, Henry Kravis' investment firm
- Following the buyout, since Hitachi Koki was no longer owned by Hitachi Ltd., the brass (read: KKR) decided to change the name to Koki Holdings Co.
In short, I think KKR is making a dumb move. While it's true that Hitachi the power tool company no longer has anything to do with Hitachi the conglomerate, the former still has a decent reputation and more importantly, brand awareness among consumers. I'm not sure your average Joe even knows Metabo, which is a more trades-based tool company, like Hilti.
Secondly, if KKR was combining Hitachi and Metabo, the name switch might make sense. But they've announced that Hitachi and Metabo will remain separate companies, whose tools will still have entirely different designs with no compatibility nor interchangeability. Yet the logos will be identical, except for that inverse "HPT" after "Metabo" on the formerly-known-as-Hitachi tools.
"At a glance," the company writes, "customers will easily understand that this is the same brand just under the new name, Metabo HPT." I disagree, I don't think they will easily understand.
In any case, the good news is that if you own any Hitachi power tools, your warranties will still be honored, though you'll be bringing them to service centers labeled "Metabo HPT."
Imagine the future you could help us build. Teamwork, not just tech work. We are tech futurists and business geniuses. Together, we solve problems to make daily life easier. We are looking for a few more great minds to join our team as we continueView the full design job here
For Beijing Design Week, Muji presented an apartment prototype at the House Vision exhibition. Designed by Japanese architect Go Hasegawa, the concept is hypothetically intended to house four Muji employees at their Shanghai office; in other words, it's not a family dwelling, but something that four individuals with privacy needs are intended to share.
That's factor one. Factor two is that many of Shanghai's residential buildings, in which this concept would theoretically be constructed, have a plurality of odd 4-meter-tall spaces on the upper floors. These airy spaces are rather taller than proper one-story spaces, yet not tall enough to create a proper second level.
To deal with these two things, Hasegawa opted to have the bulk of the space devoted to a communal kitchen/living area...
...with something like glorified lofted beds taking up the dead air above and stretching out from a central core. The four elevated wood-clad, cave-like structures each hold a bed and storage units for personal effects.
In keeping with both the cantilever theme and Muji's minimalist style, a plank of wood protruding horizontally from this bedroom wall can be used as a small desk, if you sit on the floor and dangle your legs over the doorway. I take this to mean each of the bedrooms has their own door and staircase, though admittedly it's not clear from the photos.
Also not clear is if the bedroom-caves are open-ended, or sealed off with a large piece of glass. They appear open-ended to me. That might make for some exciting episodes when you wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom.
One interesting detail, as seen in the shot below, is that the shelves in at least one of the bedrooms do not have any rear surface--they're open-air. I can't deny that lends the room an airy feel, but if I lived there the floor below would probably be littered with my shattered belongings.
TORTUGA is reformulating furniture to reflect how we live today—as people who move more frequently than ever, and value flexibility, modularity and timeless design.There are countless ways to use our shelving as an unexpected furniture alternative, making it the perfect design solution for the tiny home dweller, minimalist, or homemaker on a budget.Brackets and Hardwood Shelves are bought additively, allowing you to customize a shelving system based on your personal space—one piece at a time.Our launch collection re-examines the modest shelf bracket asking, can utility look like sculpture or jewelry? By drawing on timeless geometry and polished finishes, we believe it absolutely can.
The NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) has discovered, through their testing, what the safest car ever built is with regards to crashes: Tesla's 2018 Model 3. It aced every single category and subcategory with five-star ratings, displacing its stablemates, the Model S and Model X. The three models now occupy the first, second and third positions on the list for having "the lowest probability of injury of all cars the safety agency has ever tested," according to Tesla.
Here are three examples of how the Model 3's design contributes greatly to the safety of occupants in different types of impacts:
What makes Model 3 safe? In addition to its near 50/50 weight distribution, Model 3 was also designed with an extremely low polar moment of inertia, which means that its heaviest components are located closer to the car's center of gravity. Even though Model 3 has no engine, its performance is similar to what's described as a "mid-engine car" due to its centered battery pack (the heaviest component of the car) and the fact that Model 3's rear motor is placed slightly in front of the rear axle rather than behind it. Not only does this architecture add to the overall agility and handling of the car, it also improves the capability of stability control by minimizing rotational kinetic energy.
Like Model S and Model X, Model 3 benefits from its all-electric architecture and powertrain design, which consists of a strong, rigid passenger compartment, fortified battery pack, and overall low center of gravity. These safety fundamentals help to prevent intrusion into the cabin and battery modules, reduce rollover risk, and distribute crash forces systematically away from the cabin – all while providing the foundation for our superior front crumple zone that is optimized to absorb energy and crush more efficiently. Here, you can see how the orange internal combustion engine block is thrust towards the cabin during a frontal impact test:
In pole impact crashes, in which a narrow obstruction impacts the car between the main crash rails, energy-absorbing lateral and diagonal beam structures work to mitigate the impact. This includes a high-strength aluminum bumper beam, a sway bar placed low and forward in the front of the car, cross-members at the front of the steel subframe that are connected to the main crash rails, and additional diagonal beams in the subframe that distribute energy back to the crash rails when they aren't directly impacted. An ultra-high strength martensitic steel beam is also attached to the top of the front suspension to further absorb crash energy from severe impacts, and the rear part of the subframe is shaped like a "U" and buckles down when impacted. These structures continue to be effective even when a front motor is added for Model 3 Dual-Motor All-Wheel Drive, due to the fact that the subframe is designed to pull the nose of the motor down and out of the way.
Model 3 also has the lowest intrusion from side pole impact of any vehicle tested by NHTSA. Unlike frontal crashes, there is little room for crumple zone in a side impact, so we patented our own pillar structures and side sills to absorb as much energy as possible in a very short distance. These structures work alongside the vehicle's rigid body and fortified battery architecture to further reduce and prevent compartment intrusion. With less intrusion into the cabin, our side airbags have more space to inflate and cushion the occupants inside.
Are you an Industrial Designer that believes that play has the power to change the world? JR Product Designer Are you a person with a passion for designing a unique play experience for all ages? If so, Playworld, a division ofView the full design job here