// Blog Archive
04 Feb / Oru Kayak. The folding Kayak
We’re a new company dedicated to unlocking the wonder and discovery of the great outdoors— even for city dwellers.
At Oru Kayak, we believe that spending time outdoors makes people happier, healthier, and more productive. Our products offer a way to explore and connect with the natural world—even when you live in a city. We hope your Oru Kayak journeys are as fun and fulfilling as ours have been.
Designer and founder Anton Willis grew up in rural Mendocino County, with easy access to rivers, lakes, and the ocean. In 2008, a move into a small San Francisco apartment forced his fiberglass kayak into storage. Inspired by an article on new advances in the art and science of origami, he sketched a few ideas for a folding kayak. Sketches turned into countless paper models, and over 20 full-scale prototypes. After user-testing on dozens of bays, lakes, rivers and oceans, Oru Kayaks are ready to explore the world.
Ardy Sobhani is a co-founder and business strategist with a strong background in business and startup operations. He has over ten years of experience helping companies set goals, achieve financial targets, and run operations.
The Almond, a router with a small touch screen that achieved significant success on Amazon thanks to a decent price point and excellent reviews, has a successor from parent company Securifi hitting Kickstarter soon. The Almond+comes with 802.11ac support, boasts a 2.8-inch touchscreen, and can be set up without even connecting to a PC. It’s the perfect router for a mobile-first generation, and the new version also builds in a smart-home hub that’s compatible with both Zigbee and Z-Wave standards.
The Almond+ includes a small and attractive case that can be wall-mounted easily. Home automation functions can be controlled either from the screen on the router itself or from companion iOS and Android apps, allowing you to connect to the router and access all your remote home management functions in the same place, even from a cellular connection. It’s a natural addition to a device that any home these days pretty much has anyway; the router is often a passive device that users install and then don’t think about again until it fails. But adding smart home features means it’ll actually contribute a lot more use value to a household.
Also it can be wall mounted or table mounted. In the wall mount position you can hide those annoying cables completely out of sight, thanks to its innovative recessed connector design. Surprisingly there isn’t a single other router that can do this today. Almond + is already pledging on Kickstarter and you can get a black one for only $99.
In the meantime you can get the Almond at the LFW Shop.
German design agency Biegert & Funk is set to release a watch like no other, one that tells the time in words. Introducing the QLOCKTWO W.
Based on their popular QLOCKTWO wall clocks, the QLOCKTWO W features a square face measuring 35 x 35 mm that contains a grid of 110 letters. Press the button on the right hand side of the watch and the relevant letters will light up to reveal the time in readable text.
Additional presses of the button will reveal the calendar day, and then the seconds. The watches are expected to retail for €550 (approx. US$704) each. In teh meantime you can buy the QLOCKTWO W Alarm clock and the QLOCKTWO W Wall clock from the LFW Shop.
The NanoLight, a new Kickstarter-funded 12-watt LED bulb, eschews the fancy-schmancy smart capabilities that are all the rage and instead focuses on groundbreaking energy savings.
The 100-watt replacement bulb is so efficient — it produces over 1600 lumens while consuming only 12 watts — that its creators are hailing it as the “the World’s Most Efficient Light Bulb.” And as for the price point? At $45, it isn’t all that shabby either.
The first thing you’ll notice about the NanoLight is its somewhat alien geometric form that’s decidedly “a bit funky” as SmartPlanet puts it. What you’re seeing is a printed circuit board (PCB) that’s been folded into a light bulb-ish shape and mounted with electrical components. It’s not the prettiest thing but that’s obviously besides the point.
The big deal here is that the NanoLight’s developers — a San Diego-based trio composed of Gimmy Chu, Christian Yan, and Tom Rodigner — have created a heat sink-free bulb (a rarity) that serves as a 100- or 75-watt replacement (again, a rarity in the world of LEDs) while offering the benefits of standard incandescent bulbs such as instant-on capabilities and omnidirectionality that aren’t normally found in LED or CFL bulbs. The lifespan of both the 10-watt NanoLight and the signature 12-watt model is between 25 and 30 years based on usage of 3 hours per day.
The Energy Seed LED halo shaped lamp uses the little remaining bits of juice left after the battery is otherwise unusable, and illuminates itself.
The design includes slots for the public to dispose of all shapes and sizes of commonly disposed batteries and scrounges just two volts to illuminate an LED. Most garbage batteries have just under this amount at their point of expiration, so two AAs combined for instance is usually enough to get the lamp lit.
Created by Sungwoo Park and Sunhee Kim the use of the Energy Seed means“Trashed batteries can be born again as a seed to blossom light.”
At the end of the day the batteries will lose all useful charge, they will again be waste, and need to be recycled properly. The Energy Tree does squeeze some useful life out of their toxic little bodies before the bitter end however!
Columbian artist Diana Beltran Herrera carefully sculpts incredibly detailed paper birds by hand, representing real and imagined species with bright (and sometimes glittery) plumage.
Though her creations are static sculptures, they seem to convey an incredible sense of movement and life. This is reflected in Herrerra’s choice of paper as a medium, which she uses for its sense of lightness and freedom.
She also frequently creates paper habitats for her birds, ranging from jungles to woodlands.
In developing nations, power outages or no access to an electrical grid means hospitals are left without lighting. Medical procedures are performed by kerosene lantern, flashlight, and in woefully underlit conditions. Michael O’Brien, from Sydney’s University of Technology, created an easy-to-ship and -assemble, hand-folded sheet metal and LED surgery lighting solution for developing countries. Michael experimented extensively with sheet metal patterns to arrive at a very simple solution that required no special tools to assemble, adjust or maintain the light.
The frame is made of a single sheet of metal. One material means one industrial process, which means that it’s ultra-cheap to produce at scale. Along with the LED components, it can be shipped in an envelope, making it easy to get to its destination. The frame is perforated to allow it to be folded into shape by hand, making it easy to install. O’Brien notes that this allows an opportunity for small businesses to grow around assembling the lights for use.
What’s interesting about this design is that as much attention was paid to the logistics chain as to the final product. After all, lighting in a hospital situation is already a solved problem. The real problem is getting lights to all the hospitals.
This Light is part of the series: Smart Designs for Social Good.
French designer Thibaut Malet created a set of hand-carved, limited edition wooden characters inspired by the iconic LEGO figure. Each of these twenty ‘Art Toys’ is unique and features a number on the bottom of its feet to let you know which one you have of the collection.
The 11cm toys are packaged in a stamped cardboard box with wood chippings. Malet was selling the wooden figures in his Etsy store, but they are now sold out.
- Graphic Design
- Industrial Design