Stuff that Looks good, Feels good and Works (sometimes)
“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works“ - Steve Jobs
A licensee of the Polaroid brand name has created the Z2300 Instant Digital Camera – a compact camera with built-in Zink printer. The Z2300 produces 2×3″ prints using the Zink ‘zero ink’ system that uses heat to control the development of full-colored images from layers of dye encapsulated in specially prepared paper. No details of sensor size or lens are available for the Z2300 but it appears not to offer a zoom, so it might be best thought of as a Zink printer with 10MP phone camera built in.
The Z2300 is distinguished from the existing, larger Z340 model by its use of the smaller 2×3″ format, rather than 3×4″. Like the Z340, the Z2300 can leave white borders around the image to imitate a classic Polaroid print. The 2×3″ Zink paper in the Z2300 will be available at a cost of around $15/£10 for 30 sheets. Adhesive-backed paper is also available.
Get yours at the LFW Shop and start taking mini instant pictures.
René Lee is a RISD industrial design BFA candidate who has designed some really nice solutions to a variety of problems, including Mbrace, that transforms a regular paper grocery bag act as a stand alone recycling receptacle with an economic use of materials.
Behind Lady Gaga’s provocative fashions — yes, even the dress made of beef — is an ad hoc circle of designers and advisors she calls the “Haus of Gaga.” Rivalation proposed a competition back in September that proposed Fashion Students from all around the world to venture into the “Haus of Gaga”
“She needs a new dress for a funeral and you are in charge of designing it,” reads the brief for the competition, adding that the funeral is for one of Lady Gaga’s heroes, “someone that has lived a full, rich life and is being put to rest in the presence of good friends and family. … How do you balance the delicacy of a funeral with Gaga’s outrageous fashion sense?”
48 designers from 17 different countries answered this proposal and the winners were announced last week. Check all the design projects at the Rivalation page.
Companies from Google to Comcast to Electric Imp are trying to connect home devices and appliances to the web, but the internet of things remains more of a complicated, distant dream than a reality. Spark Devices wants to start off simple, with one of the most used items in your house — the light bulb.
Spark Devices launched on Kickstarter with a working prototype of what it calls the Spark Socket. All a user needs to do to get their lights on the web is screw a regular light bulb into the Spark Socket and screw that into a regular light fixture. They can then control their lighting — on, off, and dimming — through an iOS or Android app, which opens up entirely new avenues for home lighting. Users can schedule their lights when they’re away, set them to slowly turn on in the morning, and even set them to flash when someone calls their phone.
“[The Spark Socket] was inspired by my dad, who’s deaf and uses lights for notification,” Founder Zach Supalla told Wired. “At first I wanted to solve a specific problem he has. Now that he uses a cellphone for text messaging, he’s very difficult to get a hold of when he’s at home and takes his phone out of his pocket. However, once I started working on it I realized that there was a lot of potential for broader uses by providing an open API.”
Backers can pre-order Spark Sockets for $60 apiece, and the company is trying to reach $250,000 on Kickstarter.
The Geneva Sound System Model XS is the world’s first portable audio system with true Hi-Fi sound. Inspired by the classic travel clock, it comes in a sturdy leather-like clamshell case that flips open to deliver rich and detailed sound. Closed, it’s a stylish accessory small enough to slip into any briefcase.
Never before has a Hi-Fi system been integrated into a case designed for a travel lifestyle. Geneva Sound System Model XS solves this problem with simplicity and elegance. It hides the speakers, amplifiers, radio, and alarm clock inside the case, covered in a choice of Geneva’s trademark red, white or black finishes.
Once opened, a compact yet powerful Hi-Fi system is revealed. The digital amplifier and stereo speakers play mid and high frequencies with absolute accuracy. The woofer is capable of producing robust bass response below 80Hz. The Model XS features an integrated digital FM tuner and stereo Bluetooth playback. Music streams wirelessly to the Model XS from any Bluetooth-enabled device, such as iPad, iPhone, and other smartphones and tablets. Other audio sources can be connected via the included 3.5 mm line-in cable. Advanced digital technology allows the Model XS to produce stunning and expansive stereo sound that belies its compact size.
The Geneva Sound System Model XS is not just another clock radio; it is a portable high-fidelity sound system! Get yours at the LFW Shop.
French artist Olivier Grossetête used three enormous helium balloons to float a rope bridge over a lake in Tatton Park, a historic estate in north-west England. Though visitors weren’t allowed to use the bridge, it would theoretically be strong enough to hold the weight of a person, according to Grossetête.”My artistic work tries to make alive the poetry and dreams within our everyday life,” added Grossetête.
Located in the park’s Japanese garden, the structure comprised a long rope bridge made of cedar wood held aloft by three helium-filled balloons. The ends of the bridge were left to trail in the water. Replacing the usual foundations and joints of a bridge with three balloons leads us to question our perceptions, the artist explained. ”My artistic work tries to make alive the poetry and dreams within our everyday life,” added Grossetête.
“Touch screen devices, such as smartphones, lack a suitable method for text input which can compete with mechanical keyboards,” Krautli is quoted as saying in a press release from Goldsmiths, University of London, where he is studying cognitive computing. “The Vibrative Virtual Keyboard aims to appease the frustration felt by smartphone users when faced with drafting lengthy e-mails or notes on a small onscreen keyboard.”
The phone picks up vibrations from his fingers as he taps on invisible keys on the table. Using an app called Sensor Monitor, which appears in the video below, Krauti can pick up and measure those vibrations using the iPhone’s accelerometer, a sensor built into the phone. A piece of software he created translates those vibrations – which are slightly different based on their proximity to the phone – into text on the screen. In the video demo, this does not happen seamlessly or quickly, but a spell checker picks up on the mistakes.
Lytro unveils amazing new editing and sharing tools, but what’s even more clever is their product development strategy.
It’s been less than a year since Lytro started shipping its remarkable light field camera, an entirely new type of camera based on the Stanford Ph.D. thesis of founder Ren Ng. But today, the company announced a set of new software tools that will allow users to take greater advantage of the “living images” produced by the camera, which has been so popular the young startup has had problems meeting demand.
If you’ve never used a Lytro camera before, here’s the basic gist. The rectangular device contains a more developed version of a camera Ng built as a PhD student, which used 100 small cameras to capture an image that could be focused after the fact. Snap a shot with the gadget, and the company’s desktop software allows you to choose what part of the image you want to focus on. By capturing the entire “light field,” or all light in a given environment, the camera produces a file that contains thousands of different versions of a single shot.
You can try out the Camera effect on the pictures below, click to focus on different objects and drag to change perspectives. (It may take a couple of seconds to load)
Originally developed for use in tanks and helicopters, Jawbone PRIME’s NoiseAssassin is a proprietary technology that eliminates background noise from mobile phone conversations. Jawbone is the only Bluetooth headset with a Voice Activity Sensor (VAS) that actually feels your speech, which helps Jawbone distinguish your voice from background noise. As a result, Jawbone offers better audio quality than any other headset on the market.
Design Functonality Functionally, the design has also been enhanced by a slight indication in the shield’s texture, a small tactile crease that indicates where the switch is located. The inside contours of the product follow your face in a perfectly comfortable manner, while new ergonomic earbuds have been refined to keep the Jawbone in place without an earloop for most wearers.
Get yours at the LFW Shop.
15 Nov / Fiat 500 Bellavista Concept
The Fiat 500 is beloved subject for many professional and amateur designers to express their creativity and skills. The 500 concept studies bundled under the Bellavista moniker that you see pictured here are the work of the students from the Polytechnic of Milan and Madeindreams.
The students developed two similar prototypes based on the Abarth 500. The first is a two-seater roadster model with a regular windshield, beefed up wheel arches, a double canopy behind the headrests and re-styled front and rear bumpers.
The second model we see in these designs is a more radical and sporty speedster-like variant with a cut-off windshield and small side windows. The rest of the car looks like it keeps the same bloated bodywork as the Roadster.
Unlike an old-fashioned photo booth, you will only get one “photo.” This might not be the best way to capture a proposal, for example. You and your soon-to-be-fiance would just be standing there as you wait the 15 minutes it takes for the 3D scanner to capture your image. The 3D prints start at about $265 for a 4-inch figurine and go up to $530 for an 8-inch mini-you.
You’ll need to hurry and make a reservation if you want to get in on the action. The photo booth opens as a pop-up store in Tokyo on November 24 and will only be available until the middle of January.
This leads me to wonder what you would do with a little version of yourself. You could finally battle your He-Man action figures on their own turf. You could paint it gold and make a personalized trophy statuette. Just be careful that your perfect replica voodoo doll doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.
14 Nov / Sahn Classic Urban Helmet
Sahn is a new helmet manufacturer out of Vancouver BC, with the pictured $140 Classic being their first model available on the market. It uses a hard ABS shell bonded to a conventional EPS foam liner with a smooth surface and integrated sun visor.
While there aren’t any vents, there are internal air channels to help move air across your noggin to some degree. The lack of vents also helps to keep the smooth surface, which arguably creates a more protective helmet in the event of a crash as there aren’t any protrusions to potentially snag the ground in a slide and cause further injury.
The helmet is available in three sizes all incorporating a robust, Swiss designed ratcheting fit system.
- Graphic Design
- Industrial Design