Archive for the 'design' Category

Business Week’s Cutting Edge Designers

June 14, 2007


Business week has a special section on Cutting Edge Designers; about the innovation, discovery and process of design. In particular, Pushing the Boundaries of Design and their accompanying slide-show, Thinking Outside the Design Box, are worth perusing for the design inclined.

Business Week’s coverage points out the importance of design and innovation as a foundation for business strategy and opportunity. This has never been more true than it is today. A great example is the RD4 chair (pictured above), a chair made completely out of melted plastic bottles. It satisfies a growing market in a number of different and exciting ways.

Check out all of Business Weeks coverage for the full report.

– chris


DIY Backyard LCD Projector

June 8, 2007

DIY Projector

Popular Science recently featured a very sexy do-it-yourself backyard theater. Roll this guy out of the garage and you’ll be watching backyard movies in minutes. The rig should only cost you about $400 using new parts and it’ll be cheaper if you scour ebay.

You’re going to need to find someone with some mechanical skill to help put this guy together. Apparently taking apart LCDs is not for the faint of heart.

Outide Project

Weare definitely going to be making one of these in the next couple of weeks, I’ll be sure to spread the word on how things go.

Read more about the project at Popular Science. If you’re ready to proceed just download the instructions and get started.

Happy screening!

– chris

(via Gizmodo)

See Yourself in 3rd Person

June 5, 2007

Avatar Machine

Marc Owens, a Design Product student at the Royal College of Art, has created a hilarious and amazing piece of ‘apparel’.  Owens has fashioned what he calls The Avatar Machine, a suit which allows the user the incredible ability to bulk up and live their life in 3rd person, if only for a fifteen minute period.

Owens created a back-mounted tripod with a camera, that broadcasts to a screen that fills the vision of the wearer. He was inspired by the 3rd person experience often associated with video games. There is a phenomenal short film here, aching to be made. Think about how self reflexive it could be: the audience of the film, watching the character within the film watching themselves. With a plot and some effort it could even be interesting!

The hipsters at we make money not art conducted a interesting interview with Owens about his first experience with others using the machine., check it out.

After a few minutes, users began to gain confidence not only with faster and more fluid movement, but also began to mimic the types on movement that they imagined the avatar would demonstrate, ie: sto[m]ping around and swinging of arms.

You can read Owens’ blurb about the project for more info or head to his official site to see his other interesting projects.

– chris

(via we make money not art )

Turbochef Ovens Residential Redesign

May 29, 2007


Fastcompany has put together a great little slide-show chronicling the design process that went into creating the Turbochef 30″ Double-Wall Speedcook Oven. Turbochef industrial ovens have been used commercially for years to dramatically cut cooking times, but a redesign was in order to sex them up for the residential market.

You can check out Fastcompany’s slide-show or head to Turbochef’s official site if you feel inspired to purchase the real thing.

– chris

Print Your Videos on 16mm Film

April 25, 2007

Print Film

Looking for an inexpensive way to transfer your video to film? All you need is an inkjet printer and some transparent 8mm or 16mm film. It’s not going to look pretty, but you’re going to get a great gritty version of your video that’s ready to be projected.

Printer Film

Check out the process here, as documented by Jesse England an artist whose work often bridges both film and video. Here are some examples of his results.

A different technique I saw in school was to shoot, cut and then project a video in High Def. Film the projection with a finely tuned 16mm camera and you’ll have your video in beautiful 16mm format.

– chris

(via BoingBoing)

The Lucifer “Matchbook”

April 19, 2007

Lucifer Pod

Lucifer is a sleek “matchbook” that automatically lights your match as you pull it from its housing. Many criticize products like this for being useless. “What’s wrong with an old-fashioned matchbook?” they squabble. Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve singed my ‘stache more times than I’d like to admit while trying to fire up the grill. Perhaps I shouldn’t leave the gas on while trying to light my matches. Or maybe I just need a fail-safe match lighting device like the Lucifer! And no, there’s no way I’m tossing my zippo onto the grill (or using one of those fancy long-nose grill lighters or chimney matches)! Hush!
Lucifer Diagram
Lucifer was created by Feel Addicted, the one-man design shop run by 24 year old French designer Clement Eloy. Eloy has an impressive array of products in his portfolio and also happens to be an extremely talented photographer. Head to his site to see his work; it rocks!
(via NOTCOT)
– chris

Portfolio: Aaron Koblin’s Data-Driven Work

April 17, 2007


Aaron Koblin is a California-based artist who focuses on data-driven projects. We first noticed him yesterday, when the good people at Coudal linked to his flight pattern project. Koblin took a 24-hour chunk of US flight data from the FAA and used it to craft an impressive visualization.
Koblin is also the architect and sole creator of The Sheep Market. Using Amazon’s Mechanical Turk, Koblin employed thousands of workers to draw sheep for him online. He paid out $0.02 a pop and managed to amass 10,000 unique renderings. The drawings have been printed onto stamps (not actual postal stamps) which he sells on his website for $1 per stamp. It’s quite an onslaught of virtual sheep. Baah.


– chris

A Big Green Roof

April 16, 2007

Green It

I was doing some afternoon browsing and came across some impressive images of the ACROS Fukuoka Prefectural International Hall in Japan. It’s a combination office, atrium, and symphony hall, housed underneath a gorgeous “green roof”. Built on the last remaining green patch in Fukuoka City’s downtown area, the building features terraced roof gardens on the south side with a traditional glass front facing the street to the north.


The ACROS Fukuoka building was constructed in 1995 and is now covered with a healthy level of vegetation. According to a giant list put together by, there are currently 539 buildings featuring a veggie exterior, including the Rhode Island Department of Highways, boasting an impressive 100 square foot plot! Wowsers!- chris

Green Design: The Wind-Powered Lamp

April 10, 2007


Dutch-based design house DEMARKERSVAN has just released Light Wind: the wonderful wind-powered lamp. Taking inspiration from the windmills of their native lands, the boys (and girls) of DEMAKERSVAN have created an elegant, green product. Why shouldn’t outdoor lights have props attached to them?

Light Wind makes a great addition to your backyard, or as DEMAKERSVAN subtly suggests, to a deserted shipping yard. Head to their official site to scope out some of the other quirky designs they have brewing.

– chris

Multi-Touch Fever

April 5, 2007

Tropist Handbrowse

What’s that he’s browsing?

A few weeks ago, this video of Jeff Han’s multi-touch display began making the rounds on the web. The excitement over this thing has been overwhelming. It’s a pretty cool idea: imagine cutting a scene or retouching a photo while working intuitively with only your hands. There’s only one problem though: Jeff’s display will take years to move through the market and currently he’s selling these things for hundreds of thousands of dollars.

But there’s hope yet! We stumbled across this camera-based interface a few days ago. The software uses simple background subtraction techniques to detect a user’s hand gestures. While this type of solution can’t really compete with Jeff’s multi-touch display, it has the advantage of being dirt cheap (all you’d need is a webcam). Hopefully I can convince Brendan to build me a plug-in like this for Final Cut.

– chris