The amazing thing about the Porsche 911 is that it's essentially had the same form for over 50 years. At least, in broad strokes. With this animation from Donut Media, you can see that what we think of as subtle design changes were actually rather significant, spread over time. It's
While they clearly did not hire a graphic designer to lay out the type, this sign cost the city money to design, produce, distribute and install. The entire point of these two symbols… …is that they don't require an explanation and can be understood by those who cannot read
A tool roll sounds like a nifty way to organize and transport all sorts of tools. But in my perception, there's really only one proper application for it. That application isn't woodworking. I know woodworkers use them to transport chisels and such, but the form factor doesn't make sense to
Builders and craftspeople who work alone need to devise clever methods of achieving tasks better performed with assistance. Sometimes these tricks work great. Other times…they don't. That could have been so much worse; I'm amazed anyone would ever turn their back on such a thing!
The problem with a nuclear bomb is that it wipes out everything within its blast radius, then renders the land uninhabitable with radiation. Mass murdered Stephen Paddock sprayed a crowd with automatic fire, indiscriminately killing whomever he could get. But what if there was a way to quickly, easily, surgically
Probably not what the designers intended, aesthetically speaking. But here's a cheap, easy way to keep kicked-up debris from flying into the grill of your delivery truck. Or heck, maybe they're trying to reduce airflow.
Those of us not involved with leatherworking may have never seen this tool: Those are called swivel knives. The user rests a finger in the curved saddle up top to provide downward pressure, and the rest of the tool swivels between the thumb and other fingers, allowing the user
While this video is primarily about how to wring way more functionality out of your drill press, there are also several great tips in here about workflow efficiency, dust collection, and a wickedly easy way to create a micro-vacuum for through cleaning. Here industrial designer Eric Strebel shows you how
When it comes to making marks on leather, one commonly thinks of stamping or branding. But skilled craftsman like Japan-based Tomohiro Kanno can produce stunning patterns in leather with carving knives. Take a look at this guy's work: Kanno produces handmade one-off leather goods for sale, and perusing his website,
The makeshift sidewalk lounge I wrote about earlier, sited on Baxter Street, is apparently experiencing growth in its numbers of patrons. The unseen people who populate this lounge--I've yet to catch them in the act, as I only pass this way in the morning--have amassed more furniture, including two rolling
It must be awesome to be wealthy. So a Porsche enthusiast named Scott Blattner owns a Porsche 964. (That's what Porsche called the 911 Carreras made from 1989 to 1994, which had styling revisions.) Blattner's model was made in 1990, but he approached Singer Vehicle Design, an aftermarket company that
This week, safety watchdog W.A.T.C.H. (World Against Toys Causing Harm) released their 45th annual list of nominees for the 10 Worst Toys of 2017, highlighting "potentially hazardous toys [that] should not be in the hands of children." Here's what they want parents to watch out for during this gift-buying season.
Here's a video that Boston Dynamics released yesterday showing off their Atlas robot doing a series of jumping tricks: Again I say, why don't we just get it over with and teach the goddamned things martial arts.
This week Tesla pulled the sheets off of the Semi truck they've been working on, and it's a beaut': We were curious to see what the company would do in terms of design, given that the electric powerplant obviates the need to follow a typical semi's form factor. Tesla has
Situated at an intersection of two streets that each have a slight grade, this restaurant has angled sidewalks on both its south and east faces. The restaurant owner had custom benches made to compensate for the grades on each side. But every morning when they open, the guy who pulls
Now that technology has freed us from the lightbulb fixture, designers are continuing to exploit the new form factors made possible by LEDs. Power Practical's Luminoodle Task design is not only powerful, but portable, lightweight and flexible, which opens up a whole new world of lighting possibilities: I'm digging
This creation here is a marvel of ultra-functional design. Belgium-based furniture maker Timothy Wilmot faced a problem many of us do, which is needing a product that doesn't exist. In his case, he sought a mobile shop fixture "designed to assist woodworkers all along the construction of a piece
Spotted in Chinatown, placed out on the curb as garbage. Some chef or butcher definitely got his or her money's worth out of this butcher block.
As industrial designers our mental database of objects should be immense, and we can often use one object to describe another. After all, how many shapes and form factors are there, really? Or as Italian film company Tanello Production points out, "In nature all is apparently different but essentially the
Here's the latest video from industrial designer Eric Strebel, who walks you through a process that will prove helpful when you need to pump out a lot of something: This video is about designing for low-volume manufacturing, using vacuum forming and laser cutting. It shows how I approach designing and
I recently received this as a gift. It's a package of poop bags, which I go through a lot of as I have two dogs. The package appears to contain two layers of nine rolls. But when you open it up… …you see this inside. This cardboard spacer serves no
Remember Boston Dynamics' SpotMini robot from last year? To refresh your memory, it was a sort of dog-giraffe hybrid with a lobster claw for a head. Well, now they've upgraded the thing, and just yesterday they released this teaser video of the New SpotMini, racking up 1.2 million hits:
There are nearly 30,000 people who want to brush their teeth without using their hands. We know this because earlier this year, 26,832 Kickstarter backers pledged €3,198,516 (USD $3.75 million) to bring the Amabrush, an "automatic toothbrush," to life. Yes, our resident illustrator of imagined contraptions, Steven M. Johnson, came
I was surprised to learn that Festool's parent company, Tooltechnic Systems (a/k/a TTS), purchased SawStop earlier this year. On the one hand both brands are focused on worker safety: Festool was a pioneer of both dust collection and the guiderails that make kickback from circular saws virtually impossible, and SawStop's
Here's a great, free resource for you furniture designers or architects looking for different ways to join materials together. A book called "Cassell's Carpentry and Joinery," first written and illustrated in 1854, painstakingly details all of the joinery techniques--many of them forgotten--that builders used for centuries to create our furniture
The Pontiac GTO, like the Chevrolet Chevelle, was a classic American muscle car that debuted in 1964. Initially the GTO was merely a performance package for Pontiac's Tempest, but became an actual separate model in 1966. The GTO's design was tweaked every single year of the decade it was
I've never had to harvest pecans, but presumably the designers of this Multi Headed Nut Wizard have. Here's the brilliant object they came up with, which "will pick up through light to medium leaves and will hold up to 40 lbs of pecans when full." Be sure to stick around
There are certain classic toy designs that simply oughtn't be messed with. Here's a case where a manufacturer did not heed this rule, perhaps realized that they screwed up after they'd already gone into production, and perhaps was very careful in how they presented their creation in photographs. The object
Here's a great example of a product design that probably sounded great on paper, but clearly sucks to use in the real world. We present to you the Ion Bottleless Water Cooler: 1. The Initial Design Problem Office water coolers require the end user to lift that heavy jug of
I use a small ultrasonic jewelry cleaner to wash old machine parts, and it's amazing watching decades of grease just mist away into liquid clouds. But the size of the machine's tub limits what I can put in there. The developers of Sonic Soak came up with a better
If you were shown a sketch of a design like this, to be made from solid wood, how would you make it? Consider that the radii of the slats are concentric, so that they cannot be separately laminated from a single mold. Well, the Croatia-based designer/builder (the chap behind
Flying across America provides a bird's eye view of how we humans have decided to cut the land up. In regions where we've completely mastered the topography, you'll see completely unnatural-looking, perfect grids like this, punctuated with perfect circles: So what the heck are those, and how/why are they created?
When the design of a product, service or system is willfully changed or something new is introduced, it is typically for one of several reasons: 1. Because it's better for the consumer.Example: The original iPod or iPhone. These objects provided a vastly improved user experience over what had come before.
Yesterday the City of Las Vegas launched ARMA, an autonomous shuttle that provides free rides to passengers along a short route. While the shuttle's circuit is barely over a mile, the vehicle is interacting with regular traffic, which it was hoped would provide public confidence in the viability of the
Years ago, I was stunned to learn that NYC schoolteachers, facing budget cuts, were purchasing art supplies for students out of their own already meager salaries. I myself would never have become involved with industrial design if my own public school education didn't involve art classes. Upon learning of
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