Thursday, June 24, 2010

Design for disaster reflection

I found this assignment to be an extremely good learning experience. It was a very interesting and refreshing assignment. We often have briefs that feel frivolous and not that beneficial to the community but rather just adding more “stuff”, possessions, to people’s homes. This assignment felt as if we were really making a useful and beneficial product that had a purpose and in that respect I really enjoyed the assignment
I not only have I learnt about bushfires, the damage they can cause and what problems arise, which was interesting in itself. i found that while reading on the internet problems that occurred and experiences that people felt, it was actually the person interviews and firsthand accounts that were the most useful because you got a really good understanding of what it was like to be in a bushfire. Which is an experience that is not imaginable and the issues that arise are not the typical smoke inhalation and heat problems but many other unexpected problems that both the firemen and the survivors experience.
What I mostly had a learning experience about was materials. Due to the product I had to make I had to find out which materials would be able to withstand temperatures of up to 1000 degrees. There are not very many that will do that, and those that do are expensive and often quite harmful for the environment. Also while a lot of these materials can withstand that temperature and exists on kilns and other high heat ovens, they are not able to withstand the wind and change in temperature of the outside environment. I feel that i have grown in my knowledge about these materials and have learnt about insulation effects of different materials as well as heat resistance, expansion and thermal co-efficient.
One area that I felt that I was really lacking in is my knowledge about how the different materials interact with each other the environment also the electrical engineering of it all. I felt that this assignment, while the concept and form was to be made by a designer and maybe the initial material choices should be made by the designer. The actual material specification and figuring out the electronics was more of an engineer’s job then a designer. In this sense i really struggled trying to grasp the concepts of material science and electronics.

(for pictures please refer to submit folder, cause the i just didnt manage to make the picture load)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

the story of cap and trade

the story of cap and trade by annie leonard is very interesting, i really enjy the way she explains the situation and i find the graphics make it easier to understand and keep the interest.
while i think that mos of what she says is true and especially as designer we should be involoved in this, try to figure out how we can make a differnce, design a solution that will be better for the environment.
on the other hand i do think that the way annie leonard presents the argument, and mostly her solution is way too simplified, i think that she may have a good understanding of what going on, but its too simplisitic, there are many issues involoved with the reduction of carbon emissions, these factors are hard to chane. the cap and trade option could work if there werent so many dodgy loop holes.

Friday, May 21, 2010

design for life

i found this mini series incredibly interesting
i thought that phillipe stark was very intersting in his opnions and thoughts, so i looked at this series from 2 perspectives, the first being philipes many philosophies and the second the students design process

philipe stark had ALOT of different ideas that he meantioned during the series.x
A couple of ideas that i both liked and agreed with were, first that good "design is about making beautiful, useful, and sustainable objects that can be enjoyed by everyone" this is what i think is the big difference between art and design is, Art tends to only be a medium for a small amount of the eilte population who have so kind of understanding in art rather than a broader more all encompassing interaction that is found in design, which is why i have always loved it.

Stark belives that design should help your tribe, your society, your civilisation to have a better life, and to do so through a useful and sustainable manner. by this i think he means, that products that are of no use to anyone really should not be made, and products that are made should have a profound impact on the user in a way that positively improves their way of living, while i think it is a very noble thing of him to say and i would tend to agree with him in this perspective esspecially talking about usefulness and sustainability, yet i fail to see how he has achieved these things in his design?

from the perspective of the students i would like to say that i believe that the ideas they came up with for the first major project were just terrible, most of them didnt even come up with one product just wishy washy half formed ideas which i was not at all suprised that stark reacted badly to.
i think that some improvemnts were made although i felt that the only viable ideas where the elderly chair aid and the blind plate (although even this did not seem too inovative)
i felt that the students were not deep enough in their thought process and did not come with wordly design solutions.
i think starks decision to let the elderly chair thing and the blind plate thing through was a good desicion compared to the other 2 designs as they were more aimed at helping people.
i think that the design the won had a beautiful form, it looked almost like a sculpture rather than a product yet it was still a usefull product.

one little thing i noticed that made me rather happy, was that the designers did not have to make their models themselves, they got judged purely on form and not on model making skills...

summing up i loved this mini series as it not only gave me insight into how others design, and also their failings but also into philipe starks thoughts and ideas where they come from

the 11th hour

the 11th hours was both and eye opening and also a frustrating experience.
i felt almost shocked at the amounts of problems are earth faces from global warming to deforestation, mass species extinction, and the depletion of the earths habitats.
not onky was it abit confronting to be told, hey your earth is slowly dieing, but also hey its all your fault.
i felt so frustrated that no one was really making a change, or at least not enough people were making a change.
this is when i realised that as an industrial designer and someone who is essentially encrouaging mass consumerism in the world by designing things that people either potentially dont need, or making them feel like the things they have are not valid anymore cause there are more current "things" out there, i was essentially causeing the problem
i think that by watching this video, and having statements such as "Global warming is not only the number one environmental challenge we face today, but one of the most important issues faceing all of humanity... we all have to do our part to raise awareness about global warming and the problems we as people face in prompting a sustainable environmental future for our planet" (leonardo di caprio) i am more aware that designers need to have a new outlook on what should be the aim of industrial design.
is it really to make people want to be things they dont need, or should it be take make things more durable and longer lasting through a better quality design that is made to last, or a design that will transcend the different fashions and trends that come through, or even use materials that will be more environmentally friendly.
all these things will mean that our part of industrial designers will not be making things like global warming worse.

charrette 2- part 4

charette 2 - product disassemably part 3

i thought that this exercise was a very interesting one.
i found that there was ALOT of waste in this product.
firstly this product was a waste full product in the first place as it was an milkshake like blender thing that was generally just useless and wouldnt be used very often at all.
then thinking more about the individual parts, each part was made of a different material, be it the different types of plastic, or rubber or even metals, this made it not recycable in the first place, secondly it was all glued and assembled together in a way that made it nearly impossible to tak apart. i did not know where to start and had to really fight with the product to take it apart.
it shows that these products really are so wastefull and not recycable!
we came up with a more friendly design that would use less materials, would disassemble easily and didnt use electricity meaning it did not waste electricity either!
this was a very eye opening and intersting project

charette product disassembly part 2