Swiss designer Andreas Bhend is specialised in “hacking” IKEA furniture, for example the shelf above made from Frosta stools. Actually, since the 70’s IKEA has been encouraging people to modify their products or use them in another way than the obvious. For example a friend of mine uses a bookshelf as a coffee table, and [...]
Many times have I been defending the practice of marketing among people who think of it as tricking people into buying what they don’t need and want. Today’s form of marketing, that I represent, is rather about matching needs, demands and offerings, while taking attitudes and awareness into account. You can make people aware of [...]
In the daily life you don’t think so much about the origin of things. And at least myself I usually regard vegetables as something “real” that comes from “nature”, not as something that has been made up or “designed”.
Last night I saw Jimmy Doherty’s tv programme about genetically modified food, about how the global food [...]
Once in a while I have wondered about where that red dot, generally seen near surfaces of matte black, comes from.
Richard Sapper has put the red dot on many designs like the Tizio lamp and the IBM/Lenovo Thinkpad laptop computers with their red pointing device, “Trackpoint”. The latter has become such an icon that there [...]
May 1, 2010
The video has now been published on YouTube.
To see my talk at TEDxNorrmalm, 17th of april 2010, click the image or this link.
Food is both survival and experience, depending on situation. It also reflects our attitudes in general.
The hotdog is definitely a child of its era, industrialism and modernism. Easy to grab and eat on the go, rational, practical and functional. Perfect for its context, where people would no more gather in families for the daily lunch [...]
The good old product lifecycle model has been questioned, but I can’t help thinking that it is a good illustration to the shift of focus that we can see.
The model in brief: when a new offering is launched your first customers will be enthusiasts and after a while the so called “early adopters” will be [...]
Around the 80’s a new style emerged in product design, furniture and architecture. One of the leaders was the Memphis group, with Ettore Sottsass. Simple things like a piece of furniture having several colours were quite new at the time. The objects and buildings clearly broke with the modernistic tradition and started to mix style [...]
Holistic, integrated product development – what does that mean? Well, if you want to be successful today and tomorrow, if you want to be innovative and competitive, then it will be too slow, inefficient and irrelevant to first develop a physical functionality and then try to powder on some experience values. You will need to [...]
The first Sony Walkman, introduced in 1979, was a completely new and different product even though all its components had already existed in other products. There had been stereo heads before, but never in a pocket tape recorder. And so on.
The innovation was based on ideas of human behaviour, and re-arrangement of technologies, rather than [...]
Some time ago I decided to buy a new camera, and suddenly I found myself in a private badge engineering project. And of course it turned out that changing the logo had a good effect in itself, but only after adding a couple of other elements the experience was complete.
The feeling you have for your [...]
Branding is not just about the logotype. Not even the logotype is just about the logotype. That’s what every branding expert will tell you. And they’re right!
But still, once you have managed to build a certain image and confidence, it is striking how strong the effect can be in changing both expectations and experience. Only [...]
The shift from modernistic to post-modern, physical to mental, basic to added value can be seen in big and small. What’s interesting is how this shift of focus is scattered around all possible areas, taking place at different times. Many areas are still in the modernistic, physical, basic stage, and will still be for some [...]
Can something just be “beautiful” in itself? Looking for examples I find my turntable below. But then I realise that the consequences of this product design were more interesting than that. The beauty is not only in its minimalistic brushed metal shapes, but also in its statement towards the ordinary.
Basically, the traditional modernistic approach to [...]
Once there was basically just one model of telephone in Sweden, as in many other countries. One single model should fit all environments. They were owned by the telecom authorities. Old phones were recycled. Telephones were infrastructure, like electricity, running water and heating. A fascinating design task, quite different from todays context. In all a [...]
Here is a first rough illustration of the shift in various areas. Of course this model is very simplified and I want to point out the aspects which are increasingly in focus, not an absolute truth!
Obviously the later aspects don’t replace the earlier. But for me the change of focus is quite evident. You may [...]
A few years ago I made these candleholders by cutting off a pair of boat horns. When I started using them I was surprised by the strong formal effect of the candle holders being flush with the candles themselves. I think it’s a good example of how the effect of a certain feature often doesn’t [...]
Jacob Jensen, creator of the design language that made Bang&Olufsen world famous in the 60’s, also designed this fruit plate. Well, in a way.
Jensen developed his linear and modernistic design language during the 60’s. The design was based on great attention to choice of materials, surfaces and graphic design, and it did not look like [...]
Let’s start with four examples, from left to right:
The last edition of the Olympus XA camera (XA4). At its launch in 1979 the XA was the first quality camera made of plastic, which was a sensation. Shape, choice of plastics and surface treatments, and graphics made this a not at all “cheap” product with technical [...]