- A good concept for making computers more accessible and less disposable from Acer. Unfortunately it's still more of a concept than a real commitment- the maximum upgrade potential of the system is quite limited, so it's the same designed-obsolescence in practice.
- When technology is miniaturized and interactions are offloaded to smartphones, exactly what an object is for can become opaque. A good read on what devices are hiding, even when they're out in the open.
- Panasonic is bringing back the wheels of steel and relaunching Technics Turntables (in aluminum).
Bias and Brains:
- Women in the military have had to wear boots designed for men, and it's contributed to a higher rate of injuries. The Washington Post examines gaps in equipment design, medical care, and prosthetics that have been making life as a military woman more difficult and dangerous.
- Clear Design Lab founder Kat Ely writes about how bias gets designed into our world and the consequences that we all live with.
Roadmapping the future:
- Technology is not an all in one solution. Social, governmental and cultural forces and institutions all play a significant role- in Western world led projects to help developing countries, this math is often wrong, resulting in failure.
- Toyota puts up $ 50 million for MIT + Stanford to help them figure out smart cars, that might not be self-driving.
- Farmers want to control their own data, not share it with their suppliers. Startups, including Clear Design Lab client FarmHub, are working to develop systems that empower farmers to collect and use data how they see fit and make resource use more efficient.
- Restaurants are figuring out how to use design elements to turn down the volume.
- The much hyped "Smart Home" wave is heavy on gimmicks, light on real value produced. We think that problems of the home are often made worse or at least more complicated by technology introduction (tech punctures solitude, creates opportunities for isolation within a family unit) rather than improved by it. Making things better for humans in their most intimate spaces is a complex challenge and few designers/companies are really handling it well.
- Looking at the differences between natural vision and photographic vision.
More next week.