Industrial Design

Dock It.

One thing that has always baffled me about my iPhone is the why it comes with a wall charger but no dock. Actually I know why it is. It’s all about the money, and by not giving you a dock they ask you to buy one for 40 bucks. The thing is, when I am shelling out the kind of money Apple want’s for a phone, the least they could do is toss in a dock. I hate the wall plug with the power cord snaking out of the wall across my counter or desk.

Thankfully though, if you want a dock you don’t have to give your money to Apple or whoever made your smartphone. You can instead opt for Native Union’s which costs about the same and frankly looks better, especially when it is bundled with their belt cable. I also like the fact that this design gives your phone additional support so the weight of your phone isn’t placed exclusively on the lightning connector and the port on your phone. (I’m pretty sure this is what eventually caused my old phone to stop charging and the port to eventually fail)

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After 8, Razor Thin Lighting.

If I still had a kitchen island that faced out into the rest of an open floor plan, this is definitely a lighting solution I would consider. After 8 Pendant by Molto Luce is a line of illumination. At just 5mm wide (0.19 inches for non metric people) this razor thin LED light is compact, simple, minimalist fixture suspended by two this lines of wire that descend from ceiling mounts.

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The pendant is just over 48 inches in length, and 3 inches tall. Constructed with a refined metal black housing, and compact light source there is an elegant simplicity to the end result that adds a level of refinement to the space without detracting from it’s surroundings.

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Austrian design firm Molto Luce was founded in 1981. The companies Italian name is reflective of their design approach and philosophy.While Molto Luce  is generally focused on commercial lighting for work environments, their pieces are considered timeless thanks to their overall design aesthetic.

 

MNML Sisifo.

I’ve spent most of my weekend trying to figure out just exactly what the previous homeowners were doing when they finished the basement in my house. Nothing is square, the wiring is a fire hazard, and the plumbing is a joke. I was going to try and fix the problems, but instead decided to tear a section out and start from scratch. After 6 hours, it’s break time, and break time led to the Internet. The Internet brought me to Sisifo, a minimalist light designed by Chicago-based firm MNML for Artemide.

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Sisifo places a disc of light, balanced above a weighted base on an articulating pole. The pole allows for 360 degrees of rotation, and for the disc to placed at the most useful angle for the end user. Designed with a small footprint, the weighted base and double ball joint were designed for minimum resistance, allowing the lamp head to effortlessly float above the base and be adjusted. Sisifo also features an intuitive on/off touch dimmer control at the front of the base that invites tactile interaction. Using a fresnel pattern, the light source is diffused eliminating any harsh shadows, creating even uniform light. Yeah I kind of want a few of these.

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Pebble 2. Wireless Charging Made Beautiful.

Anyone that knows me, knows that I hate wires and cables. Anything I can do to eliminate the tangle of cords and cables from my living space is a must. This morning in my inbox I had an email about a new KickStarter project from the French design firm Orée, for a minimalist smartphone wireless charger and bluetooth speaker by the French studio Orée. The piece is handcrafted from solid wood or marble.

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Pebble 2 is handcrafted from solid wood or marble and seamlessly blends with any environment. The technology blends seamlessly with any device. Simply set your smartphone on the Pebble 2 and it starts charging automatically. Your phone also auto syncs via Bluetooth to the music system built into the Pebble 2.

Smartphones fit our mobile lifestlyle like a glove. Yet when we are at home or in the office, they just feel bulky: we’re never quite sure where we leave them, we scramble for the power cable to make sure they are charged up for our next errand and we cope with the poor sound quality of the built-in loudspeaker when we want to conveniently make hands-free calls or listen to music. We created Oree Pebble 2 so your smartphone elegantly fits your lifestyle at home or in the office.

Pebble 2 uses bluetooth and standard QI technology to wirelessly charge most Android handsets. Unfortunately this technology is not yet embedded in iPhones, but they can be charged via a Wireless Power Sleeve, made from solid walnut and genuine vegetable tanned leather.

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Les Cordes a New Twist on a Rope Light.

Mathieu Lehanneur created a new twist on the rope light for the reopening of the Museum of Decorative Arts, pottery and fashion in the castle Borely Marseille.

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The lamp is constructed from borosilicate glass that is kiln bent frosted and then fitted with LED’s and a control system. It’s an absolutely wonderful take on both a chandelier and the rope light with all those overlapping sweeping curved surfaces. The video below shows the production process that went into making this one of a kind light for the school. What a really impressive design and fabrication process.

“This chandelier was conceived as a rope of light crossing the ceiling, only bands of light and glass are visible. It is not an object. It is not a light fitting. It is the light itself that seems to live and circulate in the entrance space, as if stitched onto the building itself,” Mathieu Lehanneur
Producer: Château Borély / City of Marseille
Executive Producer: Agency Rubigo
Director: Christophe Luparini
Music: Lionel Payet Pigeon
Curator of Decorative Arts and Fashion, Chateau Borély: Christine Germain – Donnat
Creating Mathieu Lehanneur
Artistic production: Agence Eva Albarran & Co. SINCE 1974 Glassworks GmbH

Henry Wang and Chris Curro Reinvent the Cardboard Box.

This is probably old news, although I just came across this today. I say old news because the YouTube video already has 3.5 million views, none the less this is a great idea from two students at Cooper Union’s Invention Factory. The premise is quite simple, build a better shipping box that uses less paper, recycles easier, and can be assembled and shipped without tape. The video below shows it in action. Deceptively simple, simply ingenious. I hope these two land their patent, license this out to USPS, FedEx, and UPS, and get rich so they can invent more stuff.

The Beauty of Coffee by Ratio.

Mark Hellweg took his passion for design, good tools, architecture, and aesthetics and put it to good use when he launched Ratio. The fruits of his labors is this absolutely stunning coffee maker.

Ratio is a high-design machine that is built around the precise science of brewing the perfect cup of coffee. Beneath it’s beautiful exterior is a powerful heating element that maintains an constant optimal brewing temperature of 200 degrees so coffee is never to hot or to cold.

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Ratio is designed manufactured and assembled by hand in Portland Oregon. The materials used are a reflection of Hellweg’s attention to detail, and his love of design. Die cast nickel-plated aluminum contrasts with Oregon black walnut and borosilicate glass.

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