- Boomerang Addicts Can Now Charge Batteries
- My Car, It’s “Alive!”
- Revolution with Knives
- Getting Lost Is Not So Trendy
- Show-off The Strip
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Boomerang Addicts Can Now Charge Batteries
I find this concept cute and odd – that would mean oddly cute. The Boo is a battery charging boomerang. It holds 3 AAA batteries and just by playing with it, the device converts rotary motion into energy. The surface is covered in silicon to protect the precious innards from impact. In the center is a dynamically changing icon that indicates charge levels. Simple idea right? Would you buy one?
Designers: Ji-youn Kim, Jeon Hwanju & Yang Soonyoun
My Car, It’s “Alive”
As we move forward in our increasingly mass produced and technological world, there is a certain nostalgia for what many critics say we’ve lost. We just need to find new ways to personalize and humanize the products we create. The Equilibrium (EQ) car uses artificial intelligence to engage us by generating the illusion of life and individual personality. Tho the cars are mass produced, no two are alike.
Lets close our eyes. Envisage a high tech world not too distant in the future. It’s morning and you’re getting ready for work; a day like any other. You step in the garage where a dark, almost black figure rests in the corner. As you approach it illuminates from within, pulsing like the slow rhythmic pace of breathing. The vehicle is alert, it senses and recognizes your presence. It knows you’re the owner and goes into standby mode. The door handles reveal itself to you. The floating seats adjust to you, comfortably cradling your body. As you place both hands on the steering wheel, biometric sensors activate the vehicle into full power mode. You’re ready to go.
The idea is intriguing and not difficult to imagine. For years automotive designers have thought of ways to create experiences within a car to simulate a living object. Personalization is key to creating an emotional attachment with anything inanimate. The Equilibrium takes it a step further by utilizing some key technologies not yet invented but it’s only a matter of time.
Take for example the exterior surface – covered in what the designer dubs “rubber metal.” Thanks to nanotechnology, it’s flexible and rigid. The wheels are even covered and steering is achieved by manipulating the material to pull on the center axis of each wheel hub. On the outside it gives the vehicle a smooth continuous form uninterrupted by seams. The material can even move from opaqueness to transparency, hinting to the owner what’s inside waiting as they approach.
Two electric engines are located in the rear wheels for space efficiency and for weight distribution.� All interior elements float by using a connection to a center frame. This creates a light and spacious expression. At the same time it provides a feeling of safety for the passengers; a strong central object for protection.
The battery pack is located in the front of the vehicle for weight distribution. To cool the batteries, air flows from a front air intake along the batteries and through the frame to an air outlet on the top.
The seats consist of two parts; an external ‘shell’ and soft inner skin. The skin is made of Electro Active Polymers, and adapts to the drivers body. Electricity can make the surfaces stretch and change shape.
The steering wheel has heartbeat sensors to activate the vehicle from stand-by to full power as soon as it detects the driver’s heartbeat. This has a safety element as well. As the driver gets tired while driving, the vehicle will detect a lower heart rate and react by blowing fresh air inside. But in more serious situations (heart attack) it can automatically bring the vehicle to standstill; park it along the road and send out an alarm message. By satellite, the exact location of the vehicle can be traced.
Designer: Bob Romkes
Revolution with Knives
You say you only want a single knife now, well, you know: we all want to save on packaging. So, so, then, what we’ve got to do is cut down! And that’s exactly what we’re going to do with designer Aaron Root’s singular knifes concept! You say you only want a few of those knives out of that giant block they sell? How about buying one knife at a time in its own block, each block connectable to the next? Neat!
Aaron Root was charged by J.A. Henckles to create a unique way for people to purchase individual knives that would normally be part of a large block set. So, what he did was to break up the block. Each knife comes in its own block, magnets on either side, making it possible for the purchaser to collect, say, three knives, then put them all together for their own unique block set.
Not only that, the magnets make it possible for the owner to stick the block to anything metal: the fridge, a metal shelving unit, the metal plate inside mom’s head, anything! And the only waste is the small paper bellyband!
Designer: Aaron Root
Getting Lost Is Not So Trendy
Maptor is this wonderful combination of a map and projector that (predictably) projects the desired map onto any surface. Palm of the hand, floor, and walls included. What I really fancy about it, is its size. Small enough to pass off as a lipstick (or a chapstick for you guys), the device is discreet enough for you to quickly hop into a quiet corner, check for directions and make your way forth. All this without anyone knowing that you are lost or need help!
Another good thing about the Maptor is that it has GPS included; as a result there is this big red arrow on the map that points to your current location. Therefore getting your bearings and charting your course is easy.
Although the images of the projected map look visible enough even in daylight, I wonder if it’s really going to be that clear in its practical avatar.
Anyways, I think this project has the potential to make it to the market and be a hit, I would love to get one for my husband, who hates to ask for directions!
Designers: Jin-Sun Park and Seon-keun Park
Show-off The Strip
Managing power-cords is more of a hassle for folks with kids and those who like the wire-free look. Just how to manage those damn wires? With the elegant Power Bridge, of course! It eliminates the need to hide wires in order to make the room look neat or safe. This sturdy strip has the plug-slots beneath the bridge for better plug management. An indicative light on each plug outlet also displays the amount of power being used by that particular device, making you aware of the energy consumption. A refreshing approach for the wires-issue.
Designer: Hyukjae Chang
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