I need some help, dear readers. As I'm outlining projects I want to build in future semesters of The Hand Tool School, as well as future projects on my Renaissance Woodworker site, I have come across a design conundrum: Technically everything I do both on my free RW site and
Last month we wrote about American Field, a traveling pop-up event that showcases "the best of American-made brands." Since some of you entrepreneurs in our readership could benefit from getting a booth at AF's events, we broke down the numbers in their post-event reviews, to give you a rough idea
Want a reminder that simple, beautiful, problem-solving design changes the world? Well, too bad. Instead, look at this golf club that's also a portable urinal. Sometimes I research old TV advertised products to learn about unexpected consumer "needs" I've never considered. When there's-got-to-be-a-better-way there's a fifty-fifty chance I've got no
For jaded designers and/or consumers, it's tough to get excited over Google's new products, as they're all derivative of existing offerings. There are some incremental improvements: The Pixel phone can reportedly gain 7 hours worth of battery life off of a measly 15-minute charge, for instance. But taking a close
There was a lot of talk in the '80s and '90s about the paperless office. As personal computers began to proliferate, we were told, paper would go away. We now know the opposite happened, and that we use more paper than ever. Similarly, in design schools of the '90s, one
As helpful as school can be, there are many topics design programs fail to breach—particularly in the realm of operating within the professional sectors of the design world. On our discussion boards, Core77 moderator Mr-914 recently brought up an apt point about a subject no design student would
Please circulate this among your friends who are not industrial designers. Because just when we think an awareness of our role has finally permeated society, we see we've still got a ways to go. Take, for example, the rash of "How Much Does It Cost to Make an iPhone?" videos.
For over a decade, the team behind PAX Labs has been steadily reimagining what it means to vape. Once a novelty confined to the fringes of smoking culture, vaporizing has emerged in recent years as a more refined experience for those who enjoy loose leaf pleasures and e-cigarettes mainstream
In the midst of quitting a 9-to-5 to start a business, I'm sure many who have gone this route underestimated all of the details one must be aware of for the ship to run smoothly—how to get the word out to possible clients, the best way to invoice so you
Just above the office of Tina Roth Eisenberg's startup Tattly is a haven for freelancers that bears no resemblance to the spiritless, sterile co-working spaces around the city. "There are a lot of very non-supportive and really sad co-working spaces", says Eisenberg, "now it's like everybody opens a co-working space
These days there are plenty of incubator programs promising an express ride for founders from fuzzy idea to the promised land of venture capital. But of the options, very few have targeted designers, recognizing the unique skill set that design practitioners bring to the world of entrepreneurship. In 2014, Google
Minimalism is everything. EVERYTHING. But how do you bravely cut the clutter and cords from your life when your old phone still technically works? The heroic and forward-marching minds at Nicer Studio have studied Apple's technological advances and come up with a fittingly elegant solution. Meet the Apple Plug. With
Every now and then a product comes out where the sheer thrill of its existence is quickly replaced by a sense of horror that it took so long for something like it to come about in the first place. Such was the case with FLEX, a new kind of
When we asked "How practical is the Shaper Origin" and invited you to ask questions, we knew Shaper would answer them. But we didn't know they'd go the extra mile and answer with video demonstrations! Here the team tackles the things that are better shown than written. We've
If you watch our Job Boards, you know that Lego was looking for a Senior Design Director this summer. As it turns out, that one job was just a drop in the bucket: The company has been on a hiring spree this year, picking up over 3,500 new employees in
Apple's new iPhones don't have the 3.5mm jack. Neither does Motorola's Moto Z. Get over it. These companies, and others in China, ditched the standard jack for a very simple reason: It's obsolete, and it's going away. Intel's been pushing their USB-C standard as the best choice for a replacement,
An Industrial Designer's Dream Scenario: You're heading up the design team for a technologically-sophisticated, big-ticket item. You got a team of engineers, industrial designers and UX guys all working in the same building, alongside a top-notch prototyping shop. A crucial parts supplier is right down the street. So is the factory.
What do you do when you come up with the idea of starting a business that transcends category and previous entrepreneurial norms? When it comes to going out on your own and starting your own business, the truth is there is no perfect science and it's almost always daunting—but when
American Field is an outfit that seeks to promote "the best of American-made brands" by holding pop-up shops around the country featuring dozens of vendors. They rotate through Boston, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Nashville and Brooklyn, that last location being described as "the widest selection of #MadeinUSA products ever
The idea behind a company called Joybird has merit: Sell mid-century-modern-inspired furniture online to customers who have graduated beyond Ikea. But suspicion sets in once you look at their website closely. The first red flags come from the marketing copy, which sounds less like the truth and more like
The last few weeks have been exciting for anyone interested in alternative aircraft, as the long awaited Airlander reemerged in the public eye. Dubbed the "Flying Bum" after its enormous hotdog bun body, the Airlander is widely credited as the biggest vehicle of any kind in the world. And it
The 2016 International IDSA Conference was hosted in Detroit last week with a focus on the theme of "Making Things Happen." Detroit, with it's wrought morality tale of decline from the richest city in the United States in the 1950's and '60s to it's recent designation as the country's poorest
The world recently lost a pioneer in the design field, a business innovator, and a passionate advocate for better sex. Joani Blank, founder of Good Vibrations, the first women-centered and all-inclusive sex toy shop in America, died on Saturday August 6th, at the age of 79. Blank started the
We figured self-driving cars were maybe five or ten years away. But Uber has beaten Apple, Google, Tesla and others to the punch, and is rolling out a small fleet of autonomous Volvos--this month, according to Bloomberg. In the test city of Pittsburgh, Uber users will summon cars as normal
By one estimate, there are 54 factories in China producing unlicensed replicas of Eames furniture. While they'll probably find a ready market all around the world--$520 for a knockoff Eames Lounge vs. $8,900 for the real deal makes it a no-brainer for the unscrupulous--in the UK they'll find a ready
Safety razors are far from new. Created by Frenchman Jean-Jacques Perrett who found inspiration in hand-plane construction in the late 1700s, the safety razor has seen countless iterations—most of these under Gillette. In 1901, Wisconsin-native King Camp Gillette filed a patent for the first disposable razor blades. Between 1903 and
MANTA is looking for a clever mid-level ID with excellent creative, usability, visualization and communication skills, that can bring beauty and sophistication to high tech, med tech, wearable tech, robotics and consumer product concepts.
It won't be long before our Cottonelle toilet paper and Bose headphones fall out of the sky and onto our front lawns. But it's heartening to see that, whether out of the developers' philanthropy or being stymied by current FAA regulations, the poor will benefit from the technology first.
It's rare to see so many members of the global design community unite for a common cause, but this is a big one that directly affects their fields—and could have an impact on the future of industrial design. Here's what happened: In 2007, shortly before launching the original iPhone, Apple
It is no secret that Design Thinking and Service Design have been around for a while and are slowly becoming mainstream-popular strategic approaches. Also, as I've covered in my previous article, it became a fact, backed by non-stop news and numbers, that the design firm establishment have been swept off
As you've likely heard, Kanye wants to take his unstoppable visionary design genius to the next level: your bedroom… And he wants IKEA to make it happen. After a March visit to the Swedish megacompany's head offices Mr. West tweeted about being inspired to design furniture, and rumors of flatpacked
I just read a scathing critique of the lack of copyright protection for industrial designers: Australian journalist Joe Aston's "Industrial designers deserve [the] same copyright treatment as Hollywood." In it, self-professed design-lover Aston sounds extremely pissed off, takes shots at both America and Asia, and makes some points you've heard
By now you're probably well aware that by 2020, 40% of the American workforce is expected to be freelance. In theory, this seems kind of cool—less people tied down to their desks, miserable in cubicles. With mantras such as "do what you love" and "follow your bliss," who wouldn't want
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