Public Goods is the tiny company hoping to make a huge impact on our personal finances. Entrepreneur Morgan Hirsh's mission is to manufacture common household consumables—shampoo, soap, toothpaste, toilet paper, cleaning products, et cetera—and sell them directly to the consumer at cost. By eliminating middlemen and retailers they can sell,
I dislike wallpaper, but this 1963 film almost makes me like it. It's not the aesthetics that appeal to me but the artistry and craft that go into making the product. Except for reproductions of William Morris designs, I don't suppose much wallpaper is made this way anymore. I particularly
I'm a big fan of the desert and have been to Death Valley a number of times. At the ruins of the Harmony Borax Works, not far from the visitor center at Furnace Creek, are two of the original wagons used to haul borax to a railroad 165 miles away.
On August 21st the U.S. will experience a rare phenomenon, a nationwide solar eclipse. Because this upcoming one can be seen from the east coast all the way to the west, millions of Americans will view it. Obviously you cannot stare directly into the sun, even during an eclipse, without
Vinyl-lovers know and play LPs and 45s, but few have the more obscure, earlier-generation 78 r.p.m. records. A lot of that is down to materials choices; while vinyl is reasonably durable, 78s were made from more brittle shellac and tend to shatter over time. For that reason, The Great 78
My friend Gary showed up at our book club wearing a pair of Chuck Taylors. Nothing unusual about that except that he's in his 70s and had no idea they were in style. He's been wearing Chucks since the 1950s—just the way they come out of the box. But
[Spoilers ahead.] Last night's surprisingly good mid-season episode of "Game of Thrones" was primarily shot outdoors. Even still, there were dozens of scenes we had to freeze-frame and lighten to get a better look at things. The object that most interested us was Bran's wheelchair. Obviously this is not
In 2009, roadtrip-loving Soon Park took his wife and two daughters on one heck of a camping journey: They drove all over America, racking up 58,000 miles over a span of three years. Park found himself dissatisfied with the UX of the conventional camping trailer they were towing, and upon
The folks over at Lensball are selling a physical photography accessory that will presumably appeal to the Instagram generation. The eponymous product is simply a sphere made out of scratch-resistant K9 crystal, in two sizes: 60mm ($25) and 80mm ($35). The lensball will of course flip the image upside down,
As per usual, last night's episode of "Game of Thrones" was so visually dark that you couldn't see how much work the set designers put in. An example: Here's another. It's so dark in this scene that you can't even tell there's a guard standing behind Jon Snow and Ser
A selection of items that will enhance your work experience rather than further clutter your desk space.
Ikea's getting ready to release their 2018 catalog. While it won't be available until August, we got a look at a pre-release version, and went through it to see if anything jumped out at us. We found the new furniture offerings to be standard fare, but there are four new
Umpire George Sosnak was good at his chosen profession but he was better as a folk artist, chronicling the history of the sport by inking highly detailed drawings and text onto baseballs. George Sosnak (courtesy Chrysler Museum of Art)Baseball people knew and valued his art during his lifetime and
The Octaspring, a European patented innovation, developed out of the necessity to create a better sleeping surface, is the first and only of its kind, foam spring technologies with the support capabilities of a traditional spring, but made entirely of pressure-relieving foam. Pressure-relieving and open to air flow, each Octaspring features eight reinforcements
Looking for a gift for the tool user who has everything—and I mean everything—how about an Urushi Ratchet Handle? For a mere $2,000-$4,000 you can get one of the handful of these things made each year. Urushi is obtained from the sap of the lacquer tree and is so central
It might be tough for me to sell you an inch-thick cross-section of Douglas Fir for $125. But if I encased it in acrylic and placed a live colony of termites in there, maybe you'd give it a second look. That's the hope of the folks behind the Termitat, a
With more and more of us traveling more frequently these days, luggage design has become a hot category for design entrepreneurs. As one example this Samsara design, billed as "The world's first aluminum smart suitcase," recently sought just $15,000 in pledges but pulled in a whopping $293,192. New luggage
For those of you that still use physical calendars, maybe you like having a dozen photos of hapless kittens or shirtless firemen cycling through the months. But a subset of you might prefer a single grid that will serve for the entire year and that doesn't have any pages to
For those not already saddled with eyeglasses or contacts, it can be handy to have a pair of reading glasses on hand. In New York City at least, menu font designers and restaurant lighting designers seem determined to make menus impossible to read. For situations like these, French company Nooz
Balance collaborated with startup Enduring Wellness, LLC, to develop a line of wellness products to help people eat more healthily, get more exercise, feel less stressed, and most importantly, get better sleep. As something we spend a third of our lives doing, we understand sleep as being a crucial part of our lives that is often overlooked in the design world. Because of this, we knew we could design a product to help millions of people get better sleep.
You know a product has been missing from the market when it goes up on Kickstarter and receives 10 times the amount of funding it requested. Recently, that product turns out to be the FLEXR pull up bar, very surprisingly from our research one of the first of its kind.
I remember tearing money in half, back when things were all cash, when you needed a guarantee that someone would wait for you. I'm not sure if this was a New York City thing or if they did it in your town too. For example, let's say I took a
Mark Rober, the ex-NASA-engineer behind that giant Nerf gun, is again scaling up a toy firearm designed for children. Rober teamed up with Bob Clagett to create a giant-sized Supersoaker that practically has the capabilities of a waterjet cutter: You reckon Rober got the idea after seeing this scene in
British artist Simon Birch is the creative force behind The 14th Factory, an L.A.-based industrial warehouse that's been converted to an art gallery. The gallery, which features the work of dozens of artists, was designed by Birch to be interactive. But perhaps not this interactive: According to Hyperallergic, The footage
In an ideal world, I could pack for several weeks worth of travel into one small backpack, which if you're bringing your normal essentials could potentially be impossible. Thankfully, there's a world out there full of designers trying to make it so we can, all the while creating products we
What is this world coming to? First we saw the Fridge Locker, a lockable plastic cage one must use to protect their food inside communal refrigerators. Now we see this insane Ben-&-Jerry's-branded combination lock for ice cream pints: I thought (or hoped) it was a gag, but the thing is
While going for her Masters at the Royal College of Arts' Design Products Programme, Danielle Clode devised an interesting project that's part prosthetic and part conversation starter: The Third Thumb. By 3D printing in disparate materials and rigging up the mechanicals, Clode created a workable, functional limb extension. Here's
Together with the Mutsy R&D team, Springtime recently developed the stroller collection for Mutsy, consisting of the EVO, EXO and IGO. All models are based on a shared visual identity, developed by Springtime. Mutsy is a leading Dutch juvenile products brand that has been around for decades and is known for its bold, robust appearance of its products. In this newly created visual identity, we translated the original brand values to a contemporary, more refined image, with a carefully defined ran
This should be required viewing for all industrial design students. The story starts off with the history of the modern pen which, fascinatingly, was prompted by spilled ink ruining a contract. What follows is a tale of clever design, mastery of materials, ergonomic considerations and above all, business savvy.
Those of us in the United States saw a lot of American flags today, most of them fabric, which require maintenance. But an Ohio-based gent named Brooks Hazelbaker produces no-maintenance flags that are meant to hang on a wall, and won't be flapping in the breeze. That's because they're constructed out of the key piece of equipment from America's favorite pastime.
When Henry the 8th played tennis the balls, he used were leather with hair or wool sewn inside. It was not until the late 19th century that tennis balls reached their modern form—pressurized rubber with a felt cover. By 1961, tennis balls were produced in factories using methods that are
Matt from UK-based DIY Perks shows you how to build his design for a smartphone projector. The design is impressive in that it leaves the phone out, making it easy to grab if a call comes in, and the construction method is pretty darn simple. I'd love to see this
Remember this guy? Johnny Dronehunter shoots drones out of the sky in style and silence, using a special suppressor-equipped shotgun. But as it turns out, you needn't pump hot lead into the sky to bring a quadrotor down; at a music festival in Canada, someone figured out a simple confetti
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