It's not so interesting to see a product you knew was going to succeed, succeed; it's much more fascinating to watch the success of something you were initially dismissive of. As a designer there's much more to be learned in the latter situation, requiring a re-jiggering of your understanding of people's desires.
Designer Dan McDonley's Ninja Standing Desk is an amusing, if self-consciously silly, product I never guessed would so handily smash its $10,000 funding target. But it's nearly doubled it with over three weeks left to go. San-Francisco-based McDonley tapped the resources of his local TechShop to create the portable bi-level desk, which can be hung on the back of a door, the wall of a cubicle, or even affixed to an ordinary wall.
I'd initially dismissed it because I wasn't considering the problem carefully enough. There are plenty of situations where a worker could use a temporary, portable desk with no wiring requirements: As one example, I've got a buddy who does interior design work, and architecture firms often contract him for the grunt job of measuring up empty office spaces they've been hired to re-do. I helped him out on one such job; using lasers, we had to measure a gargantuan open-plan office space in midtown that had been stripped of all furniture. There were no desks or chairs left, but plenty of windows, columns, soffets, and half-height walls to measure. With no place to set a laptop, nor anything to sit on, we took turns of having one of us sit on the floor in the center of the room with the laptop while the other guy ran around with the laser yelling out dimensions to input into the CAD. McDonley's invention would have been pricelessly useful for the two-day project. And the nearly 200 backers of McDonley's project attest to its desirability in other situations too.
Take a look:
Best of all it's pretty inexpensive, ringing it at just $147 on Kickstarter. "Currently standing desks are hundreds to thousands of dollars," McDonley writes. "My goal was to create a reasonably priced standing desk that was portable."