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Discussion Threads

November 2012

Garret Chow / Photo by Mike Martin
Design Process Kills Creativity / Design Process Creates Creativity

Daniel Stillman makes a case for process-centered design, concluding that it should be regarded as an opportunity for storytelling through creativity.

The Future of 3D Printing: Mere Misnomer or Something More?

Now that stereolithography and extrusion-based 3D printers alike are outgrowing their longtime niche, Editor Ray Hu takes a moment to explore the past, present and future of digital fabrication for the mass market.

The Lesson of the Parasite

Tad Toulis explores a less salient (and less savory) case of biomimicry: the notion of an infectious agent—an outsider—as a metaphor for reconfiguring systems qua organisms.

Weaving a Bicycle: The RaceBraid by Jacob Haim and Munich Composites

The young designer offers an inside look at his high-performance bicycle frame concept, created to complement the cutting-edge carbon braiding fabrication method.

YUNG HO CHANG + FCJZ: MATERIAL-ISM at Beijing's UCCA through December 2nd

Spanning the last 30 years, YUNG HO CHANG + FCJZ: MATERIAL-ISM explores FCJZ's experiments in architecture, design, planning and art together with a detailed study into the different aspects of Yung Ho Chang's practice, such as inhabitation, construction methods, urbanism, tradition, perception, and culture.

All Chips On the Table: The Bicycle Art and Design of Garrett Chow

We chatted with the artist—Lead Graphic Designer at Specialized and co-founder of MASH—on the occasion of his recent exhibition at the Rapha San Francisco Cycling Club.

Notes from the Field: Technology in Rural Uganda

An Xiao Mina reports back from her ongoing research efforts in the developing world.

Why a Car Collector with a One-Car Collection Is the Richest of Them All

This five-parter on the history of the Mercedes 300SL Gullwing is a must-read for any gearhead.

In the Studio with Chen Yaoguang of Hangzhou's DBDD

The interior architect has established himself among the Chinese elite—now he looks to make his name in the West.

A Pedal-Powered Packmule: Exclusive Interview with Donky Bike Designer Ben Wilson

While we'd seen several ultra-high-end bicycle concepts of late, designer Ben Wilson has come up with a rather more utilitarian take on a two-wheeler for urban settings.

Book Review: Why Shrink-wrap a Cucumber? The Complete Guide to Environmental Packaging

We highly recommend this guide to best practices in contemporary packaging design. Reviewd by Perrin Drumm

October 2012

Photo by Iwan Baan
for New York Magazine
Designing Delight: Behind the Scenes at Facebook

Kate Aronowitz, the Director of Design of the Silicon Valley company, shares an exclusive look at the inner workings of the seminal social network.

Lumium's Tuto eReader for Educational Change

The multinational design consultancy offers an in-depth case study on creating a handheld educational device for the next generation of tech-savvy students.

DIY Digifab via Deadwood, SD: The Story Behind the B9Creator

A hobbyist launches an open source SLA 3D-printer company from the American heartland, thanks to Kickstarter: on the occasion of World Maker Faire 2012, Mike Joyce shared the story behind his one-man operation.

Dispatches from the East: The Business of Opening Ceremonies

In his latest report from Qingdao, Roland Boal gets over his culture shock to articulate Occidental insight into the Chinese obsession with pure spectacle.

Building a Bottle Brick at GlassLab

When the Corning Museum of Glass recently invited Tim Dubitsky to participate in their GlassLab, the Hawai'i-based designer and farmer took the opportunity to make a vessel for his homebrewed ginger beer.

A Raw Materials Nightmare: The Blue Pine Disaster

An outbreak of invasive mountain pine beetles spreads from Colorado to British Columbia and Mexico: a four-part look at recovering the afflicted raw materials.

Hurricane Sandy: How You Can Help

The Tri-State Area was ravaged by a hundred-year storm in the final days of October 2012. We made it through relatively unscathed, but many of our friends and neighbors did not...

Disney Research Presents Optically-Enabled 3D-Printed Interactive Objects

A team of researchers recently developed novel applications for 3D-printed objects, thanks in part to high-resolution stereolithography.

Engineering Toy to Empower Girls

Kara Pecknold offers a closer look at GoldieBlox, a construction toy for girls. Developed by Debbie Sterling, the toy is intended to promote the education of girls and more specifically, their science and math skills.

How William Root Spent His Summer Vacation in 160 Sq. Ft.

This past summer, a Pratt undergrad took a road that is much less traveled, building (and inhabiting) his very own tiny house.

Book Review: Going Public: Public Architecture and Interventions

Going Public, Gestalten's latest publication, features the most innovative and exciting uses of public space from around the world, from dense city centers to forgotten freeway underpasses to distant forests and fjords. Reviewed by Perrin Drumm.

Gallery: Beijing Design Week 2012

Check out all of our coverage of the second annual Beijing Design Week in one place.

September 2012

World Maker Faire 2012 by Ray Hu
The Attention Deficit Designer

Jon Winebrenner talks about what certain designers and Ferraris have in common: "they run fast and hot... Ideas for these designers come fast and furious... They are designers that live with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder—ADHD or ADD for short."

Why User-Centered Design Is Not Enough

Professor John Wood argues for a more nuanced approach to design, moving beyond the outdated legacy of myopic humanism towards a more conscientious approach to design, from a culture that celebrates consumption to one that takes context into account.

Interview with Red Hat Designer Mo Duffy

Senior Interaction Designer Mo Duffy shares her experience on crafting the invisible, hitting the ground running at her first job, graphic design as an icebreaker and more.

A Community-Owned Map Accessed via Mesh Networks

Digital cartography gets hyperlocal in Parsons grad Jonathan Baldwin's Tide Pools, a community-generated and -targeted map that can only be accessed via mesh network.

Product Licensing 101: So Let's Talk Money

In the second chapter of his series on Product Licensing, Bruce Tharp of materious provides detailed advice on how to actually turn a profit by licensing your designs.

Cybersquatting and the New Internet

Attorney Stacy Wu breaks down what designers need to know about the shift beyond '.com' towards new generic top-level domains (gTLDs), such as .music, .Nike, .Africa.

Regarding Kickstarter & Product Design Projects

Earlier this year, our longtime contributor Don Lehman undertook a comprehensive how-to guide for would-be 'Crowdfunding Revolutionaries.' With the recent announcement of policy changes for Product Design and Hardware projects, Don offers his two cents on the implications of the new rules, as well as an open letter to Kickstarter on behalf of the industrial design community.

World Maker Faire 2012 Event Recap

A perennial highlight of the Tri-state event calendar, the family-friendly Faire is a two-day celebration of how the focused creativity of play can be an exploratory process that eventually benefits society as work.

The One-Handed Condom Wrapper: An "Extreme-User" Story

Drawing on the experiences of a suggestively-termed group of "extreme users," designer Ben Pawle hopes to bring innovation to prophylactic packaging.

Roadbooks: How We Used to Navigate

Hipstomp provides a four-part history of paper-based navigation in the pre-GPS era.

The Journey of Sebastian Errazuriz: Book, Exhibition and Exclusive Q&A

The twofold characterization of Sebastian Errazuriz as a designer and an artist has bedeviled his endeavors for over a decade now. This much is apparent in the dialectical introductory texts to his first monograph—to say nothing of the work itself, which resists characterization as it hovers in the narrow space between understatement and overstatement.

Gallery: London Design Festival 2012

One of our biggest single photo galleries, plus all of our London coverage from September 2012 in one place.

August 2012

Photo Credit: Jon Pack
Rumble in the Patent Jungle: An Interaction Design Perspective

IxD veteran Dave Malouf writes: "We are about to reach the climax of a war among multi-national technology companies. The chess pieces of this war will be intellectual property (IP). In all war, there is collateral damage and in the IP battles that damage is two-fold effecting consumers and smaller technology companies..."

The Design of Design Patents: What Every Designer Should Know about Protecting Your Work

Attorney Michael Hages explores the ins and outs of patent law in this four-part primer on intellectual property.

Watch and Learn: There's More Than One Way to Additively Manufacture a Metal

We've rounded up several informational videos in this handy survey of various methods of 3D-printing metal.

Airpod, the Car That Runs On Air

India's Tata Motors are working with the engineering experts at MDI on a diminutive urban vehicle that runs on compressed air.

Moulton Bicycle Company, Yesterday and Today

Esteemed English engineer and invetor Alex Moulton passed away just a few months after this short film was released. We took a look at the history of his eponymous bicycle company on the occasion of their 50th Anniversary, for which "Moulton Bicycle Company - Made in England" was produced.

To Design Is to Understand Uncertainty

Dr. James Self presents an interest thesis regarding the underlying premise of design, namely that "design is to engage with an exploration of ideas towards the yet to be."

What Happens to the Post-Olympic City?

Filmmaker Gary Hustwit has teamed up with photographer Jon Pack for his latest project, a visual document of former Olympic sites in varying states of ruin or renewal. NYC's Storefront for Art and Architecture hosted an exhibition of selected images of the work-in-progress during the London games.

A Different Kind of Concept Bike

A mysterious entry for the James Dyson Award raises questions about the boundaries of conceptual design for which innovation comes at the expense of practicality and safety.

Is Beck Hansen's Song Reader Really Where It's At?

The mononymous musician partners with indie publisher McSweeney's for his unconventional 12th 'studio album,' a dossier of sheet music that is intended to be a crowdsourced affair.

Gallery: Superhuman at Wellcome Gallery

Sam Dunne visited the group exhibition, which explores the extraordinary ways people have attempted to improve, adapt and enhance their body's performance throughout history.

July 2012

 
Core77 Design Awards 2012: Congratulations to All 200+ Awardees!

From Paris to Brasília, Seoul to San Francisco, Chengdu to Brooklyn, we hope you enjoyed tuning into our global celebration of design excellence! Thanks to all those who participated in this year's program and a special thank you to our jury teams who had the tremendous job of reviewing this year's submissions—we couldn't have done it without you!

Case Study: Outlier on Creating the 21st Century Jean

We've been fans of Outlier since they first launched, and as designers, cyclists and 21st-Century urbanites, we're duly impressed with Abe and Tyler's continued commitment to innovation in apparel and accessories. The Brooklyn-based brand has built an ever-growing cult following over the years, and we're pleased to present an inside look at their rigorous design process.

Visualizing Change: An Conversation between Designer's Accord and the Noun Project

The Noun Project collects, organizes and adds to the lexicon of highly recognizable symbols that form the world's visual language so they can be shared in a fun and meaningful way. The symbols are free, simple and high-quality—not to mention truly delightful. Founders Edward Boatman and Sofya Polyakov share how a shared visual language can be the connective tissue across disciplines and geographies, and why you don't need to be a designer to be an effective communicator and change-maker.

What Moves? Culture & Interaction Design, by Don Norman

The inimitable Don Norman dismantles some basic conventions of user interface design... leaving us with nary a sense of direction for the future.

Corning GlassLab & Cooper-Hewitt Present Live Glass Demos at Governors Island

In order to bring their mobile GlassLab to Governors Island, the folks at the Corning Museum of Glass had to schlep the custom-built tractor trailer from the Finger Lakes region down to Jersey, completing the 200+ mile journey by barge. The series of live glassmaking demonstrations affirm that the trek was well worth the effort: the Corning team offers an experience that is at once informative and spectacular—that they're masters of the craft is a given.

Redesigning Cape Town: Interview with Richard Perez

Now that Cape Town has officially accepted the title of World Design Capital 2014—a first for Africa and a first for the Global South—the city's mayor has appointed an industrial designer, Richard Perez, to help the municipality to internalize design thinking. We spoke to the designer, who holds Masters degrees from both the RCA and the University of Cape Town, about his new role and how to elevate the WDC2014 program beyond a year-long festival.

Rethinking the First and Last Mile: MIT MediaLab's Hiriko CityCar vs Copenhagen's Bike Superhighway

In the second essay on the future of transporation, our own Ray Hu examines how two seemingly disparate solutions actually represent fundamentally diverging approaches to a widely-recognized problem in urban planning.

Dispatches from the East: Living, Working and Designing in China

Designer Roland Boal "decided to give up a cozy life in West London and move to Qingdao, China, to head up the first overseas office for one of the world's leading industrial design consultancies, Priestmangoode." He shares his experiences as a designer and an expat.

How to Make It in America: Designing a Better Supply Chain for the 2nd-Generation Cuppow

While Kickstarter has lowered the cost of entry for young upstarts and industry veterans alike, there's something to be said for working hard and saving up so you have some 'liquid assets' in the ol' rainy day fund when inspiration strikes. That's what Aaron Panone and Joshua Resnikoff did to realize their wildly successful Cuppow, which has since proven its usefulness by facilitating the production of this very publication, via daily doses of caffeine...

Winners of the Designed in the USA Logomark Redesign Challenge!

We asked and you delivered! Earlier this summer we asked you to help us redesign the Designed in USA brand certification logomark. Core77's LinYee Yuan and Lance Hussey of RKS evaluated a strong pool of submissions, and after much deliberation, we're pleased to announce the winners.

Student Concept Designs: Where Do You Draw the "Suspension of Disbelief" Line?

A dubious folding sewing machine concept is the rendering that launches a thousand comments concerning the question of fantasy vs feasibility.

Book Review: Making It; Manufacturing Techniques for Product Design, by Chris Lefteri

Book Editor Rob Blinn breaks down this comprehensive guide to contemporary manufacturing processes, a handy reference for practicing designers of all stripes.

Gallery: Show RCA 2012

This year's Royal College of Art annual summer show included work by the greatest number of graduating students in the college's 175-year history. Nearly 500 art and design postgraduate students from more than 40 countries exhibited the results of their creative undertakings during the past two years in what is considered to be one of London's most prestigious creative hubs.

June 2012

Nike Pro TurboSpeed
Route77: The Great Core77 American Road Trip

Now that he's completed his degree, our own Dave Seliger is ready to hightail it out of Hanover and discover America—specifically, the current 'state' of American design. Over the course of ten whopping blogposts, Dave stopped in some two dozen cities in nearly as many states, and we've got all of the roving reporting from his 5,000+ mile circuit around these United States in one place.

Product Licensing in an Era of Open Innovation

Bruce Tharp kicks off his column on product licensing in an age open innovation. He contends that product designers—with the volume of innovative ideas they can generate, their understanding of the product development process, and with their ability to visually communicate—are uniquely suited to become the darlings of the product licensing world.

2012 Bicycle Film Festival in New York City and Beyond

The last weekend in June saw the perennial celebration of cycling and its various subcultures as Brendt Barbur's inimitable Bicycle Film Festival entered its second decade. Even as the popularity of pedal-powered transportation continues to grow, this year sees a more laid-back schedule, hearkening to the festival's grassroots origins.

Passion Attracts: The Coming Talent Wars

Tad Toulis tackles the current state of the design profession, specifically how practitioners and their employers alike must embrace the tech-inflected atmosphere of entrepreneurship in order to evolve.

Nike Unveils Pro TurboSpeed & Medal Stand Collection for US Athletes

The leader in athletic apparel and footwear has some new tricks up (or rather, on) its sleeve for our fastest, fittest athletes as they step up to the world stage. Plus, streetwise sportswear for Olympians as they earn their places on the podiums throughout London.

InteriorLifestyle Tokyo 2012 Coverage

We couldn't pass up an opportunity to see what's new and what's next in Japanese housewares at the annual InteriorLifestyle Tokyo show.

Gallery: DMY Berlin 2012

The 10th year of Berlin's annual design festival featured everything from the official "Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland" design award to a handful of satellite shows.

May 2012

Nikolai Moderbacher - SI: Progress
Photo by Ray Hu
The Power of Bad Ideas, by Steve Portigal

A thought-provoking essay on the upside of bad ideas during the ideation (or if you prefer, brainstorming) process, and why 'bad' doesn't necessarily mean 'not good.'

Looking Back at 20 Years of Kikkerland with Jan van der Lande

Our friends at Kikkerland celebrated their 20th Anniversary at the ICFF this year, taking the opportunity to reflect on how they've grown over the past two decades. From founder Jan van der Lande's houseboat on the Hudson to their current international design studio, we're pleased to present exclusive excerpts and a Q&A with Jan.

The Key to Sustainable Product Creation: The Marriage of Engineering and Design, by Dawn Danby

Interdisciplinary designer Dawn Danby shares invaluable insights into a more focused, nuanced approach to sustainable design.

Catalysts for Change: How to Gamify a Path Out of Poverty

Our own An Xiao Mina spoke to gamemaster Tessa Finlev of Catalysts for Change on the occasion of their recent 48-hour brainstorming marathon, built on the Foresight Engine online gaming platform.

New York Design Week 2012

Locals made a strong showing at ICFF and elsewhere in NYC this May... though we might be biased in our opinion that our own All City All Stars show (gallery below) was the highlight.

Salone Milan 2012

All of our coverage from the Salone and its ever-expanding universe of annual satellite events: from the canals of Zona Tortona to the warehouses of Ventura Lambrate, we tracked down the best of Milan 2012.

New Amsterdam Bicycle Show 2012

We gladly made rounds at the Skylight Soho for the second year of New York's premier bike expo. We've got a full event recap, as well as a more in-depth framebuilder highlight and plenty of photos from the weekend event.

Book Review - Introducing: Visual Identities for Small Businesses

It's hard to go wrong with a visual anthology from Gestalten. Reviewed by Perrin Drumm.

Gallery: Core77 All City All Stars Exhibition

For NY Design Week 2012, we called on our fellow Gothamites to show us the current state of design in the five boroughs (including Staten Island), and they did not disappoint.

April 2012

RedShift by BRD Motorcycles
How BRD Motorcycles is Changing the Face of Motocross

Dave Seliger interviews BRD Motorcycles CEO Marc Fenigstein on their slick electric bikes. It's not rocket science (though engineering training helps): "Nobody needs electric motorcycles," says Marc, "but we found a way to make everyone want electric: by making them go faster."

Case Study: Icebreaker Merino - Reinventing Wool as a Performance Fiber

Rob Achten, VP of Product & Creative Director of Icebreaker, offers an inside look at the New Zealand apparel company's vertically integrated business model.

Moving Through Hospitals: Designing Handwashing

Rachel Lehrer examines the somatic side of user experience design in an important yet often overlooked setting. The MFA candidate presents her findings and insight into hospital hygiene in a two-part case study.

Design Ethos 2012 Do-Ference: Vision Reconsidered

Carly Ayres reports live from three days at the Savannah College of Art and Design, thoroughly illustrating how the second annual Design Ethos event is not just a conference, it's a 'do-ference.'

Logic Over Lust: Remembering Butzi Porsche

Contributor Raymond Jepson reflects on the renowned car designer's legacy.

Imperialist Tendencies, a Four-Part Series

Jan Chipchase of frog design offers his expertise on 'Design Imperialism,' drawing on his extensive experience in ethnographic research.

Need to Know: PSFK Conference NYC Recap

Highlights from the "Ideas and Inspiration" blog's annual conference.

Book Review & Event Recap: Paper View - Sight Unseen's Printed Edition

We celebrated the launch of Sight Unseen's first collection of design stories, Paper View, at NYC's Creatures of Comfort.

Gallery: New York International Auto Show 2012

Marking the end of auto exhibition season, this year's show was decidedly mainstream with an abundance of plug-in electric options on parade; see our favs in our gallery.

March 2012

Photo of Noma Food Lab by Mork
Two (Non-Exclusive Possibilites for the Future of Transportation

Inspired by recent stories on European cycling culture and autonomous cars—by Streetsblog and Wired's Tom Vanderbilt, respectively—our own Ray Hu explores the future of transportation: maybe computer-guided automobiles are the perfect complement to pedal-powered vehicles.

The Character of Design

Sydney-based designer Steve Baty offers a close examination of intent as a first principle of design, providing a detailed analysis of the ideation process that precedes and informs prototyping and actual execution.

Made in the USA: Kinetic Custom Machine, a CNC Speaker Factory and Beyond

Like many All-American entrepreneurial stories we're hearing these days, the Kickstarter debut of SoCal studio Kinetic Custom Machine is a timely tale of a couple young fellas with a dream and a CNC machine.

Design Indaba 2012: Collaborations with Time and Place

Design Indaba has certainly put South Africa on the design map as an annual destination for design practitioners the world over. René Redzepi of NOMA and architect Dan Pearson offered a pair of standout of talks at this year's conference.

International Home + Housewares Show 2012 coverage

Don't miss our exclusive coverage of the annual show, including photos, videos and interviews live from Chicago!

In the Studio with MGMT

Perrin Drumm stops by the Brooklyn graphic design studio to discover how the five-person operation led by principals Sarah Gephart and Alicia Cheng tackles up to ten projects at a time.

New Nordic Interior: 3XN/GXN Creates Gastronomical "Experimentarium" for NOMA Food Lab

The Danish architecture studio recently designed the interior of the new Food Lab at Copenhagen's renowned NOMA

Book Review: Wicked Problems: Problems Worth Solving, by Jon Kolko

Kolko offers his insight on Horst Rittel's notion of 'wicked problems,' and how designers might begin to tackle them. Reviewed by Rob Blinn.

Gallery: American Design Club Presents "Threat - Objects for Defense and Protection"

Following their open call for bespoke objects "designed to protect you in case of a break-in or some other 'threatening' situation," the AmDC selected 54 projects to exhibit in the springbenefit show.

February 2012

ENTO: The Art of Eating Insects
Case Study: Ento, the Art of Eating Insects

Ento is a roadmap for introducing edible insects to the Western diet, a project undertaken by a team of four postgraduate students from the RCA and Imperial College London who wanted to tackle the issue of food supply in an increasingly hungry world. Motivated by the failings of the livestock industry, the team wanted to see how this provocative new food source could be introduced to Western diets by driving cultural change through understanding human perceptions, using strategic design thinking, as well as through creating innovative and compelling experiences.

In Search of Sock-Sneaker Hybrid, Nike Develops "Flyknit"

Nike's continued materials experimentation has yielded Flyknit, their proprietary blend of "yarns and fabric variations [that] are precisely engineered only where they are needed for a featherweight, formfitting and virtually seamless upper." The benefits are threefold: 1) lighter weight; 2) less waste, as the Flyknit materials comprise the bulk of the upper; and 3) combining the comfort of a sock with the structure and support of a traditional sneaker.

Biomimicry 3.8: What Would You Ask Nature?

Design leader Robert Suarez and Sustainability Strategist Kathy Zarsky have been exploring this question through their studies in biomimicry with Biomimcry 3.8, the world-leading organization that harnesses nature's strategies to inspire new kinds of creative problem-solving. In this conversation with the Designers Accord, we learn from Robert and Kathy not just what they ask nature but why they ask nature, and how it makes them better designers.

Two Folding Electric Bikes Offer Twofold Urban Mobility Solution

They call it the first and last mile, an urban planning issue that has only recently crossed the threshold of collective consciousness, thanks to the ZipCar and bikeshare programs alike. A couple new options for folding electric bikes offer a promising new solution.

An Introduction to the Crowdfunding Revolution

Designer Don Lehman explores the pros & cons and ins & outs of the growing popularity of crowdfunding platforms as a venue for product design. His mission: to "describe what it's like to run a product design project in 2012, the early, Wild-West days of Crowdfunding."

Motorola Solutions' APX XE Remote Speaker Microphone

We intentionally omitted one of our favorite iF Product Design Gold Award-Winners from our list of notables because we had the opportunity to talk to two members of Motorola Solutions' design team. Scott Richards, a Senior Industrial Designer, and Mariah Levitt, a Human Factors Engineer for Motorola Solutions, were happy to share several insights into the premise and process of the APX XE Remote Speaker Microphone.

Accumulated Meaning: "Swept Away" at the Museum of Arts and Design

"Swept Away: Dust, Ashes and Dirt in Contemporary Art and Design" is MAD's latest exhibition in their ongoing examination of materials and process. As its title suggests, all of the works are composed of materials that are overlooked or otherwise ignored, if not eliminated altogether—unsavory scourges of sanitation that accrue over time, infinitesimal residues man-made and otherwise—dirt, dust, soot, ash, smoke and sand.

Core77 Photo Gallery: Designs of the Year 2012

Now in it's fifth year, the London Design Museum's Designs of the Year exhibition presents a snapshot of industry heavyweights across seven categories including: Architecture, Digital, Fashion, Furniture, Graphics, Product Design, and Transport. The show features 89 nominations, the winner for each category and overall winner for 2012 will be announced later this year in April.

January 2012

Courtesy of Google Maps
Google Maps: Designing the Modern Atlas

The online data giant's own UX wizards offers a fascinating look into the design process and considerations behind leader in digital cartography. A must-read not only for designers but anyone who uses Google Maps—in other words, just about everyone.

From Motorcycles to Mad Max: The Found Objects Work of Michael Ulman

Feast your eyes on these remarkably detailed vehicular sculptures by Michael Ulman. The Boston-based artist uses found objects as his medium, abiding by the maxim that "God is in the details."

Guns, Hunting and the Great Outdoors: Introduction to the 2012 SHOT Show

SVA Design Criticism MFA candidate Barbara Eldredge tackled the annual tradeshow in a series of divisive reports on trends from both the floor and the shooting range. The outspoken readers' reactions were at least as interesting as the trip to Las Vegas...

Apple Make a Textbook Move with iBooks 2

Apple has continued to innovate despite the various storylines of Steve Jobs' passing, labor questions, bullish sales figures and persistent hardware rumors as the tech titan looks to reinvent the textbook with iBooks 2.

Everyday Design: fuseproject & Assaf Wand Launch Sabi - Exclusive Q&A with Yves Behar

The founder of the San Francisco consultancy offers some insights into the thoughtully-designed new line of "lifestyle and welllness products designed to transform life's small tasks into moments of joy."

The Landscape of User Experience Design in Asia, by Daniel Szuc and Josephine Wong

As Asian businesses such as Samsung, Huawei, Baidu, Lenovo and HTC (to name a few) increasingly flex their economic clout on a global stage, Daniel Szuc and Josephine Wong note that UX is paramount to their continued success

The New Dawn: Tapping Social Networks for Design Research Recruiting, by Jan Chipchase

The Executive Creative Director of frog provides a comprehensive overview on the current state of ethnographic recruiting via Facebook et al.

The Path Less Followed (or, Why I Didn't Work at Circuit City)

Michael DiTullo shares his story about transitioning from student to professional, including a detour at an electronics superstore.

December 2011

"Little Printer" by BERG
Core77 2011 Year in Review

Our editorial team is pleased to bring you a comprehensive look at 2011: we pored over some 2000+ posts' worth of content to bring you the best of the best. Over the course of six heavily-linked posts, we've compiled our favorites as well as yours, from design for social impact to soon-to-be-classic viral videos.

The Best of Design Tide Tokyo 2011

We were glad to have Nikkei Design Magazine Editor Junya Hirokawa reporting from Design Tide Tokyo this year. Hirokawa demonstrated his intimate knowledge of the contemporary Japanese scene by inviting his designer friends to share their top picks from the exhibition.

Double Diamond for Sustainable Strategy: Participatory LCA and Design Thinking

Stephen Clune and Simon Lockrey present a very thorough and timely case for the "Double Diamond" method of Life Cycle Assessment. Drawing on their research at the Centre for Design, Clune and Lockrey cite existing examples as evidence that sustainability is deeper than many companies may think.

Core77 Photo Gallery: Design Miami 2011

Now in its seventh year, Design Miami has grown 50% bigger since last year... and, with any luck, is that much better this time around. The gallery, as always, is a feast for the eyes for those of you who couldn't make it down there.

1000 Words: The Critical Dichotomies of Design

In this year-end entry for our Apocalypse 2012 series, our Editor-in-Chief Allan Chochinov breaks down the diametric forces that dictate design thinking today, and how we must proceed in order to surmount these challenges.

Big Idea, Little Printer: Exclusive Q&A with Matt Webb, Principal & CEO of Berg

London's Berg gave us a little insight into the future with the unveiling of the "Little Printer," a desktop device that is more or less exactly what it sounds like. We spoke to Principal & CEO Matt Webb about the invention as the first manifestation of their concurrently-launched BERG Cloud technology.

Amplifying Creative Communities 2011 Northwest Brooklyn

Cameron Tonkinwise of the New School's Design for Social Innovation and Sustainability (DESIS) Lab examines community-based solutions for sustainability in this four-part series.

Designed in India: Inaugurating the DSK Supinfocom Campus

Looking towards the future of design at the grand opening of a state-of-the-art design school in Pune, India, brainchild of entrepreneur D.S. Kulkarni and French school Supinfocom.

Book Review: Design by Nature, by Maggie Macnab

Robert Blinn's review of Maggie Macnab's second book is as comprehensive as the book itself... and equally as informative concerning its subject matter.

November 2011

Batwoman: Elegy
artwork by J.H.Williams III
Heart of Darkness: A Mild Polemic

In the first post of our year-long "Apocalypse 2012" series, Jon Kolko makes sense of the myriad crises—from the recent past and in the recent future—so that we, as a society, might collectively design a better future.

Seven Graphic Novels Every Designer Should Know

Core77's resident graphic novel enthusiast Dave Seliger walks us through his favorites—from classics such as Akira to dark horses (no pun intended) such as Batwoman: Elegy—and why they're must-reads.

Architecture for Recovery: IDEO and Michael Graves Design a Home for Disabled Military Veterans

IDEO brings their human-centered design philosophy to housing that is specifically designed for returning veterans. As per our interview with project lead Altay Sendil, "The Wounded Warrior Home Project is a new model for accessible homes on military bases." Read on for more.

Sketchnotes: Ezio Manzini at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Our expert sketchnote-taker Craighton Berman (a.k.a. Fueledbycoffee) presents his latest edition of "visual notes that are drawn in real time."

Book Review: Learning Curves, by Klara Sjolen and Allan Macdonald

Core77 Book Editor Robert Blinn shares his thoughts on Klara Sjolen's eye-catching second book on design sketching.

The Messy Art of Saving the World

Panthea Lee of Reboot tackles the topic of design as an underutilized but paramount aspect of international development projects in a comprehensive seven-part series.

Knog USB-Rechargeable "Boomer" Bicycle Lights, Road-Tested & Very Thoroughly Reviewed

We put Melbourne-based bike-light producers Knog to the test on the mean streets of NYC, and we're pleased to report that no one was harmed in the making of this review.

Design Fancy: Trace Hurns

Matt Brown traces the origins of more awesome apocrypha: from "First-Love" Baseball Bats to doily decoders, Trace Hurns is the subject of yet another modern myth.

Urbanized: A Conversation with Gary Hustwit

The wide release of the filmmaker's third straight design documentary is the occasion for reflection on how his outsiders' naïete is precisely why his films are so interesting.

Photo Gallery: Dutch Design Week 2011

The annual design exhibition celebrates its tenth year in Eindhoven. A must-see for anyone who's interested in what's new and next in design.

October 2011

Photo: Daniel Michalik
Cork: Letting the Material Lead

This is the first piece in a series exploring cork from designer and educator Daniel Michalik. He designs furniture and objects using underutilized materials and manufacturing methods. Recent explorations have included cork from sustainably managed forests and lumber from structures around New York City.As a prelude to this series, Michalik produced a beautiful photo gallery documenting the cork harvest.

A Better World By Design: Spotlight on Panthea Lee of Reboot

Our clogger Dave Seliger provided comprehensive coverage of the annual student-organized conference, including an excellent interview with Panthea Lee of Reboot.

Innovation Self-Efficacy: Fostering Beliefs in Our Ability through and by Design

Liz Gerber, a designer, entrepreneur, and an academic, currently teaches design and innovation at the Segal Design Institute at Northwestern University. As a co-founder of Design for America, an award winning national network of designers using human centered design to make social and local impact, Gerber is passionate about building innovation capacity in organizations.

Designing the Ideal Industrial Design Program

Ziba Design Director Paul Backett wraps up his five-part series on design education with a postscript and prescription for posterity.

Photo Gallery: London Design Festival 2011

Hundreds of photos from a half-dozen events that comprise the ever-growing London Design Festival.

Design Education: Brilliance without Substance

Don Norman's latest rant: "Design education is led by craftspeople who are proud of their skills and they see no reason to change. Design education is mired in the past." Read all about it.

An Empty Lot Becomes a Riverpark Farm in NYC

Nature is taking over New York! Or, at least a sizable plot in Kips Bay on the East side of Manhattan. And, at least temporarily, until the farm built on milk crates easily picks up and moves to its next home. For now, the farm and its 7,000 fruit and vegetable plants, in 85 varieties, are thriving on a "stalled" site, right next to Riverpark, the newest Tom Collicchio venture and proprietors of the farm.

Empathy on the Cyber Frontier: Personal Chronologies & Humble Assistants

Willem Van Lancker shows us how Mad Men's Don Draper predicted the latest shift towards truly human-centered design. Between Facebook and Apple, Van Lancker argues that technology is finally at the tipping point of humanizing digital interaction.

Designing Our Competitive Advantage

Senior Vice President & CMO of GE Beth Comstock reflects on the hitting the seven billion mark and what the future holds—specifically, how design thinking will come into play.

Book Review: Brand Thinking and Other Noble Pursuits by Debbie Millman

Our Book Editor Robert Blinn analyzes Millman's interviews with the likes of Grant McCracken, Malcolm Gladwell and Karim Rashid, and how Brand Thinking encapsulates the conflict inherent in branding today.

September 2011

Teach Less, Integrate More by Paul Backett

Industrial Design Director of Ziba Paul Backett shares five pillars for rethinking design education. Many of today's Industrial Design programs ask their students to be social scientists, technologists, business analysts and brand strategists—just about everything. The reality is, most of these skills are best learned through experience on the job, and the traditional ID skill set still makes for the best foundation: framing the problem, exploring ideas, making prototypes and storytelling.

1000 Words of Advice: Starting a New Design Program

For the past year, Core77 Editor-in-Chief Allan Chochinov has been putting together the bones of a new MFA program in Products of Design at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, welcoming its first students in the fall of 2012. So now it's a year in and a year away, Chochinov has taken time to document some of the thoughts and strategies and arguments for the new program, and lay the groundwork for the certain learning ahead.

Core77 Design Directory Relaunch

September saw the relaunch of our Design Directory, a searchable directory listing professional design firms offering services across a wide array of fields. New features introduced in the redesign include improved searching with larger, image-based results, more browsing options, and a focus on individual projects to showcase firms' work. Monthly plans and add-ons are available to meet firms' exposure needs, and the new design is built on top of the detailed firm listings and increased traffic our SEO and strategic partnership with Bloomberg Businessweek provides.

Ride the Talk: A Sustainability Roadtrip

2.5 Weeks + 1000 Miles + 4 States + Countless Encounters. Follow Cindy Gilbert, director of the Minneapolis College of Art and Design program on Sustainable Design, as she bikes 1000+ miles from Montana to Minnesota in an effort to raise need-based scholarship money for students.

Incase Audio: In-Depth Review

Incase was kind enough to provide us with their full line-up of all new headphones, their first foray into the electronics category. Read our first impressions here.

Gallery: New York International Gift Fair

Featuring everyone from large international design houses to small independent designers, this season's fair was all about getting business done with a few new products launches. Trends include bamboo kitchenware, chalkboard paint and one-liner gift items.

Book Review: Folding Techniques for Designers, by Paul Jackson

Preeminent origami artist Paul Jackson distills years of teaching the 3D art of paper folding to design students in a beautifully illustrated book. This book should inspire readers to find out how far a form can go; how else it can be applied and transformed.
Reviewed by Daniel Stillman.

August 2011

Standing Desk Shoot-Out!

With computer workstations chaining us to a staid work environment, sit/stand desks offer a dynamic trend in office design. Every week in August, we took an in-depth look at some of our favorite options on the market. See how desks from Geekdesk, Haworth, Steelcase, Humanscale & Giraffe stand up to one another.

Knoll CEO Andrew Cogan on Design, Innovation and the Evolution of the Workplace

This year's Cooper-Hewitt National Design Award for corporate and institutional achievement was given to furniture design company Knoll. Andrew Cogan, CEO of the Pennsylvania-based company since 2001, chatted with Helen Walters about the company's ongoing commitment to innovation, describing how Knoll has learned to evolve and adapt along with the market even as it continues to emphasize the importance of design.

Gallery: Talk to Me at MoMA

The Museum of Modern Art's most recent exploration on design, Talk to Me: Design and the Communication between People and Objects, explores the shifting terrain of design: nowadays, designers are not only expected to create form and function in objects but they also must impart meaning. With the aid of recent technological innovations, objects are now expected to interface with users and "contemporary designers now write the initial scripts that are the foundations for these useful and satisfying conversations."

Act First, Do the Research Later

Norman's Law of Product Development: A project is behind schedule and over its budget the day it is started. Don Norman weighs in on design research and argues for alternative strategies for design in his newest op-ed column. Here are five very different arguments to support the practical reality of starting by designing, not through design research.

Core77 Presents Dieter Rams: Good Design Is Long Lasting Exhibition & Panel

Cor Phaidon were pleased to celebrate the launch of Dieter Rams: As Little Design As Possible with an exhibition and panel discussion. We received 60+ drawings from Rams fans the world over; see the finalists here.

The Inkling: A Wacom Tablet Without the Tablet

August bore witness to tantalizing teaser images and video of Wacom's new digital pen, which tracks and records actual (ink) penstrokes with a special sensor, freeing draftsmen from the cumbersome tablet.

Book Review: Car Guys vs. Bean Counters

In his book Car Guys Versus Bean Counters, Bob Lutz, Vice Chairman in charge of product development, chronicles the very wary GM of 2001 through it's first still-born turn-around, it's acquisition by the American and Canadian governments and it's new born success since 2009.
Reviewed by Ray Jepson.

July 2011

Awards Identity by Studio Lin
Core77's Ultimate Gift Guide for Summer Making

It's Tool Time! Each week, a selection of our favorite designers from the worlds of craft, hack and DIY to help curate a selection of gifts and gets to inspire you to get your hands dirty and dive, safety-goggles first, into the season for making!

Core77 Design Awards: Live Broadcast Schedule

This is the moment you've been waiting for. Set your clocks because beginning next week, we'll be broadcasting LIVE over 10 days from eight countries with our distinguished judges announcing the winners from 15 categories. Drumroll please...

The Design Dilemma: Dismay vs. Delight

Columnist Don Norman deliberates over his frequent state of "simultaneous dismay and delightful admiration about the end product of designers." Practical versus delightful: Which do you prefer?

Gallery: Otherworldly @ MAD Museum

"Otherworldly: Optical Delusions and Small Realities" presents an eclectic range of dioramas, models and site specific installations alongside photographs and video created from the hand-built works.

The Case for Competitive Collaboration

Columnist Tad Toulis weighs in on the nature of successful collaboration. Like two pugilists in a ring, creative collaborations require passion, ambition and a good dose of competitiveness if they're to deliver results that matter.

Coroflot Genius Gallery

This summer, Core77 & Coroflot have partnered with Blurb, the online photo book publisher, to bring our readers the Coroflot Genius Gallery, a contest celebrating some of our members' most inspired creative visual work.

Gallery + Coverage: Sofia Design Week

Returning to the Bulgarian capital for it's third year, Sofia Design Week took over the city for eight days with a packed schedule of exhibitions, design talks and workshops. The festival—a relatively newcomer to the design calendar—is as much about generating design awareness amongst the locals as it is a platform for showcasing new and emerging design talent.

Book Review: A Taxonomy of Chairs, by Jonathan Olivares

We review Jonathan Olivares' dissertation on office chairs, a dissertation on the novel features from a curated selection: With full color photographs and breakdowns of chair bases, armrests and more...
Reviewed by Robert Blinn

April 2011

PIC: Aart Van Bezooyen
Building Adaptive Capacity, by Michael Sammet

Ten years after Cradle to Cradle, design for sustainability is now moving towards a new qualitatively different area of exploration: designing to build adaptive capacity—designing for resilience, designing for resourcefulness and designing for empathy.

It's Not Easy Being Green

Core77 contributor Aart Van Bezooyen and Paula Raché embark on a 184-day creative journey around the world conducting lectures, student workshops, exchanging ideas with designers and taking notes on sustainability examples and challenges in the cities they visit.

Gallery: 2011 International Home + Housewares Show

Not only did Core77 provide live video coverage from this year's Home and Housewares Show in Chicago but we also have product highlights of all our favorite water bottles, rainbow-colored kitchen gadgets, indoor fire pits and housewares bobbles collected in one easy photo gallery!

Designers Accord: Sustainability in 7

The top sustainability experts in the world share 7 things every designer should know about their field of sustainability in a short-video series curated by the Designers Accord.

Dimensions of Design, by Sami Nerenberg

As the notion of design expands, it becomes more and more important for designers to continue to raise the curtain and democratize design by simply articulating what design is. Design educator Sami Nerenberg presents a simple and straightforward framework for tackling the question, "What is design?"

Book Review: The Industrialization of Design, by Carroll Gantz

The first history of design we've seen in quite a while that also gives editorial space comparing the arc of industrial design in the United States as compared to Europe. The book opens tracking the "Twin Revolutions" in industry in the United States and Britain, walking the reader from the origins of design in both countries into the seamless multinational production effort that is most ID today. Reviewed by Robert Blinn.

March 2011

PIC: Sam Dunne
Dr. Braungart on Designing a New Material World

Recent events around the world expose the heightened uncertainties of a growing demand for materials that are both precious and in limited supply. In this Q+A, Braungart encourages designers to fully understand material flows and learn how to capture material assets at every part of the life cycle.

Design Fancy: Travis Salisbury, by Matt Brown

The newest piece from the short story series about fictional designers making fictional things. Travis Salisbury begins his career as director of design for the Montana State Legislature and is the man behind great design artifacts including Chair #406, Jailbird Quarters and the Doodle Book.

2011 International Home + Housewares Show

Reporting on the latest in homeware design, product presentations, exhibition design and industry trends through carefully curated video content, LIVE.

Gallery: Stockholm Design Fair

Celebrating it's 60th Anniversary, much of the work took visual cues from mother nature and there was an abundance of highly crafted woodwork. Standout pieces include the K-Chair & K-Plus by Danish designer Helle Damkær for Japanese manufacturer Kitani.

Ziba for TDK Life on Record, by Paul O'Connor and Carl Alviani

Ziba Design was approached by electronic component maker TDK to elevate the brand from its analog heritage to become relevant for a new generation of consumers in the digital age. They take us through the design language for the resulting product line, a collection of audio electronics including a turntable, headphones, speaker and boombox.

I Have Seen the Future and I Am Opposed, by Don Norman

Don Norman, jack-of-all-design-trades and Core77 columnist, reflects on the future of our technologies and warns about propriety controls. Weigh in on this stirring argument for net neutrality and the importance of Internet freedoms.

Book Review: Cult-ure: Ideas Can Be Dangerous, by Rian Hughes

Beautifully designed as ideas translated into 2-page memes. Interspersed between the text are digressions on particle physics and quotes like: "The illiterate of the 21st Century will not be those who cannot read and write but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn." Cult-ure certainly provides a lot of opportunities. Reviewed by Robert Blinn.

October 2010

PIC: Lisa Smith
London Design Festival 2010

The London Design Festival went out with a bang at the V&A Museums's Two's A Pair Event, closing down a massive program of events, from mainstream to fringe. We sent Core77 Correspondent Shai Akram to blitz the shows and capture the best.

My Concorde Thing, by Nathan Shedroff

"When I started collecting Concorde memorabilia, I don't think I really knew why. The Conran china wasn't particularly 'designy.' LAN and Air New Zealand's new business class ware is much more suited to a designer's home..."

Maker Faire NYC 2010

The Maker Faire made its East Coast debut at the New York Hall of Science earlier this month to celebrate d-i-y and open source processes of all kinds, from crafting all the way to carnival stunts.

The Challenges of Teaching Sustainability: The RCA's Approach, by Clare Brass and Octavia Reeve

"Conventional design education trains designers to drive consumerism, which drives growth, and is the established way of achieving prosperity; like many art and design institutions the Royal College of Art is beginning to grapple with the apparent contradiction in the sustainability debate..."

Announcing the Winners! 1 Hour Design Challenge: Play-Doh Kicks

We're thrilled to announce that Flipp82 from Germany has won the 1 Hour Design Challenge: Play-Doh Kicks Grand Prize for his interpretation of the Adidas SL 72, combining two colorways in one hyper-detailed model, down to the logo on the tongue of the sneaker and the perforated yellow tread.

Exploring Materials: Creative Design for Everyday Objects, by Inna Alesina and Ellen Lupton

"Every year, new books come out for industrial designers and architects to familiarize themselves with the abundance of new materials they can probably barely afford to buy (see Emerging Technologies and Housing Prototypes or the Transmaterial series). Well, Inna Alesina and Ellen Lupton's new book Exploring Materials is absolutely nothing like that..."

Ars Electronica 2010e

A shut down Tobacco Factory in Linz, Austria was the perfect location for this year's Ars Electronica, a yearly festival for art technology and society attracting almost 100,000 tech lovers from all over the world. In the context of today's surveillance society, financial bankruptcy and climate crisis, this year's theme of REPAIR is a call for action in order move things in the right direction.

September 2010

PIC: Lisa Smith
New York International Gift Fair Summer 2010

In our gallery, we pass up the snow-globes, decals, and candlesticks to focus on the special section Accent on Design, where companies like Areaware, DBA, Artecnica, and Joseph Joseph share the latest they have to offer.

The Strategic Arc of Interaction Design: Moving Towards Holistic System Design, by Steve Baty

"What a great idea: a 'green' product to make a difference, make one happy, and assist in performing the menial tasks that litter an otherwise hectic day. Or is it? Consumer decision-making is beginning to follow a distinctly 'green' trend, which is fantastic in principle but often contrived in reality."

A Day at the Museum: Kicker Studio's Inaugural Device Design Day Conference, by Ben Fullerton

"On August 20th, San Francisco boutique product design company Kicker Studio held such an event: its inaugural Device Design Day (D3), at the San Francisco Children's Museum..."

Book Review: Design is How it Works: How the Smartest Companies Turn Products into Icons, by Jay Greene

"Jay Greene's new book on the power of design wears its affiliations right on the book jacket. The logos of all eight companies he profiles are stamped right on the cover, although perhaps Virgin Atlantic gets an extra psychological shout-out, since the subtitle and author credit seem to owe a little debt to the form of luggage tags..."

The Designmatters Concentration at Art Center College of Design: Q&A With Mariana Amatullo

"Design for social impact is undoubtedly a piece of an art and design education that is exploding with enormous force across the top institutions around the country and internationally..."

The Designers Accord Educational Toolkit: What does it really take to encourage sustainable practice? By Valerie Casey

"We all know that a single solution, technology, or person will not solve the humanitarian and climate change challenges we face. There is no silver bullet, but there is silver buckshot. One of the best ways we can advance our mission to practice sustainable design is to make sure the next generation of designers will graduate with a value system that reflects the new realities of our profession..."

"Politics Please, We're Social Designers," by Cameron Tonkinwise

"On August 5th, the Parsons DESIS Lab (of which I am a member) opened an exhibition at the Abrons Arts Center in the Lower East Side of New York City...The assumption is that people around the world are giving up waiting for government or business to develop more sustainable (both ecologically and socially) ways of living and working, and so are starting to do it for themselves..."

August 2010

PIC: Paul Fraser
SIGGRAPH 2010

The world's foremost conference on computer graphics and interactive techniques brought together almost 23,000 artists, gaming experts and developers, filmmakers, scientists, and students from around the world, with more than 160 industry organizations exhibiting this year.

The Strategic Arc of Interaction Design: Moving Towards Holistic System Design, by Steve Baty

"This simplistic view of interactions and their design, is not the only view, nor the most appropriate. When designers apply their more holistic lens to the design of interactions it becomes clear that the practice is a much more complex and deeper undertaking."

New 1 Hour Design Challenge: Play-Doh Kicks

This month, we're celebrating shoe designers all over the world with our latest 1 Hour Design Challenge: Play-Doh Kicks. Your task is to recreate or reinterpret your favorite pair of shoes in play-doh, in one hour or less.

Maker Faire Detroit

This July, the Maker Faire came to Detroit for the first time! The two day event was packed with inspiration and enjoyment for people of all ages and walks of life. Highlights included Maker Faire favorite The Life-size Mousetrap, hot-rodded Power Wheel racing, and more.

Book Review: Plastic Dreams, by Charlotte & Peter Fiell

"Plastic Dreams by Charlotte and Peter Fiell, aims to be, as it observes on its back cover 'quite simply the definitive guide to plastics in design.' Indeed, Phillippe Decelle of the Plasticarium in Brussels agrees; 'Plastic dreams is outstanding. No one icon is missing.'"

Mitigating Mitigation: Hierarchy, Communication and Success, by Fernd Van Engelen

"If Mitigated Speech can bring down an airplane, surely it can bring down a product development program. In the ideas around mitigated speech, I see a connection to my own experiences in product development..."

Open for Branding

"How do you create an identity for an organization that is constantly changing? We're taking on this challenge with a new project for Design Museum Boston and want your input to help determine the brand identity and visual language. "

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