Building on Autodesk's improving product lifetime resources on the Sustainability Workshop, in this challenge Core77, Autodesk and iFixit asked students to design a smart product that is smarter environmentally; a product that can be repaired and will stand the test of time, even if some of its components need to be replaced. Sustainability and repairability are important considerations for designers at all career levels. But, by the record number of entries for this challenge, it's apparent that these issues are paramount with young designers as they face the future with increasing needs and decreasing natural resources. Out of the more than 200 entries, judges selected a terrific representation of winners in First, Second and Third place as well as some honorable mentions.
For First Place, judges selected two entries. The Easy Access Computer Monitor designed by Gabriel Nicasio, Praneeth Pulusani and John Zakrzewski from Rochester Institute of Technology and a Repairable Microwave designed by Marshall Jamshidi from Savannah College of Art and Design.
"The Easy Access Computer Monitor offers a cost benefit to users as well as an environmental benefit in terms of reducing the number of whole monitors which are thrown away rather than repaired," said Dan Lockton, design researcher and creator of the Design with Intent Toolkit and a challenge judge. " In increasing users' confidence in repairing their own products, it could also have further benefits as time goes on. I can also imagine that in many workplace IT contexts, being able to replace backlights easily would have cost benefits."
Commenting on the Repairable Microwave, judge, Kyle Wiens, Co-Founder and CEO of ifixit remarked, "This idea makes me say 'This is so obvious, why has no one done this?' That's the hallmark of a good design. They combined it with a technical innovation that could dramatically increase safety of repair and increase reliability. That's what great designers do—solve lifecycle problems in intuitive ways that make people's lives better."
Second Place went to Rocio Garcia Ramos and Bernat Lozano Rabella from Elisava Escola Superior de Disseny de Barcelona for a Smarter Phone with removable parts, a customizable interior and endless exterior combinations that play with colors for housing, buttons and structure. Judges were impressed with the compelling concept and attention to lifecycle as well as the elegant unfolding structure.
And, with a solid concept, using simple materials, and considering durability, ease of use and emotional connection, David Ngene from Rhode Island School of Design took home Third Place for his Able Modular Headphones.
Click for full-sized image!Honorable Mentions (Click for Full-Sized Images after the jump):
Ronja Ophelia Hasselbach from the Folkwang University of the Arts in Germany for a repairable Coffee Machine.
William Tham from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for the Simplestream home irrigation system.
Enzio Lette, Elysa Hofstra, Jesper van Manen, Steven Crielaard & Lars Hammer from Delft University of Technology in The Netherlands for Cleancut, a durable electrosurgical pen for electrosurgery.
Ehsan Noursalehi from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign for a Cardboard Wireless Router.
A special mention goes to the students of Joost Van Cauwenbergh in Belgium who created Project Zetel, an interesting chair using plastic bottles. The design solution was a result of a five-week exploration of Autodesk's Sustainability Workshop using Autodesk Inventor. We applaud the effort of the class and look forward to seeing more work from the next generation of young designers.
Thanks to our incredible judges for their hard work and CONGRATULATIONS again to all our winners!
And, to hear more about the winning entries and learn about Autodesk's Sustainability Workshop, be sure to join Autodesk TODAY, Wednesday, December 5 at 4:00pm PST / 7:00pm EST for their webinar, Winning Approaches to Smart, Sustainable Product Design. Register here.