For those of you turned on by mass-customization, there's a new initiative called Design Democracy '08 - Power to the People. It's not tied to the election, but rather, is an "educational and interactive mass customization manufacturing website." Designers submit designs, and selected pieces will be prototyped and displayed at this year's International Contemporary Furniture Fair in NYC.
The website offers curriculum for "DD08 citizens" to learn about mass customization processes, philosophies, materials, design elements and software/hardware applications. A panel of industry professionals will choose the designs that best exemplify mass customization principles for the showcase. Here's the pitch:
Design Democracy '08 is looking for citizens who believe in industrial evolution, and that object design and fabrication can have a positive impact on society and the environment. Kerry Moore, the co-founder of DD08 says, "This website and ICFF event is primarily about addressing how the world interacts with the goods it creates." Design professionals, students and enthusiasts alike can participate within seven design districts: 3D Designers, 2D Designers, Educators, Students, Trades, Media and Constituents."
Core-fave Scott Klinker, who advised on the project, puts it perfectly: "This grass-roots effort should demonstrate what's possible with the powerful new digital tools that have leveled the old hierarchies of mass production. Mass customization through digital fabrication is a valid and growing format for young designers to build a voice."
Deadline for submissions is March 21st 2008, but the DD08 website will continue beyond the ICFF by continuing to offer mass customization content and to serve as a networking hub for consumers, designers and fabricators.