Monday, 6 December 2010

Yanko Design - Latest Posts

Yanko Design - Latest Posts

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Interactive Electronic Jewelry

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 08:33 AM PST

How would you like your bracelet display a bunch of text, the text you desire, the text you love? If Biju Neyyan is a designer who has some clout in the future, you can bet that this project, “eJOUX” will bring that functionality to your wrist and neck. This project consists of a Bluetooth device to which you upload your own specific design, animation, or functionality. One screen all around the band is what it is.

Turn it into a swish of blowing leaves, connect it to your music player and display text telling you the track or sound-activated animation, all of this on flexible screen technology. Welcome to the future, where someone can send you more than a message to your mobile phone – welcome to a future where electronically, your friend can send you a design you can wear instantly! Super fun. Do want.

Designers: Biju Neyyan


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Planting Paper Flowers

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 08:28 AM PST

How many times during the day in the dead of winter do you just sit there and think, gosh! I wish I could plant a flower right now! Well now we all can! Sandra Bautista’s designed a collection of flowers on paper that, with a bit of rolling and basically a simple cup or vase, you’ve got a loverly flower any time of the day!

Take a look at these instructions, and be sure they are followed to the t! Especially make sure to heed number five:

1. Choose a flower.
2. Place it as the cover.
3. Make a roll with all pages together.
4. Put it in a vase.
5. And of course, don’t water it!

32 Flowers. 29×37 cm.
Everyday a different one, everyday a beautiful one!
Flowers make people happy, give flowers as a gift!

No dunking! Flowers for the love of looking only!

Designer: Sandra Bautista for itunube


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Advanced Walking

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 08:22 AM PST

Welcome to the future of walking support, so says Andres Sebastian Sanchez. This is a multifunctional walking helper for moving side to side, forward, and backward, not to mention that super little seat for taking a rest. Folding down is meant to be simple, and multiple assembly configurations are possible. Different heights, positions, and etcetera, all in an attractive black, orange, and gray.

Designer: Andres Sebastian Sanchez


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Throw The Perfect Christmas Party

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 01:26 AM PST

Is there a recipe to throwing the perfect Christmas Party? YES! You take a bunch of merry people, toss them with good tidings and garnish with loads of love & cheer. While most of the above ingredients are readily available, hosting in the perfect setting can get a bit tricky. Not to worry, because here are some ideas that’ll make your holiday shindig a success.

Polar Ice Tray by Jacky TC Wu

Ice can make or break a party but leave the boring cubes in the freezer. Step up your game with an Inukshuk ice sculpture. Familiar? It was the official symbol of the 2010 Olympics Winter Games.

Colors: White, Red & Black
Price: $59

Trio Plate (Set of 2) by Jean Marc Gady

Good food is 50% taste and 50% presentation. The Trio Plate elevates even the simplest nibbles to culinary perfection.

Price: $48

Tissue Box by John Brauer

"Attention to detail", a phrase hammered into my head by my etiquette teacher! Details like an artistic tissue box can add a dash of elegance to any room.

Colors: Red, White & Black
Price: $32

Slate Tabletop Fireplace by Gido Wahmann

Make your space cozy and inviting with this Slate Tabletop Fireplace. The steel oil burners mimic logs in a fireplace. A handsome addition to any party.

Price: $365

Hug Salt & Pepper Shakers by Alberto Mantilla

Christmas is all about love and giving. The Hug Salt & Pepper Shakers endorse that sentiment aptly.

Price: $24

Migration by Lichen Studio

Christmas celebrations are incomplete without decorations and lights. Set the mood right with the Migration modular oil candles.

Price: $98

City Rain Concrete Glass by 25toGo

I’ve loved the City Rain Concrete Glass tumblers ever since they made their debut in the YD store. Each one was handcrafted with love and precision. Made of high water-absorption concrete and glass, they’re awesome!

Price: $18

Wine Tree by Delia

As the host you’re allowed to be a bit of a show-off, but do it with class and sophistication. Display that collection of wine you’ve been working on all year with the Wine Tree!

Price:7 Bottles Rack – $89; 10 Bottles Rack – $ 149; 17 Bottles Rack – $175

d°light Bubbles by Diana Lin

Another item that holds a soft spot are the d°light Bubbles. They’re fun and interactive. They exude charm and wit, lighting up the most mundane spaces with a subtle glow.

Price: $139

Animal Shot Glasses by Goody Grams

Round out the night with shots of your favorite liqueur in these Animal Shot Glasses. Perfect way to end a very special night as people stagger home.

Available in: Bull, Bear, Moose, Rhinoceros, Deer, Rabbit and Ram. All 7 designs come with a detailed look and shape.

Colors: Black & White

Price: $28


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Book Reading Made Haptic And Easy For The Blind

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 01:00 AM PST

The Haptic Braille is a mouse-like device that’s capable of translating ordinary text into braille on its surface. This means that the blind can read virtually anything the sighted can. The technology uses optical character recognition. Simply skim it over any text and wait for the haptic feedback. I like how you can pocket and carry it over to the library. Just imagine how many books literally become available at your fingertips. Splendid!

The Haptic Braille is a 2010 Red Dot Concept Design winning entry by Samsung Art & Design Institute student.

Designer: Baek Kil Hyun


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Favorite Mobile News Reader, The Flud

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 12:20 AM PST

Its slick interface has the media gushing so we decided to give it a go. There’s a diverse collection of content already featured in the Flud ecosystem. Each one you subscribe to gets its own panel and regardless of said content’s CSS, the Flud app overrides it with its utilitarian, yet visually engaging interface. Want it? Act fast because it’s free to download both on the iPhone and iPad for a limited time. Android user? Don’t feel left out. Hit the jump and I’ll tell you a secret…

It’s coming to Android! Not only that but expect some awesome updates to the iPhone version like Google Reader syncing and proper categorization. Flud has become our favorite way to keep tabs on our friends already in the ecosystem, e.g. Gizmodo, Notcot and Fubiz. Question is when will Yanko Design get all up in that? Any of you already using Flud?

The Flud | @fludapp


Yanko Design
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Lamps and Geometry

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 12:15 AM PST

Here’s a quick design tip. If all else fails, turn it 45 degrees. Try it with anything you do because it may just work. Lamp 45 by Jaren Goh is a simple, unpretentious desk lamp engineered from aluminum and steel mesh. Simply by turning the mesh cage and bulb socket 45 degrees, he’s created visual interest. My eye is drawn to things slightly askew in a world that demands uniformity. It might not be everyone’s cup of tea but I’m loving the raw geometry. If you hate it, turn your head 45 degrees then everything will balance out.

Designer: Jaren Goh for Munkii


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Why Do So Many Designs or Products Look The Same?

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 12:05 AM PST

Ever wonder why so many products look the same? On the surface, it may appear designers have found the ideal form factor so there’s no need to change anything, but there’s more than meets the eye. The reasons are deeply rooted and the key to breaking the mold is to first understand why. Hit the jump!

Contributing Editor: Brian Ling

I'm surprised to see two similar designs have won the 2010 iF Concept Award. The Easy Needle (left) and the Ppin Needle (right) were both created by students from Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China.

Here are another pair of ideas, the e-Cart on the left and the Saving Cart (which won an iF Award as well) on the right. Both concepts seem to revolve around the idea of converting kinetic energy into stored latent energy as the trolley gets pushed around by a shopper.

Time and time again we see it, and we often wonder why designers (assuming they work independently) seem to come up with similar design solutions? I thought it would be a good exercise for us to understand and be aware of the conditions that could lead to similar design solutions.

Working with Similar Design Briefs, or Briefs that Want the Same Thing.

One of the biggest reasons why we have similar products is that these designs come similar briefs. There is a good chance that the designs for the needles came from a studio project when the lecturer asked the students to design products along a similar theme. I noticed the students came from the same university.

Along these same cognitive lines, designers could be faced with briefs requesting an Mp3 player that is just another "iPod, but better". Though such briefs are not as common as they were five years ago, designers need to ensure they create a better design brief by challenging assumptions and focus on identifying objectives or problems.

Overly Limiting Design Briefs

While I believe in the freedom of a tight brief, a limiting design brief is another condition to be watchful of. A good example is when you are developing tried and proven products and the client asks you to just "design something nice on the outside". Sometimes it may be no fault of the client, especially when there is a huge mechanical component. They simply just do not understand and it is your job to use design to reconcile it.

Clients requesting or limiting design activity to things such as a design refresh, body or face-lift with little or no architectural change can result in similar looking products. While not something every designer cherishes, this is unfortunately the bulk of most design work in consumer electronics and probably why many products look very similar in that industry.

Often it is about managing expectations. Many clients may not be aware of the outcome, but are only limiting the design activity for purely financial reasons. They may also naively think that a design is about "skin deep" aesthetics and by just changing its look, will give them a new product.

Working with Similar Processes

Broadly put, working rigidly by using a similar design process or methodology could result in similar looking designs. A good example is in university design courses that have a more technical or mechanical approach to design refinement. Though not necessarily a bad thing, their graduates often run very similar looking portfolios with technical resolved solutions.

Another angle we can look at is in a studio environment lead by a strong individual that has a distinct way of working or visual style. Luminaries such as Karim Rashid, Marc Newson or Philip Starck have distinct visual styles you can spot instantly. This can also happen in smaller more traditional design consultancies that are lead by a strong creative director who encourages the team to approach problems in a certain way.

That is why it is always important to challenge, vary or tailor our design processes to fit a particular design problem.

Designing Lower Complexity Products

Lower complexity products, which some designers also call low or no tech products, may lead to design solutions that are quite simlar. The reality is that many of these products were invented years ago, and the functionality of such products are tied to its construction. Things like the needles (above), cutlery, plates, furniture, lamps toothbrushes are so straightforward and simple to make that it is challenging to do something different. I am constantly amazed by designers that can continue to create fresh designs from such simple products.

Sometimes the simpler a product, the more difficult is becomes to design. A small mistake can be amplified many more times than it normally would.

Working with Similar Visual Stimuli, or a Popular Visual Style

It is a dangerous mistake for new designers to look for inspiration like magazines. Looking at other products for a market competitive study is fine, but when it comes to inspiration, you will very likely reproduce designs that are similar.

I remember when Apple introduced the first iMac with their range of transparent bubble gum colors. Suddenly every product in the market was transparent bright blue or orange. Designers were just sick.

But designers were not cured. The same story followed with glossy white or black materials, and more recent geometric designs with the promise of simplicity stamped right on its metal body.

I'm glad to see that things are starting to change, however I still get nervous when I hear clients wanting to be the Apple of the "X" industry. More specifically, they want their products to reflect the same Apple look and feel rather than adopting the visionary and risk management style of the company.


So there you go, four possible conditions that could lead to similar looking products or designs. Do you have any more to share? Have your say in the comments below. I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I have writing it, and I'm looking forward to reading your comments.

Brian is a multidisciplinary industrial design leader that goes under the pseudonym of “The Design Translator”. Formally a Senior Design Manager at Philips Design, he currently runs a Strategic Design Consultancy and muses about the strategies for good (industrial) design over at Design Sojourn. He often laments the lack of good soy mochas and Italian pizzas (with Rocket and shredded Parma ham) in Asia.


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Only The Essentials, Haworth LIM Light

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 12:03 AM PST

We’ve written a lot about minimalism but what is it? To say it’s simply stripped down and devoid of the frivolous is inaccurate. We’ve all seen designs that embody that statement, yet fail in all intentions. When I got my hands on Haworth’s awarding winning LIM Light, I knew minimalism. It’s the removal of the non-esssential to embrace and enhance the functional. The LIM Light embodies it and has become one of my favorite products of the year.

Haworth’s LIM Light is a multipurpose LED task light with a magnetic base allowing for multiple configurations. The minimalist design won the coveted 2010 Gold IDEA award for its innovative use of LED lighting. Essentially made of just LED’s and block aluminum, the simple material usage is efficient and recyclable.

The LED diodes are arranged on a strip along an aluminum arm. The arm magnetizes to an aluminum base. The mechanism by which the two connect enables you to easy adjust how you want the light. No need for screws, slides or other mechanical apparatuses. This simple approach spotlights what the primary function should be – illumination.

I’ve had it on my desk for nearly a year. Being the editor of an ID blog means I get to try out a lot of things so my desk is constantly finding new visitors. Once in awhile a visitor becomes a resident because it’s everything I want and the LIM is one of those products. Only one other lamp (by Herman Miller) has caught my fancy but the LIM strikes a chord with my minimalist nature. It actually beckons my desk to be cleaner and all by itself, has become the centerpiece. Even my MacBook Pro looks unremittingly complicated under the LIM.

Aesthetic simplicity aside, it’s actually very easy to use. To turn on, just press a small integrated button on the diode strip. Press it twice to increase the illumination.  It’s pure white light and each diode is consistently even in intensity – a testament to the build quality.

If you’re wondering, LIM stands for “light in motion.” Absolutely brilliant!

Designers: Pablo Pardo and Ralph Reddig for Haworth


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Each Hour By A Cyclist

Posted: 06 Dec 2010 12:01 AM PST

To pay homage to cyclist Graeme Obree’s amazing career, Mr. Jones Watches just released “The Hour” watch. Each hour of the day is revealed by a cutout with words that have particular meaning to Mr. Obree. For example, the 12 o’clock position reveals the numbers 52.713 which is the distance Obree covered to win the world cycling championship in 1995. Inspired by Obree’s flare for the unconventional, the watch uses design cues normally reserved for children’s watches. It’s playful, allows for intricate illustrations, yet very professional and functional. If you want one, act fast. It’s just one watch in the Masters of Time series by Mr. Jones and it’ll run ya £145.

Designer: Mr Jones Watches

The Hour – TL from Mr Jones on Vimeo.


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