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  • Cooks, cools and charges your mobile phone

    Poverty, Industrial Design


    A stove that uses acoustic technology to cook and cool, and generates its own electricity, is being designed for developing communities in Africa and Asia.

    The Stove for Cooking, Refrigeration and Electricity, or SCORE, could help improve the health and quality of life for the 2 billion or so people in the world who cook over open fires, its developers say.

    When used in enclosed places, smoke from open fires can cause health problems. And the stoves can be notoriously inefficient.

    A person can spend two hours a day collecting wood to burn in a fire that is so wasteful that 93% of the energy generated, literally, goes up in smoke.

    "We make the burning more efficient so that they use less wood and have more time to spend on other things like education," says Paul Riley, the project director at the UK's University of Nottingham.

    [...] The stove has electrical sockets, where homeowners can plug in, for example, a mobile phone for charging. Or they can sell the electricity as a phone-charging service.

    Wow! Does it do windows as well?

    Via News in Science

  • Made from a bottle of water!

    Environment, Environmental Design


    Did you ever wonder what happens to all those millions of plastic bottles after you put them in the recycling bin? Prepare to be surprised - Marks & Spencer and British Home Stores have recently announced they would each be selling a range of schoolwear made from recycled plastic bottles. The bottles have been chopped up into flakes, melted and then made into a polyester yarn, which is woven into cloth. The end result is a range of fleeces, polo shirts, trousers and skirts that will go on sale in the summer, and apparently don't melt under an iron. I'd watch out for those lunchboxes though, if I were mum!

  • _43062967_betsytop416x200

    This fascinating BBC report outlines in detail one woman's war on waste. Here's a snippet to lure you to go read her tips and tricks to minimize her household rubbish,

    Today it's reduce, reuse, recycle. For earlier generations, make do and mend. Done assiduously, the result is next to no rubbish. With zero waste the goal for many councils, a life-long adherent shares her tips in the first of our week-long look at recycling.

  • Harvesting water from the air

    Environment, Industrial Design


    WatAir, an inverted pyramid made from elastic canvas, recycled polycarbonate, metal or glass, can reap dozens of litres of water a day from the air.

    The inexpensive solution could help bring clean drinking water to people in remote or polluted areas, its developers say.

    "The design has minimal special demands. It is low-tech and low-cost, and in fact can be even produced with local means," says Joseph Cory, a PhD candidate at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and an architect at Haifa's Geotectura Studio.

    Cory and colleague Eyal Malka of Malka Architects recently won first place for the invention in a competition sponsored by WaterAid, an international nonprofit organisation dedicated to providing safe domestic water to poor nations, and Arup, a UK-based firm specialising in sustainable designs.

    Cory and Malka were inspired by the passive way dew gathers on leaves, spiders' webs, even on sleeping bags and tents.

    via News in Science

  • Mc4_chcs_legacy_177_

    According to a speech at a recent conference, up to 98,000 deaths per year result from medical mismanagement in hospitals, and improved access to information could change that. "There's almost no way a single individual could put this [all the information required to care for a patient] together," but health depends on it.

    It's not just a matter of throwing computers at these broken processes, but redesigning them from the ground up with technology in mind. Tools such as ethnography, allowing patients add information to their own records, and ways for doctors and nurses to access this information from anywhere in the hospital are just a few ways a well-designed process can improve the medical industry and save lives.

    Read Health care record needs cited at an IBM conference

  • garbage design

    Environment, Industrial Design

    Garbage is poorly designed. In many cases the only way to deal with it is to burn it or burry it deep into the ground.

    Why didn't we consider this when we designed this garbage in the first place? It's not that it happened overnight. Actually it took a great effort to produce the materials and shape them into products. First they were designed. Many things were taken into account; shape, material, price, color, aesthetics, taste, packaging, etc. Then they were produced; trees cut, iron casted, plastic moulded. Then marketing was used to sell the products. They were transported to shops and finally sold.

    But this, of course, is not the final stage. The product-stage is only a temporary one. Sooner or later (nowadays more sooner then later...) a product becomes garbage. People are continuously seduced by new products. More advanced, more features, more comfort. Or just new. New is delicious!

    So the discarded products end up somewhere else. It's not that they disappear. You can discard them from your home, but you cannot discard them from the planet. It's a closed system. And everything you throw away will eventually come back to you like a boomerang.

    Wouldn't it be nice if the discarded products would not cause problems for the environment? That you could throw them away without feeling guilty? Or the materials could be completely re-used without much effort? Maybe garbage could even be so advanced that it is beneficiary for the environment?

    Sounds crazy?

    I don't think so...

  • 3_177_

    1/ I shouldn't try to depict a bad portrait from Iranian designers! Through a global network, but sometimes I should do!

    2/ All the time Iranian designers - although the "Iranian term" just is regarding to geometrical reason and nothing except that because in Iran we don't have any school of industrial design- trying to find an idea which they like it includes all factors of a good design and with the contemporary situation and facilities in Iran, this ideal thought is more like an utopia.

    3/ I should do something, but if you know them, tell me immediately!

    In design with a general mind we can't design detailed objects. As you know most of the times, detailed objects can play an important role in social life and when you get a general and vague approach, you can't reach a good solution in during of your design process. In Interaction Design we try to keeping in mind people all the time. It means from the first up to end of design life cycle, designers should think about people and ask questions from themselves about behaviors between people and that designed output. So we should have enough knowledge about target group from the first up to end, which during the process this knowledge will be more completely. so through interaction design we should know anything about target group in detailed points of them, but in industrial design all the time amateur designers - like Iranian's ones - without any detailed information try to find a target group! And most of the...

  • Camel_and_designs_132_

    When it comes to the complex landscape of international humanitarian aid, technology interventions and social entrepreneurship, Africa is at a juncture more promising than ever before. Many of the accounts from attendees to the recent TEDGlobal 2007 Conference in Tanzania, held by the Technology, Entertainment and Design organization are a case in point. Jason Pontin, editor in chief and publisher of M.I.T’s Technology Review, surveyed forthcoming solutions presented at TED that could be a recipe for progress and success, making the following compelling statement in his New York Times Slipstream Column (June-17):* “In truth, Africa will need both investment in entrepreneurialism and aid, intelligently directed toward education, health and food.”* This essential equation is at the heart of the objectives behind one of the projects the social and humanitarian initiative Designmatters at Art Center College of Design [] ( has been developing for the past few months in collaboration with a small mobile health clinic in Northern Kenya, Mpala (

    In the Laikipia and Samburu districts of northwest Kenya, nomadic, poverty-stricken tribes often suffer from a lack of basic medical care, as well as access to education and family planning. A small community-based organization, Mpala Community Trust (MCT) is one of the sole health-care providers in the region. MCT’s ex...

  • Sustainable Farming by Design

    Community, Environmental Design


    Sheepdrove Organic Farm in Berkshire UK is a remarkable example of how a person’s dreams can become reality. The farm is a truly unique example of sustainabile design.

    The farm is owned by the Kindersley family (Peter Kindersley of Dorling Kindersley publishers) and started as a small plot of land with a windmill. Peter Kindersley describes, with some amusement, the book on self-sufficiency which has now sold millions of copies and which inspired the continued expansion of the farm.

    Peter also gives a very compelling talk on the reasons for supporting organic farming, which extend far beyond the common emphasis on health to the sustainable nature of farming without using industrial methods: the diversity of plant and animal life on the same land, the health of the soil, the wellbeing of the animals, the growing of more real food. The chicks spend time in their own conservatory extension prior to becoming free-range out of doors. Every detail of the working of the farm has been scrutinised and designed for the benefit of the land, the well-being of the animals and the good quality of the food.

    The latest addition to the farm is the Kindersley Centre, a beautiful and extraordinary timber framed conference centre on the top of the chalk down land.

    Congratulations to the whole Kindersley family who continue to strive to provide an international example of superb farming though big hearts, hard work and thoughtful, brilliant design.

  • Simon1_177_

    Another fab drawing!!!

    Simon is Head of Drama at Dunhurst School and teaches English at both Dunhurst and Bedales

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