Tag Archives: design

Design Job: Step it Up! The Step2 Company, LLC is Seeking a Senior Industrial Designer in Streetsboro, OH

The Step2 Company, the largest American manufacturer of preschool and toddler toys and the world’s largest rotational molder of plastics, is looking for a Senior Industrial Designer to work in the R&D Department at our Corporate Offices in Streetsboro, Ohio. The Senior Industrial Designer is

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Design Job: Make a Visual Impact! Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) is Seeking a Director of Design in Providence, RI

RISD is seeking a Director of Design to convey the collective imagination of the college community through integrated print and digital communications that engage and inform diverse audiences, including prospective and current students, donors, faculty members, alumni and the general public. The director, who reports to the Chief Marketing

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The Industrial Design Prototyping Process, Part 4: Laser Cutting, Plastic Welding

Here in Part 4, the prototype of the mobile solar charging platform starts to take shape. Industrial designer Eric Strebel, founder of Botzen Design, shows us the tricks of the trade:

– Using a laser cutter on the styrene forms that he vacuum-formed last time, he’s able to get precise shapes in a compound-curved surface

– When cutting out parts that don’t require an entire sheet of material, he uses the opportunity to cut extra test parts out of the extra material

– The versatility of styrene, which he’s even able to fashion hinges out of

– The benefits of wet sanding, and the importance of sanding blocks

– How to solvent-weld plastic with great precision

Check it out:


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The Industrial Design Prototyping Process, Part 4: Laser Cutting, Plastic Welding

Here in Part 4, the prototype of the mobile solar charging platform starts to take shape. Industrial designer Eric Strebel, founder of Botzen Design, shows us the tricks of the trade:

– Using a laser cutter on the styrene forms that he vacuum-formed last time, he’s able to get precise shapes in a compound-curved surface

– When cutting out parts that don’t require an entire sheet of material, he uses the opportunity to cut extra test parts out of the extra material

– The versatility of styrene, which he’s even able to fashion hinges out of

– The benefits of wet sanding, and the importance of sanding blocks

– How to solvent-weld plastic with great precision

Check it out:


Core77

The Industrial Design Prototyping Process, Part 4: Laser Cutting, Plastic Welding

Here in Part 4, the prototype of the mobile solar charging platform starts to take shape. Industrial designer Eric Strebel, founder of Botzen Design, shows us the tricks of the trade:

– Using a laser cutter on the styrene forms that he vacuum-formed last time, he’s able to get precise shapes in a compound-curved surface

– When cutting out parts that don’t require an entire sheet of material, he uses the opportunity to cut extra test parts out of the extra material

– The versatility of styrene, which he’s even able to fashion hinges out of

– The benefits of wet sanding, and the importance of sanding blocks

– How to solvent-weld plastic with great precision

Check it out:


Core77

Benchcrafted’s Moxon Vise: A 17th-Century Design with 21st-Century Design Upgrades

After Christopher Schwarz wrote an article on how to build a Moxon vise, untold numbers of people tried it. But a sticking point for some was that one of the design elements in Schwarz’s rendition are handscrews made from wood:

Creating these requires turning blanks and cutting threads into them, a process some found difficult. People began reaching out to Benchcrafted, an Iowa-based manufacturer of high-quality vise hardware. “Soon after the [Moxon vise] article appeared,” they write, “we received numerous requests for hardware to make a vise similar to Schwarz’s version, but without having to buy a tapping kit and deal with the frustration that many have experienced with these kits.”

Benchcrafted looked at the design of the Moxon vise and brought it into the 21st Century. The wooden screws were jettisoned, replaced by carbon steel Acme screws, which can withstand a tremendous amount of force. (Acme screws have trapezoidal thread profiles; this makes them exceptionally strong and the go-to thread profile for power machinery.)

Acme threads
Acme threads

Rather than requiring the user to twist handles with octagonal cross-sections, as in Moxon’s 17th-century version, Benchcrafted added a much more ergonomic touch: Their signature cast-iron handwheels, which have enough mass that once you get them going, they practically spin themselves.

Next they made this interesting design choice: The handwheels do not drive the screws, but rotate on the screws. “Instead of the handwheel rotating the screws and being restricted by the weight of the movable jaw, we’ve fixed the screws to the vise itself (they don’t move) and tapped the handwheels, allowing them to move in and out on the rigid screws. The mass of the wheels and the polished acme threads allows the hand wheels to spin freely and do the work of drawing the jaws together effortlessly.”

Finally they’ve lined the inside of the front chop with Crubber, a material made by grinding cork and rubber and combining them under high pressure. Cut into sheets and used to line a vise, the material provides excellent grip yet will not mar the workpiece.

If you don’t understand any of the descriptions above, watch the following demo and all will be clear:

Benchcrafted manufactures and sells the Moxon vise hardware (for $ 149) only; the end user is meant to provide the wood and knock it together.

Benchcrafted’s design improvements to the Moxon vise are apparent. But next we’ll look at how a couple of ingenious fellows pushed the design even further with some clever hacks.


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Design Job: All Fun and Games! Fisher Price is Seeking a Staff Designer (Packaging/UI/UX) in El Segundo, CA

Staff Designer (Advanced Concepts) Mattel, Inc. is seeking an experienced and self-motivated Staff Designer to join its Advanced Concepts / Games Branding and Packaging design team. The Advanced Concepts team focuses on launching exciting innovative Branding, UI/UX and Packaging for a wide range of consumer tech related

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Design Job: Make a Deal! Groupon, Inc. is Seeking a Senior Manager, Product Design in Palo Alto, CA

Groupon is looking for a talented hands-on Sr. Design Manager to join our team in Palo Alto, CA, where you’ll be leading the ways our consumers buy, check out and use the deals cross platform. You have 8+ years of experience as a UX leader and amazing portfolio to back

View the full design job here
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Design Job: Make a Deal! Groupon, Inc. is Seeking a Senior Manager, Product Design in Palo Alto, CA

Groupon is looking for a talented hands-on Sr. Design Manager to join our team in Palo Alto, CA, where you’ll be leading the ways our consumers buy, check out and use the deals cross platform. You have 8+ years of experience as a UX leader and amazing portfolio to back

View the full design job here
Core77

Design Job: Make a Deal! Groupon, Inc. is Seeking a Senior Manager, Product Design in Palo Alto, CA

Groupon is looking for a talented hands-on Sr. Design Manager to join our team in Palo Alto, CA, where you’ll be leading the ways our consumers buy, check out and use the deals cross platform. You have 8+ years of experience as a UX leader and amazing portfolio to back

View the full design job here
Core77

Design Job: Make a Deal! Groupon, Inc. is Seeking a Senior Manager, Product Design in Palo Alto, CA

Groupon is looking for a talented hands-on Sr. Design Manager to join our team in Palo Alto, CA, where you’ll be leading the ways our consumers buy, check out and use the deals cross platform. You have 8+ years of experience as a UX leader and amazing portfolio to back

View the full design job here
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Design Experience That Matters, Book Review: The Back of the Napkin

Cartoons! They carpet the walls of our studio, and they make frequent appearances in Design that Matters presentations and TED talks. In his 2009 book, The Back of the Napkin, design thinker and professional doodler Dan Roam demonstrates how simple cartoons can help us to explain and visualize complex concepts, brainstorm more effectively and extract meaning from piles of data.

The Back of the Napkin argues that if you can draw a smiley face and a stick figure, you’re ready to become a visual thinker. The book demonstrates how even simple doodles can help ideas jump off the page.

DtM’s value is expressed in terms of novel solutions to tough problems. Where powerpoint slides and bullet points can lead to anxiety and boredom, drawing cartoons makes people happy. Happy people are more creative. Creativity pays the bills at DtM.

But there’s more! We’ve found loads of resources describing human-centered design research methods, including IDEO’s Method Cards and the LUMA Institute’s Innovating for People. Back of the Napkin is the first book we found that explains the kinds of visual “frameworks” we use for data-reduction. Frameworks help us to organize the enormous undifferentiated mass of observations and insights we collect during field research. Frameworks lead to qualitative design principles, and then to quantitative product requirements and specifications. Roam’s framework examples on pages 130-133 are worth the price of the book.

And if you buy this or any of the other books through the links in this email, Amazon will send part of the proceeds to DtM!

[The Back of the Napkin]

_____________________________________

This “Design Experience that Matters” series is provided courtesy of Timothy Prestero and the team at Design that Matters (DtM). As a nonprofit, DtM collaborates with leading social entrepreneurs and hundreds of volunteers to design new medical technologies for the poor in developing countries. DtM’s Firefly infant phototherapy device is treating thousands of newborns in 21 counties from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. In 2012, DtM was named the winner of the National Design Award.


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Design Job: Pedal Power! Pearl Izumi is Seeking a Director, Design in Louisville, CO

Director, Design General Purpose: As Director, Design for Pearl Izumi, you’ll lead a talented design team to create product that combines aesthetic appeal with performance innovation. You’ll collaborate with the VP of Product and your fellow Directors to set strategic direction

View the full design job here
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The Blade Runner 2049 Set Design Is Officially Not Going To Suck

The newest Blade Runner 2049 trailer is out and the visuals are worth getting excited for. I promise we aren’t pivoting to a fan site for Ridley Scott adjacent projects, but good set design deserves as much love as we can throw at it. It’s not that I’m anti-CGI, but practical effects can still launch a movie from good to great. It’s why we still care about the first Blade Runner today.

I won’t dig into the new storyline pieces, I’m just thrilled to see solid visual callbacks to the 1982 original that feel cohesive and familiar enough to come through in a tight edit. Vaulted pyramidic buildings and crumbling edifices are dotted throughout, with enough clean futuristic interiors to keep novelty and surprise up. We’ll definitely get grit and apocalyptic tech and downtown lights and flying cars, along with gutted hopeless buildings to match our grizzled old friend Deckard and the future in general.

Production designer Dennis Gassner has some deeply atmospheric credits under his belt (Skyfall and Waterworld among them) and the dedication to world building really pops once you tune out the cops and gaze at the environments. 

Plenty has already been said about director Denis Villeneuve (of Arrival and Sicario fame) and cinematographer Roger Deakins (Hail, Caesar!, Sicario, and dozens of other incredibly shot classics). So let’s just marinate in some stills of the enormous practical effects that “overwhelmed” Ryan Gosling while filming, fantasize about their fabrication shop, and mark our calendars for October. 


Core77

The Blade Runner 2049 Set Design Is Officially Not Going To Suck

The newest Blade Runner 2049 trailer is out and the visuals are worth getting excited for. I promise we aren’t pivoting to a fan site for Ridley Scott adjacent projects, but good set design deserves as much love as we can throw at it. It’s not that I’m anti-CGI, but practical effects can still launch a movie from good to great. It’s why we still care about the first Blade Runner today.

I won’t dig into the new storyline pieces, I’m just thrilled to see solid visual callbacks to the 1982 original that feel cohesive and familiar enough to come through in a tight edit. Vaulted pyramidic buildings and crumbling edifices are dotted throughout, with enough clean futuristic interiors to keep novelty and surprise up. We’ll definitely get grit and apocalyptic tech and downtown lights and flying cars, along with gutted hopeless buildings to match our grizzled old friend Deckard and the future in general.

Production designer Dennis Gassner has some deeply atmospheric credits under his belt (Skyfall and Waterworld among them) and the dedication to world building really pops once you tune out the cops and gaze at the environments. 

Plenty has already been said about director Denis Villeneuve (of Arrival and Sicario fame) and cinematographer Roger Deakins (Hail, Caesar!, Sicario, and dozens of other incredibly shot classics). So let’s just marinate in some stills of the enormous practical effects that “overwhelmed” Ryan Gosling while filming, fantasize about their fabrication shop, and mark our calendars for October. 


Core77

The Blade Runner 2049 Set Design Is Officially Not Going To Suck

The newest Blade Runner 2049 trailer is out and the visuals are worth getting excited for. I promise we aren’t pivoting to a fan site for Ridley Scott adjacent projects, but good set design deserves as much love as we can throw at it. It’s not that I’m anti-CGI, but practical effects can still launch a movie from good to great. It’s why we still care about the first Blade Runner today.

I won’t dig into the new storyline pieces, I’m just thrilled to see solid visual callbacks to the 1982 original that feel cohesive and familiar enough to come through in a tight edit. Vaulted pyramidic buildings and crumbling edifices are dotted throughout, with enough clean futuristic interiors to keep novelty and surprise up. We’ll definitely get grit and apocalyptic tech and downtown lights and flying cars, along with gutted hopeless buildings to match our grizzled old friend Deckard and the future in general.

Production designer Dennis Gassner has some deeply atmospheric credits under his belt (Skyfall and Waterworld among them) and the dedication to world building really pops once you tune out the cops and gaze at the environments. 

Plenty has already been said about director Denis Villeneuve (of Arrival and Sicario fame) and cinematographer Roger Deakins (Hail, Caesar!, Sicario, and dozens of other incredibly shot classics). So let’s just marinate in some stills of the enormous practical effects that “overwhelmed” Ryan Gosling while filming, fantasize about their fabrication shop, and mark our calendars for October. 


Core77

The Blade Runner 2049 Set Design Is Officially Not Going To Suck

The newest Blade Runner 2049 trailer is out and the visuals are worth getting excited for. I promise we aren’t pivoting to a fan site for Ridley Scott adjacent projects, but good set design deserves as much love as we can throw at it. It’s not that I’m anti-CGI, but practical effects can still launch a movie from good to great. It’s why we still care about the first Blade Runner today.

I won’t dig into the new storyline pieces, I’m just thrilled to see solid visual callbacks to the 1982 original that feel cohesive and familiar enough to come through in a tight edit. Vaulted pyramidic buildings and crumbling edifices are dotted throughout, with enough clean futuristic interiors to keep novelty and surprise up. We’ll definitely get grit and apocalyptic tech and downtown lights and flying cars, along with gutted hopeless buildings to match our grizzled old friend Deckard and the future in general.

Production designer Dennis Gassner has some deeply atmospheric credits under his belt (Skyfall and Waterworld among them) and the dedication to world building really pops once you tune out the cops and gaze at the environments. 

Plenty has already been said about director Denis Villeneuve (of Arrival and Sicario fame) and cinematographer Roger Deakins (Hail, Caesar!, Sicario, and dozens of other incredibly shot classics). So let’s just marinate in some stills of the enormous practical effects that “overwhelmed” Ryan Gosling while filming, fantasize about their fabrication shop, and mark our calendars for October. 


Core77

The Design Flaws in This Otherwise Nifty Portable Cassette Player

Sometimes novel designs are not good ones, but have enough “wow” factor to create desirability in those who aren’t thinking it through. I’ll put this Elbow portable cassette player concept in this category. Designed to reduce a Walkman to the barest minimum, it consists of a biaxial arm and provides what initially looks to be a satisfying way to interface with and manipulate a cassette.

The first axis of the arm allows the user to clasp it shut, inserting a spindle into one of the cassette’s gears. The device is then rotated so that the magnetic head can read the tape.

Controls are provided by a single dial which regulates the volume, play, and fast forward functions.

Seems nifty, doesn’t it? But we see several problems that actually make this design a step backwards from Sony’s venerated Walkman. First off is the problem of directionality/orientation. Cassettes have two sides, and the user selects which side of the tape they’d like to listen to. With the Walkman and every other cassette player, this problem is solved in an obvious way: The desired side of the cassette faces outwards.

With the design of the Elbow, “outwards” is presumably the side with the dial on it. But the user is presented with one spindle and two cassette eyes that it could possibly be inserted into. Because the motor only rotates in one direction (there is no rewind functionality), the user must insert it into the correct hole, or risk unspooling the tape on one reel without the slack being taken up by the other reel. So right away, we’ve got the potential for operator error.

The second, more glaring problem is that the device appears to have been designed to make a neat photograph, rather than considering how the user will actually interact with it. Here’s what we mean:

Is the Elbow meant to be held in one’s hand for the entirety of the listening session? Or thrown in a bag? Either way the design, which leaves parts of the cassette exposed, presents a problem. Walkmen, while in use, were either held in the hand (while jogging, for instance), thrown into a jacket pocket, clipped to one’s belt or thrown into a bag. In all four of those scenarios, both eyes of the cassette and the exposed portion of the tape are completely enclosed by the Walkman; there is no danger that the user’s sweaty grip, or debris in a pocket or bag, will interfere with the tape or the cassette’s eyes. The relatively smooth outer shape of a Walkman also provided no sharp surfaces or undercuts which could snag on something. Those positive qualities are absent on the Elbow.

Nevertheless, we’ll probably continue to see these images being eagerly forwarded on social media, with folks proclaiming it a neat design. I suppose it is neat. It’s just not practical nor user-friendly.


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