The Design blog

The Design blog


Computer-in-a-ball: Smartball concept reimagines computers of the future as spheres

Posted: 21 Dec 2011 07:07 AM PST

Asmita Prasad:

Designer Laura Lahti has come with a new computer keyboard design for the next-generation of computing that could entirely revolutionize the way we look at and interact with our personal computers. Named Smartball, the concept takes the notion of a touchscreen interface to the next level and makes it more user friendly, interactive and functional. The gadget is intended to work as a game controller and a remote control as well as a mouse and a keyboard. The form of the Smartball will essentially resemble a soft, malleable balloon though instead of being hollow and bouncy, it would be made of e-textile smart fabric and would feature an electronic core.

The Smartball
The Smartball

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The Smartball
The computer of the future

The seamless interface of the spherical computer system allows users to place their fingers anywhere on the ball and the Smartball will automatically reposition its home keys to the position of your finger. By pumping a single finger, you can then confirm the orientation and the screen will display the control keys on the surface. Until the your motor memory with the ball is up to par and Smartball has decided your speed, a visual keyboard will show up on the ball as well as a the bottom of the television monitor or computer screen.

The device holds a lot of potential for 3D developers and designers who create apps with integrated Augmented Reality since the most exciting quality of the Smartball is that the user's interaction with this surface screen occurs from inside the ball. This unique functionality allows surgeons, architects and engineers to grab, pull, twist and pinch virtual simulations. The Smartball will also allow these users to use the tactile feedback of the e-textile to feel the texture of various materials. The surface of the device could thus be used to present users with the ability to experience textures like silk, flower petals etc. via the interface of the Smartball itself.

The honeycomb structure of the device allows all kinds of exploration possibilities within websites since users will be able to experience textures when interacting with images. The Smartball will be compatible with any external display and the device can interact with any display-based gizmo as a universal remote. The OLED components within the ball will allow the device to serve as a self-contained content viewer.

On the surface, the programmable ball can be set up to display users' server cloud as an internet browser or a computer desktop and users will be able to set up their own passwords for the device via finger gestures like pinching and snapping. For watching a movie, holding the ball is a very ergonomic position for the wrists, and it has a slight weight that prevents it from rolling away or needing to be propped for relaxed viewing pleasure.

Via: Behance


Asteroid table-shelf takes multi-functionality to the next level

Posted: 21 Dec 2011 04:53 AM PST

Asmita Prasad:

The Asteroid Table-Shelf by architect Vladimir Paripovic of design studio Parchitects is a fantastic new design that will change everything you know about multifunctional furniture. The unusual design of the Asteroid allows it to be used as a table and a shelving unit as well as table and bench combo. Intended for spaces like neglected corners in large rooms or backyards and decks, the Asteroid is a statement piece and a standalone work of art in itself. The table-shelf/bench has been designed in a way that allows users to put it up in various orientations to change its usage for every person.

ASTEROID table-shelf
ASTEROID table-shelf

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ASTEROID TABLE by studio PARCHITECTS
ASTEROID is a multifunctional piece of furniture on blocks as a form

While a small child can use this as a reading table and seat, an older person can use this as a multi-level shelf for holding planters and flower pots. The design is not intended to be very space-saving and the Asteroid does not make pretences to that end. With an attention-grabbing angular design, the table-shelf unit almost appears to be a clearing space for itself and thus serves as a minimalistic décor piece with its provocative shape.

Designed as a multifunctional piece of furniture, the Asteroid originated with the deconstruction of the form of cubes with vertical displacement of their edges allowing the design to take its ultimate shape. With a clean and clear form, the table-shelf provides storage on three planes. The Asteroid was crafted using eco-friendly techniques and materials and uses sustainable and more durable materials in its construction with sustainable plywood painted and natural beech wood being used to fashion the piece.

Source: Vladimir Paripovic


Teasmade Automatic Tea Making Machine also charges USB gizmos

Posted: 21 Dec 2011 03:39 AM PST

Asmita Prasad:

Well, the holiday season is upon us and everyone loves the gift giving and the gift-receiving and the general merriment. But there are a few of us for whom the season comes with deadlines and late night shifts at the office and nothing is more irksome than having to stumble out of bed in the morning and having to wait around the stove in a cold kitchen while the teapot boils the water for your morning cuppa. Designer Luke Smith has come up with a brilliant new tea-making apparatus that can free consumers from the trouble of having to get out of bed to get their morning tea ready.

Teasmade
Teasmade

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Teasmade
Automatic Tea Making machine/alarm clock by Luke Smith

The Automatic Tea Making Machine AKA Teasmade is a fully-functional tea maker that also doubles up as an alarm clock as well as a USB charger. The multi-functional tea-making machine is the prefect beverage brewer for the urban professional who doesn't have the time to hang around the kitchen every morning waiting for their tea.

Teasmade is a truly innovative product that combines the functionality of a traditional teapot with the capacity of a modern smartphone-compatible gizmo. Teasmade comes with a USB slot at its back which allows the tea making machine to charge any USB gadget on the go via a rechargeable battery installed at its base.

The tea maker comes lined with a special foam-laden inner wall that represses the sound of boiling water so that you are not woken up by it in the morning. The programmable tea making machine can receive commands via smartphones and can be set to start boiling water for tea at a preset time by the user.

Via: Behance


SpnKiX: The motorized shoes

Posted: 20 Dec 2011 11:47 PM PST

Sahil Khurana:

The year 2012 is going to be great year, that's for sure. With a bagful of developments paving the way for innovation, the technology of tomorrow shall revolutionize the way we travel on our feet even. It may sound pretty amusing, but it’s pretty true.

spnKiX
spnKiX

Proving our worth in the 21st century, life has been made easier as and how we progress further. Bringing forth the concept of personalized, motorized skates, designer Peter Treadway stands tall when it comes to introducing the SpnKiX. Hailing from California, Peter decided to lend a pair of wheels to the human feet, making commuting all the more convenient and plausible.

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spnKiX
spnKiX a Wearable Mobility

SpnKiX can broadly be categorized as a set of battery powered, motorized skates which once strapped onto your shoes, provide a mechanical support to your feet. While there is a dedicated skate for each foot, the motor and battery are what make up the skates. Zoom away on this gadget designed out of reinforced nylon fiber.

The skates come equipped with a remote which can be strapped onto your arm. Once strapped on, it controls both the skates wirelessly. The best part of this amazing gadget is that it comes equipped with a pair of training wheels which can be removed once you're rearing to go like a pro.

Zip zam zoom on these skates measuring 9.5" long, 9" wide and 10.5" high. Catering to the age group of 16 years and above, SpnKiX would end up being everyone’s real time fantasy.

The designer is still awaiting funds for the production of his futuristic gadget. Once he is able to amass enough dough, he expects to launch the production in a full fledged manner by February 2012 while the end product shall be available by March, hopefully.

The skates just provide a small glimpse into what the future would look like. With this product, peeking into the future surely looks quite bright.

Via: Gizmodo/ KickStarter


Kube2: World's smallest touch MP3 player

Posted: 20 Dec 2011 11:34 PM PST

Arun Shekar:

MP3 player is everywhere, it has become such an integral part of our life that wherever we go, we carry our favorite songs in it. Kube2, is one such tiny, impressive MP3 player, manufactured by Bluetree Electronics, a Singaporean based company. It has been dubbed as the world’s smallest touch based MP3 player, which is made out of touch sensitive aluminium body. Its interface responds to touch gestures along the face-plate, top and bottom, to play, pause, skip songs, and enable other features.

Kube2 MP3 player
Kube2 MP3 player

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Kube2 MP3 player
Produced by singapore technology company the ‘kube2′ is billed as the world’s smallest touch mp3 player.

Kube2 is the second generation update to the original colorful Kube, which was released a couple of years earlier. Kube2’s interface is its touch sensitive face-plate. Swiping one’s finger on it will skip to the next or previous song; holding one’s finger on top or bottom will increase and decrease the volume, and swiping against the face-plate in a specified movement will pause, playback or will enable the shuffle feature.

It has a maximum battery life of 6 hours when songs are played continuously, and a charge up time of 1 hour from zero to full charge. The device will accept micro SD cards ranging from 512MB to 32GB capacity. The Kube2 is currently available with a price tag of approximately $35, which comes with a 4GB memory card.

This tiny device is not widely available yet around different markets, but it is a huge hit in Singapore and Indonesia currently. This player also allows the users to jazz it up with colorful themed stickers that wrap around the little player beautifully. These stickers are specifically made for Kube2 players, which will cost somewhere around $4 each. This device will be on exhibition in the CES 2012 show in January, and its worldwide release dates are expected to be revealed during the event.

Source: Designboom


Emax Super Marine 45: World’s first carbon neutral superyacht

Posted: 20 Dec 2011 11:09 PM PST

Sanjib Saha:

The concept

Luxury, comfort and style are what yachts have been known for. But, nowadays the concept of using eco friendly technology in these vehicles is the main concern. Hence, most of the yachts have adopted new technologies to reduce their carbon footprint. Emax Super Marine 45 has become the world’s first carbon neutral superyacht. It is built with modern technology and is very environmentally friendly. Moreover, it offers 32KWh of power. The maximum speed that it can be provide is 80 knots. This Allison's global leadership in Hybrid Technology is estimated to cost more than $300 million dollars.

Emax Super Marine 45
Emax Super Marine 45

The Inspiration

Emax Super Marine 45 is the very first yacht of the world that tenders with zero emissions. It is at the same time having a good enough acceleration, besides the fact that it follows the zero emission principle.

Eco credentials

This Emax Super Marine 45 yacht is fitted with GM Allison hybrid transmissions and the twin CMD TDI V6s on the Emax jet propellers. Also, the solar hybrid tender allows it to travel at an 80 knots' speed. The weight of the engine is similar to that of a diesel engine. The Solar Hybrid boat can travel at a speed of up to 25 knots even in a virtually silent electric mode. Also, it uses a 32 KWh Lithium UPS when runs as a zero carbon ship to shore shuttle.

Feasibility

The Emax Super Marine 45 can accommodate up to 10 people along with 4 sunbathers on the sun bed. There is a shower room with stand up head and a double bed provided inside the vessel in the cabin beneath the Solar Centre Cockpit. Not only that, for longer trips there's a kitchenette with stove, fridge/freezer, microwave and a table that is foredeck for setting the food for six sit-down guests.

Related trends

1. Transcendence

Transcendence
Transcendence

The Suater Carbon Offset Design of this yacht changes the perception of a yacht designed for comfort and luxury only. The ultra-rich concept has come up nicely in this. It is a 49-meter super yacht and is said to be the world's first Zero Carbon yacht. It is also capable of achieving 25 knots' top speed. Transcendence comes with cool Mercedes Benz unit in order to produce clean diesel electric power plant. This further helps in achieving reduction in greenhouse gas emissions over conventional engines between 50 and 100%. This trendy 'ultra-green' machine has made a vast difference.

2. Sauter Zero Carbon Design

Sauter Zero Carbon Design
Sauter Zero Carbon Design

This is a Mega yacht that is propelled by a solar hybrid engine. It just not only aims to reduce emissions, but also promises to be the first zero carbon footprint mega yacht in the world. It is dubbed as the Supernova as it boasts wing sails which are half as tall as found in conventional mono hulls. This hence promises to reduce drag and provide much greater thrust to this 60m Solar Hybrid Mega yacht. The yacht also has an advanced aerodynamic and hydro design that harnesses all sought of weather conditions, be it sun, wind or the waves. This design helps to generate electricity in order to propel the yacht to a cruising speed of 17 knots. There is of course a 100 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. That is made possible by employing multiple diesel electric drives that are further supported by rotational wing sails.

Green Voyager
Green Voyager

Green Voyager is a 45m motor yacht which was designed for an owner who wanted to cruise the globe responsibly giving least importance to comfort and luxury. Green Voyager is the first yacht in the world under 50m built to Green Plus standards. There's an effort to increase efficiency in every area of the yacht. In order to do so, best solutions would include heat reflecting glass, heat recovery, high efficiency insulation, ultra efficient props, gas treatment, bio lubes, and environmental operations manuals. The aim of the design is to reduce the power demand. Green Voyager protects both, the environment on one hand and the owner's operational costs on the other.

4. Arcadia 85 super yacht

Arcadia 85 Superyacht
Arcadia 85 Superyacht

For those people who like eco friendly technology and luxury travel to go hand in hand in a yacht, Palmer Johnson super yacht and the 006 super yachts are the best choices. Now adding to it is the Arcadia 85 super yacht. It has negligible carbon footprint without compromising on luxury features. The Arcadia 85 is the second model from the yacht maker company called Edmiston & Company. It allows the holiday makers to undertake perfectly luxurious cruises. The measurement of the yacht is 85ft in length. It has a room to accommodate at least eight people at a time. To power its electricity and appliances solar panels are placed at the rooftop. These solar panels generate the clean form of energy. There is a use of organic fuel made in order to propel the engine to provide power to reach a top speed of 18 knots.


Best of 2011: Tablet concepts

Posted: 20 Dec 2011 01:35 PM PST

Balasubramanya Subbarao:

There is a revolution going on in the world when it comes to the development of smartphones and tablets. With their touchscreen feature, the tablets have become increasingly popular and they threaten the very existence of the PC! Though that has not yet come to pass, the rate of development of these tablets is something phenomenal. And the tablet concepts are evolving every day. 2011 saw the release of some fantastic concepts and one could only hope that Santa brings home these tablets this Christmas! Here are seven best tablet concepts of 2011.


Sound Perfume glasses use senses to generate emotional response

Posted: 20 Dec 2011 11:34 AM PST

Balasubramanya Subbarao:

The concept

The product could be thought of as a ringtone for the nose! Here is a system that helps people identify themselves with a unique sound and smell. Built into a pair of spectacles which can communicate via apps on smartphones, Sound Perfume intends to personalize a meeting with any person through your own smells and sounds.

Audio and Olfactory Stimuli Glass
Audio and Olfactory Stimuli Glass

The inspiration

Yongsoon Choi’s team at the National University of Singapore conducted preliminary tests on about 52 people and saw that each of them, without exception, enjoyed the additional information received. There were more positive impressions formed during the first time, face to face encounters. Thus, the team was inspired to go ahead with the idea.

The design

The product comes as a pair of glasses fitted with speakers and odor emitters which are positioned behind the ears. An app running on the smartphone connects the phone to the glasses via Bluetooth. You can choose a smell ( from among 8 available now) and a sound for yourself. When you meet someone, the infra-red sensors in the glasses get activated. This results in a communication between the two Sound Perfume apps and the sound and smell also get exchanged along with the name and number data.

So, while the other person experiences the sound and odor you emit, it gets recorded in the phone too. The odor is emitted from from aroma blocks in the glasses which melt to release the odor when heated gently at 46°C. These smells and sounds can be retrieved by the receiver as easily as the name and number and thus helps to relive nostalgia!

The fabulous

This device will help to build emotional responses based on smells and sounds too. Till now, these experiences could only be stored in the mind and heart unlike visual information that was available as pictures and videos. Now, even they can be physically stored in your smartphone. Thus, building memories and reliving them becomes easier and more memorable.

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Audio and Olfactory Stimuli Glass
Sound Perfume glasses uses senses to generate emotional response

The target

Since the intention of the product is to make social interactions memorable, these glasses could be used by almost anyone. Anyone seeking more emotional and involved social interactions will form its target audience. The current trends indicate that the youngsters will be most targeted. With time, the glasses can be also used therapeutically for those burdened with reclusive social behaviors.

Related trends

1. Glasses for blind people

Glasses for the blind
Glasses for the blind

The recent advances in camera technology has ensured the arrival of very small cameras. This has inspired a revolutionary attempt to help the blind to ’see’. The tiny pin-head cameras that are embedded at the top corners of the frame capture information and transmit it to a pocket computer. This computer simplifies the information into a simple pattern which gets displayed on the eye lens. This provides vital info for the wearer. There is also a provision to provide that information via an audio signal too that the wearer hears. Thus, bus-boards and train notices can now be read out to the blind!

2. High-tech spectacles that provide subtitles during a movie

Subtitle glasses by Olympus Corp
Subtitle glasses by Olympus Corp

This in an innovative idea that is sure to make life easier for those who are hearing impaired. The glasses project the subtitles of the movie on to the lenses of the glasses. Movie subtitles for such disabled people needs to include information about the other sounds and sound effects too in the movie. For instance, explosions, footsteps, horns etc. have to be indicated. This will ensure that such people too can go to movies like any other. They need not go to special theaters only!

3. Musician's High-Tech Glasses

Musician's Glasses
Musician's Glasses

Inspired in an attempt to help a euphonium player suffering from retinitis pigmentosa which results in tunnel vision, University of Victoria's CanAssist has designed a pair of glasses that have built-in cameras and screens. The cameras record the conductor and play it on the lenses of the glasses which the wearer can easily see. He can also just look above the rim to see the music notes. Thus, it provides the great ability to see the notes and the conductor at the same time.

4. High-Tech LCD Sunglasses That Instantly Auto-Tint

Auto-Tint Glasses
Auto-Tint Glasses

Photochromic glass is not a new concept. It has been in existence for decades now. But the Navy is testing the release of blast-proof, ballistic eyewear that can alter its tints in response to changing light conditions within one quarter of a second! This will help to prevent exposure damage to the eyes during blasts and other such extreme situations. It also helps in the opposite. When one moves from a bright to a dark place, the glasses again clear up instantly thus preventing the person from removing them and exposing the eyes. The glasses work on the technology of flexible LCD screens that align themselves to provide the tint.


1 comment:

  1. Its greatest blog too Informative gud job! i have a topic related to el diablo train horn and more about train horn usage, Train horns are devices that are used to create alertness or awareness as to the presence of a train to both humans and animals. Horns can also be used as a form of communication among train operators if they are used in a certain fashion. Mostly, horns are used when approaching a railway crossing to alert people that a train is approaching so they should clear off....

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