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The Design blog

The Design blog

Annex is the new age tripod stand for the iPhone

Posted: 15 May 2012 06:12 AM PDT

Sahil Khurana:

How one wishes, there was a fancy, yet sturdy iPhone stand for everyone to use according to their convenience? Well, those prayers are certainly answered now, all thanks to Annex iPhone tripod mount and stand. The usual tripod stands available in the market are not exactly user or phone friendly and often fall short when it comes to providing a firm grip. This is certainly not the case with Annex.

Annex Tripod
Annex Tripod

Where other tripod stands fall short, Annex emerges as the clear winner. The stand has been finished with a frenzy of sandblasted surfaces and has clear cut edges, awarding it a firm grip. Furthermore, it has suction caps on the front, allowing it to double its firm grip on the phone.

How it scores over other tripod stands is quite simple. The usual stands available in the market often become inadequate as they can't hold phones with protective screen covers, shiny cases etc. This is where the true worth of Annex comes in. The suction caps hold the iPhone so securely, you can be assured you will get a picture which will speak a thousand words of its own accord.

The outstanding feature of the stand is the flexibility it provides to the user. Use it any shape, size and form and one would never to have to look back at any other space consuming tripod stands. The stand is ideal for traveling and clicking pictures in unsteady areas. It's definitely worth every penny spent.


Solenopsis Invicta EV is the lovechild of Red Fire Ant and Mars Rover

Posted: 15 May 2012 06:09 AM PDT

Asmita Prasad:

The Solenopsis Invicta or the Red Imported Fire Ant is one of the world's most irritating and resilient pests that have killed around 80 humans in recorded history and have been known to be excellent predators with incredible survival skills. Though myrmecologists (people who study ants) are fascinated with these stingy little insects, most regular humans do not prefer their company. However, designer Marco Aurelio Galan Henriquez believes that the Red Imported Fire Ant possesses a biological form that can be adapted to electric cars for the cities. This idea has been clubbed with the form of the Mars Rover to make it suitable for rougher terrains or roads in third world countries.

Solenopsis Invicta
Solenopsis Invicta

The Solenopsis Invicta Electric Car is fashioned out of reinforced plastic and carbon fiber and the single seater comes with a chassis that is flexible like the shock-proof exoskeletons of arthropods which would enable it to ride smoothly over all kinds of terrains with ease.

The Solenopsis Invicta Electric Car makes no pretension of being a family car which may make it a little parking and street unfriendly, but it would help save immense amount of battery power since it would not have to tow around the weight of the empty extra seating as it is intended for use by commuters who travel alone.

[Thanks Marco]

Reduce cooling and heating energy demands with the Solar Skin

Posted: 15 May 2012 06:04 AM PDT

Jaspreet Kaur Walia:

The outer walls of the house are never exploited well. They just help mark the territory and prevent us from harsh sunrays, rainfall, winds, and cold weather. However, if you wish to extract much more out of plain walls of your house, then have a look at Solar Skin that will unfurl a multitude of functions for a better living.

Solar Skin
Solar Skin

Solar Skin is nothing but a modular panel that will bring down all the heating and cooling demands, while making sure that natural light gets used in the best way possible. This modular panelized system plays a variety of roles and it can be customized according to the place of installation and the solar conditions existing there. According to the above-mentioned circumstances, it can vary in aperture, material, and directionality.

Solar Skin will help save a lot of energy, which is required to bow down to all the heating and cooling demands, as the system needs minimum energy input for the same. Principles of passive cooling and heating have been used to the fullest while coming up with this brilliant design. Natural light will be able to penetrate through the skin, as the Solar Screen will work with double glazed window units. Such a set up will provide maximum light and minimum heat loss or gain.

A thermal buffer of warm air will be formed by the screen during summers that will aid in natural ventilation and will prevent heat loss in winters. The screen will lend the much needed security and privacy, while doubling as vertical landscape element. Solar Screen will be a great educational tool as well, which will educate children about various things and help them form a connection with plants.

Via: Cargocollective

PosHEAT converts wasted heat into electricity

Posted: 15 May 2012 06:02 AM PDT

Asmita Prasad:

Harnessing heat and converting it into electricity is not a new concept by any stretch of the imagination and the field of harnessing geothermal energy has been explored vastly over the recent decades to serve as a sustainable and clean source of power for human consumption. An unexplored area, however, remains the field of heat generated by humans through their use of electronic and mechanical devices. Since computers, vehicles and domestic appliances etc. are known for emitting heat during their operation, harnessing them and converting that wasted heat into electricity could provide an alternative method of energy generation for domestic users.


The Heat Energy Harvesting for Portable Power Supply (PosHEAT) project is one such venture that proposes the harvesting of wasted heat from various domestic or industrial sources through a Seebeck unit that would be based on the Thermocouple concept. Made from Bismuth Telluride (Bi2Te3), the unit will generate electricity with no emissions, no moving parts and no noise with reduced maintenance, making it a great product for domestic users.

The PosHEAT basically looks to create an electrical system design using the Seebeck theory that can produce electricity by utilizing the difference in temperature when heat emitted from a source comes in contact with cooler air. The thermoelectric device can be based on semiconductors or two different metals and use the temperature difference between them to create voltage according to the theory of the thermocouple concept. The energy thus generated could be stored in rechargeable batteries or boost DC voltage from the grid.

Source: James Dyson Award

Picture Exchange Communication System helps the autistic communicate better

Posted: 15 May 2012 05:59 AM PDT

Asmita Prasad:

For the mentally disabled, communicating with others in social environments can be very challenging. Since people with such disabilities are not equipped with the understanding of social norms like when to listen, when to talk and how to presents their needs to others, interacting with the society can be very disconcerting. The Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) developed by designer Tim Wymore Byrne allows the mentally disabled, people living with autism in particular, to enhance their communication skills in social situations.

I don't follow you
I don’t follow you

Based on a wearable "sixth sense" device developed my MIT students Pranav Mistry and Pattie Maes, the system analysis the user's environment to process visual information and uses a system of projected images to allow the mentally disabled to communicate with others more clearly. By combing projected interfaces developed using advanced technology, the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) becomes a communication platform that offers a hands-free and discreet communicator to the autistic for smoother social interaction.

The device also uses voice recognition technology and is fronted by a digital interface that would enhance the effectiveness of the components of the system and allow users learn new things on their own while helping them explain themselves to other in a better way. The designer intends for the device to be created using existing technology that would make it available for sale under $300 in the market.

Source: TimWymoreByrne

Consul Climatizador Sense Therapy helps you bring foreign climate home

Posted: 15 May 2012 05:31 AM PDT

Asmita Prasad:

The world is increasingly becoming a very small place with cheaper airfares, budget holiday packages around international destinations and the World Wide Web bringing the formerly exotic environs closer to home. However, even if you design your home in the style native to another country, bringing the climate of that region into your home has always been a challenge. To allow people to match their interior styles with the climate of a particular region, Brazilian designer Alexander Maydana has created the Consul Climatizador Sense Therapy.

Consul Sense Therapy
Consul Sense Therapy

The Consul Climatizador Sense Therapy is created as a tool for people who are not satisfied by simply altering their home temperature with regular air conditioning, heating and ventilation but want to experience a more authentic sense of being in an entirely different part of the world. The device, thus is geared not only to decrease or increase the temperature and humidity of the air inside a space but also helps purify the home air and infuse it with fragrances peculiar to particular climates.

The Consul Climatizador Sense Therapy is created as a holistic relaxation device that creates a cozy and harmonious environment within a room or a house by stimulating one's sense of smell, sight and the temperature of their environment. The fully-customizable Consul Climatizador Sense Therapy device comes with a set of controls that can be used to control the color and intensity of ambient lighting, aromas, operating times, and the force of breeze, humidity and temperature levels.

[Cheers Alexander]

Cipher Business Card shaped Stylus may be the dumbest smartphone accessory

Posted: 15 May 2012 05:26 AM PDT

Asmita Prasad:

Everyone knows that the styluses that come with smartphones are very easy to lose which prompts most people to use their fingernails or fingertips to operate their touchscreen phones. And while major smartphone brands are hard at work trying to come up with touchscreens that don't require you to fiddle around with styluses, there are some people who just can't seem to reconcile with the idea of using a touchscreen phone without a stylus. And that's the sanest explanation we could think of for this rather amazingly dumb product called the Cipher Business Card-shaped Stylus.

Cipher Make Your Mark
Cipher Make Your Mark

Probably inspired by multi-tasking gadgets like pens with digital clocks in them or wrist watches with built in cellphones, the Cipher Business Card-shaped Stylus is created around the premise that styluses are indispensable when it comes to operating touchscreens and since the point plastic one that most touchscreen smartphones come with are lost very easily and are very hard to replace.

The Cipher Business Card-shaped Stylus, this comes fashioned out of a capacitive material which allows it to be used with any touch device- be it a public touch screen kiosk, ATM, smartphone, iPhone or tablet. According to its designer, the fact that the stylus is roughly the same size as your drivers' license or a regular business card, it can easily be fitted in your wallet though he/she easily forgot that no one would want to take their wallets out every time they need to use their touchscreen smartphone.

Via: Quirky

iPhone holder for the Toyota Prius doubles up as a charging dock

Posted: 15 May 2012 05:23 AM PDT

Asmita Prasad:

The Toyota Prius is fast becoming one of the most popular eco friendly cars with middle class families and this one piece iPhone holder for the vehicle is going to add another layer of functionality to the vehicle's dash. There are many iPhone dock designs in the market which allow the iPhone to be stationed around the in-car entertainment unit which contributes to drivers' distraction while driving. The one piece iPhone holder by Mike Enayah Design comes with a contoured base that allows it to be fitted to any part of the dashboard which may be within easy reach and line of sight of the user.

iPhone holder
iPhone holder

By having the iPhone holder docked at a location that doesn't need the driver to take his eyes off the road for a maximum of 2-3 seconds, the one piece iPhone holder for the Toyota Prius makes in-car cellphone usage safer. Suited for both left hand as well as the right hand drive models of the vehicle, the one piece iPhone holder for the Toyota Prius can be installed at a customized location on the dashboard.

The one piece iPhone holder for the Toyota Prius also comes with base that can be fitted with the iPhone charger with a slot up front that allows the charger cord to pass through if the user doesn't want to disconnect the phone from the charger when using it in handheld mode. Alternatively, the iPhone holder can also be used as a docking station for in-car charging.

Source: Mike Enayah

Mingle simplifies communication devices for seniors

Posted: 15 May 2012 05:22 AM PDT

Asmita Prasad:

The brisk development in technology over the last few decades has been vastly adapted by most people though senior citizens still struggle to keep up with what the majority of the population considers fairly easy to use devices. A touchscreen phone, a laptop or even a remote controlled home entertainment system with endless customization options could be difficult for senior citizens to understand and operate. To make technology more senior friendly without dumbing it down entirely, designer Nate Sundberg has created the Mingle.


A communicator device that is created keeping in mind the specific needs of an average senior, the Mingle uses the same touch-enabled interface as a regular smartphone. But instead of presuming that its operator would be well versed with current cellphone interface, the device guides the user through all kinds of operation via a step by step interaction. With simple, easy to read and easy to understand instructions, options and command systems, the Mingle can be customized to train a user on its usage.

When the Mingle is first brought home, the device asks its user a few simple questions and customizes the interface to their particular needs. Then, judging by the responses given, the device will be automatically programmed to "check in" with the user at preset intervals which could be at daily or weekly intervals.

Source: NateSundberg

Enjoy music while lounging on the inflatable chair

Posted: 15 May 2012 05:20 AM PDT

Radhicka S Saxena:

You will love sinking into this plus sized doughy chair after work hours or when you plan to unwind. This comfortable and cushy piece measures about 45 inches along the sides. The raised headrest is quite a boon. While the bitsy divot is a good cushion and ensures that you can be seated for long hours. The reason the seat feels so good is that it is filled with air.

Inflatable iMusic Chair
Inflatable iMusic Chair

You can also listen to music while lounging in the chair. Stereo speakers have been slotted into this seat, right next to the headrest. Therefore, you can easily listen to tunes on your iPhone, iPod or mp3 player when you are relaxing in it. In fact, the 3.5 mm plug-in cable is compatible with the headphones of most music playing devices.

This piece can be inflated and deflated easily. You can pump it up when it is in use or shrink it when you are switching apartments. Carrying it around from one place to another will be a cinch. Do not worry about pumping air into the seat if you have a puny frame. A foot pump has been provided for inflation so the exercise will not be very taxing.

Also, just because this seat is as light as air, do not go around floating it in your pool. You do remember that there is music playing gear attached to it. This means that you cannot station the piece anywhere near water, so the pool is totally out of question. Hence, there is a good reason why this chair has been designed for people who are above 8 years of age. Want to purchase the groovy piece, be ready to shell out $40.

Via: Thinkgeek

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