Friday, February 27, 2009

12 Year Old Designs a Homeless Shelter Made Out of Trash

Max Wallack has designed an ingenious shelter for the homeless and disaster victims. The 12 year old was the winner of Design Squad’s Trash to Treasure contest, which asked kids to re-purpose trash into practical inventions. Max’s dome is constructed out of plastic, wire and packing peanuts. Check out the video of its construction below.
Source PSFK

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Heineken offers first class airport lounge for all

Warm beer in airport restaurants resembling barns has, no doubt, caused many of us to wonder where air travel's glamour got to. Helping revive the notion of classy business travel, Heineken has teamed up with design agency UXUS to create an airport lounge offers a respite from the chaos of the terminal gate.

The Heineken Lounge opened in Newark Liberty International Airport in December 2008, and democratically presents all travellers with the luxuries typically reserved for first and business class passengers. Private conversation nooks, custom white leather sofas, spherical light fixtures and green aluminium tables combine to create a contemporary brand space. In addition to Heineken, a variety of beers are served on tap, alongside a fully-stocked cocktail bar.

Although Hong Kong's International Airport has had its own Heineken bar for some time, Newark's lounge is more of a 'third place', offering work necessities such as wifi, as well as movies and other entertainment. One to emulate, if branding budgets allow ;-) (Related: Being space for a microbrew — Beer cans that sleep two — Baby brand space at Schiphol Airport.)

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Magic by Google

The BBC reports that European telecom operator Vodafone has announced details of the second “Google phone” - a phone called The Magic from manufacturer HTC with Google’s operating system Android:

The Magic will feature new Android firmware, known as “Cupcake”, with changes based on G1 user suggestions. The Magic will go on sale to Vodafone customers in the UK, Germany, Spain and France, and non-exclusively in Italy.

Android phone users will be able to access the Android Market, a storefront for applications that already boasts 800 offerings. That number that is sure to grow with more Android handsets on the market.

The announcement was made at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona - a major event for the telecoms business - where it was expected that several phones that used the Google operating systems would be presented by companies. The Magic has been the only phone announced by a major player so far though.

Source BBC

Thats all about money

Designboom has compiled a lengthy post all about currency design and artists who use monetary imagery in their work. They showcase money from around the world and explore artists who play with these powerful symbols of wealth. It’s an interesting look at the complex relationship we have with these little pieces of paper and metal.

Designboom explains:

it is said that recession provokes artists, designers and alike to create some of their best work but for some people money is the constant source of question regardless of the economic climate.

money is many different things at the same time. it’s a work of art, a medium of exchange, a representation of value, one, which most people take for granted. everybody has their own answers when it comes to money yet we think that it is more generative and engaging to think about values and doubt. it is a balancing force.

money creates a mood of euphoria. money is one of the major constituents in determining what our lives feel like, what our typical day feels like. money also represents our society. it’s everywhere but money is just an idea - an abstract measurement.

Source PSFK

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Creative Process by Hooper Galton

Cannes Lions: Hooper Galton, 2008
Source Cannes Lions

Monday, February 9, 2009

Add-Art: The Entire Web as Art Gallery

Add-Art is a free FireFox add-on that transforms website advertising into a curated art show featuring rotating works by emerging artists that are selected from a submissions database. The open source project was developed by artist Steve Lambert with support from Eyebeam and Rhizome. The idea emerged from the popularity of existing “adblockers” that merely replace ads with blank space, providing clutter-free surfing. Lambert felt they could take this service a step further and offer a richer experience to users in the process, by simply converting browsers into virtual art galleries instead.

Introduction to Add-Art from Steve Lambert on Vimeo.
Read more here Source PSFK

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Economic Crisis in Song

What does a failing economy sound like? Johannes Kreidler offers his rendition with these computer-generated tunes created with Microsoft’s Songsmith program, Muzak-y compositions that follow the downward tumble of American financial institutions, as well as the unemployment rate and Iraq war statistics. Watch the video below to see how the melodies match the depressing stats they were built off of:

Source kottke

The P2P Alternative Social Economy

The Wall Street Journal reports that a peer to peer social currency based economy may be playing a large role in our future. Stan Stalnaker, founder of the Hub Culture social network is says “I don’t think anybody has any idea of how big a shift is coming in terms of our our view and perception of finance and money.” Clever social entrepreneurs are already bypassing the traditional banking world with micro lending services such as, and now other groups are creating their own units of exchange. Hub culture has it’s own digital currency called Ven that it’s worldwide members can use to swap for goods and services in place of local money. These alternative economic networks often value trust, transparency and reputation over any kind of physical collateral  More in the WSJ video below.
Source PSFK

Monday, February 2, 2009


NEW YORK: A total of 78% of US teenagers regularly play online video games, compared with just 65% who use social networking websites likeFacebook and MySpace, according a new study by The Pew Internet & American Life Project
The "Generations Online in 2009" report also found that the number of 12–17 year-olds using email fell from 89% in 2005 to 73% last year, a drop attributed to the rise of social networking.
Sydney Jones, research assistant at Pew: "Teens really gravitate to these instant forms of communication. They're not likely to be sitting around waiting for e-mail."
Overall, 97% of teenagers play video games of some kind, but just 10% of 12–17 year-olds use "virtual worlds" like 
Second Life, a figure falling to 2% of older web users aged 18–32. 
Among the latter group, 50% of web users regularly play games online, and 67% are active users of social networking services. 
Members of both age ranges are more likely to use the web for entertainment than practical purposes according to the survey, which was conducted late last year among 2,253 internet users.

Data sourced from AdWeek (USA); additional content by WARC staff, 02 February 2009

Open Source Urban Planning

Mark Gorton, creator of the Lime Wire file sharing software is now using his talents to improve urban transportation design. Using an open source software program he’s created along with data gathered from the collective population, Gorton aims to make urban transportation safer, more efficient and sustainable.

Wired reports:

The top-down culture of public planning stands to benefit by employing methods he’s lifting from the world of open-source software: crowdsourced development, freely-accessible data libraries, and web forums, as well as actual open-source software with which city planners can map transportation designs to people’s needs. Such modeling software and data existed in the past, but it was closed to citizens.

Gorton’s open-source model would have a positive impact on urban planning by opening up the process to a wider audience, says Thomas K. Wright, executive director of the Regional Plan Association, an organization that deals with urban planning issues in the New York metropolitan area.

“99 percent of planning in the United States is volunteer citizens on Tuesday nights in a high school gym,” Wright says. “Creating a software that can reach into that dynamic would be very profound, and open it up, and shine light on the decision-making. Right now, it becomes competing experts trying to out-credential each other in front of these citizen and volunteer boards… [Gorton] could actually change the whole playing field.”

Source WIRED