MIT/RISD Product Design and Development

We made the front page of MIT news yesterday. The product design and development class at MIT held its final presentations last Saturday. I was a part of the tablet computer backpack group the writer mentions at the beginning of the article.

Here’s the link.


“The Challenge to Make Chocolate Child Labour Free”

I just found these videos, and I’m incredibly sad to hear that 300,000 children are employed on cocoa plantations where they work in conditions that expose them to toxic pesticides and injury. It seems that so much of what we consume these days is part of a system that involves exploitation of human labor. The socio-economic imbalance that capitalism spawns is something that makes me question what we as a society really value.

After two weeks of insane stress…


My portfolio website is finally up.

I learned a lot making this website.

  1. Do wireframe the website out in advance.
  2. Graphic design is a lot harder than you think.
  3. Change one element and you’ll want to change the entire website.
  4. If it’s not displaying properly, check for typos in code and don’t panic.
  5. Better to measure and calculate than to eyeball.
  6. Don’t let one project consume your life, make you pause exercise.
  7. Doing a little every day really does make a difference.

It’s so easy to make things…


…but it’s so hard to get rid of them.

Our stuff either goes to:

1) The trash, 2) The recycling, 3) Storage, 4) Someone else who will buy or receive it, 5) Earth via you throwing it out the window.

I prefer 2 and 5, but I always end up taking it to 1, 3 and 4.

Yesterday, I found an old desktop calendar a friend had given me years ago. It’s made of plastic, chipboard, magnetics and a wax coating, which are all bonded tightly to each other. Where did the makers of this product imagine it would end up when 2003 (the year I was supposed to use it) was over? I find it really interesting that we often only consider the “life” of the product. Among non-designers, the birth and death are usually absent from conversation, the same way those topics can be tricky when applied to living things. When the end is the landfill, the object is placed out of sight, as if it never existed. It’s crushed and squeezed so that it no longer keeps its form or usability. It’s rejected. We hope that it’s goes away even though it doesn’t.

We keeping ignoring the problem, which is that the large majority of what we make is trashed. But what if the garbage trucks stopped coming to our doors and no more landfills were created? Would we finally cease the desire to create and want more and more and more? We would be forced to actively think about how to get rid of things.

This article proposes charging corporations for taking back their product at the end of its life cycle and recycling it while eliminating landfills. It’s not about planting one tree on earth day or switching to CFLs. It’s saying we have a giant problem with how we deal with what we make, because eventually it’s going to harm us.

We have a flawed system in which corporations are endangering our livelihoods. The end result is collective apathy through individual selfishness. Call it human nature, call it hopeless; but you’ll always know that there’s a better alternative.

Designs I like


Your palm is your phone, the wall is your gps and your finger frame your photos. The potential of this technology is enormous. See for yourself. 



My Litte Piece of Privacy:

The robotic curtain that follows outside passerbyer’s movements. Hilarious.



Cyclops Watch


This is the watch for me. It doesn’t tell you the time with hands; instead a hoop passings over different colored circles which represent the hours. By Crispin Jones.



The DBA Pen


The only 98% biodegradable pen in the world. Made at a wind-powered facility. Link


Playground House

This is basically the house I’ve always wanted as a kid. One that replaces conventional doors with slides and has all sorts of colors running everywhere.




Trace of Time – Erasable Clock


Get that task done before the clock erases it!





Transportable and lightweight glass water container with airtight seal.



Amor de Madre – Barcelona Design


Beautiful, intuitive design. Encanal – channeled cutting board + Comebagagain – support for garbage bags



Wall Cleat, Universal Plug and Hang On Outlet


Making life tidier and easier.  

Wall Cleats and Universal Plug and Hang On Outlet


Alhzeimer Ad



Brilliant concept to demonstrate the effect of memory loss. It really takes advantage of the medium to get to the point.