Home | Feed aggregator | Categories | Industrial Design News

Industrial Design News

Auto Design Mash-Ups: A Dodge-Chevy, Nissan-Porsche, BMW-Lamborghini & More

Core 77 - Wed, 2018-11-14 02:30

Here's another "What if" from fanciful rendering firm NeoMam Studios, who this time asks: What if competing car brands came together to create a mash-up vehicle that incorporated both brands' styling cues? Here's their take on 6 Car Manufacturers' Collaboration Concepts:

1. Bentley – Ferrari"British class and Italian passion combined would undoubtedly produce one of the coolest and most truly beautiful cars of all time. The double-breasted face of Bentley's grand tourer, the Continental GT, would temper the impulsive stallion of Ferrari's 812 Superfast, while maintaining the track-driven engineering and aerodynamics that makes Ferrari's road cars handle like a dream at top speeds. Of course, with Bentley being involved, the interior would have to be decked out like the 1st Class drawing room on the Titanic (pre-sinking), which is hardly a bad thing."2. BMW – Lamborghini"With a BMW – Lamborghini mix one would probably expect to take more of the edgier features from the latter, like the Aventador's rear wheel cooling ducts, the air scoop inlaid into the bonnet and the characteristic chiselled jaw-line. Not that BMW wouldn't bring plenty to the party though, with their classic "kidney" grille being a welcome addition and we have no doubt that, with the Bavarian firm's eye for precision engineering, the drive would be smoother than a fine, aged single malt."3. Dodge – Chevrolet"The engine roar from these two major American powerhouses joining forces would make roads shake and lesser cars go weak at the struts. Ostensibly a cross between a Viper and a Corvette, we'd have to presume that the engine of choice would be the former's 8.4L V10, though it would be housed behind Chevy's bonnet and grille design, making this new beast the true face of snarling American muscle cars."4. Volkswagen – Ford"Back in June 2018, Volkswagen and Ford announced that they are working towards building a strategic alliance which could see them co-produce vehicles together. Latest reports confirm that the collaboration will be centered on light commercial vehicles. But what if they decided to collaborate on a VW + Ford compact car? That got us thinking about crossing two compact classics, the Golf and the Fiesta. We'd take the more rounded, hatchback rear of the Fiesta, though we'd stick to the Golf's sportier roots by throwing in a rear spoiler."5. Nissan – Porsche"This engineering partnership would have the whole world licking its lips in hungry anticipation. While Nissan has its own experience of creating sporty cars through the Skyline and the Porsche-esque 350Z, Porsche itself has undoubtedly been a true master of the field for decades. Expect to see plenty of those iconic Carrera curves though with a more substantial body. The only other major question is, with Nissan being the largest EV maker in the world, would this be the first Porsche Electric?"6. Smart – Range Rover"Smart cars are perfect for nipping around, and finding parking in, congested cities but we all know their major downside, they look about as sturdy as a lawn chair made of matchsticks. Well the best way to solve that major image crisis would be to partner up with a marque whose very name has become a by-word for rugged, off-road indestructibility. The linkup would see the little two-seater get a full makeover, with that large Range grille, imposing face and tyres that could actually allow it to mount a kerb."

Backpack Hanger Mockup Build: Using Matboard to Simulate Folded Sheet Metal Parts

Core 77 - Wed, 2018-11-14 02:30

"In product design, the importance of building mockups and simple prototypes cannot be underestimated," writes industrial designer Eric Strebel. "The knowledge gained from the exercise, to touch, hold and use the object in real life, is legitimately worth the time invested."

"Seeing what you learned from a mockup gives you a leg up in the development process before you get to CAD. It also helps you avoid pitfalls that can't be as easily identified in CAD."

To that end, in this video Strebel creates a mockup of a variant of his backpack hanger design that will ultimately be fabricated in sheet metal. To simulate the sheet metal, he uses simple matboard. Here's his process:

Images From "The Most Memorable Product Designs of the Past 150 Years" Book

Core 77 - Wed, 2018-11-14 02:30

Imagine playing a game of Pictionary with other industrial designers, where every clue is an iconic product design. Something that you could render with a few lines and your teammates could instantly name the specific product. What would those products be?

They'd probably be the products depicted in "Iconix: Exceptional Product Design," a forthcoming book by German industrial designer Wolfgang Joensson.

Apple iPodCoca-Cola BottleIconix is a comprehensive collection of iconic product design objects, chronologically organized from the beginning of the Industrial Revolution to the present. In this richly illustrated book, Joensson shares his concept of the term iconicity to help the reader understand what makes these products stand out and why they are considered icons today.Bausch & Lomb Rayban WayfarerBIC LighterMore than one hundred remarkable product designs from all areas, including household appliances, everyday objects, furniture, entertainment technology and office equipment, are presented in this collection. Charming vignettes accompany each product, with amusing insights and fun tidbits of information that discuss how design has been influenced by changes in technology, science, and society.Wester & Co. PocketknifeFender StratocasterFeaturing the Coca-Cola bottle, the Wester & Co pocket knife, the Kitchen Aid mixer, the Le Creuset Dutch oven, the Weber grill, the Bic Cristal pen, the Rolodex address file, Kikkoman soy sauce bottles, the Kodak Instamatic, the Polaroid SX-70, the SONY Walkman, the Apple MacIntosh, the Dyson air-multiplier, and more. Alessi Anna G. CorkscrewK2 Phone BoxKodak InstamaticRolodex Address File

Produced by Skyhorse Publishing, the $20 book will be available on November 20th.

Reader Submitted: Chairs Inspired by the Organic Growth of Cities

Core 77 - Wed, 2018-11-14 02:30

Growing Chairs break ground in Shanghai, in the old worker's neighborhood at Lujiazui Park located on Tongji University's campus. The installations represent organic growth of cities, free spirit within these spaces, and the neighborhood's urban regeneration demand.

View the full project here

Design Job: Eleven Is Seeking Designers with an Entrepreneurial Spirit in Boston MA

Core 77 - Wed, 2018-11-14 02:30

Would you like to join the Culture of Design at Eleven? We are a diverse family of thinkers. We create products, brands, and experiences as we peer through the lens of our "Powers of Perspective". Eleven is looking for team players whose

View the full design job here

Bag Making Behind the Scenes: Peak Designers Overseeing the Production of Softgoods at the Factory

Core 77 - Wed, 2018-11-14 02:30

The industrial design process is not just ideating, prototyping, pitching and cashing in; after a production run has been funded, as with Peak Design's successful Kickstart of their Travel Backpack (which we wrote about here), the designers then have to visit the factory to oversee the production process. This is particularly crucial with new products, where designers must ensure that any kinks are being ironed out and quality needs are being met.

It's rare that we get to see this process on video, but Peak Design has thankfully captured it. Below are some snaps, and at the bottom is the video, which is well worth a watch.

Here's what happened after the Kickstarter money rolled in and it was time to deliver:

The Virtual and Augmented Future of Engineering

Design News - Tue, 2018-11-13 05:00


What's more exciting for engineers, virtual reality (VR) or augmented reality (AR)?

VR and AR are undergoing an explosion in the consumer and enterprise spaces. What's all the excitement about? And what does it mean for engineers? At the 2018 Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) in Minneapolis, Design News senior editor Chris Wiltz spoke with a panel of experts and enthusiasts including the following: Dr. Aaron Bryden, senior vice president of software development and co-founder of augmented reality company Praxik; Lloyd Moore, senior embedded systems engineer at FS Studio; and Laura Hall, “The Virtual Reality Girl” on the latest and most popular use cases for VR and AR in enterprise.


What advantages are there to using AR/VR in engineering? How can AR enhance the impact of IoT devices? Do VR and AR need a killer app to truly win over engineers? How can social VR change the way we work? And, perhaps most importantly, which is better?

Watch below as the panel discusses all of these questions and more.

[Image source:  Lux Interaction on Unsplash]

IIC Track and Trace Testbed Forges Requirements for IIoT Standard

Design News - Tue, 2018-11-13 04:00

The Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) has developed a Track & Trace Testbed that has generated the requirements for a new IoT standard for tracking and tracing assets. These requirements have been used by standards development organization Object Management Group (OMG), which creates and maintains IT standards. OMG has started the process to develop this as a new IoT standard.

Bosch developed the track and trace testbed in partnership with Cisco and SAP. This testbed is the basis for the new standard. (Image source: Bosch)

Through the process of developing the IIC Track & Trace Testbed, it became clear that the manufacturers of sensors needed to be able to publish the required interpretation of the data that they produce via an Electronic Data Sheet. The testbed creates visibility by tracking geo-location, both indoor and outdoor, as well as usage of key assets. The testbed, led by Bosch with IIC member participants Cisco and SAP, developed these requirements from the extra-logistics use-case, which gathers data from transport-related assets to ensure that transport SLAs are met and logistics chains can be optimized.

“Testbeds collect all sorts of best practices, and then the actual standards requirements come from asking, ‘What standard would have simplified the development of this testbed?’” Richard Soley, executive director of IIC, told Design News. “In this case, an entire tracking infrastructure had to be developed by Bosch and its partners in the testbed—an infrastructure that wouldn't have been necessary had implementations of standardized tracking applications been available. Bosch and its partners, to their credit, have open-sourced the result and are supporting the OMG standardization of that infrastructure.”

Expanding Numbers of Sensors Prompts Standard

The idea of creating a standard comes from the fact that the number of sensors connected in IoT projects is expanding exponentially. “As the number of sensors in the field multiplies by the thousands per day, there is an urgent need for a standard,” Erich Clauer, SAP VP of industry standards and open source, said in a statement. “With a standard way to interpret data, both sensor manufacturers and end users will be able to derive more actionable results from the information they are gathering,”


OMG was a natural choice for taking on the responsibilities for the standard. “IIC defines requirements and lets its 40+ liaison organizations decide which they can address in a timely fashion,” said Soley. “OMG has had a manufacturing group for more than 20 years and saw that the Track & Trace requirements fit perfectly into their roadmap and have initiated a standards process.”

Simple Electronic Notation for Sensor Reporting (SENSR)

The IIC noted that OMG SENSR RFP requests specification proposals that provide the following: a platform and vendor-independent metamodel for describing available data provided by hardware sensors and an optional library of data types to facilitate the above sharing of interpretation. Organizations interested in participating in the development of this standard can submit a letter of intent to OMG by March 18, 2019.

Rob Spiegel has covered automation and control for 17 years, 15 of them for Design News. Other topics he has covered include supply chain technology, alternative energy, and cyber security. For 10 years, he was owner and publisher of the food magazine Chile Pepper.

Pacific Design & Manufacturing, North America’s premier conference that connects you with thousands of professionals across the advanced design & manufacturing spectrum, will be back at the Anaheim Convention Center February 5-7, 2019! Don’t miss your chance to connect and share your expertise with industry peers during this can't-miss event. Click here to pre-register for the event today!


Made in USA: Is the Pendulum Swinging to Reshoring?

Design News - Tue, 2018-11-13 03:00

Anecdotally, we are hearing from more and more clients asking us to help produce goods domestically. Without getting into politics, it is worth considering some of the basic issues (avoiding the issue of tariffs) that are driving the growth of manufacturing in the U.S.

Over the past decade, we've seen steady growth in US manufacturing jobs. (Image source: Reshoring Institute)

1.) Tax and regulatory environment

Recent tax and regulatory changes reduce the economic disadvantages to manufacturing products in the United States. While there may be offsetting factors involving the heavy use of certain raw materials, those factors do not necessarily come into play in technology-oriented products.

2.) High consumer demand globally

Worldwide demand for products is at a phenomenal level these days. This is taxing the capacity of many manufacturing plants domestically, but also in the Far East. As a result, those products not committing to high volume up front are not getting the same attention from overseas suppliers as one might experience in “normal” or slow times. This is presenting new opportunities for U.S.-based manufacturers and final assembly shops, which have been proving to be more agile (and increasingly competitive) in ramping up capacity.

3.) Smart, connected manufacturing is reducing the impact of labor cost differentials across geographies.

For high volume manufacturing, it is tough for U.S.-based manufacturers to compete—especially when the cost of production involves the use of labor intensive processes. U.S.-based labor rates remain disproportionately high compared to labor costs in many other locations (though Asian labor costs are rising). As U.S. manufacturers employ less labor intensive (and more technology intensive) means of manufacturing, the impact of direct labor cost can often be reduced.

4.) Responsiveness of domestic manufacturers

Given today’s rapid changes in demand and short product life cycles, it is necessary for manufacturers to be able to quickly pivot in response to new market pressures and product technologies. While overseas manufacturers are optimized for consistent high-volume production flow, they often struggle with high-demand volatility and fluctuations. It is often harder for them to scale if volumes unexpectedly rise or if market opportunities do not ramp up as rapidly as expected. This reduces flexibility. U.S. based supply chain partners are frequently more nimble and responsive to change.

5.) Transportation issues

Companies that manufacture products in Asia are being impacted by several factors that are driving some products back to U.S. manufacturing sources. First, transportation costs are on the rise. While not a radical change at this point, it does erode some of the cost advantages of manufacturing product abroad—especially when shipping physically large or heavy items. Second, in markets that are rapidly changing, shipment via seagoing vessel—still the lowest cost option—reduces flexibility. For all but the smallest, lightest items, faster delivery means (such as air) are cost prohibitive in any reasonable volume.

In addition to these “hard” factors, there are subtle underlying factors that are rarely expressed but have a bearing on supply chain decisions. Importantly, U.S.-based companies have been expressing subtle (and sometimes overt), conscious preferences for U.S.- based manufacturing. While pricing has to be competitive, in some scenarios, the lowest cost option does not, de-facto, always win the deal. Secondly, much more so than in the past, there is a widespread recognition that there is a significant “cost of doing business” with overseas partners.

Examples of such hidden costs are the very substantial expense of sending a company’s staff overseas (often for extensive periods) to onboard suppliers, manage communications, and oversee quality processes. Additionally, there can be a heavy burden on a company’s domestic labor team to handle the innovation work, answer questions from overseas partners, and manage quality, etc. Worse, this incremental work by domestic teams often requires frequent or daily calls at crazy hours of the night or early morning as a result of time zone differences—a burden that is difficult for those team members.


These factors, and likely others, are driving some shifting of manufacturing back into the U.S. by U.S.- based product companies and their suppliers. Is the tide totally shifting? Of course not, but even the shift of a small percentage of manufacturing back into the U.S. is a driver for domestic jobs and the growth of U.S.-based suppliers.

Mitch Maiman is the president and co-founder of Intelligent Product Solutions (IPS), a leading product design and development firm. He honed his deep knowledge of product design on the strength of a 30-year career with companies that manufacture commercially successful products for the consumer, industrial, and DoD markets. Prior to launching IPS, Mitch was VP of engineering at Symbol Technologies. 

Pacific Design & Manufacturing, North America’s premier conference that connects you with thousands of professionals across the advanced design & manufacturing spectrum, will be back at the Anaheim Convention Center February 5-7, 2019! Don’t miss your chance to connect and share your expertise with industry peers during this can't-miss event. Click here to pre-register for the event today!


Currently Crowdfunding: Tarot Cards for Designers, "Chewable" Metal Straws and More

Core 77 - Tue, 2018-11-13 02:17

Brought to you by MAKO Design + Invent, North America's leading design firm for taking your product idea from a sketch on a napkin to store shelves. Download Mako's Invention Guide for free here.

Navigating the world of crowdfunding can be overwhelming, to put it lightly. Which projects are worth backing? Where's the filter to weed out the hundreds of useless smart devices? To make the process less frustrating, we scour the various online crowdfunding platforms to put together a weekly roundup of our favorite campaigns for your viewing (and spending!) pleasure. Go ahead, free your disposable income:

Have you ever wanted an alternative to a plastic straw that looks like a vape? In all seriousness, though, this reusable metal straw kit has some clever add-ons that typical metal straws don't offer, including a case that you spin to dry the straw and a chewable silicon tip so no teeth get chipped.

Love using metal filters but hate the resulting sludge? These ameuus micro filters help close the tiny gap regular filters leave, giving you the option to use finer coffee grounds with your AeroPress.

The world really deserves a mug designed to help eat cereal on the go right now, and CrunchCup delivers. Do we think it's a beautiful design? No. Do we think it's useful? Hell yeah.

Pour one out for getting stains on your shirt, because with the Stain Repelling Performance Shirt 2.0, stains aren't an option.

Instant Archetypes by Superflux is a spiritual tool to help designers, technologists, researchers, and beyond explore their place within the world of business and entrepreneurship. Beyond their purpose as a strategy and planning tool, the cards feature beautiful illustrations by Amelie Barnathan. If you've always wanted to get into tarot cards but don't understand how they relate to your life, give these a go.

Do you need help designing, developing, patenting, manufacturing, and/or selling YOUR product idea? MAKO Design + Invent is a one-stop-shop specifically for inventors / startups / small businesses. Click HERE for a free confidential product consultation.

Reader Submitted: Minimal Calendar Imagines a Simpler Mobile Calendar Experience

Core 77 - Tue, 2018-11-13 02:17

Minimal Calendar for iPhone is a focused, beautiful, and clear calendar experience. Something less that can be more inspiring to use daily.With its design and features, we focused only on the basics, done smart and straightforward. Navigation, event creation, editing, and all functions are uncluttered, easy, and fast.

View the full project here

Creative Ways to Upcycle School Buses

Core 77 - Tue, 2018-11-13 02:17

What happens to decommissioned school buses? With their utilitarian seating, they are unsuited for commercial bus use, dissuading fleets from acquiring them. Yet they still offer long wheelbases and plenty of hauling space. With such functionality, should the roadworthy among them be sitting idle in junkyards?

The answer, for a subset of creative and handy people, is no. Here are some rather interesting ways to repurpose these orange behemoths:

If you're interested in buying a decommissioned school bus, you'd probably be shocked to see that bids start at about $100 on this GovDeals auction site. Realistically, by the time the bidding closes the vehicles sell in the thousands, but depending on what your hacking plans and capabilities are, they still might be worth it.

U.S. Manufacturers Lack Skilled Labor. So Here's a CNC-Training Scholarship

Core 77 - Tue, 2018-11-13 02:17

The days of large-scale American manufacturing, with factories employing thousands of workers, are over. But what's truly sad is that the manufacturing jobs that are available here often can't find properly trained workers. 

According to Deloitte's "The Skills Gap in U.S. Manufacturing" report, produced in conjunction with the Manufacturing Institute, "Over the next decade 3.5 million manufacturing jobs likely need to be filled," but "the skills gap is expected to result in 2 million of those jobs being unfilled."

"There is a talent shortage in U.S. manufacturing," the report states. Here are some of the stats:

One of the training shortfalls is in the area of CNC machinery. To combat this, Florida-based CNCMachines.net, which sells used CNC machinery in the 'States, is offering a $2,000 scholarship to applicants enrolled in a CNC machinist, CNC operations, engineering or manufacturing certificate or degree program. (The chosen student's school will get $500.) 

If you'd like to apply, get started here.

Quick--What's the First Color in Google's Logo? Measuring How Well Americans Can Accurately Recall Famous Logos

Core 77 - Tue, 2018-11-13 02:17

Last year we asked "How accurately can people draw famous logos from memory?" The results were dismal, with about 6% to 20% being able to accurately sketch the logos for Adidas, Apple, Burger King, Dominos, Foot Locker, Target and others.

Now let's lower the bar. Forget drawing them--can you simply recognize them, picking the correct logo out of a lineup? You probably know the Target logo is red, but how many circles are in the bullseye? What's the color of the first letter in Google's logo? Which side of the Apple is the bite on?

To measure consumer accuracy, marketing agency Siege Media tested 6,000 Americans of differing demographics, showing them real logos alongside altered ones. Here are the results:

I'm guessing there was a vocational gap, as I want to think designers/artists would have had a higher accuracy rate. While that's speculation on my part, the study did show there was definitely a gender gap, with females more likely to choose the accurate logo:

Unsurprisingly, there was an age gap:

And sadly for Costco, their target market apparently has the most trouble getting it right:

I'm not sure if the marketing agency who conducted this study is reading this, but I think they would've gotten a lot more traction if they'd released these as an online quiz, rather than just releasing the results.