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Category Archives: Design

Better Than A Heated Swimming Pool In Your Backyard

By Jonathan Kimak

You may be tired of waiting in extremely long lines for rides like Disney’s new Toy Story Mania. The long waits are especially annoying when the ride itself lasts only a minute. Well, if you have some spare time and a shed full of scrap metal you can do what John Ivers did and build a fully functioning roller coaster in your backyard.

The ride is called Blue Flash and has 180 feet of track and a 360 degree loop. The ride is longer than the wait and you can pretty much go again and again until one of your relatives jumps on it while you are re-experiencing your lunch and hurling it into the trash bin.

VIA [ Offbeat earth ]

Video of the awesome ride after the jump.

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Eye Candy: Nudi Pics

Nudibranch

By Evan Ackerman

Kinda like last Friday, there’s no really gadgetry going on here, but these guys are just SO CUTE and alien-y I had to post about them. They’re nudibranchs, a type of sea slug, and they’re some of the most flagrantly colorful animals on the planet. The colors are partially to help them blend in on coral reefs, and partially to communicate that they’re poisonous. National geographic has a mind bending gallery by David Doubilet that you can check out here, and I’ve posted some of my favorite pics after the jump.Continue Reading

Nike Teams Up With KDDi Communications For Infobar 2 Shoes

Nike Infobar Shoes

By Luke Anderson

Shoes and technology aren’t generally two things that go hand-in-hand. However, since the inception of Nike + iPod, it has been a little more common to hear people talking about both in the same breath. As far as I’ve seen, Nike is really the only shoe company trying hard to cross-brand their products with tech gear. Well, they’re at it again, only this time they’ve decided to team up with Japan’s KDDi Communications.

When Nike teamed up with Apple, they created a very useful product. This recent partnership is not nearly as exciting. In fact, they’re apparently just shoes that bear some sort of resemblance to the KDDi Infobar 2 phone. I’ve heard of people buying shoes to match a particular coat or dress, but don’t you think buying a pair to match your phone is a bit much? They’ll be on sale in December in Japan for around $155.

[Mobile Fashion] VIA [Newlaunches]

Your Secret Garden; Haute Horticulture

la bague gazon

By Ryan Nill

Questionable fashion gets an “Eco” twist in this chunky ring that features haute horticulture. The large porcelain fashion rings actually come with compost and seeds; you grow your own fashion statement. It takes about 15 days for the ring’s seeds to sprout and mature, after that it will be ready to wear. Sure, they’re dangerously green, maybe a little less than dangerously stylish. They also are dangerously expensive, with prices between 70 and 120 Euros.

[ La Bague Gazon ] VIA [ Red Ferret ]

Plush(ie) Chairs

pandas.jpg
By Ryan Nill

Just as I predicted in 2004, here is a chair whose seat is made entirely of plush pandas. It is probably disgustingly expensive, in addition to be disgustingly cute. But it is also limited edition, so some enterprising person will either have to go for broke or end up gluing little sister’s entire collection together. It’s your choice.

Made by design group Estudio Campana in Brazil, it is apparently commentary on complex socio-economic ideals. I am torn between dearly wanting one of these and my extreme disgust for people who make art and then write an essay on it.

Hit the jump for more pics.

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Blue Label -Snail- Makes Espresso, Somehow

Snail Espresso

By Evan Ackerman

I’m not much of a coffee drinker, but that doesn’t stop me from appreciating this coffee maker named after a gastropod. It’s easy to see why it’s called -snail-, and although it may not add much to the functionality, it does undoubtedly look cool, especially with its deep blue-violet color and backlit buttonry. It’s supposed to be pretty easy to use, accepts espresso coffee packs, and has a 19-bar pump (whatever that means). It’s more than a concept, but unfortunately still seems to be stuck in the prototype stage.

[ Room69 (In German) ] VIA [ Design Spotter ]

Toaster Concept Of The Month: Toaster Note Pad

Toast Messenger
By Evan Ackerman

We’ve run across (non-conceptual) toast printers before, but nothing with the utility (or the resolution) of this concept. Designed by Sasha Tseng, the toaster incorporates a stylus and notepad on the top, and whatever you write on the surface gets burned (through some undisclosed process) into the top of the toast. This way, you can pass along relevant information like “I finished up all the butter, sucks for you,” but it might not be so good at letting people know things like “we’re out of bread.” A few more pics after the jump.Continue Reading

Portable Lightbulbs That Grow On Trees

Pear Tree

By Evan Ackerman

Need more light in your life? Grow it on a tree. The Pear Light, designed by Nick Foley, is a hand forged steel tree upon which grow three pears. Inside each pear are 10 ultra bright LEDs and some rechargeable batteries. The pears attach to the tree with magnets; when you want some light, pick a pear, and when your pear goes dead (in about an hour), just stick it back on the tree and it’ll recharge itself. An elegant (and bright) idea, but the “hand forged” part makes me think it’ll be hard to get your hands on one. More pics after the jump.

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Fuwapica Furniture Devours Your Self-Esteem

snipshot_e4r64sa7r7v.jpg By Ryan Nill

Fuwapica Furniture glows!

…based on how much you weigh. The Fuwapica project was unveiled at the SIGGRAPH 2007 in San Diego; the glowing cube-shaped furniture comes in two varieties, Honeycomb and Ice. Upon sitting down, the furniture will assign you a color based upon weight. The Ice types are inflatable and display solely based on your weight, while the Honeycomb ones can coordinate with the seats and the table.

The Honeycomb’s table contains a computer and LCD display screen that can control the chairs. If you place something on the Honeycomb’s table, the computer will analyze it and then instruct the chairs to glow in a matching, accompanying color. Or you can just let them ravage your self-worth at will by glowing based on your weight.

Sources indicate that this technology is more than just a design exercise and will be available commercially within one or two years. Currently, the Fuwapica Honeycomb retails ¥417,000 (or US$3,505) and the Fuwapica Ice sell for¥179,000 (or US$1,500) and are both available now from the Proto-Type Inc., located in Tokyo. No word if they have an online site.

[ gizmodo ] VIA [ inventorspot ]