We are back into subject and I am ready. After the eye opening project that has been Field Futures, and the ongoing explorations in Constellation, my once blinkered view of the world of design and products within them – product design you may call it – has changed. No longer am I stumbling about, tripping over discarded products on the ground; blindly following the breadcrumbs that are in front of me. I have become gluten free and all the better for it.
So what is the brief I hear you ask? It’s a kicker:
‘You are required to redesign the outer casing of a basic two-part, injection-moulded ‘hot glue gun’ in order to help maintain product sales by bringing it up to date, and enhancing its aesthetic appeal.’
I have just been reading a book that berates this entire thought process – making a new skin for things so people will consume more stuff, just for the sake of it? This could be tricky. I’ve only just dropped my training wheels; am I ready for this? Let us see, dear reader. Let us see.
Thinking about it, this brief almost says, ‘I am fundamentally a bad idea – making stuff for the sake of it – please highlight how bad this is to all’. I will. Thanks Mr G. Gun.
Who are the worst offenders at rehashing an old design and making people buy the newest version, just because the marketing agencies tell them their lives will be significantly improved if they do so? That their lives suck if they have the old model? Apple. Every new model launch tells me how junk the old version is and how much more handsome I’ll become if I buy this new version. It’s thinner, bigger, simplified, better looking, more easily scratched. You name it, the new version is better in every way. Want to plug your headphones into the new iphone 7? Sure, just buy our new headphones…or buy an adapter to make your old ones work just as they always did. Want to plug your flash drive into your macbook? Sure, just buy one of our usb-c memory sticks…or buy an adapter that makes your old flash drive work exactly as it did before, just with the added benefit of carrying around a dongle everywhere. Want to charge your iphone 6 from your macbook? Sure, Apple products sync so well with other apple products. You just need to buy an adapter first. On the plus side, you macbook is 0.000000000000000000000000000000000003mm thinner than before. Good times. Chuck the old fat one in the bin.
As you can tell, dear reader, this is my critique. My glue gun will be made by Apple. It will be streamlined, beautiful, simplistic and easy to use…as long as you have an icloud account and 10kgs of dongles in your bag so it will work EXACTLY LIKE YOUR OLD GLUE GUN!!!
And breath. This could be fun after all.