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DESIGN

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If you enjoy the plasticy smell of fresh cut PVC in the morning and iconic chair design, you’ll love the new butt hugging iteration from Kenneth Smythe. You’ve seen the asymmetric permutations of his designs before – open-source designs based on musical variation. But where those use materials that are more difficult to work with,…

Kickstarter is awash with iPhone, iPad and other Apple paraphernalia – it speaks the website’s yuppie creators and contributors – not that it’s a bad thing (Apple user here). After going through the website to make a long-overdue edition of Solidsmack’s ‘Wisdom of the Crowd’, I discovered that many of the best, most funded projects…

Do you have a soft spot for hardcore hacks, fanatical fabrication, robots, steampunk and funnel cakes? Do we even need to ask? It’s exactly why we were at this year’s Bay Area 2012 Maker Faire featuring all of that and a mass of 3D printers, tons of guest speakers, Tesla coils set to music and…

There’s a place we’ve been warned about called, THE FUTURE. I’m not so sure it exists. But if it does, there are present trends that are certainly shaping it and how we experience everything from structures to shopping. Stuart Fingerhut has a firm grasp on what’s setting the pace. You’ve heard him on EngineerVsDesigner. Now,…

Oh, to drown your mornings in a scalding hot cup of java. Perhaps you recognize the Octo cup from Shapeways – you can buy it in white ceramic for $56. The eight-handled cup was designed by Cunicode design agency as part their ‘One Cup a Day’ project. Over a single month, new cup designs were…

Hubless motorcycles, people. Some designs are awesome. Others are so badass, they make your skin tighten around your face and leather chaps instantly appear on your leg meats. The Indian Gorilla V4 is no exception and is one of the coolest examples of two-wheeled engineering design and vehicular magnificence you’ll find. It also happens to…

What’s going on in the world of Crowdfunding? Amazing things! But before I get into this edition of “Wisdom of the Crowd”, I’d like to point out that Maxifab has beat its target of $5,000, pulling in a whopping $24,393 and iZen Bamboo Keyboard past its goal of $18,000 reaching $26,436. Pretty kickass if you ask…

To me, PLM always sounded like something that should be plastered across an anvil that Wile E. Coyote drops onto his own head. You could say that Road Runner represents happiness, and the coyote a frustrated humanity: the harder we work for happiness, the more our hackneyed schemes get the better of us. We’ve had…

Japan has Godzilla, Russia has META-ELK. The idea is to deploy them in the thousands as… massive powerline pylons. Perhaps this is the next transmutation in the evolution of electrical Elk lords? We knew it was going to happen and these design renderings by Russian firm Design Depot put it all in perspective.

I appreciate the idea of traveling lightly, unless it means you can’t pull up to a panoramic view, open your trunk and take a shower against the scenic landscape. Fortunately, there’s a box for that – a swissRoomBox to be exact. It houses just about all you would need to enjoy the comforts of home…

Nevermind the rug in that photo above. It’s a technique used to cover up the blood spray after you’ve blasted an offending intruder across the floor with your two Mossberg 930’s. How did you get to them so fast? Simple. They’re stored in your bedframe – the BedBunker – locked away, hidden from those interested…

Dirk Vander Kooij, winner of the 2011 Dutch Design Award, has developed a very elegant solution to all that trash sitting around. YES, you know where I’m going with this. Why should it be sitting around, when it could be doing something useful. Like being sat upon?

Great ideas don’t mean squat if you can’t market them properly. The invention of the modern automobile, developed by the dynamic duo known as Karl and Bertha Benz, is no different. Bertha had invested much of her own dowry into Karl’s workshop in 1871 – 17 years later his patented vehicle was ready for sale,…

Prepare to project your bat signal or latest car concept in STYLE. The Kreios G1 LED image projector has won a highly-prized Red Dot Design Award for Product Design, selected amongst the ‘Best of the Best’ products within 1,800 entries. The extremely energy-efficient projector was developed by our friends over at Cambridge Industrial Design for…

I have a new favorite app. It’s called Paper. Now, before you think I’m trying to be clever and slap me upside the ear, read this. Paper is a new sketch/design app for the iPad created by an entrepreneur, a designer, an engineer, a filmmaker and an inventor. It takes the creation of ideas and…

The most awesome thing in the history of awesome things has just come to pass. The hack slappin’ crew at F.A.T. Lab has slipped the surly bonds of inoperable construction sets making it now possible to interlink your favorite blocks with the Free Universal Construction Kit. LEGO, Tinkertoys, Lincoln Logs and seven other sets are…

This is what I would truly call ‘a 3D movie.’ This ‘3Drehkino’ is a series of 3D printed figures of a man walking. An LED is triggered by each passing figure in his appropriate pose, illuminating it and giving us the illusion of motion. Tobias Krawutschke designs all kinds of Zoetropes (which you can see here),…

This is our new column “Great Ideas Never Die.” Here at SolidSmack we talk a lot about the future of Design and forget the History behind the tools, the inventions and the processes we use. Not to mention the rather kooky, inventive and slightly crazy designers behind them. So we decided to give them a…

Do Samurais kick? I’m pretty sure they do. Especially after getting an arm or two sliced off. Sensable is taking the sword to 3D Geometry launching the new version of it’s flagship modeling software Freeform, slapping a big ol’ Version 12 on the box and shipping out an app that can take on anything from…

In the design consulting world, we’re accustomed to words like ‘Strategic innovation’, ‘qualitative and quantitative analysis’, ‘research synthesis’, and ‘concept ideation’. So much so, in fact, that it’s easy to forget just how pompous we sound to the rest of the English speaking world. The next time your significant other says “Honey, we really need…

We can slap some text into Photoshop, apply layer styles and churn out some quick LetterPress lookin’ crap, but the process that goes into creating the real thing is much, MUCH more time consuming. RISD students Phil Cao and Kebei Li show the intricate process behind the typesetting task of making one section of one…

That’s right, friends: modo 601 is here, and to say we are ‘excited’ would be an understatement. In fact, we burnt ourselves on some celebratory, half-baked brownies we cooked up for the occasion while feasting our fingers on new modeling and rendering tools, a slew of new shaders and – oh yes – character animation…

In the realm of stylish SHTF fashion, it’s unlikely you’ll have a lot of choices. Fortunately, given the proper society ending event, there will be plenty of unnecessary road signage lining the untraveled streets. Just snag a couple or five and you’re all set to make colorful shielding to warn any would be attacker that…

If you want to see something completely mind blowingly, mind blowing feast your eyes upon RogueDZN.com. We’ve featured their Armadillo:161 Bracelet. Now, they have announced their newest precision machined men’s bracelet, the Armadillo: C6-DARKHORSE and boy, IS IT MANLY. Each of the 145 interlocking parts are individually, 9-axis machined from over 200 layers of compressed…

I’m convinced that what you’re about to see is the future of water sports, water exploration, water battle and anything having to do with the combination of insanity and awesomeness. Franky Zapata, World Champion professional jet ski/waverunner rider of Zapata Racing, is stepping watersports up a number of notches by retrofitting a jet to propel…