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Design Sojourn

Design Sojourn
How to do good design and create clever products!
Articles: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7


Design Manifesto 2012
2012-05-29 16:47:00
When Tim Brown said that ?design is getting big again?, he meant that Design is moving (or has moved, in my humble opinion) from a form giving exercise and into the boardroom where is have become a much bigger strategic activity. I agree. Design is fast becoming a more strategic and holistic consideration in many organizations evident with its application through out many levels of the entire business.
Our Kickstarter Industrial Design Picks for Week 21
2012-05-21 23:00:00
Design Sojourn was originally conceptualized to live on the confluence of the Internet and Industrial Design. As such, one of the biggest shakers to bubble up from this confluence is the crowd-funding platform Kickstarter. Kickstarter is changing the way we design and make things. I'll even go as far as to say that even the definition of Designer is changing. From today, we will be running a weekly column to help this new movement grow by sharing our picks of the plethora of great ideas and good industrial design worth considering. We rate these projects under the following five criteria: 1) Idea novelty, 2) Design quality, 3) Value for money, 4) Feasibility for manufacture and delivery, and 5) Contains an X-factor (i.e. solves an important problem, saves the earth, super awesome design etc.). If a project gets selected you can be assured that it contains all 5 of these criteria. If you are running a crowd funding program on Kickstarter or any other platform and i...
More About: Design , Week , Industrial Design
Presentation Skills I Learnt From Pecha Kucha
2012-05-21 15:13:00
I was shocked how hard it was preparing for Pecha Kucha Night. Even after seven iterations, I was still not done! Despite being a seasoned presenter, Pecha Kucha was a brand new experience and a challenge indeed. For those that don't know, Pecha Kucha is a gathering of creative minds to share what they are passionate about. As creatives like to talk, Pecha Kucha runs its presentations in a unique format; 20 slides that stay up for 20 seconds each, no more, no less. Like an emotionless robot, it all runs on automatic leaving many presenters in mid-sentence when the slide changes. People say that we should treat the creation a presentation like a design exercise. I agree. But being forced to work within the constraint of 20 X 20 slides you suddenly realize why Simplicity is hard and very few people do it well. In the process of creating my slide deck for Pecha Kucha and then subsequently presenting it, I relearned a number of presentation techniques that could also apply to...
More About: Skills
I?ll be presenting at the next Pecha Kucha Singapore 2012!
2012-05-17 09:16:00
I'm going to be presenting at the 4th Pecha Kucha Night here in Singapore and speaking about "How design makes people's lives better".
2012-05-14 14:59:00
A little change of pace in today's blog post. I can really relate, as I'm sure you can, to this cartoon by N.C. Winters for Freelance Switch. It does on occasion happen to me, but it gets more frequent when I'm mulling over a serious problem. How about you dear reader?
What it Means to Have a Designer as a Startup Founder
2012-05-09 16:40:00
So it looks like The Designer Fund, a VC fund that specifically invests in Startup companies that have designers as founders is starting to gain traction. It seems that suddenly everyone seems to have an opinion on the premium placed on designers. Brace yourselves! I'm going to join the fray with my 2 cents worth simply because I find that many people seem to miss what the Designer Fund is extolling. I would even dare say that even the Designer Fund itself seems to miss something in the communications of their objectives.
More About: Entrepreneurship , Founder
Chip Kidd on Designing Books
2012-05-07 12:20:00
I was presently surprised to find out that Chip Kidd presented at TED.
More About: Design , Books , Designing
When Designing Experiences for Humans, Consider Common Psychological Behavi
2012-05-03 16:37:00
Often designers design stuff (products/services/interfaces etc.): to fit user personas, to solve problems, to make it beautiful etc. but don't often consider the how it psychologically interfaces with the user. Such user experience design draws heavily from human psychological behaviors that are a result of millions of years of evolution. These behaviors will not change tomorrow or even in the next 10 years, therefore we should be aware of what these behaviors are and how our designs should take them into consideration.
More About: Designing , Experiences , Common , Psychological
The Journey to Becoming a Designer is Never Easy
2012-04-19 14:49:00
Design Juices recently published an interview with Michael DiTullo, a designer I greatly respect, where he shares his insights and challenges he faced to get to where he is today, namely a Creative Director at Frog. (Actually it seems he is now the Chief Design Officer at DEI Holdings, Inc. Congrats Michael!) I fully relate to the stories he shared, and it seems almost every successful designer I've spoken too have made a similar journey. Indeed the journey of becoming a designer is never easy, and I'm glad that Michael was so open and candid especially the part about his struggling to land his first job. In the interview, Michael also drops some amazing words of wisdom and I'll share a few here:
More About: Journey , The Journey , Designer
Plastic Classic by Pili Wu
2012-04-17 15:16:00
Pili Wu, a Taiwanese Industrial Design student, does an interesting mash-up between an ubiquitous plastic stool and an expensive Qing Dynasty hardwood chair.
More About: Classic , Plastic
Dumpling Steamer by Jia
2012-04-17 13:43:00
This Dumpling Steamer by Hong Kong based Homeware maker Jia (It means "Home" in Mandarin) really appeals to me. They have managed to reinterpret and modernize this iconic product, and yet still maintain its simplicity, function and meaning. Well done. Check out more images after the jump.
More About: Design
Design is a Connector in Business
2012-04-11 17:27:00
Ton Borsboom, my ex-colleague at GE/Fitch (a General Electric and Fitch joint venture in Asia), and now Senior Director at Philips Design Consulting, shares his view about how design and designers need to be connectors in today's business by reaching across all touch points and stakeholders. I also like how he proposes that companies should engage with designers at the very early stages of the discussion. This implies that design is a strategic activity and has the most value add at the beginning or the top of the decision making chain. Check out Ton's quote after the jump.
More About: Business
Businesses should Tell a Story and Plant Many Seeds
2012-04-10 15:46:00
Guy Kawasaki, at a Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders Lecture Series at Stamford, shares insights on why start-up businesses should tell a story and plant many seeds. I believe that any company (not just start-ups) interested in getting their products (or services) out there or wanting making a difference will find his few words of wisdom very useful. You will find this very applicable in a Design Thinking context as well. Enjoy!
More About: Entrepreneurship , Story
Go Ahead, Design the New Business
2012-04-02 15:07:00
Oh how did I miss this? The Design the New Business documentary, aired first in Asia at the recent Design Film Festival 2011, is now available online and shamelessly embedded here.
Decision Fatigue is Why Designers Need to Respect Consumers
2012-03-31 17:47:00
It was not very long ago that the world was filled with objects like the dreaded VCR. That piece of crap was supposed to make our lives better by recording our favorite TV shows so that we could do more important stuff like going for dinner. It was however so difficult to use, that most people, I bet, just bought a long play VCR tape and started recording the moment the left the house. They would then fast-forward to the exciting bits when they got home. We accepted it because we did not know better or that there were so many better things to do, like take a walk in the park, then to worry about it.
More About: Designers , Decision , Respect
The Inverted Bike Shop
2012-03-27 12:06:00
It's funny. As a kid I loved riding bikes. What I loved even more was tinkering with them. I had this classic Chopper (you know, with that smaller front wheel?) that I hacked up and lighten so that I could do bigger jumps. My boys size BMX was a mish-mash of parts that was a result of my lengthening limbs.
More About: Bike , Shop
How to Steal like an Artist?
2012-03-20 11:32:00
Picasso said: "Good Artist s Copy; Great Artists Steal ". This controversial quote is more relevant than ever in today's design industry. We now live in a world where the majority of things we need to survive have already been invented or designed. And no, you don't really need that iPad.
12 Reasons Why The Apple Design Process is Nothing Special
2012-03-13 17:44:00
You would probably have caught wind of Sir Jony Ive's rare interview with the London Evening Standard by now. I was not planning to blog about this as I figured that this would just become a pointless re-post. Except something dawned on me as I read the post. My suspicions that Apple 's Design Process is nothing special was confirmed! While I would encourage you to read the entire interview (which is pretty cool), please let me summarize what Jony shared:
More About: Special , Reasons
Design Sojourn Rebranded!
2012-03-11 17:14:00
Our Facebook fans had a little treat last week, when they caught wind of Design Sojourn's new look. Developed together with my friends from Black Design, this rebranding initiative was targeted to coincide with our first massive Workshop Project. Since our consulting work has taken up most of the time required for articles here at Design Sojourn (Sorry!), I thought it would be nice to share some of what we have done with all of you.
iPad 3rd Generation Retina Display is Not just a Spec
2012-03-08 04:57:00
Ryan Block from gdgt believes that the new 3rd Generation iPad's retina display is not a specification upgrade, but a transformative experience.
More About: Display
The Finger Friendly Keyring
2012-02-29 16:38:00
I really love how we can still find opportunities for innovation in the simple products we still use daily.
More About: Friendly , Industrial Design
The new Porsche 911 (2012) is just Sublime!
2012-02-21 17:29:00
Perhaps it is my advancing age, or just a mid life crisis, but I'm getting really turned on by the Porsche 911, especially the latest 2012 iteration. Despite many fans criticizing the designers for not taking risks, I for one am pretty comfortable that they have not deviated from their iconic archetype developed by Ferdinand "Butzi" Porsche in 1959. I prefer that they keep evolving it instead, and this is probably the best evolution yet.
More About: Industrial Design
Time for our 3rd Introduction to Design Thinking Workshop!
2012-02-20 14:50:00
It's time for our 3rd bi-monthly Introduction to Design Thinking Workshop ! It will be on the 29-30th of March 2011. Here is the usual blurb with the e-mailer at the end, so do sign up as soon as possible as seats are limited and gong fast!
More About: Time
SOPA and PIPA from the Eyes of Design
2012-02-02 17:13:00
As the wave of SOPA and PIPA protests die down, it?s time to take stock of the implications such legislatures can have on the design community. Please do take my thoughts with a pinch of salt as I do not live in the US, and very likely not have the same cultural background or government system. But I do think that such a Bill could find traction in many other countries should it be passed. So indirectly, I could be affected.
More About: Design , Eyes
Design Thinking in Manufacturing, A Workshop Series
2012-01-25 18:11:00
I'm really excited to finally be able to announce an exciting project that we have been passionately working on since August last year (2011)! Design Sojourn was commissioned by Design Singapore, the national agency leading the initiative to establish Singapore as a global city for design in Asia, to develop a curriculum for an intensive 9-day design thinking workshop (starting from 6 February 2012) for their Design Thinking and Innovation Academy.
More About: Series , Workshop
8 New Year Resolutions All Designers Should Have
2012-01-15 17:08:00
We are two weeks deep into the New Year and I am sure all of you have already hit the ground running. If you are anything like me, then you probably either forgotten to make a New Year?s resolution or could not think of one. Therefore I?ve decided to save everyone the trouble and compiled a quick list of 8 New Year resolutions I think designers should have. Just pick one after the jump and enjoy!
More About: Design , Designers
Frog Design?s Tech Trends of 2012
2012-01-11 09:32:00
January is often abuzz with 3 things: New Year resolutions, trends and forecasts for the year, and CES. I'll leave CES to the CES PR engines, because as designers, if you just focus on CES you will be a year too late. So if you want to consider something more interesting and forward looking, check out this compilation of technology trends for 2012 from the global team at Frog Design . It looks like a number of interesting predictions from some familiar names. Check it out after the jump.
More About: Trends , Tech
We Will Have to Deal with Defining Design, yet Again!
2011-12-07 10:31:00
Click for a larger image. IA Collaborative, has tried to do the impossible, and that is to define the meaning of Design . Or rather, they have taken the effort to gather the different definitions of design from our favorite industry luminaries and arranged them in a rather symbolic (and cool) infographic.
More About: Deal
Look to the Past for Metaphors to Design for Simplicity
2011-11-17 16:22:00
Cliff Kuang, in his Fast Co Design article on The 6 Pillars of Steve Jobs' Design Philosophy, talks about Jobs "finding simplicity for the future in metaphors from the past".
More About: Simplicity , Past
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