Finally, we’re getting closer to a consumer-level 3D Printer. This model, called the Matrix, is made by UK company Mcor and crafts intricate three-dimensional objects using nothing more than cheap sheets of standard A4 paper and glue.
The cost savings over plaster modeling and proprietary media are huge. In the image above, the head comes in at €7.20 ($9.25), the house €1.20 ($1.54), the hand €3.70 ($4.75) and the teeth cost as little as €0.63 (80c). You could probably do even better than this too by using scrap paper and picking up lots of regular PVA when it’s going cheap. Note: You are supposed to use their “proprietary glue”, but seriously, how different can they be? Both are water-based PVA.
The printer seems almost magical, but the process really is quite simple. Starting from the ground up, it feeds a sheet of paper and applies glue to the required areas, as dictated by your design. It feeds another sheet on top and the excess is trimmed away with a tungsten-carbide tipped blade. Compared to a Concrete-Jet 3D Printer, it’s child’s play.
It’s not just adults that appreciate fine automobile design and that’s something Mercedes seems to have caught on to. Their latest creation is a limited edition, tot-sized, ride-on version of their SLK AMG called the Bobby Benz, which joins their smaller, made-to-order model cars aimed squarely at this neglected audience of car aficionados.
Who knows what their motivation is? To instill brand loyalty from a young age? To take advantage of a relatively untapped market? To help the company remain solvent through the economic downturn? Nah, maybe they’re just trying to bring a little happiness to the children of the world uber-rich.
According to the company’s recent press release, the Bobby Benz is the successor to the classic children’s go-cart and like any decent luxury vehicle, features ergonomic leg positioning and noise reduction technology. It also includes a Direct-Steer system that reduces the vehicle’s turning circle…imagine that.
German appliance manufacturer Miele have come up with an impressive new ultra-flexible vacuum cleaner called the S7, which features an array of bright LED lights on the suction head to floodlight all your dirt and dust. Apart from looking great, this simple addition should help prevent missing a spot and the cursing that inevitably ensues.
Don’t let your BIG IDEAS go to waste, this is an opportunity for established designers and talented students alike.
We are a global company, with bases in the UK, HK and Australia, that has an exciting and fresh range of gadgets, toys and designed led gifts. We’re now seeking freelance designers to work with us to increase our product offering, in return we will produce and distribute your product based on a royalty agreement for units sold. Ingenious products sought.
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In 20 years Design + Industry has become the largest and leading
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To understand a huge topic such as social innovation, the very first step would be our sincere interest and passion to know more about both elements: the social, and the innovation. The first time I learned about this was last year, as part of a training offered by the Centre for Social Innovation (you’d think I’d get a hint from their name, but that was a slow day for me). They describe the process as the new ideas that resolve existing social, cultural, economic and environmental challenges for the benefit of people and planet. A true social innovation is systems-changing – it permanently alters the perceptions, behaviours and structures that previously gave rise to these challenges. Some examples are the Wikipedia, the Open university in the UK, micro-credit, the fair trade movement, and community wind farms (Geoff Mulgan talks more about these examples). When you dig deeper into the research as part of your thinking mechanism (now that you became a design thinker), you get more information on the leadership qualities behind those who pioneer it, the environmental factors that facilitate its process, and even how to notice the missing gaps that can lead to a socially innovative idea. In the case of micro-credit, one of the leading figures and a Nobel Prize winner is Dr. Muhamad Younus, who noticed that a village of 42 people in Bangladesh only needed $27 to pay their debt and save them from the loan sharks. He loaned his own money to the villagers thinking it was a gift, and was surprised when the money was returned to him fully after the villagers recovered their losses. That initiated a movement of micro-credit around the world.