It’s a bird, it’s a plane… No… It’s a dog, it’s a phone… WHAT?
I’ve always thought alot of the digital media devices we see are UGLY so was relieved/amused by two things that crept into my inbox today thanks to some very fashionable colleagues. (If this type of thing interests you, I highly recommend you read We Make Money Not Art which looks at the intersection of art, fashion and technology.)
The first is seen in the picture above. OK, it might not be QUITE what everyone would call fashionable – but it’s a great stab at making mobiles fun and fashionable. Apparently, this is what one of my colleagues learned recently when she went to the showroom for the company that made the My Doggie Ring Ring in Japan. They’re called iida – and doggie phones aren’t the only cool thing they make (but it might be the most fun!). They’ve also got a range of concept musical instrument phones and ones that incorporate solar panels. The work is being done in conjunction with the Au Design Project – check out their site for more interesting concepts.
I really like the way that the designs incorporate fun and fantasy with objects that provide us with utlity. Sure, usability and utility are great – but I sometimes feel in our hyperconnected world that we need a little room to indulge ourselves with a bit of fantasy and frivolity and that all too often we gloss over this because it might impinge on usability. Why shouldn’t we have devices that give us a laugh, connect with our tastes and personalities? Services on mobiles are becoming more personalised – why shouldn’t the devices themselves do the same – and maybe give us a tiny bit or reliefe from the hyperconnected world we live in?
On a slightly less practical note, I was also sent a picture of a QR Code belt buckle. So, if you want people taking pictures of your crotch and then being able to use that picture to download a URL to their phone to go to your blog (or other online profile?) you can now do it! More here.
And… not mobile related at all but as long as I’m pointing to some everyday objects re-imagined, I couldn’t resist this one – Creative Coffins. Eco-friendly (cardboard!) and reflect your tastes, pastimes, nationality – whatever you want. I quite like this beekeeper’s model: