Tableware essentials such as spoons, cups, plates and bowls are classic designs whose forms have remained unchanged over time. While the majority of us find these designs beneficial in their current form, what evolution for a society entails is evolution of our everyday designs to suit not only the majority, but to be inclusive and cater to all humans alike. It is this progress and inclusiveness Jexter Lim brings to the world with his tableware design named Eatsy.
Jexter’s design process started with a relatively simple question, “How might we design an adaptive tableware to enhance dining experience for the visually impaired?” The answer was Eatsy, a set of multi-functional tableware consisting of a plate, a bowl, a cup and utensils designed with a unique feature, a silicone flap that can be bent to increase ease of usage while reducing the stigma by blending in with the existing tableware. The silicone flap is one of those minor changes that make all the difference – they provide unique sensory cues in a subtle manner for the visually impaired, helping them feel the edge of the container to guide them in their tasks – be it pouring water correctly into the cup, scooping food from the edge of your plate or even balancing your spoon on the edge so it does not slip into the food. For example, the cup’s indent or silicone flap bends inwards, helping the user identify the spot and secure that location for pouring from a jug. The raised corner of the plate is sloped in nature, helping you capture, corner and scoop food onto your spoon, making it easy for the user to scoop the food towards this corner and judge the content left on their plate. Such tasks that commonly do without realizing our dependency visual cues and taking the action for granted.
Eatsy is also user-friendly for both left and right-handed users while its stackable design makes it easy to store. The simplicity of the design ensures it is easy to implement across restaurants and home. Given the fact that it helps prevent spillage, Eatsy is user-friendly not only for visually-impaired but for the elderly, children or just about anyone who has a tendency to spill – Eatsy is just as useful for everyone as it is for the visually impaired and that’s what makes it a truly inclusive design!
Something tells me we’re a mere announcement away from Microsoft’s cloud gaming service – Project xCloud, and it only makes sense that when the announcement drops, Microsoft does its bit to make sure everyone has access to it, regardless of their location, and their abilities. The Adaptive Controller concept for xCloud takes Microsoft’s special-needs controller and gives it a couple of tweaks to make it ready for cloud-based mobile gaming. Fundamentally, the xCloud Adaptive Controller is the same as its predecessor, but with a few upgrades that make it mobile-ready, so the specially-abled can reap the benefits of the upcoming Project xCloud!
What’s visibly different about the xCloud Adaptive Controller is its acid-green device-docking station that lets you rest anything from a phone to a tablet (without having it tip over or slip, thanks to the use of high-grip rubber). Built with WiFi connectivity, the controller works as any wireless one would, allowing you to play games on mobile devices as well as with the Xbox console connected to a television. The xCloud Adaptive controller also houses an in-built battery, large enough for it to power the controller as well work as an external power source for you smartphone or tablet (so you can game for longer), along with the multiple USB and 3.5mm ports designed to plug in external buttons and pads, and even a pair of headphones.
We are all aware of the three basic needs for human survival, while a fourth one is added to the list: medicines. Medical innovations are one of the few things that have the ability to change the world in a single innovation. WHO states that Cardio Vascular Diseases are the number one cause of death globally: more people die annually from CVDs than from any other cause. About 422 million people worldwide have diabetes, the majority living in low-and middle-income countries, and 1.6 million deaths are directly attributed to diabetes each year. The only way to handle these diseases is to improve our existing healthcare practices, focus more on monitoring which in turn will help us be more prepared for everything that comes our way. The designs showcased here today attempt to innovate and improve our existing practices – from the cast applied on a fracture to even motion sickness, these designs will improve our quality of life for the better!
Chicago-based startup Cast21, however, has designed a sleeve that fits over any hand. Cast21’s cast takes shape around your hand once it’s filled with a patented gel that hardens over time. Doctors select a sleeve-size based on whether the patient is a child or a fully-grown adult. The sleeve is slipped on, and filled with a patented mixture of resins that become a malleable gel after a while. The doctor can then adjust the gel to perfectly hug the limb, giving it the support it needs. Patients can even choose between gel-colors, opting for combinations and gradients, breaking the stigma that casts need to look horribly clinical. The resins harden through an exothermic reaction, providing soothing heat to the limb as the cast begins to take shape.
Citroën’s SEETROËN (clever name alert) is quite an ingenious device designed to help create a balance between nausea-inducing experiences, so your brain doesn’t get confused. The quirky-looking glasses (designed to be worn only while traveling) come with four rings on the front and side with a liquid suspended in them. When in a moving vehicle, the liquid moves around too, giving the brain a visual stimulus that helps it understand the way you’re moving. When the car moves from left to right, the liquid in the ring does too, informing your brain of the movement as you watch movies on a screen or read a book. The rings stay on the boundaries of your vision, allowing you to see normally, while the liquid rings on the periphery don’t obstruct your vision.
Literally the size of a quarter, Adam Miklosi’s Dab is an unobtrusive Holter ECG/EKG that rests comfortably on your chest, constantly reading your heart’s movements. Designed to be minimal, non-invasive, and simple, the Dab tries to bridge the gap between medical appliances and wearables. Its tiny yet classy design sits on your chest via a gel patch, while the electrodes capture your heart activity. The Dab’s dry-electrodes allow it to be used and reused, while constantly measure one’s heart activity (requiring periodic charging via their wireless charging hub), and keep logs of accurate readings, quietly sitting on your chest while you absolutely forget that they’re even there in the first place!
The Kardia is a tiny ECG (or EKG) reader that works in conjunction with your iPhone to give you heart-rate readings. Simple in its design, with just two textured sensor-pads for your fingers, the device takes readings and its partner-app guides you through the process, showing you your current heart rate. Place your fingers on the sensors & in just 30 seconds, you have a medical-grade EKG reading, to be monitored for irregularities, or shared with your doctor. Just like the thermometer became a household medical product, followed by the blood-sugar meter, the Kardia aims at becoming the next household medical device that helps people monitor their heart status and keep a check on their condition.
VanBerlo Agency’s LifeSaver can be mounted on walls at accessible and prominent locations. If someone is suffering from a cardiovascular attack, you simply grab it and press the button for calling 911 below it. So while you perform CPR, the ambulance is on its way! The first instruction provided is to remove the clothes from the chest of the victim. After that, you open the box and remove LifeSaver from it. Place the AED on the chest of the victim, and follow the instructions. OLEDs and touch sensors guide you through the entire process. LifeSaver even helps you with placing the electrodes correctly and guides you regarding the location and rhythm for the chest compressions. Via visual displays and an audio option, LifeSaver gives you critical feedback.
Using a trio of gyroscopic motors mounted within a sleek and futuristic wearable that dramatically wraps around the user’s hands, Tryro counteracts the shakes to stabilize the user’s hands and therefore induce a sense of confidence! Its designer, James Sanchez, recognized the various levels of tremors that an individual can have. To cater to this, a dial that’s located on the user’s wrist allows for adjustment of the gyroscopic motor’s speed! What makes Tryro so unique is the medical aesthetic that it has managed to avoid. Considered details and an attractive form lead to a more desirable product and one which doesn’t carry the stigma of medical devices!
Imagine a smart insulin port attached to your skin, delivering the right dose, and at the right time. At the same moment, getting all information regarding your sugar levels, meds timings, and health data, managed and analyzed with the accompanying app. Kite, designed by Mitul Lad & Cambridge Consultants, replaces the need to pump yourself with over 30 injections a week, thanks to the soft cannula insertion. It turns any device into a ‘smart’ device and automatically dispenses the accurate insulin dose. Designed to be affordable, a device like this can be very helpful in the lifestyle management of diabetics.
Ryan Krause’s VERO isn’t just some regular thermometer… it was built for helping companies monitor the health of their individual employees. The VERO reads temperature using non-contact infrared sensors, but it doesn’t just do that. It helps keep a tab of people scanned too, allowing offices or businesses to internally test their own employees. The VERO scans the patient’s temperature while also logging in their name, details, and their identity… like a biometric scanner that captures an employee’s attendance as well as their health!
I love how designer Manuel Hess put it… “a walker doesn’t have to look like a disease itself.” Harsh but SO true! His proposal for a walker, called PROSUS, ditches the stigma and is instead designed with dignity in mind. It takes inspiration from both sportbikes and modern furniture, applying the same sleek design language to the walker. Unlike “medical” looking walkers, this one totally looks Professor X worthy!
Taking inspiration from Airbus’ existing family of cutting-edge aircraft, the Airbus A-180 Drone project by Reza Salianeh looks a lot like something that might already exist in their modern fleet! To deliver a payload of emergency supplies, it utilizes three double engines – one at the rear for forward thrust and two integrated into the wings for upward and downward maneuvering. Able to take off and land vertically or horizontally, it can safely enter danger zones. Upon arrival, it releases a cargo capsule capable of transporting everything from medicine and antivenin to supplemental blood and even organs.
The award-winning Jelly medicine by Jeongho Oh, Dongho Choi, and Ryangtak Oh is individually packaged to minimize air contact and to prevent almost oxidation of nutrients from the moment it comes into contact with oxygen. It also provides customized medicines by individually tailoring the packaging. You can order medicines for specific diseases and age groups instead of having all tablets coming separately and wasting resources. The aim of this water-free jelly medicine is to ensure that people in developing countries do not needlessly suffer from diseases caused by contaminated water. Not only does this medicine design make swallowing easier, but it also addresses the larger problem of access to clean water in poorer countries. This innovative jelly medicine is created to be water-free so people don’t have to pick between curing themselves or adding on to existing health risks. The jelly is the same size as a sip of water so the patient won’t need to drink anything when taking the medicine. “Poor hygiene and poor water quality are causes of many diseases, including cholera and typhoid fever. When taking medicine in such conditions, there is a risk of acquiring additional illness if the medication is taken with unsanitary water. Jelly medicine eliminates this hygienic problem because it can be easily swallowed without water,” says the designer.
Behold the Full Metal Jacket… No really, this jacket from Vollebak is actually made from a germ-repelling metallic textile. Quite unlike those space-foil jackets that astronauts wear, the Full Metal Jacket actually uses a fabric with woven strands of copper, so it’s entirely breathable, flexible, and doesn’t make a crinkly sound when you move around. With as much as 11 kilometers of copper in each jacket, the apparel relies on copper’s innate ability to kill off any bacteria or viruses that it comes in contact with. The Full Metal Jacket comes with four large waterproof pockets on the outside and three chest pockets for your belongings. Designed to be your everyday jacket, it can be worn in any sort of weather outdoors, and remains as comfortable and soft to touch as any sort of synthetic outerwear would… in fact, you really can’t even see the copper strands unless under a microscope. However, unlike most outerwear, synthetic or not, it possesses the ability to completely obliterate any sort of microorganism that comes in contact with it, a feature that makes it a standout product in our uncertain future.
With reality and life catching up to our unchecked actions, it is time for us to clean up our act and while we repair the damage we inflected to the earth, we need these medical innovations to keep us healthy and safe.
Ever since the invention of the sundial, time-telling has remained unchanged over time. Using two hands or a digital format, the time is usually told by using numbers. Designer Sy Hyin Wong feels that looking at the ticking numbers first thing in the morning creates anxiety, that is amplified if the user is near-sighted and has trouble identifying numbers. So she decided to use shapes instead of numbers to tell the time!
Named the Muji 2.0, Sy Hyin Wong, draws inspiration from the strictly minimal and functional brand Muji to tell time using another Japanese classic – the paper fan! According to The National Institute of Health, “about 42% of Americans ages 12-54 are nearsighted”. This clock actually helps people with nearsightedness be able to tell time from afar because it is more comprehensible than the slim hands of a watch or small digits. Light strips are added in the folds of the fan so you can tell time at night too without your glasses. Removing the numbers instantly removes the urgency/anxiety that can come with clocks – and especially in quarantine when you look at it often, you want it to calm you down and if it looks beautiful then that’s a win-win. The clock’s design may seem confusing at first glance, but it is quite easy to identify the shapes and correlate them to the time. The clock’s fan moves in a clockwise direction, with the starting point of the fan representing the hour of the time and the other end pointing at the minute hand. In an almost meditative manner, the fan completely unfolds over an hour’s duration, regroups, and starts the process all over again, kind of like our everyday life.
The appearance model is made out of polyurethane foam, but the final clock would be made out of plastic and recycled paper – another reason why we love this clock even more! Keeping in touch with its primary target audience – the nearsighted users, this clock comes with a storage compartment for glasses, as someone who wears them ’round the clock’ that is so essential! The end result is a wall-clock with a surprise pull-down storage space. Glasses are the first thing you need when you wake up in the morning and see the time – minimal and functional, which is what makes Muji such an iconic brand.
The pandemic still plagues the world and the war is far from over. Medical equipment was in short supply even when we were in the beginning stages of this pandemic, so you can only imagine where we stand now. All brands from fashion to automotive have pitched in to do their bit – be it creating masks or portable ICU pods, it is an all-hands-on-deck time. Fitbit, a company that was already leading the game in monitoring body activity, has taken its tagline of ‘every beat counts’ to a whole new level by designing portable ventilators to fight the crisis.
The Fitbit ventilator is called Flow and has already received emergency clearance from the FDA which means they can start working on the production process. Be it a 3D printed ventilator or the one that costs $40,000, they have the same job – pump oxygen into the patient’s lungs and reduce the respiratory distress. Fitbit is a trusted personal gadget that we all use to monitor our health and wellness, so the team used their existing body sensors and put them to work in a product designed to function as a portable ventilator. The resuscitator bags that paramedics use is placed inside a clear case so the health professionals can monitor and operate it from a safe distance if needed.
Portability was key, the ventilator should have the ability to be placed anywhere and comes with a mobile stand to make it easier. It is more compact in terms of the physical form when compared to traditional ventilators which help in moving it around hospitals. Even though it functions as a ventilator, Fitbit is calling it as a life-support supplement till a commercial ventilator becomes available. While we all wait for hope in the form of a vaccine, it is important to acknowledge brands taking charge and buying us time until a cure comes around.
Designed to make technology accessible but also desirable, the iF Design Award-winning Braille Computer from Hangzhou DesignDo Innovation brings the sleek design language of modern consumer technology products and introduces it to special-needs design. The computer works like any standard desktop or laptop and supports regular desktop and mobile operating systems and programs like note-taking software, mail software, e-book readers, and even internet browsers. The all-in-one computer comes with a keyboard for input on the top, and a dynamic braille display at the bottom that lets users read what’s on their screen, one line at a time. Joysticks on the left and right let users navigate through their computer too, allowing them to switch between apps, open files, and even scroll across documents and pages!
The Braille Computer’s design noticeably deviates from the design DNA of other computers for the visually impaired. Designed for functionality but also made to look and ‘feel’ desirable, the computer is small, portable, sleek, and features a satin-finish metallic body that looks and feels great to the touch, combined with concave-capped keys that make typing on the Braille Computer an absolute breeze! Designed with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi built in, the computer can even connect to other peripherals, bridging the gap between consumer tech and special-needs tech!
If you tie a blindfold and walk around as an exercise, maybe some parts of your house are the only places you can confidently navigate. The exercise is just a small way to feel a fraction of what visually impaired people might be feeling. They are constantly reliant on those around them, even for small things like going to a public restroom. So a designer reimagined a basic facility, the urinal, to be made in a way that they can have some independence. And, of course, privacy when they use the bathroom. This particular design revolves around the common urinals for men that you find in malls, movie theatres, schools, and most other public spaces because that situation is much tricker than being in a restaurant.
There are 37 million people across the globe who suffer from some kind of visual impairment. While there are various organizations that help train such people to be independent, here are some places like a public restroom where they would require extra care. Suthar observed that visually impaired people have no interaction with the products in the restroom which leaves them fumbling. This redesign is created around using sound as a guide to identify and position oneself in front of the urinals. “I kept their ability to sense sound and tactility in three-dimensional space,” says Suthar on the choice of using sound as a guiding force.
The designer understood that finding their way around the restroom was still doable but finding products was harder. The users navigate through the tactile mobility system on the floor with special tiles which can also be used to map out other areas of the restroom. Each urinal is in front of a ‘stop tile’ so when the user steps on one of these tiles, the sensors pick it up and a sound lets the user know they are in front of the urinal. There are two more stop tiles near the urinal, so when the user is close enough the sound will buzz again to let them know they are precisely positioned.
If the sound system gets compromised, there are guide rails in the stalls to help. Occupied urinals will make a different sound to let the user know when they are crossing. The sensors activate the flush once the user steps back and there is another sound buzz. Inclusive designs help make the world a better place and this urinal will make life easier for millions of people. The use of sound to answer nature’s call is just brilliant in a metaphorical way too.
Growing up in a large extended family, gatherings were common and they would all center around the kitchen. Kitchens have always held a special space in my memories, so designing the same needs special attention! The designs we bring to you today are kitchens equipped to handle anything that comes their way! Minimal, modern, colorful, and elegant, we are sure these kitchen designs will match your vibe and inspire you to create your happy space!
An open-plan kitchen is difficult to merge with the rest of the house while making it stand apart. This kitchen is a part of a house built by a high school sweetheart couple who have detailed their journey of designing their dream house on IG under the page @ahousewebuilt. The underlying theme throughout the interior is a combination of earthy tones with black highlights to create a focal point.
A mix of teal and black accent furnishings and light wooden cabinets gives this kitchen an intriguing mix of retro yet modern feels. Designed by Madeleine, this kitchen is perfect for those who want the best of both worlds!
This modern kitchen design by Edvinas Skiestenis is perfect for our modern homes! Matte black countertops, shelves, and cabinets manage to add a sleek urban feel.
Mysha of @remingtonavenue is an expert at using a mix of wood, metal, and also DIY-ing designs to create a harmonious layout! Each part of her kitchen uses a mix of white and gold without making it overtly feminine with the use of gold burnished metal lamps that balance the space.
Dark yet fresh, that is exactly how I would describe this contrast filled kitchen design by Margaret Naeve Parker. The dark kitchen cabinets make the modern chrome-finish appliances stand out, giving this kitchen a modern look.
I wouldn’t mind whipping up some breakfast in this beach-facing kitchen by Gicinque Cucine! Minimal wooden stools and a wooden kitchen counter are accompanied by breathtaking views of the ocean.
“We wanted it to be open yet connected,” the owner says. “We wanted living to be downstairs and sleeping to be upstairs.” Designer Eric Olsen designed a great room in the middle connects to the kitchen, and a guest suite wraps around the left side. And we can’t help but love the hanging lamps that create a focal point as well as a differentiation between the two spaces.
Man-cave meet kitchen! Leather, hues of copper, and warm accents fill up this kitchen design by Lori Clarke Design. But the focal point of this entire setup is the copper hood that dominates the place while giving the modern kitchen a touch of the antique.
Do you dare to blue? This kitchen is surely inspiring us to go bluer! Designed by Evan Ljunghag, Joshua Coffie of Vigeo Construction uses blue tiles in the backsplash to create a contrast that makes your kitchen stand apart with ease.
Sometimes we should just let nature do the talking, or in this case, the beautiful wooden countertop with its natural curves should do the talking. PureHaven Homes designed this kitchen with a massive wooden platform that acts as a separator as well as a bar set up in this kitchen that feels perfect for any bachelor pad!
Need the perfect appliances for your newly inspired kitchen? Check out our collection of innovative appliances that will help you unleash your inner chef!
Let’s be honest, it would be a lot more fun to take medicines if they were wrapped in Haribo gummy bears. While it is mainly a problem to get children to swallow tablets, I know many adults too who will go to any lengths to swap their tablets with syrup. This water-free medicine jelly is a life savior for many!
Not only does this medicine design make swallowing easier, but it also addresses the larger problem of access to clean water in poorer countries. Since drinking water is a problem, even if medicines are available, it is harmful to people to be taking them with contaminated water. This innovative jelly medicine is created to be water-free so people don’t have to pick between curing themselves or adding on to existing health risks. The jelly is the same size as a sip of water so the patient wont need to drink anything when taking the medicine. “Poor hygiene and poor water quality are causes of many diseases, including cholera and typhoid fever. When taking medicine in such conditions, there is a risk of acquiring additional illness if the medication is taken with unsanitary water. Jelly medicine eliminates this hygienic problem because it can be easily swallowed without water,” says the designer.
Jelly medicine is individually packaged to minimize air contact and to prevent almost oxidation of nutrients from the moment it comes into contact with oxygen. It also provides customized medicines by individually tailoring the packaging. You can order medicines for specific diseases and age groups instead of having all tablets coming separately and wasting resources. The aim of this water-free jelly medicine is to ensure that people in developing countries do not needlessly suffer from diseases caused by contaminated water.
Monitoring air quality is going to become crucial post this pandemic as we all try to boost our respiratory systems. It isn’t possible to carry your air purifier everywhere with you and how can you tell if the air quality in the multiple environments that surround you is safe? Well, Sprimo has a solution for you – a keychain-sized personal air monitor that keeps you informed in real-time about the air you breathe. This is extremely important for those with pre-existing respiratory conditions so they can reduce their discomfort by checking the air quality before going to a certain place.
This compact personal gadget monitors the air quality around you and reports the collected data on an intuitive app that you can install on your smartphone. It is compatible with iPhones as the nifty device connects to your phone via the lightning port. As soon as you insert it, the air monitor should give you the readings instantly whether you are indoors or outdoors. Along with the air quality, it also gives you additional details like temperature and humidity’s effects on the air so you cover all your bases. The accurate air quality measurements are then color-coded for easy comprehension – green means clean air and red means you could be breathing in harmful particles. This helps to figure out if the areas you spend most of your time in has clean air and how it affects your health. Like does your office or school has healthy air quality? If not, you now know that you have to take the necessary steps to change that instead of continuing to harm your respiratory system unknowingly.
It also tracks toxic paint smell and chemicals, pollution, smog, cleaners, dirty clothes, second-hand smoke, perfume for allergies, glue, pet waste or garbage, and more! Sprimo’s personal air monitor is determined to make sure you only breathe clean air so your health remains uncomplicated during these complicated times.