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Tools of the Trade September 28, 2007

Posted by goodmind in Function Follows Form.
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Every good baker possesses the proper tools of the trade, but until now, one couldn’t actually bake tools of a trade.  Fortunately, metal goods manufacturer Hugo Bräuer has stepped in to address this matter, offering a series of six industrial themed aluminum baking pans.  The “tools you bake” are directly borrowed from the “hundreds of wooden moulds, used in the making of hubcaps, lids or shades” produced throughout the 100 year history of the company.    

In addition to all of the obvious reasons, we love the idea of making a hubcap cake because it is the perfect instance of Function Follows Form.  It takes a special mind to translate an industrial wooden mould into a baking pan with MoMA credentials, but once it’s been done, its actually more shocking that no one thought of it before.  



A Working Lunch September 26, 2007

Posted by goodmind in Task Unification.
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Delightfully dubbed “sketchpads for architects” by cribcandy, these bound napkins are perfect for lunch meetings, no matter your profession.  By adding what appears to be a rubber adhesive backing to a stack of generic cafeteria napkins, doodlers and dreamers can remain productive during meals without sacrificing basic cleanliness and table manners.   A  stack of bound napkins makes sure that one is prepared for moments of lucid inspiration, and for messy spills. 

It may be a tongue in cheek instance of Task Unification, but we know more than a few people who would proudly tote their “sketchpads” to meetings and meals. 

Everybody’s Working for the Weekend September 20, 2007

Posted by goodmind in Attribute Dependency.
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Spent judiciously, 20 cents can go a long way.  Donate 20 cents to UNICEF, and a child may be properly vaccinated against the measles.  Add a 20 cent computer chip to an alarm clock, and the world can be a more well rested place. 

According to Seth Godin, existing technology provides alarm clocks with the precise time, via radio signal.  This same technology can also be used to supply the correct day as well,

“Which means that they [manufacturers] can add a switch that says “weekends.” Which means that the 98% of the population that doesn’t want to wake up on the same time on weekends as they do on weekdays will be happier (and better rested.)”

From Monday to Friday the alarm clock is a blessed invention, critical to professional success.  Saturday and Sunday, mmm not so much.  An alarm clock’s basic function is dependant on calendar time, rather than conventional 24 hour clock time.  This is yet another literal instance of Attribute Dependency Change

The change from weekday to weekend induces a drastic qualitative transformation of the alarm clock’s existential meaning in our busy lives.  It goes from an object facilitating punctuality, to one that elicits adult language and poorly aimed bludgeons. 

Given that alarm clock manufacturers probably enjoy sleeping in on weekends much like the rest of us, overlooking this key dependency, and failing to adjust the product to consumer needs is simply inexcusable.  Unless a full night’s rest is a pre-requisite for inventive thinking, which could explain a lot actually.