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Designers called on to help Haiti

Designers are being called upon by the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design to liaise with relief organisations and assess how design can help with rehabilitation projects in earthquake-stricken Haiti.
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Old cast-iron radiators transformed for electric heat

Canadian company EcoRad transforms old cast-iron radiators into eco-minded electric heat systems.

Cast iron radiators are often seen as remnants of outdated hot-water or steam-based heating systems, and so are frequently scrapped by homeowners updating their homes.
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Augmented Reality Application shows architecture from the past,present and future

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ARA, NAi Augmented Reality application

The Layar augmented reality browser is now being put to work to reveal insights about Dutch architecture.

To recap on AR: when a camera-equipped smartphone is pointed at a scene, AR apps will superimpose information and links relevant to the location. SARA, which was created by the Netherlands Architecture Institute (NAi) in partnership with IN10 Communicatie and Layar, is billed as the world’s first mobile architecture application featuring augmented reality with 3D models. Users of the technology simply hold up their smartphone to see photos, video, 3D models, scale models and other details about buildings currently in situ as well as those from the past and any planned for the future.
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Pentagon / Hexagon Watch with a Soccer Ball Icon Design from &design

A black pentagonal shaped panel and a white hexagonal shaped panel
brings a unique and casual look to a simple watch.
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NASA Technology in Your Home

Cultural shopping site CultureLabel in partnership with creative science company super/collider have become the first UK retailers of the super cool ANDREA Air Filter which uses NASA space technology to detox your home.
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The Design Museum in London have announced the shortlist for the Brit Insurance Designs of the Year 2010.

The Design Museum in London have announced the shortlist for the Brit Insurance Designs of the Year 2010.

Brit Insurance Design Awards shortlist announced across seven design categories

London, 18 January 2010: The third annual Brit Insurance Design Awards has produced another eclectic and progressive range of nominees; from beautiful Hutong Bubbles in Beijing to the BBC iPlayer, the 2010 shortlist reflects the comprehensive and international scope of the awards.
See full the shortlist On following Page.
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Design Competition Open Source House

Open Source House (OS-House) is a non-profit organization that aims to provide better, more sustainable housing in low-income countries. 8 Design principles are utilized by OS-House to guarantee standards of sustainability, and meet the challenge of flexibility, ensuring that all designs can be locally embedded. Establish your name, and contribute your ideas and designs in their first design competition starting on the 15th of January 2010. The competition results will be shared on the OS-House platform thereby marking the beginning of this ongoing project.

OS-House is an initiative of Enviu and architect Vincent van der Meulen. Let’s generate choice for those who don’t have any.

CircleBath, opening of the first hospital designed by Foster + Partners

CircleBath is Foster + Partners’ first hospital and the first in a programme of new independent hospitals which offer a radical departure from orthodox approaches to hospital planning. After a period of commissioning, CircleBath is expected to open to patients in February.
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OfficePOD: The Prefab Home Office

Working from home can be a serious challenge. Kids, pets and housework can put a significant strain on any workflow, so some tele-commuters have opted to divide their work from their home– with a separate office elsewhere on their property. The OfficePOD is a prefab home office unit that provides nearly 7? x 7? of office space and storage in a curvy, contemporary package. Plop the OfficePod on your property — be it your back yard or even a separate lot in a woodsy setting — and you’ve got a full-service modern office without the household distractions.
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Shidonni: Website Lets Children Design Their Own Plush Toys

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Featuring simple drawing and animation tools, Shidonni is a website that allows children to easily create and interact with characters of their own creation. With their parent’s permission, kids can also submit their favorite characters to the Shidonni team, who will translate the drawings – no matter how whimsical – into a custom stuffed plush toy. Watch a video at PSFK.Com

Design Virus Alert

According to Dutch Designer Pieke Bergman her distorted light bulbs are nothing more than standard bulbs infected with the ‘design virus’. The quirky young designer explains that her bulbs have “gone way out of line…taking on all kinds of forms and sizes you wouldn’t expect from such well behaving and reliable little products.”
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Tate and Design Competition

Tate and are collaborating to launch the 2010 edition of RELEASE and, this year, the hunt is on for two outstanding product designs that will be produced and sold in Tate shops, through Tate Online and at

This is your chance to get your work into Tate . The winning entry from each category will receive a cash prize of £500 plus commission on sales from 6 months in.
Product designs must fall into two price brackets – up to £10 and up to £100.
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Tesla’s Next-Generation Battery Packs

Panasonic and Tesla, have come together to create a new kind of electric vehicle battery based on Panasonic’s nickel-based lithium ion chemistry.

Business Wire reports:
Tesla, the only carmaker producing highway-capable electric vehicles, will use Panasonic’s battery cells in their newest battery packs. The cells are comprised of Nickel-based Lithium ion chemistry, the highest energy density battery cells in production today, preferred by Tesla for EV applications because of their high capacity, light weight, durability, and long life.
[Business Wire via PSFK]

Homestar Aqua: Sega Toys rolls out planetarium for your bathroom

Sega Toys’ series of planetarium projection systems for home use, the so-called Homestars, is getting another update. The company has announced the so-called Homestar Aqua for the Japanese market (everyone living outside this country can pre-order the Aqua here). This version is smaller and can, as the name suggests, be used in the bathroom (it’s water-resistant). And it’s relatively inexpensive, too.
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Magimix Vision Toaster

The result of 15 years of research and design, Magimix’s new Vision Toaster uses revolutionary long-lasting quartz heating elements to perfectly toast bread and let you get a peek at the action through a window.

Tucked away in the corners of the French appliance brand’s toaster, the hidden quartz parts replace the traditional metal components not only getting them out of the way for a clear panorama of the toast, but also heating more evenly.
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