2009 resolutions

I don’t like chocolate that much anymore and I’ve already promised myself to do more exercise, so all there’s left to commit to are a loose collection of interests I’d like to pursue in the coming year:

– Find out what’s behind the current trend of doomsday scenarios for the future..is it only a byproduct of a downturn? Can we find solutions to this general malaise? Is it common to former times of despair? (Great depression? Great war?) Future-casting is now a completely depressing activity (see Trend Blend 2009.

– Where is design going exactly? On one hand we have very cheap and limited productions by a limitless number of young aspiring designers being pumped out of every design school in the world every year (see See Super Christmas Market), then we have design for the masses with every new version of iPod or Dyson vacuum cleaner which is actually a great vacuum for the car, then we have luxury focused products made by signature designers ( see the rest of OLPC designer Yves Béhar‘s work as an example ), then we have design that wants to occupy the same function as art , then architects who design products (although that’s always been a sort of tradition) and then design as a business solution. I’m interested in this absolute dilution and often wonder if the field will dissapear entirely as we enter the post-modern age and industrialised processes break down and shut down or if people will stop referring to “design” as an activity at all. Will design be a word that will become “dirty” in 30 years, by referring to an era of 100 years of absolute excess?
Related: Will product designers stop using Flash in their websites and start participating in the global internet conversation? What would convince them?

– How can you teach people management skills when they are young entrepreneurs who don’t have an MBA? I’m sure there’s a ton of stuff out there, but i’m looking for bite-sized advice.

– Can people be interested in DIY problem-solving when they’ve been spoon-fed with produts to fulfill every solution to every problem they could imagine in the past 60 years? What can we learn from our grand-parents? Should governments be taking a more active role?

– Sustainability / climate change / global warming is impacted by sets of constraints and imbalances in a system we can’t quite wrap our heads around, can we build a machine (not unlike this one) to illustrate the problems tangibly?

– What is the next generation of web-enabled products and interactions? I can feel this is really going to be very exciting. Should designers and developers be working together on this? YES!

There, that should keep me busy.

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Founder of designswarm & the Good Night Lamp. Ex CEO of Tinker London, Head of Bulb Labs till May 2019.