The British electrical plug. A design classic you either ignore, or ridicule depending on where you’re from.

Foreign visitors have been known to query the design of the British electrical plug which, compared with that of most countries, seems quite large and – if you accidentally step on one – rather painful. Well once it’s plugged in it’s not that large at all, and far less easy to accidentally kick out of […]

The Design curriculum in English schools includes… cooking

This is what design is, according to the English National Curriculum   Worrying news about the state of teacher recruitment in the UK. The number of new teachers for design and technology is also more than a third below what it needs to be and there is a 10% shortfall in the number of IT […]

Hyde Park visitors “covertly tracked” via mobile phone data

 The Guardian reports that: Visitors to Hyde Park, one of London’s most famous tourist spots, were covertly tracked via their mobile phone signals in a trial undertaken by the Royal Parks to analyse footfall amid drastic funding cuts. Officials were able to retrospectively locate park-goers for 12 months using anonymised mobile phone data provided by […]

In kids cartoons, 0% of princesses are engineers, 2.9% of characters are black, and Batman doesn’t recycle

News via The Guardian of a new Kickstarter campaign to tackle poor representation of girls/women in STEM subjects (or rather STEAM – they quite rightly include the arts where they belong, alongside the other disciplines). “In kids cartoons, 0% of princesses are engineers, 2.9% of characters are black, and Batman doesn’t recycle. And kids spend […]

Netflix made socks that know when you’ve fallen asleep while binge watching

The socks use a method of rest and activity monitoring known as actigraphy. So a built-in accelerometer will wait for you to stop moving for a prolonged period of time before sending a signal to the TV to prevent you from losing your place in Mad Men for the 20th time. An LED light will […]

Epson’s PaperLab turns useless trash into fresh sheets of paper

Epson has developed what it says is the first ever in-office paper recycling machine. You feed used documents into one end of the PaperLab, and out the other comes clean, white, printable sheets. It’s speedy too, churning out 14 A4 sheets every minute (that’s 6,720 sheets in an eight-hour work day), and can even produce […]

Ad Blocking: The Unnecessary Internet Apocalypse

Ad Age on ad blocking Advertisers and their agencies should voluntarily abandon the most upsetting forms of digital disruption. While autoplay video ads may work in some mobile in-stream environments where a consumer can swipe them off the screen quickly, it may be time to retire autoplay in other contexts. Flashing, blinking intrusive ads also […]