concepts

  • Like algae? Love lamps? Please read.

    Just now you were wondering, “how can I get more algae in my day-to-day life?” Well, maybe not then, but you are now. Now. Now. See? So now that you’re wondering it, I have an answer for you. I know! Such a lucky coincidence! Or maybe it was meant to be. You and this algae-powered lamp are a match made in the epipelagic zone. Read More

  • Squishy batteries that fit A through D – probably not going to happen

    We have to give concept designers points for trying, but I don’t think this resizable battery is going to fly. For one thing, the actual core is tiny, and batteries derive their power from packing as many volatile chemicals into their little bodies as possible. Imagine putting six of these, at D size, into a boom box — the thing would die in like 15 minutes. Read More

  • Mocca Pearl concept: espresso in the wilderness

    Okay, it’s an egg-shaped version of the Moka Express stovetop espresso thing. So far so good. But how do you pick it up? Read More

  • Monami, the hard drive concept with a leather top hat (kinda)

    Yeah… How much thought do you put into your hard drive purchase? Like, zero seconds? I mean, you check out the specs—capacity, cache, speed, etc.—and then off you go. Do you care what it looks like? I certainly don’t, but then I’m probably not the “demo” for this deal. Then again, it’s not even real, so I don’t even know what’s going… Read More

  • Concept USB drive glows different colors for different file types

    This is a good idea, but… we basically already have it. I reviewed Western Digital’s e-ink display-equipped My Passport Studio a couple weeks ago, and although it only had room for a label and some basic data, it could just as easily be a better, larger, more versatile display. The concept here would be fun, but it ignores some really basic use issues. Read More

  • MacBook 3D concept: How long till it becomes a reality?

    What’s most surprising about this next story is that it took so long to emerge. Presenting… someone’s MacBook 3D mock-up! “See 3D, make 3D.” Yes, that’s very Apple-like indeed. Read More

  • Inverted, ocean-bound "seascrapers": aqua-communes for the future?

    You guys, I’m freaking out about how cool these things could be. A recent skyscraper concept competition yielded some really interesting designs, among them this utterly amazing concept, which they inexplicably call a “water-scraper” instead of the decidedly more euphonious “seascraper,” as I have dubbed it. Think of it: a partially self-contained structure… Read More

  • Motorola hard hat computer concept

    “Look, honey! There’s a cyborg up on the telephone pole outside. Should we invite it in for some motor oil and finger sandwiches or do you think it’d try to kill us? Whup. Wait. It’s a repair man. Cyborgs don’t have butt cracks. That’s how you can tell. False alarm. Should we invite him in for some coffee and finger sandwiches or do you think he’d try… Read More

  • Swarming helicopters create 3D display


    If we’re going to be killed by swarming robots, they might as well look good doing it. Scientists at the MIT SENSEable City lab created a 3D display using tiny remote controlled helicopters that float in patterns in the air and light up, thereby creating a volumetric display. Read More

  • Concept bike from Peugeot looks amazing, but is it practical?

    The bicycle, my friends, has gone through many refinements, but not as many serious changes. Look at an average bike now, and you’ll find it’s much the same as a bike from 50 years ago. More reliable, more efficient, and much lighter to be sure, but it’s built with the same archetype in mind. Not so much with this crazy thing from Peugeot. Read More

  • OLED board game pieces promise to take Carcassonne into the far future

    My buddy Lou tells this story: he was with his girlfriend at the time and he got a call from a couple they knew. They couple invited them over for “boardgames and wine” and Lou said “Sure.” Then his girlfriend told him that they were not going over for boardgames and wine because, in that couple’s special code, “boardgames and wine” as some sort of… Read More

  • SmartFish concept aircraft swims in the air

    The SmartFish aircraft is a concept vehicle created by an engineering firm in Germany, based on the aerodynamic shape of a fish. So far, they have only built a remote control version of the aircraft, however a prototype is in the works. The prototype will be built from kevlar and carbon fiber, however the designers expect the vehicle to be relatively inexpensive to build. Read More

  • MSI's two-screen wonder looks a lot like that extinct OLPC 2.0

    Remember that OLPC design that had two touchscreens joined at the hip, kind of like we saw with the Courier later? Yeah, it got canned, but the basic design seems to have lived on in this MSI concept. Read More

  • "Rambler," another dubious but perhaps useful socket modification

    The common wall socket is, despite what you may think, a very well-engineered piece of work. There’s no way to put plugs in wrong, it’s difficult to electrocute yourself, and they put through plenty of juice as well as grounding your device. Ain’t nothing wrong with that, but people seem set on fixing it anyway. The pull-out looked good, but the Node was a disaster waiting… Read More

  • Custom Band-Aid dispenser for those foot-long paper cuts

    Although the concept here is good, I can’t help thinking that if you need a Band-Aid (elastic bandage, sorry) longer than an inch or so, you probably need something more than a Band-Aid. Except for things like grass and paper cuts, injuries more than an inch in any direction generally don’t just go in a straight line. And what about covering up hickies? Read More

  • T3's "Netpad" puts a few new twists on the tablet format


    Product differentiation is getting more and more difficult these days. The lozenge-shaped, touch-enabled, all-purpose computing device is fast on its way, and while things like the Courier are still serving up surprises, you could be forgiven for thinking most of these big blank screens are pretty similar. That’s why I was pleasantly surprised to see some smart additions to the tablet… Read More

  • Yeah, this Vertu concept looks better than most of the ‘real’ phones out there

    Apparently this phone is getting ready for a big Muay Thai match. It’s a Vertu—“vertu” is “virture” in French!—designed by one Norihiko Inoue. No, you cannot buy it, I just thought it looked neat. Read More

  • Store your data on an ice cream bar with deliciously easy file transfers

    Yum. Ice cream bars and external data solutions are, without a doubt, two of my favorite things. Actually, I don’t back up all that often (I’m in the cloud, baby!) and frozen confections give me headaches. But this concept actually makes a whole lot of sense and it looks good, to boot. Read More

  • Screw cooking with gas, I wanna cook with lasers

    When appliance heavyweight Electrolux has a design contest, you know there’s going to be some crazy stuff coming out it. This year is no exception, as designer Ludovic Peperstraete has come up with his “Cooking in the Futur” design, which suggests that 90 years from now we’ll be using laser beams to cook food instead of gas or convection ovens. Do you hear me? Read More

  • Portable housing concepts

    So due to the financial crisis, you’ve lost your mcmansion, the wife left and took the kids, the bank took the car, and all you’ve got left are your clothes, and maybe your bicycle. Don’t despair, you can still look stylish while being homeless! Read More