Field trips are always a treat for our team — it’s so great to see the work happening in our industry across the country. Several of us recently attended the Core 77 Conference to learn more about designing, manufacturing, and innovating with physical objects.
The conference was an amazing experience for our team. We’ve built lots of awesome social machines connecting the physical and digital worlds, and as we continue to build out an industrial design practice, this immersive 1-day event was well-timed for our hungry minds.
We heard from Dong-Ping Wong about his enormous and groundbreaking project + POOL. The goal of the project is to put a giant floating swimming pool into the rivers of New York City. The pool will filter the river’s water so that the water in the pool is safe for people to swim in — an innovative solution for a city surrounded by water that’s too dirty to interact with. His team’s experience over the past four years bringing the project closer to fruition was so different from our internal process, involving so many more parties and moving pieces — it was a treat to peek behind the curtain of such an awe-inspiring project.
We also got a tour of a Carla Diana’s Leo the Maker Prince, a fiction story that teaches the concept of 3D printing to people of all ages. Involving the next generation in such a simple but fun way is crucial to inspiring future innovation, and it was great to hear about a project that aims to do just that.
Many of the other talks at this year’s conference centered around responsibility in design — making sure that when given the opportunity to design something, that it is done with regard to the environment as well as everyone who will interact with what is created.
Two major takeaways:
- As designers, we (have the best job in the world) get to make things that are used every day; it’s important that we take the time to make sure that they are benefiting the people who use them.
- We need to consider the context in which our products are used; an idea might seem perfect in the lab, but we won’t know anything for sure until we get out into the field and test the prototype in the desired context.
Thanks to everyone at Core 77 who worked so hard to make the conference a great experience!