Disruptive Design - Issue 1, Dec 2015

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d srupt ve des gn Issue 1, Dec 2015

3D Printing MakerClub’s robotic aspirations

Out of Date Has the Apple Watch met expectations?

Change by Design Tim Brown takes on the economy

English Disco Lovers office party & awards ceremony

December 18th @ KOMEDIA ÂŁ8 + bf in advance. ÂŁ2 donation from every ticket goes to the Hummingbird Project supporting Refugees in Calais! www.edl.me



d srupt ve des gn Issue 1, Dec 2015

Introduction Disruptive Design magazine aims to provoke, explore and publicise ideas about the benefits of disruption in design. As the new year approaches, we have a real chance to innovate in 2016. The name Disruptive Design encompasses our core belief; ever ything is designed and as changing economies spread across the world, the status quo needs to be disrupted to keep ahead of the cur ve. We believe things should be disruptive by design. Tweet us @DisruptiveDesign with any comments, feedback or ideas about how you have injected some disruption into your life.

Cover Featured on this month’s cover is a 3D printed ceramic vase created by Eran Gal-Or of Studio Under in Holon, Israel.

of beauty. Is a piece of work still beautiful if it can be reproduced anywhere in the world at the click of a button?

Open-source artwork like this forces us to question our perception

For centuries we have valued items based on their supply; it has never


been possible to have a functioning ‘art industr y’. As population increases and resources become more widely accessible, this economic system may be forced to change.


Contents 1

Disrupt your business models 6-7. Mark Shayler’s wants us to ‘Lose Control’ with disruptive innovation. The eco designer and author of book Do Disrupt spoke at TEDx Brighton this year about innovating your business model to stay ahead.



Learning in 3D 8-9. Brighton startup MakerClub are moving into the world of microcontroller boards, taking on the likes of Ardiuno and Littlebits to bring the Maker Movement to digital education.

Out of date, out of time 10-13. Has the Apple Watch met expectations? Toby Whelan doesn’t think so, in fact he has some serious concerns about the future of wearable technology.







Viva Brighton 14-15. An exclusive look at the Viva Brighton cover page to be featured in the March issue next year, themed ‘The Mind’.

Think like a designer 16-17. Tim Brown takes on the changing economy with his design thinking. For businesses to successfully adapt to new emerging markets, Tim believes design should be incorporated into ever y level of business.

PR for dummies 18-19. Pegasus talk about some of their successes and failures, particularly how to overcome the difficulty of branding towards the market that just doesn’t want to listen: students.


“We need to stop designing things better and start designing better things.” Mark Shayler is an eco designer and author of the DIY disruption book Do Disrupt . Mark gave an inspiring talk at year’s TEDx Brighton. The theme of the day was ‘Losing Control’ – and that’s exactly what he wants us to do. The message Mark Shayler left us with (which also happens to be his personal motto) is that we need to “design better things, not design things better”. This didn’t really make any sense to me at first, but I think I have gotten my head around what he meant. It feels like a ver y important message, one that I’d like to share with you today. Mark’s main job involves consulting for companies, saving them money by 6

Reducing packaging materials can save companies millions. Mark shaved 10% off the weight of Dorset Cereals’ boxes and ended up with a much better looking box.

eco-auditing to find weak spots in their production line, packaging, or manufacturing processes. He then works with them to refine processes and make things simpler. He claims to have saved his clients £10 million by doing this, over the years.

On his website (thisisape.co.uk) Mark quotes Sir Ian Cheshire, saying “if you don’t disrupt your business model then someone else will”. Also, someone you might not associate with disruption, Jony Ive himself said that “complete intrigue with the physical world starts by destroying it”.

But for Mark, this is not enough. Taking something that is unsustainable and improving it, polishing it up nicely, this doesn’t chop his broccoli. To truly innovate, we can’t just design things better, we have to completely start

This is clearly something we must take seriously, and as much as Mark presents it with cheeky humour, is an issue that needs to be addressed in order to not fall behind. I will leave you with one of Mark’s powerful analogies: a sailing boat is safest where? In a harbour. What is it built to do? Sail the seas. So get out into the wind, he says, take a risk and do something big.

over – we have to design better things.

“If you don’t disrupt your business model then someone else will”

Mark is running a ‘Do Disrupt’ workshop in London on Friday, December 11th from 09:30-17:00. Book online at thedolectures.com

Mark has been doing this with some ver y big companies including Nike and Coca-Cola – ‘Positively Disrupting’ their business models to the point where they actually change the status quo. 7

A peek inside the office of Brighton Startup MakerClub


Wander into a dimly-lit coffee shop on London Road, up some windy stairs, along an astroturfed corridor and you will find yourself in the new home of Brighton startup MakerClub. Simon Riley, founder and CEO, is passionate about bringing the Maker Movement to digital education, and has some exciting ideas for the future of the company. I recently got the chance to spend a day working with MakerClub in their new office above London Road’s Presuming Ed Coffeehouse. The desks surrounding the office provide an intriguing glimpse into what it is MakerClub are building. Spread around the room are MakerClub wants the various 3D world to ‘learn in 3D’ printed trinkets, robotic components and Arduino-like circuitboards.

Left: A mobile controlled car 3D printed at a MakerClub after-school workshop.

Will Brett-Atkins, Head of Product Development, explained the startup’s new direction. MakerClub is developing a new single-board microcontroller with a focus on robitics. Unlike Arduino, which only supports a limited number of motorised components, the unnamed 9

board MakerClub is developing will support four times as many add-ons, allowing for much more complex creations. To delve into such a new territor y is a significant risk for a small business, but Simon is confident there is a growing market for the product. It seems that Simon is right, as they are gaining momentum fast. MakerClub were recently awarded First place in the UK Creative Business Cup, and were flown to Copenhagen where they reached the semi-finals at the European level. MakerClub wants the world to ‘Learn in 3D’, and the Government have recognised this, awarding them an £80,000 grant to design a school-age online resource for programming, 3D design, and electronic engineering. Follow @MakerClub on Twitter to keep up to date with all their creations.

Apple Watch owners: look away now. Your shiny ÂŁ600 watch is a danger to us all.


The Apple Watch has been on shelves, wrists and bedside tables for 6 months, but has the landscapechanging product we were promised really come to life? I don’t think so, in fact I think the watch could represent a scary change in society – one we need to keep a close eye on. I’ll start by saying that I am by no means an Apple critic. It’s way too easy to slam their latest products online, and people have been doing it for years. The Apple Watch got its fair share Apple Watch users of unfounded scrutiny on have bought into launch, so here the idea that every I will be as element of our lives fair as I can. I however, needs to be tracked am, war y of buying into the hysteria that often surrounds Apple product launches. Walk into any small design studio, tech startup or boutique 11

coffee shop and you can guarantee there’ll be a beardwearing creative tapping away at their MacBook, glancing down at their wrist between sips of black coffee. Ask them about their watch and they’ll excitedly tell you how this £600 device has greatly improved their lives. They’re drinking more water, running more miles and – according to Apple’s ad ‘Date’ – having more sex.

Opposite: a £13,500 Apple Watch Edition falling to a bitter end. Above: The Apple Watch Spor t fails FoneFox’s ‘hammer test’.

team still manage to make more noise. Whether you are attacking or defending Apple’s products, it is time to set our differences aside: whoever invented the touchscreen first doesn’t really matter. Information mined from smartwatches gives companies like Apple and Google a level of access to the personal intricacies of our lives never before possible. The power held in this big data is terrifying, yet we are queueing up to give it away. Not only can targeted advertising now appeal to our (previously) deepest kept secrets, but government departments can wirelessly track us and sell that information internationally.

The benefits portrayed by Apple’s marketing appeal to our fundamental human needs. Through the beautifully crafted adverts we convince ourselves that we need an Apple Watch to fulfil our dreams and take a meaningful step towards our life goals. At this point, the product that arrives really doesn’t matter at all. The oath has been sworn: we are devotees. Like the people of Kickstarter who believe an IoT-connected water bottle (yes, that is actually a thing) will improve their lives, Apple Watch users have bought into the idea that ever y element of our lives needs to be tracked, traced and analysed. And all it takes is a nice video.

If the smartwatch is accepted as an integral part of our lives, we are saying “I’m okay with this”. This lack of privacy is a hairs width away from becoming the precedent, but if we reject it now, it is not too late. You can buy an Apple Watch in store or online. Prices range from £299-£13,500.

The power held in this big data is terrifying, yet we are queueing up to give it away Apple product launches are reliably polarising. There is always a crowd that adore them and a crowd that despise them. As Apple’s market share grows it is clear that the home team has far more fans, yet the away

Top right: A screenshot from the Apple ad ‘Date’ shows the romantic benefits promised by the Apple Watch.


Debate: Is the Apple Watch the future of wearable technology? Once a month we like to get ever yone in the office together for a big debate. The topic can be anything, from benign to profound. The group is split in half, with one side fighting for and one against. This month, we discussed the Apple Watch and whether or not it was the future of wearable technology. It got fier y.


For • Apple’s ResearchKit API allows researchers to collect anonymised data for their studies

• All the technology in the Apple Watch is available in other products, Apple have not innovated here

• Apple have successfully combined the fashion and technology industries, creating a high-end desirable product

• When compared to alternatives such a Fitbit, the price difference is huge

• All data is encr ypted and stored locally on the iPhone, meaning it cannot be remotely accessed

• The Apple Watch doesn’t yet have mass-market appeal, so cannot be the future of wearables

• Apple are taking responsibility for their users’ data, protecting it from government bodies as much as they can

• Features are limited without iPhone, cutting off a large chunk of the market • Short batter y life means it cannot be used for both daily use AND sleep tracking

• Considering it is the first generation of a new form factor, the Apple Watch has been incredibly successful - far more then the first iPhone

What do you think? Tweet your thoughts about the Apple Watch and the future of wearable technology to @DisruptiveDesign using the hashtag #OutOf Time - Yay or Nay? 13


Viva Magazine Exclusive Ever y March local magazine Viva Brighton gives Sussex University final year Product Design Students a chance to be featured as their cover artist.

are all so tired of. The South Downs and chalky cliffs that bookend Brighton are a huge part of our identity, so I wanted to feature this in my cover.

Our ver y own Toby Whelan submitted his work, inspired by the walnut and the South Downs, with the theme ‘The Mind’.

Q: And the walnut? A: The theme of the March Issue is ‘The Mind’, so I went about working a loose image of the brain into the shape of the trees. The style was in part inspired by the walnut, which was heralded centuries ago for its visual similarity to the brain.

I inter viewed Toby to find out more about his thought process in creating the cover. Q: How did you come to find this idea?

You can pick up this month’s Viva Magazine for free in shops around Brighton.

A: I thought about symbols that represent Brighton, but wanted to stay away from the pier/sea/pavilion combo we


Why businesses need to think like designers to keep up with the changing economy Tim Brown, CEO of global design firm IDEO, spoke at the Disruptive Innovation Festival (DIF) about the changing economy and how people, businesses and societies as a whole need to think more like designers to keep ahead of the curve.


Tim wants the value of the designer to be recognised for what it is. Design philosophies and techniques are valuable tools at ever y level of business, and are in fact essentials in order to not stagnate. This idea is not new to Tim; his book Change by Design, published in 2009, outlines how design thinking can allow companies to problem solve from a human-centred approach. This innovation is vital to ensure businesses don’t fall into the dangerous trap of continually ‘giving customers what they want’. Products and ser vices that don’t evolve will quickly become mediocre, mundane and undesirable.

Ask a room of people what the word design means to them, and you will likely hear a lot about how things look, what they are made of and what colours you can buy it in. In reality, design encompasses so much more than aesthetics; it is the creative mindset needed to innovate.

This movement is not just coming from the bottom, however, there are big companies pushing for design to give them a competitive advantage. Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks, said in a 2004 inter view that “The fracturing of trust is based on the fact that the consumer has been let down”. Our current economic model is approaching the point of failure. For widespread change to take place, this action can’t just be sole businesses adopting change. A total transformation of culture is required.

“The fracturing of trust is based on the fact that the consumer has been let down” Too much effort, recently, has been spent designing things to be as beautiful as possible. Apple are partly to blame for this, continually releasing new products with hardware thinner and software simpler, at the cost of a huge sacrifice to usability. Aesthetics are an important part of our interaction with a product, but they should not conflict with the basic Interaction Design principles of discoverability, recover y, consistency and feedback. Worst of all, these products will simply stop functioning after a few years.

Read more about Tim’s design philosophy on his blog at designthinking.ideo.com Opposite: Tim Brown at University of Southern California Top left: Tim’s book on design thinking, Change by Design


Why marketing to students is so hard, and how to do it anyway. Pegasus PR is a Brighton-based health communications consultancy, blending traditional communications with digital and social marketing. They have been growing steadily, but recently hit a hurdle: students. Students are a notoriously hard bunch to sell to. They claim to have no money, no time and often no self worth. When Pegasus where tasked by ProPlus to re-adjust their marketing to focus on the student market, they had their work cut out.

bit of student loan from the under-slept group, so ProPlus have made a smart move in re-evaluating their position. Pegasus knew that the campaign would need to focus largely on social media, as this is a ver y cost-effective way to target a large group such as students. They also knew that relying on Facebook would not be enough; the campaign had to stretch across all social platforms: old and new.

The student sector is, however, growing at a huge rate. Companies have realised the value of squeezing a


Facebook has become so saturated with advertising that many students see it simply as a LinkedIn-like alternative for your family affairs. A website where you occasionally upload an inoffensive photo or two, only so your grandma knows what you’re up to. Ever ything else is fed to Snapchat, YikYak and Instagram, or whichever other app is trending at the time. The fastmoving nature of social media makes it difficult for companies to keep up with, as Karl Kasparis outlines to us.

The best marketing comes from the users themselves, the self-made brand ambassadors Karl is in charge of ProPlus’s social media, and he says the Facebook posts are incredibly hit and miss. One post may get picked up and will go viral, where another would bomb and get buried with the rest. Karl goes as far as to say there is no formula for success: “because they have become so used to companies advertising at ever y opportunity, students have learnt to completely ignore them.” The trick, he reveals, is for the engagement to come from within: “the best marketing comes from the users themselves, in the form of selfmade brand ambassadors.” If you can encourage users to engage with your own content, or better yet create their own, then the post has to potential to snowball. ‘Brand tribalism’, the dream outcome for Pegasus PR, is common among students, as they car ve out an identity for themselves. Follow @ThisIsPegasus on Twitter for the latest updates on their work. 19

We are here

Come and visit the Sussex University Product Design stand next year at New Designers 2016! See the portfolios and final year projects of Product Design graduates, network with talented students and get a glimpse at the cutting edge forefront of modern design.



New Designers Part 2 06 - 09 July 2016 10am - 6pm

Business Design Centre 52 Upper Street London N1 0QH 20

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