is a blog about design, technology and culture written by Khoi Vinh, and has been more or less continuously published since December 2000 in New York City. Khoi is currently Principal Designer at Adobe. Previously, Khoi was co-founder and CEO of Mixel (acquired in 2013), Design Director of The New York Times Online, and co-founder of the design studio Behavior, LLC. He is the author of “How They Got There: Interviews with Digital Designers About Their Careers”and “Ordering Disorder: Grid Principles for Web Design,” and was named one of Fast Company’s “fifty most influential designers in America.” Khoi lives in Crown Heights, Brooklyn with his wife and three children.
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A small but crucial correction: it’s not crowdfunding, it’s ‘crowdspeaking’. The only goal is to get enough attention in order to interest hardware manufacturers. That’s also why I’m very skeptic towards this plan: hardware manufacturers deliberately produce products with a limited lifecycle. (The same applies to e.g., lightbulbs and pantyhoses. There’s a very good documentary called ‘The Lightbulb Conspiracy’.) Currently, the phonebloks people wait for one of these incumbents to produce it. I’d say: forget it. The only way to get such an idea of the ground is to (a) crowdfund it and make it yourself (comparable to e.g., the fair phone (http://www.fairphone.com/)), which will be a massive operation with a big chance to fail, or (b) hope, and that’s where the speculation starts, a challenger with enough knowledge and resources wants to pick it up to break open the market. Who knows, there might be a new Huawei sleeping somewhere in Asia. But for the moment, I doubt we will ever see this phone.
Great video concept but that’s all. It’s a solution in search of a problem. I’ve used Apple devices for twenty years or more. About all of them have been resold or, more likely, handed down to second and third users in the family. Recent products are even more long lived. Check Gazelle; it will even buy broken iPhones. And Apple will buy back its products for recycling.
Good critique of this here. It’s totally not feasible: Link
The aspiration is admirable, and the underlying goal is also nice, but the video is misleading as it implies it’s more than just a 3D rendering.
Still, it’s popularity does give a voice to people’s desires and hopefully acts as a guide post to the industry about the qualities people want in their electronics.
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