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, Design Chair at Wildcard and co-founder of Kidpost. Previously, Khoi was co-founder and CEO of Mixel (acquired by Etsy, Inc.), Design Director of The New York Times Online, and co-founder of the design studio Behavior, LLC. He is the author of “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. Refer to the advertising and sponsorship page for inquiries.+
The Sigelock Spartan is the first major redesign of the fire hydrant form factor to gain traction in over a century. It was inspired by the surprisingly common failure of traditionally designed fire hydrants at times of peril. The Spartan replaces cast iron with a mixture of stainless steel and ductile iron, which purports to be much hardier in corrosive conditions. The creator claims that it’s designed to “last two hundred years maintenance free.”
The design is elegant if a little unorthodox; it seems a shame that the new form couldn’t retain a closer lineage with traditional fire hydrants, but the new one has a unique, friendly elegance nevertheless. There’s also a nice bit of DNA in the design, as the founder of Sigelock Systems, George Sigelakis, was a New York City firefighter for fifteen years, proving that not everything has to be designed by art school graduates. Read more at Fast Company.
Thanks to reader Adrian Ulrich for the tip.+