Thursday, August 25, 2011

Steve Jobs, Product Design,and Me

Yesterday's news was a bummer. I can't help feeling that with the loss of Steve Jobs presence, Product Design is changing irrevocably - our leader has left the building. For years now, much of traditional product design in the US has been slipping away, small parcels sneaking off to China, India, and beyond until what remains is a shadow of the former glory. Manufacturing exited the building first, quickly, soon taking engineering with it. Now, overseas factories provide modeling and tooling, promoting their own products to clients who used to pay for American design.

Nearly every client I've ever worked with has expressed their desire to emulate Apple, to be a leader in their industry, to be like Steve. Honestly, few have had the dedication and guts to risk long-term research and investments the way Steve Jobs did. But his standard still pushed everyone to do a little more. He made me more diligent. He made us all feel like everything is possible.

I hope that Steve Jobs pulls off another miracle, hits yet another grand slam, and surprises us all by debuting another astounding, design-minded company in a few years. I still hope to meet the man some day. But for now, take a listen to his Commencement speech at Stanford, it's classic Steve Jobs.

Monday, August 22, 2011

100th Post: $100 Favorites

It was hard to decide what to write about on my 100th blog entry. While I could certainly come up with top-100 lists, who'd really want to read all of that? One of the things I like best about reading blogs is finding out about cool new things that I come to love in turn. So on this momentous occasion, let me share with you a few of my favorite things that I'd happily drop a hundred dollars on, in honor of the hundredth post:

The Sodastream Soda Maker, favorite purchase of the year
SodaStream Jet Black Sparkling Water & Soda Maker 4-pc.

KitchenAid Mixer Attachments - trust me, without these you have no idea what your mixer is capable of!
KitchenAid FPPA Mixer Attachment Pack for Stand Mixers

Philips Dual Screen Portable DVD Player takes long trips from excruciating to easy
Philips PD7012/37 7-Inch LCD Dual Screen Portable DVD Player, Black

Beaba Babycook Baby Food Maker - consolidates the baby food process and is a super nice splurge for a new mom.
Beaba Babycook Baby Food Maker

Dewalt 18V Cordless Drill - a bit over budget, but the ideal drill in my eyes. Great battery life and an easy chuck make short work of DIY work.
DEWALT DC759KA 18-Volt NiCad 1/2-Inch Cordless Drill/Driver Kit

SimpleHuman SS Step Trash Can - think about how many times you use your trash can every day. Treat yourself to a good one!
simplehuman Rectangular Step Trash Can, Fingerprint-Proof Brushed Stainless Steel, 30 Liters /8 Gallons

iPod Nano - if you aren't in the apple game yet, this gadget is a great way to get started. With music, media, calendars, and apps like the pedometer, the nano quickly integrates into your day.
Apple iPod nano 8 GB Graphite (6th Generation) NEWEST MODEL