At CES the sun sets at Belkin. It was the most natural, inviting, "home" to hang out in... with a grassy courtyard in the center where the band played live music with the sun setting behind them... bedrooms, offices, kitchens, living rooms to the sides... even a perfectly darkly lit gamer den off to one corner... mannequins out for a jog out front... the VW parked out back. With lush green grasstroturf in the center space they nicely insulated from the chaos of CES, and hardwood floors with clean black furniture in the others... i felt more like i fell into a pre-fab house out of Dwell. Honestly you could momentarily forget that you were at an industry only electronics convention... they have really transformed themselves the last few years, and i am thrilled to hear that their design process for products and even the booth put Users First! They work with focus groups and run in home usability studies to find out what people really NEED in their lives, and only THEN do they bring together the designs and technology to fit ~ and it really shows, since they have managed to really put the "lifestyle" aspect into their products. Even the careful detail on the designs of products show, from the buttons, to the fonts and glows, the color choices and materials used... (remember the rockstar and conserve surge protector?)... and when it came to the booth ~ we see more of the silhouetted furnishings motif (like at HP) and i love the touches like both REAL black goldfishes in bowls as well as subtle vinyl stickered goldfish bowls at the top of the stairs where few may even notice such a minute detail.
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Nokia goes green this CES with their Nokia 3110 Evolve, and to show it off they gave it a special corner of their large booth space. The most eyecatching things there? The Toyota Hybrid COVERED in green vinyl sticker trees (YES, i am so dreaming up things to do to my car) ~ the beautifully simple compressed wood layered displays ~ the bold typographic 60% recycled packaging. If there was one common trend between my favorite design centric booth displays this year it would definitely be silhouettes in vinyl...
I must say that i was proud to have our sites sponsored by HP when i walked into this booth... it was like a designers wet dream. I was just floored by the intense amount of design classics everywhere, and didn't expect to find a booth covered in silhouettes of design classics ~ as well as many beautiful design pieces in their settings as well. Can you name/spot all the pieces? I have LOTS of pictures for you below, and it does feel like they might have gone nuts with a DWR catalog. And even down to the tiniest details ~ they have a normann copenhagen WOOFY on a shelf ~ looks like a nava notebook and automoblox on a desk even! And now they have me pondering whether to start printing out silhouettes of life size design classics (like lamps and chairs) with my vinyl cutter! Even the artimide tolomeo mega classic floor lamp is there. My absolute favorite i'm tempted to replicate is their Vitra Algue wall... i never could justify spending enough to make a proper wall hanging of those, but with the push of a button the vinyl silhouette version would be sooooo easy. I think there is even a french bulldog on one of the walls.... and the mix of woodgrain and the various hues of blue for the faux walls in their walls mixed with the crisp black and white of the products.... *swoon* Look at the pics below, let me know what else you spot!
One of the first booths i encountered that i actually loved wandering around in was the one for Eton ~ which is re_inventing radio, but more to come on those later! I started from their darker Porsche design collaboration space (i've always been a sucker for those Porsche design radio), and working into their strangely spacious feeling (not an easy task at such a large trade show) main space that used many illuminated white geometric forms for both displays as well as overhead ambiance and projection spaces. the result was a multifaceted cloud like environment. Their main bar showed all their latest products in a range of colors, and surrounded by playful orange stools were very inviting and their colorful, rugged radios displayed on nicely layered pieces of plexi with info on the various models, as well as simple layers of shapes and colors on the main surface. Apparently Eton is Palo Alto based, which was a pleasant surprised ~ seeing as their booth looked far more european and heavily design influenced than the majority of silicon valley companies represented at CES! I also found out from their VP, John Smith, that the booth was the brain child of Jesse Kearney. Take a quick tour of the booth in pictures after the jump!
This is not your usual list of Top 10 CES picks ~ here are 10 products that are actually relatively attainable (either out now, or soon, and aren't concepts), that made my wishlist far too quickly - and don't fall under the cliche mobile, tv, pc launches you've probably been reading about and seeing everywhere.
Freshly back from CES, and i can barely feel my feet. As can be expected - it was one insane 36 hour vegas trip filled with more gadgetry than you can imagine, taxi lines longer than those at amusement parks, bright lights, tacky hotel rooms, the drone of slot machines pinging away, camera crews/bloggers/businessmen everywhere, booth babes galore, 150" tvs, robots, giant dancing/singing frogs with waterfall projections at the wynn, etc... But before i get into all of that, i need some sleep! ~ So, see below for the full list, and rest assured i'll have some up close and personal pics/posts to show you some design details of these products and more probably in the next few days!
It's that time of year again. What other way to kick off a new year than the annual CES Vegas madness? I'm sure you feel the buzz of all the tech launches every 5 seconds burning up your RSS readers... Well i'm off at the crack of dawn for two days to wander through the mayhem, and this year dan is coming along as well! Seeing as you have all the tech sites live blogging the latest announcements, just like last year, i'll be showing you what is actually worthwhile in person, who has the most innovative and well designed booths and displays (the big companies don't hold back for this one, and last year Belkin blew me away), and which products we're dying to BUY. So please be patient if my blogging and editing is a bit slow while i'm caught up in the whirlwind for two days, you know i'll catch you up when i have time to process it all and clean up the pics!
*fingers crossed* its a good show this year ~ hopefully the front page of the CES page saying "Experience the Art of Technology" with their super colorful gadget paintings are a good sign!
Oh, and if you're there and/or have something we can't afford to miss, leave us a note!
008 is upon us (nearly!), and i'm excited to say farewell to 007, particularly since this year was spent fairly grounded in california (bouncing between norcal and socal), with a few tiny quick excursions. I'm hoping to make 2008 a more normal jetsettery/nomadic year, and could really use some help! I've been trying to compile a list of major design events, and things to possibly try to make my way out to... as well as just general places to see, etc.
SO, take a look at the list below ~ help by suggesting more to add to it, or if you're interested in sponsoring a trip in some way to make sure we cover it, let's chat! I'm already playing with the idea of having our main NOTCOT homebases for 008 by LA and Paris, but details are in the works... *fingers crossed* ~ what do YOU want to see happening here in 008?