Here at Makeshift, we’re helping spread the word about Colour Outside the Lines, a reverse innovation challenge looking for ideas in emerging markets that can be applied to healthcare in Canada. Think new cataract procedures or cellphone-activated EKG machines. Or, in line with stories we’ve run, low-cost prosthetics, solar powered [...]
The sidewalk hustle: hawkers, vendors, merchants, traders, and craftsman, their wares lined up on tables or spread out on plastic tarps. The shouts, sounds, and smells of streetside commerce are unique in every corner of the world, with each culture putting a local twist on this brand of work.
We worked with Autodesk, Core77, and iFixit to create the Design for (Your) Product Lifetime competition, a challenge that tasked students to envision a product of the future: durable, repairable, and easily broken down into components for recycling when its useful life was over.
Last year, Mexican police raided the drug cartel Los Zetas three times. They weren’t looking for cocaine or marijuana; they were targeting the homegrown radio network that stretches across the northeastern chunk of the country, where the Zetas control drug and migrant smuggling routes.
A laser cutter, the tool at the top of every garage engineer’s wishlist, is capable of making incredibly intricate cuts in a wide variety of materials. The laser moves back and forth over a stationary bed, much like a CNC router or an architectural plotting printer. Traditionally used for cutting [...]
Four years ago, Tom Cruise’s prominent role in the Church of Scientology brought the wrath of the hacking collective Anonymous squarely upon him. An in-house Scientology video—in which Cruise cackled and claimed superhuman powers in times of crisis—suddenly flooded YouTube, then quickly disappeared after a copyright violation claim from the Church of Scientology. Anonymous responded with the launch of Operation Chanology, its [...]
Last year, mass demonstrations erupted throughout every inhabited continent. Each resisted a different power—corrupt governments, unethical corporations, or wealthy citizens. But they all represented a new kind of resistance that leveraged global networks and novel tools. At times, the protests seemed so connected that they were inseparable. Occupy organizers cited the Arab Spring as an inspiration, and on October 15, [...]
In back alleys, street markets, and hidden workshops around the world, micro-entrepreneurs churn out new ideas and products to help them get by or improve the world around them. We could philosophize on this all day. But here in Observed we ask our correspondents to say nothing. We invite you to take a long glimpse through the lenses of [...]
Student Design Competition In The Electronic Afterlife, we revealed the impact of electronic waste: 20–50 tonnes each year flow through a global supply chain, mostly ending in landfills and informal recycling villages. As we embed electronics in more of our products, how can designers keep the product lifetime in mind? [...]
Consider an object you use everyday. Where was it born? The more advanced it is, the more likely its components were sourced from more places all over the world. Your laptop is a sort of third culture kid. Globalization has linked distant mines, factories, and ports to each other and [...]