Tools We Like

When you’re crunching against a tight deadline to design a new-to-the-world digital experience, you do a lot of learning on the fly. One of the cornerstones of our design process at IDEO is that we build to learn. I’ve found I work more quickly and effectively prototyping in the browser itself. The global community of [...]
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"How to make Arduino code act “psuedo-asynchronous” or “multi-threaded”"
Jimmy Chion

A Purse That Can Charge a Phone

For London Fashion Week, Vodafone teamed up with fashion designer Richard Nicoll and IDEO to bring a disruptive solution to life — a purse that charges a phone in style. On day one, we created three prototypes for making our idea catwalk ready. Not only did the phone and bag need to work together, we wanted the [...]

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"There’s something so delightful about reinventing a classic. People love getting their portrait, and it reminds us that we’re all artists."
Julie Regina

How to Make a Fauxtobooth

There was a lot of work to be done. IDEO’s New York studio was to host an event to celebrate Tom and David Kelley’s new book, Creative Confidence, and whatever we designed had to reflect their ideas. Pressure on, we brainstormed over lunch — tools and sticky notes spread out across the largest room in [...]

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"the mind a true internet of things"
The Brain

Coding the “Brain”

I have always been interested in automation. In the wake of cheap computing and other technological advancement, more and more repetitive tasks are being automated, from tax preparation to checkout services to manufacturing to product handling. Recently, I’ve found that maintaining a social media activity feels repetitive. As a result, I’ve wondered, using natural language generation, [...]

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"A quick look at our favorite tools for building and prototyping"

Tools We Like

Between client projects and personal ventures, IDEO interaction designers and software engineers across our global offices spend a significant amount of time designing and building apps for iPhones and iPads. We’re part of the thousands of iOS developers worldwide beholden to the operating system’s wild popularity and sound frameworks. While we focus on the design [...]

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"We brought hardcore genetics to life with Ralph's Killer Muenster, an iPad game inviting the science-curious to save San Francisco from mutant cheese"
Brad Simpson

Save the City, Stop the Muenster

1953 was a good year for science and technology. The polio vaccine was developed, the first open heart surgery performed, and color TVs hit the store shelves. It was also the year Watson and Crick revealed one of the most important discoveries of the 20th century: the double-helix structure of DNA. Sixty years later, amidst [...]

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"My recipe for innovation is thinking critically about technology and asking what you can do with it. "
Dominique Yahyavi

The Making of Spark Camera

Designer Dominique Yahyavi has always been compelled to capture amazing images. So, when the founder of IDEO’s Toy Lab, Brendan Boyle, gave him the green light to develop a new iOS video app, he jumped at the opportunity, working obsessively to create Spark. The app, which launched in October, 2013, quickly shot up through the Apple Store ranks, landing as [...]

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"Here at IDEO Chicago, we like beer. A lot. And we don’t just love drinking the stuff, we like brewing it, too."
Chris Gold

The Mix Master 2000: How to Build an Automated Shandy Machine

Here at IDEO Chicago, we like beer. A lot. And we don’t just love drinking the stuff, we like brewing it, too. Our ChIDEO Brew Crew started about two years ago and since that time, we’ve made more than 60 gallons, mostly for studio events like Rocktoberfest or St. Paddy’s Day, but sometimes just because [...]

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"Good morning, good evening, goodbye."
Vanessa Monogioudis

IDEO Munich Make-a-thon 2013

Inspired by previous IDEO Make-a-thons in London and Chicago, the IDEO Munich studio hosted its first Make-a-thon in July 2013. Under the theme of Good morning, good evening, goodbye, 60 participants from various backgrounds worked together on challenges inspired by people’s daily routines. With briefs that consisted only of a persons age and a specific time of the day, [...]

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"Good Morning, Good Evening, Good bye."
Vanessa Monogioudis

Join us in Munich on July 5th- 6th for a weekend of making

Ready to make a difference over the weekend? Join us for two fun and intense days of making, as we craft, hack, and build human-centered design solutions to real world challenges, working alongside IDEO designers from various disciplines. The theme for our Munich Make-a-thon is Good Morning, Good Evening, Good bye. We will tackle design [...]

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"We live in Chicago, so the idea of our company being called “Central Standard Timing” (CST) just made sense."
Dave Vondle

The evolution of the world’s thinnest watch, the CST-01

In January, Jerry O’Leary and I launched a Kickstarter campaign (currently <3 days to go) for the world’s thinnest watch, the CST-01. This is a watch we have worked on outside of project work while here at IDEO. On IDEO Labs, our aim is to share our process and give our readers an “under-the-hood” look at some [...]

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"At some point we began discussing how we might make a living circuit."
Rodrigo Martinez

Designing with Bacteria

At IDEO, “What if we…?” is a phrase you hear a lot. This “What if?” mindset, plus our love of playing around with new ideas, can lead to some fun experiments. A few months ago, for example, we used agar as a design medium to grow and biohack an electrical circuit. It all started on a [...]

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"Designing together for 24 hours to produce 12 amazing concepts with the potential to make lives easier for everyone."
Lydia Howland

Enabled by #Designathon

In November 2012, a crowd of over 100 designers, engineers, facilitators, technologists, policymakers, health and social care professionals, and people with first-hand experience of issues with independent living, all gathered for the inaugural Enabled by #Designathon at Ravensbourne College in London, UK. The brainchild of the folks at Enabled by Design, and supported by IDEO, The Technology [...]