Have we passed the point of no return?

The 1 hr design contest got me thinking.

Among the entries, most utilize elements of modern technology, such as LCD/LED displays, touch sensitive or motion sensors and so on. However, water saving is such a fundamental problem that… does it need all this gizmos to do the job? Or are we simply so customed to what is available to us today that we can’t function without it?

From the days of school till now, I have always relied on manual pencil sharpeners. Practically, I like it because I can control the “torque” applied, to prevent the lead from breaking too often, plus it doesn’t scream like a pig. Fundamentally, I use it because I don’t want to be the joker who complains about battery depletion or power outage. That will be almost as bad as the kid who complains about homework being eaten by his dog.

So here are 2 aspect of the issue. One is about the elements of the design. The other is about the method of design.

I am definitely not anti-technology, because I believe that anything that requires technique to manipulate objects is considered technology, so almost everything that we do is based on technology.

Therefore, given the situation of being stuck on an island where the terrain doesn’t retain much rainfall, are you able to design an efficient water storage/dispensing device/system using what’s available?

Even if we lose our limbs or part of our senses, we still have our brains to keep things going. Furthermore, it’s not like no one’s ever succeeded in this before.

I would be able to, its part and parcle of having built and developed prototypes of so many products. In the development phase you keep striving to get rid of “stuff” to smoosh it down to the bare essentials. A good mental model is Lotus vrs Porsche. Lotus the glofied home garage of a smart guy, but he still only has whats in his garage or close to hand so he makes every little piece to 2 or 3 jobs, in fact that was Colin Chapmans primary rule when he was alive. Porsche on the other hand is like the uber toybox, any part, process is fair game. Porsche has time, money and people so their designs are complex to the max, no doubt they are very good just complex. I know i can keep a lotus on the road (did so with a europa for 6 years) with just hand tools, a porsche, well differnet matter all to geather.

Whats this all mean about a water system and design? We design complex because we dont have to make the thing ourself with in a time and money budget, doiong it on your own nickle gives you a different view.