Skyline Lifestyles Rail System

An innovative and intuitive step forward to solving the plug & play problems in vehicles, the Skyline (SLRS) is a flexible docking technology used in cars, SUVs, minivans, etc. that can be used for the plug-and-play attachment of a wide array of modular devices, including CD/DVD players, video displays, remote-control devices, storage products, small tool kits and first aid kits.

Contact: Leif A. Norland,
Johnson Controls,

Credit: Johnson Controls

JBL OnTour portable sound system

Client: Harman Consumer Group

OnTour is a sophisticated portable sound system that will play music from any source using a headphone jack, including all iPods, MP3 players, laptops and DVD/CD players. To achieve portability, the design needed to be compact with a long battery life. However, in order to be successful, aesthetics could not be compromised. The pocket flask-with its timeless appeal, portability and upper crust connotations-became a metaphor for the design. This is most evident in the device's curved profile. When closed, the electronics are protected like a turtle shell underneath the integrated lid, and its slightly curved shape fits comfortably in your pocket. When the lid is opened, the curved silhouette is deepened and the speakers and user interface exposed. Other quality details like inlaid metals and precise fit and finish make OnTour a very elegant sound piece. OnTour has increased JBL's bottom line by 15 percent.

Contact: Kurt Solland,
Harman Multimedia, USA,

Credit: Harman Multimedia


  • Great application of Materials & Processes
  • Looks like high-end Italian glass
  • Can go from the refrigerator to the table
  • Lids grow if overstuffed

Contact: David Kusuma, FIDSA,
Tupperware Corp,

Credit:Tupperware Corp, Belgium and USA

12 Volt Lithium-Ion Compact Drill Driver

Designed with both the serious DIY-er and professional in mind, this innovative compact drill driver utilizes a patented combination chuck and clutch which enables users to easily fit into tight workspaces. The full-sized, 3/8-inch chuck provides the flexibility to use a variety of standard drill and driver bits. The drill's 12vcartridge-style lithium-ion battery boasts a longer run time and is integrated into the handle for improved balance and compact footprint.

Contact: Jason Swanson: Credit:Techtronic Industries, Concept Center (Hong Kong and US ) Client:The Home Depot®

Signature Series Strength Machines

Client: Life Fitness

This line of strength building machines was developed to appeal to the trend of health clubs that are investing heavily in the visual and emotional impact of their facilities. Existing product lines clash with this goal, especially with their hard lines and industrial character. Additionally, users find them overwhelming and difficult to understand. This innovative design solution used a balance of scale, proportion and form to create a solid and powerful machine that was still very approachable. An aesthetically sensible form has been given to each and every detail of the over fifteen different iterations available in the series. This attention to aesthetic detail, as well as to all parts requiring user interaction and adjustment, eliminates the level of intimidation other machines impose on users.

Contact: Missy Gustafson,
Cesaroni Design, USA,
(847) 724-8840,

Credit: Cesaroni Design; Life Fitness

Knirps X1 & Knirps X1 Display

Client: Knirps GmbH, Germany

This is the world's smallest umbrella, capable of withstanding winds in excess of 80 kilometers per hour and constructed of a material that dries faster than other umbrellas. Fabric matching the umbrella is applied to the case, making it is easier for the user to pick their color/style of choice. The case eliminates the need for excess packaging and the shape has kept competitors from being placed in the Knirps wall-mounted display rack. The modular rack can also be put on the floor or a tabletop.

  • The display can also be sold as an umbrella stand for cafes and hotels.
  • Small, smart & beautiful

Contact: David Haythornthwaite, IDSA,
haythornthwaitedesign, New Zealand

Credit: haythornthwaitedesign, New Zealand

Microsoft Office Keyboard Research

Client: Microsoft Corp.

Microsoft went through a careful and rigorous effort during the Office Keyboard Research that studied the affects of empathy, efficiency, engagement and creativity of users when using the power of the personal computer. The results saw dedicated keys to offer one-step, quick action for most common task performed by the mouse or keyboard shortcuts. The results of the research were featured on the Microsoft Office Keyboard.

Contact: Carl Ledbetter, IDSA,
Microsoft Corp.,

Credit: Microsoft Corp.

Trimble® S8 Total Station

Survey equipment

 plays an important role in urban development. The Trimble S8 Total Station is a robotic laser instrument used in surveying, measuring and specialized engineering applications on construction sites, building sites and in city planning. Developed in collaboration with users in the field, the instrument makes it possible to measure, survey or monitor targets up to 40 percent faster than conventional motorized stations. Its unique features and specialized software mean it can be used in different setups, ensuring future flexibility and increased productivity.

"A holistic design, with every aspect of the product's use taken into consideration. From storage to transport to utility, the design embodies a high quality product in a rugged package."

Andrew Valentine, Student, Virginia Polytechnic University

Contact: Anna Stern: Credit:Propeller Design (Sweden) Client: Trimble

ZARA 3 Stage Baby Transporter

Client: INDITEX, S.A., Spain

The ZARA 3 rolls all of a child's transportation needs for their first three years into one product—from an infant car seat/carrier to traditional stroller and finally a toddler car seat. Its all-in-one composition saves parents money and its minimal complexity makes daily use and transitioning between stages easier. Designers eliminated all superfluous elements to increase functionality. The compact chassis makes lifting and stowing in the trunk easier. Textiles became the means for the client to differentiate the ZARA 3 by giving users broader aesthetic choices with ability to change the fabric elements at will throughout the product's life and substituting some mechanical parts with textiles. For instance, the stroller can adopt two positions through regulation of the back and foot stand, which is achieved through textiles by way of zips, Velcro and clips.

Contact: José dos Santos, I/IDSA,
CDN International, Spain,
00 34 935862710,

Credit: CDN International, Spain; INDITEX, S.A., Spain


Aliph Jawbone

Client: Aliph Jawbone

This headset uses "active noise suppression" to allow the user to talk on any mobile phone in a loud environment while suppressing most or all of the extraneous noise. It does this by using a jawbone sensor, which rests against the contours of the face and looks ornamental, to sense when the mouth is moving.

  • The headset is worn directly around the user's ear.

Contact: Catherine O'Connor, fuseproject,
415.908.1492 x20,

Credit: fuseproject