Inspiring stories about innovation and business, seen through the lens of design.

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230 audio clips in 24 countries: What life sounds like under lockdown

Empty city centers. Bird songs. The 8 p.m. clap. Everything has changed during COVID-19, including the soundtrack of our lives. As a creative artist, my work explores how people interact with sound and how it impacts upon our daily lives through listening – that’s active listening with attention, rather than passive hearing. I do this by using recorded...

Forget the timer. There’s a Spotify playlist for perfectly cooked pasta

Pasta brand Barilla teamed up with the streaming giant to create playlists timed for cooking spaghetti, linguine, fusilli and penne. There are more than a few ways to know if your pasta is done cooking. There’s the Throw-It-Against-The-Wall method, the Cut-It-in-Half method, the Just Taste It method, and of course, the Set a Timer method. None of these,...

This stunning light display could make crops more sustainable

The display highlights the surprising science behind how light design can help plants grow. When you think of twinkling lights at night, you probably imagine sparkling cityscapes rather than fields of rural farms.Read Full Story

The soccer ball gets a radical redesign

No inflator? No problem! Soccer is the world’s most popular sport in part because all you need is some grass and a ball to play. But while a $12 soccer ball doesn’t sound very expensive to those of us in the United States, for much of the developing world, it is—costing more than a family’s monthly income. Especially when you pair an inflating...

The 14 most important books for designers to read right now

Experts from IDEO, Adobe, SVA, HOK, Designer Fund, and more share book recommendations for designers who want to expand their horizons in 2021 and beyond. Designers in 2021 face some of the biggest challenges of their careers as they help rebuild a society torn asunder by COVID-19, economic inequality, racial injustice, and climate change. Looking...

Want to succeed in design and business? Support women

Branding expert JinJa Birkenbeuel, who has done design work for Google, Tesla, and Facebook, shares her rules of success. Chief among them: Raise up women. JinJa Birkenbeuel is CEO of the branding agency Birk Creative, founder of The Honest Field Guide podcast, a songwriter in the band Utah Carol, and a business coach for underrepresented businesses,...

You see salad but think fries: Why this new lettuce branding looks like fast food

Vertical farm company Plenty used color psychology to drive a rebrand. Do you want a side salad with that?Read Full Story

Grocery stores were already in flux. The pandemic could change them forever

The grocery store is about to look and function differently than it has in the recent past. In the modern world, few places are as linked to our survival as the grocery store. As the main source of most people’s food, it is the definition of an essential service—and one that’s become even more important during the pandemic.Read Full Story

How Trump gave rise to the aesthetics of hate

The 45th president is out. But the world he leaves behind still needs to be reckoned with. He was the reality show president. The fluorescent orange president. The president with a comb-over coif that could neither be classified as hair nor as a toupee.Read Full Story

Decoding the fashion at Biden’s inauguration

Bernie’s mittens. Harris’s purple coat. And a whole lot of Ralph Lauren. Today, as Kamala Harris was inaugurated as the country’s first female, Black, and South Asian Vice President, she used her global platform to highlight emerging Black designers.Read Full Story

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