Category Archives: design

Experience the experience or experience documenting

How can we facilitate concertgoers to ‘experience the experience’ instead of trying to ‘document an experience’ they did not really experience.

Jack White has issued a statement through venues proclaiming that cell phones will be banned at all of his upcoming US shows in 2018:

“No photos, video or audio recording devices allowed,” the statement bluntly reads. “We think you’ll enjoy looking up from your gadgets for a little while and experience music and our shared love of it IN PERSON.”

Here is how it works: nobody has to hand in their phones but they’ll have to be locked away in a special pouch while in the venue.

“You keep your pouch-secured phone on you during the show and, if needed, can unlock your phone at any time in a designated Phone Zone located in the lobby or concourse.”

So you can still check in with your babysitter or send off that completely brilliant tweet before you forget it 😉

The pouches and phone zones are from Yondr a service that creates phone-free spaces for artists, educators, organizations, and individuals.



Picture from:





Fashion and Music

A fashion label that has music in it’s Brand DNA, a Designer that targets female audiophiles with a new accessory that combines industrial design and expert tailoring. Fashion meets Music meets Design: two examples.

John Varvatos and Jimmy Page

Screen Shot 2013-01-25 at 12.56.28

Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin is the model of a new campaign video from John Varvatos, the the brand that has rock and roll in it’s Brand DNA.

Screen Shot 2013-01-25 at 13.54.36

In selected John Varvatos boutiques they carry a unique assortment of McIntosh audio equipment, vintage vinyl records, vintage audio equipment and collectible music books for the rock enthusiast.

See more info on the website


Molami headphones are designed with the contemporary individual in mind. Instead of focussing on the product ‘as a gadget’ and the technical specifications Molani works through the fashion industry to convey how their product ‘frames and enhances the feminine face’. A good example of user centered design.

See the website

Milano Design Week 2012 – Salone e Fuorisalone

I spent two days  in Milan at salone and fuorisalone to see, get inspired, have talks, drinks meet friends and to see the family at Lago Maggiore.

It is impossible to see everything. There are so many shows, events,  shops, pop-up spaces, …  but what you see you can ‘catch’ (WYSYCC) and I have never seen so many iPhones, smartphones and real cameras in one place – people have fun to take pictures or take it ‘really serious’ and give you some order to step back.

Here are a few pictures  sorted by the following findings:
showing the process  (form idea and material to product); patterns everywhere; laser cut metal; books as decoration; playing with colour; light and nature; ceramic; ‘from handicraft to digicraft‘;  creative food; analog 3D modeling; Rossana Orlandi; Luceplan, …

… and here a video from Luceplan’s new lamp Nothing, by Francisco Gomez Paz

Nothing from Luceplan on Vimeo.

7 Principles of Holistic Product Design by Yves Béhar

There is a very nice article about Yves Behar and his 7 Principles of Holistic Product Design on TriplePundit’s coverage of the 2011 Opportunity Green Conference in Los Angeles, California.

Here is the first one:

1.  Start with questions, not answers.
Instead of trying to design a product from a detailed client brief that dictates the answers, the design process should start with a few simple questions. For example, Puma asked the question, “What can we do to improve the sustainability of our already very successful shoe box?” This question spurred an in-depth exploration of the company’s logistics, manufacturing, distribution, and customer interactions with the product.  see the other 6 and the whole story on Triple Pundit

I also added this principles to the Inspiring principles for design, life and more Mindmap on

Type and the effect on service design and learning

In a recent study published in the journal Cognition, psychologists at Princeton and Indiana University had 28 men and women read about three species of aliens, each of which had seven characteristics, like “has blue eyes,” and “eats flower petals and pollen.” Half the participants studied the text in 16-point Arial font, and the other half in 12-point Comic Sans MS or 12-point Bodoni MT, both of which are relatively unfamiliar and harder for the brain to process.

After a short break, the participants took an exam, and those who had studied in the harder-to-read fonts outperformed the others on the test, 85.5 percent to 72.8 percent, on average.

To test the approach in the classroom, the researchers conducted a large experiment involving 222 students at a public school in Chesterland, Ohio. One group had all its supplementary study materials, in English, history and science courses, reset in an unusual font, like Monotype Corsiva. The others studied as before. After the lessons were completed, the researchers evaluated the classes’ relevant tests and found that those students who’d been squinting at the stranger typefaces did significantly better than the others in all the classes — particularly in physics.

“The reason that the unusual fonts are effective is that it causes us to think more deeply about the material,” a co-author of the study, Daniel M. Oppenheimer, a psychologist at Princeton, wrote in an e-mail. “But we are capable of thinking deeply without being subjected to unusual fonts. Think of it this way, you can’t skim material in a hard to read font, so putting text in a hard-to-read font will force you to read more carefully.”

Difficulty builds mental muscle, while ease often builds only confidence.

Interesting thought on what this means for design, especially service design, learning material, wayfinding, etc. For inspiration, here a link to David Carson’s website

Read the full article on
 A version of that article appeared in print on April 19, 2011, on page D5 of the New York edition with the headline: Come On, I Thought I Knew That!.

SlideShare Design Page

SlideShare Design Page


Today I got mail from the editorial team of SlideShare. They are showcasing my Presentation for the next 16 to 20 hours on the SlideShare Design Page: CREATIVE COMPANION – What is it? or Working together like in a unique Jazz Band.

Direct links:

Christof Zürn

Download:   CREATIVE COMPANION Fact sheet

Best 10 principles in design, business and more – any suggestions?

Is there any need for rules, principles, commandments? How can guiding principles help you to make better decisions?

I just set up a mindmap with the most inspiring 10 principles that come up my mind when designing or thinking. Some of them have more than 10. For me it is an interesting starting point while doing something, although personally Creative Companion Nr. 10 is the one for me.

It’s a map in progress, have a look, any suggestions?
Best 10 principles in design

Christof Zürn

Download:   CREATIVE COMPANION Fact sheet

Digital Life, digital outlook and online behaviour

“It’s not information overload, it’s filter failure” this  quote by Clay Shirky is maybe the best description of the new report from TNS: Digital Life

The most comprehensive study of the global digital consumer, ever. Including interviews from almost 50,000 consumers across 46 countries. And it’s beautiful and interactive.

Nice feature: you can directly compare countries:tns digital life

Some other interesting reports about digital life:

  • Digital outlook report
  • Digital mom
  • Publishing in the digital age
  • and more by  Razorfish


Christof Zürn

Download:   CREATIVE COMPANION Fact sheet