Spreading Smells: Design Students Unchained

Design students!

So ingenious. So sparky. So disgustingly attractive.

designstudents5Cute, cuter, cutest… I hate you all. And I want that sweater.

Hot or not, design students are almost always up to something silly. Now it’s the UK’s Royal Society for Arts’ 2013 Student Design Awards, which this year were all about eliminat[ing] waste, over-production or excessive consumption.” The winners were announced in a PDF document, which I think every Internet user can agree is a highly practical and elegant format — the epitome of good design. Non-Internet users, enjoy the clean margins on your printouts.

The Royal Bank of Scotland: "LIBOR? I hardly know 'er!"

The Royal Bank of Scotland: “LIBOR? I hardly know ‘er!”

Since it’s impossible to have a contest without corporate sponsors, the RSA snuggled up with the Royal Bank of Scotland,* a car insurance company, and a for-profit water company. Surely the ideas they’ve endorsed will be both transformative and uplifting.

No, no, they’re all bad. There’s a washing machine you can fix yourself, thus “encourag[ing] a culture of repair” — aw, the Maytag man can’t get a break! — and an Australian commuting scheme called YOLO. Well, actually it’s “Yolo” — mixed case. Not that that helps. (“Taking the bus? That’s so 2012!”)

Oh, and also a plan to encourage commuting by


Do I have to say something about sci-fi totalitarian scenarios here? The system is even called “The Good Day Ticket!” I’m pretty sure that was the title of a Harlan Ellison story.ellisonticketcover

Yes, that’s the actual Good Day Ticket machine in the photo. Nothing menacing there, no sir.

The rest of the RSA winners are just as delish — so much so, I won’t cram them into one post. Coming on Wednesday:



*”Traders at the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS)… left a trail of evidence… detailing how they set about trying to manipulate LIBOR. … A settlement [was] announced on February 6th in which RBS admitted to rigging rates. It agreed to pay fines of $475m to American regulators and another £87.5m ($137m) to Britain’s Financial Services Authority.” The Economist, 02/07/13


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