How can we improve our postures while drinking coffee?

In Hanoi, Vietnam, there is Cafe Giang, a famous local cafe known for its egg coffee. Last year, this place was introduced by CNN travel with the title of the egg coffee in Hanoi: where to get your caffeine fix. (CNN) — Everyone at Hanoi’s humble Cafe Giang however, is after something more than just a caffeine…

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3D food printers change brand image

I followed map in Prague, Czech Republic. I crossed a bridge (Legions’ Bridge), climbed up a tower (Petrin Tower), and drank beer at a local brewery (Strahov Monastery Brewery). However, I went to one place most tourists are not interested in. I visited a design exhibition held at a convention center (Výstaviště Praha Holešovice).  …

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Is picture worth a thousand words?

Japanese draw, Chinese speak, and Koreans write. This is my temporary conclusion about how people communicate in three countries. I *suspect* Japanese draw because they intend to help readers understand messages correctly (receiver-oriented), Chinese speak because they find typing Chinese characters difficult (sender-oriented), and Koreans write because these two reasons do not apply (message-oriented, maybe).    …

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How to enjoy coffee more and consume plastics less?

Taipei is hot in summer. After sweating an hour, I ordered an iced coffee at 羊毛與花 Youmoutoohana Coffee. To my surprise, it served me a glass of coffee with a metal straw. After sipping coffee through it, I became a huge fan of metal straw. This summer, I will buy and bring a few metal…

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Mushroom shaped magnet

Thai designers make interesting experimentation. At a department store in Bangkok, I found several stationary items and kitchen utensils designed by Qualy, seems to be a local Thai design company. Although this company introduced a series of interesting products including owl-shaped salt and pepper shaker or bear-shaped one, the most interesting one is mushroom-shaped magnetic.    …

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How can we avoid bike theft?

In Shenzhen, China, people ride bicycles almost for free because bicycle sharing companies such as Ofo (yellow) and Mobike (orange) compete each other aggressively. Numerous brand new bicycles are poured on a daily basis.     Using bicycle sharing system is very convenient. I subscribed Mobike. There is no parking station. Instead, I use app to search for available bicycles.…

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People tip less when the tip jar looks like a human

Henckell is my favorite cafe in Frederiksberg, Copenhagen. It is a local place with great coffee and sandwich. I feel cozy inside. It has only four small tables.     There is a tip jar next to the credit card machine on the counter table. Interestingly, it has a smiley face, two arms, and two…

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Chinese love plastic

Chinese government tries hard to reduce plastic waste. Recently, it banned plastic waste import. According to financial times, half of the UK plastic waste need to find alternative places desperately.     In contrast, Chinese people seem to overuse plastics. In Shenzhen, for instance, plates are often wrapped with plastic packages. We should tear it down…

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Do we need floor signage?

We now see a wide variety of floor signage. In Singapore, there is a yellow-painted footstep on the right side of the paved road at the Marina Bay. Since this road is crowded by runners, this signage probably helps them run on the right side of the road.     In Shenzhen, China, there are…

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What happens when you reserve a taxi at 6am in Copenhagen?

In Copenhagen, people rarely take taxi. They ride bicycles or, if needed, take public transportation such as bus or subways. Therefore, I was not surprised when I heard that Uber’s operation was illegal. According to the news on March 28, 2017 by Alanna Petroff at CNN, “The government is passing a new law that will essentially…

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People do not prefer crowded restaurants over empty ones

About 36 million people live in Tokyo and its neighboring cities. Most restaurants well known to foreigners are heavily crowded. Therefore, when I dine out in Tokyo, I have to wait for a table for a decent amount of time. The fact that many local people are waiting for their tables relieves my concern that…

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McDonald’s satisfy our mixed desires

When we go to a new place, we often have a mixed desire, that is, the desire for exploring something new as well as the desire for doing exactly what we have done before. When some of my friends go to another countries, for example, they almost always try exotic dish at local restaurants but they end…

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Why are trash cans angled on bike lanes?

In Copenhagen, Denmark, many people choose bicycles rather than cars. In fact, the priority on the road seems to go to bicycle riders than pedestrians. Therefore, Danes often have more three bicycles; one for commuting between home and train station, another for commuting between train station and workplace, and the other for enjoying weekend. Some trash cans…

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Read the clock, literally

Red Dot Design Museum is located in the heart of Singapore’s most iconic location, the Marina Bay. This area is one of the most fun places and interesting destination to visit and for sightseeing in Singapore, with numerous attractions within walk distance from the museum. There is an exhibition space in the museum and exhibitions are…

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Three escalating numbers are enough to teach moral behavior

In Singapore, we should pay fine when behaving inappropriately in subway: S$500 when eating or drinking, S$1000 when smoking, and S$5000 when using flammable goods. Interestingly, eating durians is also inappropriate but the fine amount of doing so is not clarified. I suspect that Singapore government seems to know intuitively that people follow rules if they…

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Commercial renewal project: Heineken

  In the past, Heineken seemed to make TV commercials exclusively for men. Although many of them were successful, we decided to focus on female Heineken lovers. In our new commercial, we begin with describing how busy, how much stressed out, and how tough it is to live a life as a female student in Korea.…

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Do people like phone cases that use any famous paintings?

Jung, Bohee, Younjoon Lee, and Jaewoo Joo (2017). The Relationship between Art Preference and Attitudes toward Art-Infused Product: With a Focus on the Moderating Role of the Market Exposure of Artwork. Archives of Design Research, 30 (2), 197-211.     Abstract Background: As the quality of life improves, people’s interest in art increases and their emotional satisfaction becomes…

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Commercial renewal project: Snickers

    Snickers introduced a Korean TV commercial in 2011. In this commercial, a famous female singer behaves in a strange way until when she eats snickers. This commercial delivered a single, global message of snickers, that is, you are not you when you are hungry. Although the TV commercial is consistent with the global marketing…

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IDEO method cards do not benefit visual designers

Lee, Younjoon and Jaewoo Joo (2017), “Using Design Methods to Improve Design Quality: Verbalizers vs Visualizers,” The Design Journal, 20 (sup1), S1471-S1484.   Abstract Although a wide variety of design methods are used, two questions have been little investigated: whether using many methods improves the outcome quality and who benefits more from using them. We…

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Empathy instruction backfires on designers

Chung, Jaehee and Jaewoo Joo (2017), “Effect of Empathy on Designers and Non-designers in Concept Evaluation,” Archives of Design Research, 30 (3), 57-71.     Abstract Background: Empathy instruction (“please empathize with the person in the narrative”) is often provided when new product concepts are evaluated in a narrative form. However, concept evaluators tend to empathize with…

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Design works published in Korea

Heather Fraser published “Design works: how to tackle your toughest innovation challenges through business design” five years ago. It demonstrates how organizations can drive innovation and growth through Business Design – a discipline that integrates design-inspired methods and mindsets into business development and planning. Roger Martin said in his forward that “This book tells the story of the…

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Glass shaped like milk carton

Most cocktail glasses are designed to hold the unique aroma of the cocktail to maximize its taste. However, some glasses play different roles. While I visited Singapore, my friend recommended me to visit Loof, a rooftop bar. It is located across the famous Raffels Hotel, a colonial-style super luxury hotel in the downtown. According to the website,…

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Commercial renewal project: Kitkat

    In a recent commercial of KitKat, a female flight attendant fails to call the last passenger to the gate, eats a piece of Kitkat, then raps and beat boxes at the mic, and then finds the lost passenger. Unfortunately, we were confused about it because rapping has nothing to do with the passenger, and we were…

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Commercial renewal project: Uniqlo Sports

    Uniqlo is one of the leading “fast-fashion” or SPA (specialty retailer of private label apparel) brands. It sells comfortable and affordable life-wear clothes. In April 2016, Uniqlo launched its sports brand called Uniqlo sports and aired the commercial of “Why are you wearing clothes?” As for the target, it appeales to the people who…

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Cow shaped cheese board

About 6,700 cheese boards and cutting boards sell on the Amazon.com. Their prices vary between $5 and $370. Majority of them are rectanglular. However, not a few boards interesting shapes. At one of my favorite Canadian stores, West elm, I found a cow-shaped mini cheese board and cutting board. Its price was $22.     I bought this…

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Commercial renewal project: Oreo thins

  “Thinner, lighter, this is Oreo” This is the first sentence that appears in the Oreo Thins commercial in July 2016. It also says “slim and slender we want more and more,” suggesting that this new cookie targets at the people who used to hesitate to eat Oreo cookies for their high calories. Interestingly however,…

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Commercial renewal project: Corona

    The Corona brand is associated with relaxation and a temporary escape from stress. The original commercial attempts to show that through a man and a woman relaxing on an exotic, white sand beach somewhere in Mexico. The original ad does not seem to capture the product’s target market and fails to depict how…

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Private Karaoke for two people

I have long believed Asians go to Karaoke for team spirit. When a popular song appears on the screen, they show companisonship by standing up and singing all together. When a song is new, they start their own conversations with the next person. Regardless of whether they sing or talk, Karaoke is the place people confirm…

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Thompson, a Japanese paper clock

Some products are stunningly beautiful. They include Balmuda toaster, Dyson’s hair dryer, and LEGO brick. People sometimes buy these products without thinking much whether the purchased items are useful or needed. They seem to have a desire to posses the aesthetic quality of these products. Interestingly, they often become passionate ambassadors of these products. Recently, I met a…

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