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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Stunningly beautiful 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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From Samsung 2013 to Huawei 2016

Although smartphone market is slowing down, smartphone manufacturers constantly open their stores. While I was staying in Shenzhen, China, I paid a visit to a nearby shopping mall called Yitian Holiday plaza (9028 Shennan Road, Nanshan District 南山区深南路9028号益田假日广场). As most other shopping malls do, it has a wide variety of shops and restaurants. I visited the same shopping…

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LEGO-like solution for error management in hotel

Today’s travelers are not looking for a just tooth brush. They are looking for an experience, something they can relate to. Whether an environmentally conscious traveler or business traveler, guests are demanding more out of their hotel stays than ever before (see Trends Changing the Way Guests and Hoteliers View Amenities). One of the frequent…

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Better designed ATMs

We frequently use ATMs to deposit, withdraw, and transfer money. However, as multiple ATMs stand side by side and people queue behind us, we often notice that strangers who stand behind us or next to us unintentionally overlook what we do (e.g., which buttons to press for our passwords). Therefore, we rarely feel safe while…

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How to avoid long lines for women’s restrooms

Women differ from men. Carol Reiley mentioned in her blog post titled When Bias in Product Design Means Life or Death that “female drivers are 47% more likely to be seriously injured in a car crash” because seat belts were historically designed to be safe for men and thus unsafe for women. When it comes…

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Commercial change project: New Balance Cameraman

New Balance released a TV commercial in October 2015 to introduce its premium jacket line called Cameraman. According to the website, this premium jacket was inspired by the jacket of professional cameraman who is shooting in extreme cold weather and harsh circumstances. As such, this well-made TV commercial spotlights on a male professional photographer who has a Canadian, Vancouver, background. Although it…

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Commercial change project: Budweiser

When Budweiser released its 2015’s “freedom” TV commercial in US, only few twitter users liked it. Instead, majority criticized its unclear message of independence and overwhelming numbers of visual images. We decide to change the Budweiser’s TV commercial by making it simple. First, we do not move its angle but maintain its static image. Second,…

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An answer why designers get a seat at the CEO table

Lee, Younjoon and Jaewoo Joo (2016), “How a Design Executive Officer Can Craft an Organizational Culture,” Design Management Journal, 10 (1), 50-61.   … This company (Woowa Brothers (woowa is Korean for “elegance”) developed a mobile application (app) for food delivery services in 2010. Interestingly, the CEO of this company was trained as a designer and…

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Hide doors to be popular

Most bar owners promote their places by placing a sign board outside or updating their menus on social network services such as facebook or instagram. Interestingly however, some bar owners “hide” their doors. I had a chance to visit the bar called Nightjar in London. Surprisingly, it has a super tiny metal sign on a wood door. Therefore, I passed over…

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Seoul: Past vs. Present

While Seoul grew rapidly from the ashes to become a metropolis, this city lost much of its uniqueness and beauty, in particular, a set of organically linked traditional buildings. Two miniatures at the Seoul Museum of History showed stark contrast.     Seoul became the capital of a sovereign nation in 1945, with Korea’s liberation from Japanese…

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Design massage cushion

Most massage cushions or pillows look masculine. However, I met different ones in Japan. These massage cushions are wrapped with carefully designed fabrics and therefore look like interior items or shoulder bags. These cushions are also intuitive to use; they have only one power button and one power cord. Color, Materials, and Finish (CMF) matters.…

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