Happiness is not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort.
Posted: January 31st, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: Press coverage, Product reviews | Comments Off
Good review for The Future Perfect Company website by Virtual Granny (www.virtualgranny.com) this week.
“I might have suddenly come down with a touch of Arthur, but if I have I don’t want some sad old gadget to help me screw the lids of stuff. I want funky. I want fun – and I still want my funky fun gadget to help me screw the lids off stuff.
If, at some stage in life I need, for example, an electric scooter to get about, I want a range of colours to light up my day. Sky blue pink with purple dots, or psychedelic if I so wish. I don’t want to be fobbed off with bad design and a sludge one-colour-suits-all-old-crumblies carriage.
Actually one brilliant website, http://www.thefutureperfectcompany.com is leading the way, by selling fantastically designed products for those of us who are slightly fraying round the edges, but have no intention of being put out to grass and fed dull inferior products, when we still want to be funky monkeys.
Form and function go hand in hand here – with a pile of great products on offer. From two handled cups in vibrant shades to incredibly elegant cookware created to make handling easier, or stylish healthy back bags designed to counteract neck and back pain. There are even bionic golf gloves, designed by an orthopaedic hand surgeon that wouldn’t look out of place on Tiger Woods mitts.
I might even take Arthur for a jitterbug around the site. After all, he owes me a smart little gift if he’s thinking of moving in for good.”
To read the blog in full, click here
Posted: January 31st, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: Offers and competitions | Comments Off
Family Tree File – reduced to £17.99
Make this the year to investigate your family tree. Our smart Family Tree File includes plenty of space to store letters, photos and certificates as well as useful tools and resources for helping with the research and an attractive keepsake box.
OXO Good Grips Bypass Pruners – reduced to £10.99
Now’s the time to be tidying up your garden. These OXO’s Bypass Pruners have a hardened, steel cutting blade, and soft, comfortable, non-slip grips to maximize cutting strength and power.
Natural Dot Shopping trolley – special offer £35
This smart shopping trolley comes complete with fully insulated cooler bag, two spacious side pockets for additional storage and a drawstring and Velcro fastening to keep items safely tucked away. The lightweight trolleys are foldable making them easy to store at home or in the boot of your car.
Green People organic skincare products – special offers
Now is the time to pamper yourself or treat a friend with these lovely light. freshly fraganced organic products which are perfect for older skin at our new lower prices.
How about trying the Nourishing Spa Shower Wash reduced to just £12?
Alex Table Light with dimmer – Save £40!
Particularly good for these dark evenings, this is the ultimate table light especially designed for eyes with 50 or more years reading experience. A companion to The Alex Floor Light, The Alex Table Light provides 6 times more light on the page compared with a 60w filament bulb and the light is of a far superior quality.
OXO Good Grips Chopper reduced to £14.99
Make easy work of onions, nuts and more with the OXO Good Grips Chopper which is compact but bursting with useful features
Posted: January 31st, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: Designing for the Future Competition - Collyer's, Inclusive design | 2 Comments »
And the runners up were…
Joint Second: James Delve
The Boiling Mug is intended to challenge many of the issues associated with ageing, such as problems with manual dexterity. Additionally the product is intended to reinvent the way in which we think about creating a hot drink, while increasing the energy efficiency of the task, and removing the possibility of the user scalding themselves.
The product is based around an aesthetically pleasing stainless steel base plate, onto which the user places their mug full of cold water. When the mug is placed onto the base plate, a charge is transmitted through electromagnetic induction into the boiling element, boiling the mug of water. This use of technology means that the base plate does not get hot to touch and is therefore safe to use. Only the required amount of water is heated meaning that energy is not wasted through boiling unnecessary quantities of liquid. Another advantage of this product is that there is not a transfer of hot water from different containers, but only cold water from tap to mug.
Joint Second: Jessica Chapman
The Grip Glass is an ordinary drinking glass, which has had its shape adapted to make it non-slip, easier to grip and so hold. The glass has grooves for the thumbs and fingers which enable the user to grip the glass easily. The glass fits in with other quality kitchen products as it is aesthetically pleasing due to its colours and patterns as well as having attractive and quirky smoothly rounded grooves for fingers and thumbs.
Joint Second: Andrew Marsh
My product is designed around the theme of reach and encompasses a wide range of everyday reaching tasks. It is mainly a long handled hairbrush, however it has interchangeable attachments consisting of a hairbrush, dresser hook and shoe horn. These attach to the handle by easily locking or screwing into place. Further attachments could be developed to increase its usability. It is ergonomically designed using simple shapes which would appeal to a wide target audience, as well as the handle having a good grip making it comfortable to hold. Another unique feature of this product is that the handle is able to bend into different angles and positions to help even further with the everyday tasks, making the user more independent.
Let us know what you think.
Posted: January 29th, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: Designing for the Future Competition - Collyer's, Inclusive design, Press coverage | Comments Off
Dreamed up by UK design student Glen Crombie, this concept won first prize at the Future Perfect Company design competition, which asked its competitors to find elegant solutions for the problems faced by an aging population. The idea is simple: if the average three-pronged plug is too hard for an older person to grip, add an easily-installed eject button to push the plug right out of its socket. Quick and easy. It might be nice to see this concept see some real-life use. [Wired via The Future Perfect Company]
Send an email to Kwame Opam, the author of this post, at email@example.com.
Read article here
Posted: January 28th, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: Designing for the Future Competition - Collyer's, Inclusive design, Press coverage | Comments Off
Ejector Plug Makes British Sockets Pensioner-Friendly
This curious plug-ejecting power-socket has just won first prize in the The Future Perfect Company design competition. The brief: Come up with “attractive and aspirational” designs that help people carry on as normal when they get older.
For most of the world, pulling out a plug is as simple as yanking a cord. Arthritis? Wrap the cord around your wrist before you pull. In England – where the fear of electrocution is only matched by the fear of the gangs of teenagers that roam the streets like marauding post-apocalyptic biker-gangs (only without the bikes) – things are more complex. Switches, interlocks and a three-pronged design with a side-exiting cable mean you need some strong fingers to unplug a plug.
Glenn Crombie’s winning design has an eject button. Press it and three prongs push the plug out and let it drop gently to the thick carpets that cover the floors of Britain. Never mind that frail fingers will have to press hard on a thin rod to make it work, or that when the plug is not in place there are three prongs sticking out to catch on skirts, slacks or any furniture you may wish to place in front of the sockets.
I guess the best thing to do would be to change UK plugs, but that’s about as likely as the country ditching the pound for the Euro, driving on the right or finally admitting that it is no longer in charge of a world-spanning empire
Posted: January 27th, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: Designing for the Future Competition - Collyer's, Press coverage | Comments Off
Posted by hipstomp | 25 Jan 2011
One of the funniest things I ever saw during my corporate design years was the tech support guy who was trying to get fired. He never confided to me that he was trying to get fired, but no other motivation could explain his behavior. One day I called him in to complain about a faulty monitor. “Let the doctor take care of it,” he said, grabbing the power cord. He then suddenly, savagely yanked it out of the wall so hard it was like he was trying to start a lawn mower. (And yes, he bent the prongs.)
The tech support guy had a good grip on the cord, if not job security; but for those with arthritis, removing a power cord from a wall socket can be an ordeal. Addressing this latter fact, UK design student Glen Crombie has designed a power outlet with a sort of eject button. Press it and the plug is forced out, easy peasy.
Crombie’s outlet design took first prize in a design competition sponsored by product manufacturer The Future Perfect Company and the UK’s College of Richard Collyer. (No word yet on whether it will see actual production.)
Posted: January 27th, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: Designing for the Future Competition - Collyer's, Inclusive design, Press coverage | Comments Off
Nice write up today from our local paper, the West Sussex County Times about the Collyers’ design competition.
A good quote also from tutor, Kate Sharp : “Without design and technology in the national curriculum and its progression to product design at A level, our students’ experience at school and college would be a lot less enriching. As a subject, product design is the perfect bridge between science and creative, innovative design”.
As funds are ploughed into the sciences, it is easy to forget the importance which design and creativity play in our lives and how transformational good design can be. As we get older, it can mean the difference between being independent or not, enjoying our later lives or not.
Posted: January 26th, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: About retirement - Howard Croft | No Comments »
I have never much of one for board games, Scrabble and the like. Monopoly I particularly detest, so I was in two minds when my clever economist friend rang last Saturday evening to ask if we’d like to step over the road for a game with him, his wife and their daughter, Maddy. Apart from my loathing of the game it was half-past eight – close to my bedtime – but I’d just polished off a bottle of Shiraz, which made me bold and mellow so off we went. I’m glad I did, for I gained some insight into how the world’s economies work.
Once the initial squabbling over who would have the racing car counter was settled, the economist’s wife appointed herself Banker. I approved of this because she was at the other end of the table from Fiona, who is inclined to steal from the bank when other players are distracted, though the downside was that I couldn’t reach the cash either; my technique is furtively to slip my own money into the bank, a few hundred here and there, to accelerate my bankruptcy leaving me free to retire and have fun watching paint dry.
It was clear from the start that I had fallen among thieves. Before any dice were thrown Maddy was forbidden to collude with any player (Fiona was her target) in fraudulent enterprise for which she clearly had form, and I noticed that whenever the Banker went off for a comfort break she took the bank’s reserves with her. Not a good sign, and I have to say that Father and Daughter both carried on like graduates of the Enron School of Fiscal Probity. From the off the Economist embarked upon a reckless spending spree, investing in properties irrespective their merits and increasing his exposure by building houses and hotels, apparently without much in the way of strategic planning or risk assessment. I looked forward to watching him, maddened by greed, crash and burn in an explosive cocktail of hubris and sub-prime squalor. He won, of course, but not before he had driven family and friends into hopeless penury.
So, if like me you make no claim to understanding high finance ferret out an economist, challenge him to a game of Monopoly and hope to see him, fascinated by the cleverness of his own footwork, come to grief. But, like me, you may be disappointed. You will perhaps be better informed, but you will be no wiser.
Posted: January 24th, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: Designing for the Future Competition - Collyer's, Inclusive design | No Comments »
We are delighted to announce that sixth form student, Glenn Crombie has won first prize in The Future Perfect Company and Collyer’s competition to encourage young designers to think about the challenges that an ageing population presents – and to create innovative, attractive and aspirational designs that allow people to continue to live enjoyable, active and independent lives as they get older.
Glenn’s winning product is designed to eject a standard plug from a socket at the touch of a button – deceptively simple but very ingenious! Although initially designed to meet the needs of people with arthritis and similar gripping disabilities, this product has universal appeal and because it is based on a standard UK plug socket fitting, it is easily installed anywhere it is needed.
Joint second were Lucy Martlew, Andrew Marsh, Lauren Hale, James Delve and Jessica Chapman. whose designs included a light bulb changer, a mug which boils water using electromagnetic induction, a drinking glass with finger grooves for easy gripping, a soap sword and a long-handled personal grooming set.
The competition was open to Collyers students on the GCE Advanced Subsidiary Product Design course and judged by Denise Stephens (co-founder of online design community Enabled by Design), Harry Trimble (former winner of the competition at University of Brighton), and Philippa Aldrich (founder of The Future Perfect Company). Tutors Kate Sharp (Faculty leader – Arts and Communications) and Hari Atkins (Subject Leader – Product Design, Materials) acted as advisors to the judging panel.
Denise Stephens commented: “It was great to see design students exploring and addressing the challenges faced by many of us, but especially an ageing population. I was particularly excited to see entries that were clearly developed from a real need identified when speaking to people during the research stage of the design process, leading to some innovative results and mainstream appeal too.”
Harry Trimble said: “Collyers’ students demonstrated great quality of thought and initiative to uncover the fundamental issues underpinning the various challenges of becoming older. The competition illustrated wonderfully how the standard of design education can be significantly enhanced if we encourage designers to have firsthand experience of the problems we hope to resolve through design”
We were delighted with the enthusiasm with which the students approached the subject of ageing, something that they would not ordinarily consider and the high quality of the design thinking which resulted. It was good also to see that the students had spoken to potential older users as to what sort of products they wanted and needed and listened to what they were told.
We will feature more of the winning designs over the next few weeks but would interested to hear what you think about Glenn’s push- out plug socket. Would you buy one?
Posted: January 20th, 2011 | Author: admin | Filed under: Legal - employment, Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney, Retirement | Comments Off
By Catriona Watt, Fox lawyers
When BBC programme Countryfile moved from its daytime slot to a primetime slot on a Sunday evening, three of its female presenters were replaced by younger candidates. Ms O’Reilly (aged 51) was one of those dropped from the programme and subsequently brought a claim in the employment tribunal arguing that her removal from Countryfile amounted to direct discrimination on the grounds of her age and sex. The tribunal rejected Ms O’Reilly’s sex discrimination claim but held that her removal from Countryfile did amount to direct age discrimination. The tribunal noted that it was clear that Ms O’Reilly’s age was a significant factor in the BBC’s decision not to retain her for the primetime show. If she had been 10 to 15 years younger it would have given her proper consideration.
Age discrimination can, in certain circumstances, be objectively justified as “a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim”. In Ms O’Reilly’s case, the tribunal held that the BBC’s age discriminatory treatment of her was not objectively justified. Although the BBC’s wish to appeal to a primetime audience, including younger viewers, was a legitimate aim, it was not proportionate to remove older presenters to pander to the assumed prejudice of such viewers.
It is notable in this case that the tribunal gave such short-shrift to the idea that the BBC could justify replacing older presenters with younger ones to help achieve its legitimate aim of attracting a wider audience. This is a clear indication to employers that where they do implement practices which directly or indirectly discriminate against employees on the grounds of their age to achieve what the employer says is a “legitimate aim” for the business, the employer will have to work much harder to show that the practice is indeed proportionate.
This case is also significant in showing that employees are increasingly aware of, and indeed increasingly willing to pursue, their rights under the age discrimination legislation introduced in 2006 and now enshrined in the Equality Act 2010.
This is a general account of the law as it currently stands. It is always best to seek legal advice for specific queries