Archivio per aprile 2012

Ecodesign & Sustainability @ Milan Design Week 2012

The Milan Design Week just ended, and -as usual- registered high numbers:

  • 2,700 exhibitors
  • 330,000+ registered visitors
  • 64.5% of the total attendees were from outside Italy
  • 5,725 accredited journalists

However, this data only refer to the Salone Internazionale del Mobile, in Rho Fiera Milano, and were not considered all the initiatives which took place in the meantime all over Milan during the past week (the Fuorisalone). Confirming the ever-increasing trend of the last couple of years, the green design has been one of the leit-motiv of the exhibition. Due to the ongoing economical crysis and the constant needings to obtain more functionality in smaller spaces, a minimalistic design, together with the use of poor materials (as wood), characterized some of the most innovative projects: Scavolini presented the Social Kitchen designed by fashion brand Diesel, Domitalia showed it’s Eco-L chair made of ash wood instead of the usual plastic, IKEA presented it’s PS 2012 collection with new models of fornitures focused on sustainability, while Panasonic unveiled its stunning solar panel arrays Photosynthesis Solar Ecosystem designed by architect Akihisa Hirata, and Raúl Laurí’s decafé, a completely biodegradable table lamp made of coffee grounds, became the symbol of this year’s Design Week.

decafé lamp by Raúl Laurí

The decafé table lamp by Raúl Laurí

Sustainability has definitely been one of the trends of 2012 Design Week and, seems like a coincidence, during this very week we eventually received the assessment report by AzzeroCO2 (a society which helps its clients compensating their CO2 emissions by optimisating their resources and funding reforestation initiatives) stating that our agency successfully compensated its 2011 nocive emissions (about 48 tons of CO2eq), by acquiring credits for a reforestation project near the city of Pavia. I take this occasion to confirm that we’re still taking this committment very seriously and we planned to progressively reduce our CO2eq emissions in the following years, helping -and being helped by- our trusted clients to work in this direction.

AzzeroCO2 assessment

Certificate of CO2eq compensation (in Italian)

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Google’s April Fools’ prank brings back the glorious 8-bit graphic

8-bit graphic has been an integrated part of the gaming childhood of many of us, especially those who grew up playing with SEGA or Nintendo. We couldn’t really avoid to mention this.

Everything actually started last friday, when Google posted a video introducing a new type of cartridge (with the adventure videogame GoogleMaps) for the NES system. This was purposely made as funny teaser for the April Fools’ prank Google was preparing for the users: a “Quest mode” in its Maps service, an entire world developed in 8-bit graphic with famous landmarks to explore and -no joking- monsters to discover all around the world.

And there’s quite a lot to discover. Here’s a map of the City of London, with some of its famous landmarks (the ‘A’ pin is the location of our office in High Holborn): Buckingham Palace, the Big Ben, Trafalgar Square with the Nelson statue, etc.

London map in 8 bit

But 8 bit graphics isn’t limited to maps: in Street View mode it makes buildings more ‘cartoonish’, like the Eiffel tower in Paris you can see here:

Eiffel Tower in 8 bit graphic

This 8-bit world is literally full of surprises, as well as UFOs and dragons..

It’s not the first time Google is putting such a big effort in April Fools’ pranks: last year they introduced Gmail Motion, a way to compose emails using ‘simple’ gestures, with a pretty semi-serious video. This time, however, they went for a more visual, but still funny, approach which went immediately über-popular once it eventually appeared on Reddit.

It’s not said whether this quest map will stay or will be removed in the next days. Many users are already claming to keep it as their default maps browser, since the landmarks and the monsters to discover are many. If you are lazy, you can check here the list of the most interesting objects.. otherwise, good luck hunting, Dragon Warrior!

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