Darrell Hudson

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Evolution of an Idea – C60 Examines the Experience of Listening to Music

IDEO Boston designers began to gather into “craft” groups one lunch hour every week. Craft groups were created to encourage and inspire independent projects and design conversations; to deepen design craft. My craft group is focused on interaction and digital design.

Amplify’d from labs.ideo.com

Experiment #11, C60, examines the experience of listening to music.  In addition to listening, we used to see and touch our music. Now we download, point and click.

Gone are the hours spent in the record store on a Saturday, leafing through the racks in search of that hidden gem. Replaced with sitting in front of your computer in your underpants… trolling through the iTunes store…

-Martin Bone, “I Miss My Pencil

The C60 concept was created to bring tangibility to the digital music experience.  A card represents a song or a collection of songs. Placement of a card on the C60 table causes the music represented by the card to be played. Multiple cards placed on the table form a clockwise ordered playlist.

C60 Prototype Development

During concept development, it’s easy to spend too much time working on details that “don’t matter now”.  It is preferable to test many ideas, to perform experiments that answer pressing questions and uncover new ones.  In this phase, the best path to understanding is to try many ideas quickly.

A turntable based approach, conceived and built by designer Konrad Ropke, utilized a cardboard box, a motor, an RFID module, Arduino based components and Adobe Flash, taking less than a week to build. This approach is demonstrated in the following video.

While both approaches showed promise, the craft group decided to move forward with the original C60 concept found in the book. The use of quick prototyping methods created confidence that we could make it work.

See more at labs.ideo.com



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