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BS: Design moments of Genius

DMcG 13 Nov 17 - 03:19 AM
Mr Red 13 Nov 17 - 03:48 AM
Iains 13 Nov 17 - 04:12 AM
Joe_F 13 Nov 17 - 09:18 PM
Steve Shaw 13 Nov 17 - 09:38 PM
DMcG 14 Nov 17 - 02:57 AM
DMcG 14 Nov 17 - 03:07 AM
DaveRo 14 Nov 17 - 03:26 AM
DMcG 14 Nov 17 - 04:33 AM
Stu 14 Nov 17 - 04:38 AM
Mr Red 14 Nov 17 - 05:10 AM
Mr Red 14 Nov 17 - 05:24 AM
DaveRo 14 Nov 17 - 06:25 AM
Jack Campin 14 Nov 17 - 09:22 AM
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Subject: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: DMcG
Date: 13 Nov 17 - 03:19 AM

Over in another thread James Dyson has been discussed. So it led we to think about why his vacuum cleaners were so much more successful than their competitors. True, they are well engineered, but so are many others. He ensured they were 'stylish' as best he could, but that's no clear cut thing: a slight breeze in the fashion world and they would be labelled ugly and gaudy.

No, to me the real moment of genius in the design was to make the waste collection 'bag' transparent. So simple, but it completely changes the relationship between the user and the machine in a way that makes the machine vastly more effective. How so? Because when a traditional machine gets clogged the user thinks 'this machine isn't very good' - so blames the machine. With The transparent design the user sees it is clogged and thinks "I need to empty that" - the machine is in no way to blame. So the user is far more likely to empty it often and as a result "Dyson's pick up dirt better" gets around. Simply genius, in my book.


Any other examples that strike you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: Mr Red
Date: 13 Nov 17 - 03:48 AM

James Dyson designed and manufactured a wheelbarrow that was harder to over-balance. It had a ball instead of a wheel. And it didn't bite into the mud in the same way as a wheel. It was called the Ballbarrow.

At one point the paint-spray booth extractor needed maintenance and when he took it apart they discovered the main collector was a cylinder and Dyson being an inventor saw immediately it worked as a centrifuge. The leap to vacuum cleaners was pretty swift. That's how inventors' minds work.

That's why he champions creativity and invention.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: Iains
Date: 13 Nov 17 - 04:12 AM

Dyson started designing while still a student. He had input to the design of the Roturk Seatruck, a baby sized, glass fibre, landing craft.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sea_Truck

Having been on them a few times on rivers and lakes I would not want to be in any kind of sea in one of them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: Joe_F
Date: 13 Nov 17 - 09:18 PM

In my Hoover (a venerable brand!) Windtunnel, the dirt is likewise visible, being collected in a transparent cylinder.

Remember, tho, if you can't get in the corners, you may as well give in.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Nov 17 - 09:38 PM

We have a big-beast Dyson, a hand-held Dyson and a Dyson V6 rechargeable job. They are all brilliant - when they work. Thankfully, during our tenure of these machines there's always been a five-year warranty. We have had to call on it a number of times. I won't regale you with the multifarious problems we've had. When they work well they're brilliant. But there are still issues. It's hard to empty the dust without breathing it in. Emptying leaves the outside parts dirty. Filters are hard to wash properly. On one occasion I had to seek advice on filter cleaning from their helpline. Hoses break, tubes get clogged, non-return flaps sieze up, mains cords break inside the machine. They're good but they haven't solved the problem of everyday users actually using the machines.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: DMcG
Date: 14 Nov 17 - 02:57 AM

We are focussing rather more on Dyson than I expected, but I am not about to change that. We also owned a Dyson washing machine for a long time (until one of the many house moves). It was expensive, but high capacity. When it went wrong, it has a useful led pad which displayed a meaning error message as well as just an error code and they would come out within a day to fix it for something like five years with no charge. That happened twice, as far as I recall. But Dyson discontinued them because they were not profitable.

I had a touch of nostalgia seeing one in the background during James Dyson's interview on the Andrew Marr show.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: DMcG
Date: 14 Nov 17 - 03:07 AM

I get the impression that no-one holds the decision to make the dust container transparent in such high esteem as I do. The tech stuff of using a centrifuge rather than a fan I consider inspired, but no more. You are using a different bit of physics to generate the suction but without solving the problem of getting people to empty the dust container it would have had little effect.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: DaveRo
Date: 14 Nov 17 - 03:26 AM

I think the primary reason for the transparent collector was to emphasise the wizzy technology, which is what he sold it on. If it were opaque it would have looked like any other upright cleaner and buyers wouldn't have had anything to show for the high price.
when a traditional machine gets clogged the user thinks 'this machine isn't very good' - so blames the machine
Really?

Two of my children have Dyson cleaners. They don't suck (in the literal sense) as well as our Miele drag-it-round - which has a bag-full indicator.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: DMcG
Date: 14 Nov 17 - 04:33 AM

Quite so, DaveRo. In a way that is my point. Whatever the technology used, the machine in itself does not really stand out from the competition enough to be as successful as it has been. No doubt fashion has a great detail to do with its success. But I guess that the bag full indicator on your Miele is a discreet little window on the handle or the cylinder that you check periodically. The Dyson transparent container, as it were, shouts at you from the other side of the room to be emptied. And if your obsessively house-proud neighbour comes in he or she would not notice the discreet Miele bag full, but would certainly pass judgement on a Dyson half full of fluff and sweet wrappers. So the psychology of the Dyson "encourages" you to empty it in a way that more traditional vacuums don't.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: Stu
Date: 14 Nov 17 - 04:38 AM

Biro.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: Mr Red
Date: 14 Nov 17 - 05:10 AM

collapsible umbrellas

Having said that, it goes in my rucksak and the mechanism is so intricate is won't withstand things on top of it. Hey ho. Red handles are rare and for completeness..............

Nothing is perfect - there's a price to pay for everything - except bags in Dyson vacuum cleaners. Over the life of the cleaner (my DC01 is 20 years old - never a hiccough) the saving is noticeable, particularly when you would have run out of bags just at the crucial moment. Just after you have disposed of the last one!

Bagless is a selling point - no doubt about it. And there are a few excellent design touches. I get irritated with poor design - not with this one.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: Mr Red
Date: 14 Nov 17 - 05:24 AM

audio recording on phones.

20 years ago I suggested it to a salesman and he couldn't understand why! The phones, even then, had memory, had a/d converters, had a microphone. The only thing holding it back was marketing and salesmen with no imagination. Or much idea of what they were selling. Cameras needed more expense/hardware, and look how they sold that concept!

when I was working for a weighing machine company I suggested a printer that printed onto paper and was held between the sellotape that wrapped around the twisted neck of the bag. Point of dispensation. The tape machines were around then, simple to use. The committee said it could not be done. Non-sense. It may have been expensive, design time too long, but 10 years after most loaves of bread came exactly like that. Printing on the tape itself.

Ones I buy have a neat little paper safety tab in the ends so you can get at the two ends and pull. Which also denotes the bag has not been opened.
Now that, I submit, is a genius idea. Does two things and does them perfectly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: DaveRo
Date: 14 Nov 17 - 06:25 AM

Mr Red wrote: Bagless is a selling point - no doubt about it.
Exactly. That's the key difference. But at the time Hoover bags were quite cheap and the Dyson was very expensive - so Dyson needed more than than economics - higher capital cost, lower running cost - to sell them. But the economics made them popular with workmen who seemed to adopt them quickly. Bagless cleaners are cheaper now so Dyson seems to be resorting to being a fashion statement, judging by my son's bizarre contraption.
DMcG wrote: I guess that the bag full indicator on your Miele is a discreet little window
No - it's a big red thing on top of the machine - you can't miss it.
And if your obsessively house-proud neighbour comes in he or she would ... would certainly pass judgement on a Dyson half full of fluff and sweet wrappers
Hmmm. I wonder what judgement, though? Depends on the contents, I suppose...
Stu wrote: Biro
Yes - or perhaps the BIC - transparent so you can see when it runs out. Pity they mostly stop working before the run out.


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Subject: RE: BS: Design moments of Genius
From: Jack Campin
Date: 14 Nov 17 - 09:22 AM

Dyson moved his manufacturing operation out of the UK to Malaysia where workers are paid less and have less rights. And he is doing his best to fuck Britain over even more effectively by backing Brexit.

His machines may suck effectively but he personally sucks a lot more.


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