New technologies and the increasing environmental and economic costs of transport will support light and flexible production systems such as “point of sales production”. This can have effects on the “ecological backpack” of products as it will reduce transportation costs. (The “ecological backpack” includes all the natural resources, which are used during the products entire life cycle, from its production to its transportation, its use and waste treatments.)
TRUST2design researches the potential of such localized, customized and contextualized production methods to support ecological sustainability and strengthen local communities.
The relationship consumer-product will transform due to the shift from mass production to individual customization and network assisted production. These developments demand a new approach to design: from the design of singular prototypical objects for industrial mass production to the design of processes of production and distribution in interaction with the user. It will also enable a shift from centralized to distributed participatory systems.
TRUST2design investigates concepts for the transformation of products in media based service environments and the development of new interfaces between the consumer and the production, new service environments expanding and transforming the concept of the demand and supply system and the shop. TRUST2design looks at how the future customer (prosumer) could be integrated in the development of products, gaining a new central active role, participating in the development and production process.
As fabrication machines are getting smaller and cheaper and fab labs affordable personal fabrication will become state of the art. Within the fab labs perspective “the capabilities of machine tools will become accessible to ordinary people in the form of personal fabrication“, putting control of the creation in the hands of the users. This could help find relevant solutions to existing demands, producing local technological solutions to local problems. It will also change the relation people develop to objects (that they have produced and not purchased).
TRUST2design researches the potential of the fab lab model to unfold mass creativity and peer to peer innovation. TRUST2DESIGN also investigates the possible combinations and creative symbiosis of the quickly fading traditional crafts together with advanced technological production methods.
Today’s technological developments are accelerated by the fusions of information technology, nanotechnology, biotechnology and neurotechnologies (brain technologies) and their convergence into new hybrid technology platforms such as DNA computing, nanobiotechnology, synthetic biology and neuroengineering. These developments will enable us to generate materials with processual qualities as building blocks for objects and environments that interact with their users, changing qualities adapting to the processes of use.
TRUST2design approaches these technological developments from the designers perspective. By “inhabiting technology” we could transform these technological developments to meet the way we want to live and to build “trust relationships” in technological systems.
TRUST2design adresses a network of interrelated issues:
Where do artifacts come from – and where do they go?
How can the ecological backpack of products be tracked?
What are the platforms to support localized recycling processes?
What sort of participatory tools are needed to support the local chains of “symbiotic production”, where the waste streams of the one becomes the resource of the other?
How can the complex processes of production, distribution, use and recycling be communicated to the consumer?
How can the user steer these processes?
How can this be easy and fun?
What narratives for the ‘second life’ of objects and spaces and new social rituals for their re-birth can we imagine?
How can objects and spaces materialise the spirit of our ‘glocal’ communities?
How can design integrate and reflect the processes of cultural hybridizations in our globalised world?
How can the design cultures that are at the moment joining the global market (f.e. China, India, Brazil, Africa) influence our common design heritage?
How can designed objects and spaces support meaningful experiences, function as projection for our wishes and fantasies, thus getting emotionally charged?
What about our objects of desire and fetishes?
How can we strengthen the sustainable human affection span for objects and spaces?
How do hybrid objects and spaces function as ‘objectivations’ of our relations?
How can design help knit the network of our inter-human relations?
How can we design distributed service environments that root us in our local communities?
How can design support creative communities that strengthen our feeling of belonging?
What are the narratives developed around such interaction communities?How can design instead of accelerating our hyper-individualism support interchange by helping us bargain our individualities?
Are there still arguments for unique custom made products beside the unfolding of the prosumers creativity?
What is the added value of artifacts that are not purchased with hyper-consumerisms minimum personal involvement but by maximising personal emotional investment?
What is the binding emotional and symbolic strength of the self created objects and spaces?
How can personal hybrid objects and spaces develop with us and change in time, following and adapting to our life process?
How products mature and age: do the surfaces transform, structures change, functions fall off or get added to?
How do artifacts root us, supporting continuity throughout generations?
How do objects and spaces transport ‘permanent values and of lasting beauty’ to be passed on from one generation to the next?
How to support collaborating communities and to design services where people relate, exchange and share?
How to reduce the need for material devices by designing shared facilities bringing people closer and strengthening socialization?
How to design peer-to-peer exchange platforms as infrastructures for ecological and social sustainability?
How to support the informal economies of self-production and non-monetary exchange?
How to protect and bargain intellectual commons?
How does design relate to our so-called shared “common goods”?
How to counter fight the increasing development of consumer technology into non comprehensive “black boxes”?
What are the toolkits needed to support bottom-up user-innovation, empowering mass creativity?
How to support tinkering and mass creativity in our hybrid world?
How to enable people to tinker the TRUST2design project?
TRUST2DESIGN spans between two tension poles, integrating two project lines:
The PRESENT / TRUST project line looks at the PRESENT products and applications and at TRUSTful relationships.
The PROOF / ANTI-TRUST project line focuses on the dynamic aspects of the system – the ongoing flux and change that usually generates distrust. The PROOF / ANTI-TRUST line considers the mechanisms of control, of testing and feed back loops and integrates experimentation tools.
As the prognosis of the leisure-society is becoming reality, not in the context of wealth but of economic implosion, social strategies for upgrading forced leisure in meaningful experience are needed, for example, services supporting the informal economy.
In our globalised world the importance of belonging to a local environment and a local community is growing. The ecological and social footprint of our footloose society will in the future have to be increasingly considered. This will generate a whole new range of locally related media applications and environments and of location based services, similar to the “Facebook” that is transforming into a ‘Spacebook’.
Such hybrid (combined real and virtual) environments, focusing on the neighborhood, localize services linking them to the Global and support innovation on a local level.
A participatory web environment supports local recycling and “symbiotic production” by mapping the resources.
Complementary to high tech material research, artistic re-interpretations could be considered to develop design strategies of re-cycling and modification. Experimental processes of use, re-use and abuse, of un-learning, de-programming and re-programming could be exploited.