how technology and science are disrupting the world of design
how technology and science are disrupting the world of design how technology and science are disrupting the world of design
jul 16, 2014

how technology and science are disrupting the world of design

technology and science are disrupting the world of design
image © jake evill and cortex cast systems




design is what shapes our built environment. but as we progress, creatives are turning more and more to nature – exploring biological systems and organic materials –  as their driving influence for developing new products and constructed networks. it is no secret that technology and science are playing a larger role than ever before in shaping our world; and designers are harnessing the research and findings from these sectors to establish progressive and innovative products that could change our lives.

OAKLEY disruptive by design designboom
‘cortex cast system’ by jake evill
image © jake evill and cortex cast systems




in particular, advancements in 3D printing are enabling us to process and manufacture ideas at a more rapid rate, which is changing the entire production industry. jake evill combines 3D scanning and printing technologies to develop a cast that could eliminate the clumsy plaster versions that have been bringing fracture stability for ages. evill’s design takes into consideration the exact dimensions of the individual’s injured limb to ensure they are fitted with a cast that provides optimal comfort and support. this is the result of a mould that references an exoskeleton – a rigid external covering that is found on some invertebrates for protection. the make-up of the ‘cortex cast’, thus also provides a hygienic alternative. being 3D printed from nylon makes it waterproof, easy to clean, super light, anatomically accurate as well as recyclable, just to name a few of its potential benefits; proving its potential to benefit to change the practice of extreme sports where athletes are more prone to frequent injury and broken bones is huge.

OAKLEY disruptive by design designboom
‘amoeba trainer’ by shamees aden
image courtesy of shamees aden




in the case of her ‘amoeba trainer’, shamees aden has employed the rapid prototyping technique in combination with the study of protocells – an emerging science that has the potential to revolutionize the way we make materials – to envision surface-adapting footwear. the concept seeks to offer bespoke shoes by engineering life from artificially manufactured liquid chemicals through printed biotechnology. her concept forms a second skin around one’s foot, transforming and responds to the athlete depending on the intensity of their activity, and the amount of support needed based on their exertion and physical impact.

‘amoeba trainer’ by shamees aden seeks to provide adaptive athletic footwear
image courtesy of shamees aden


OAKLEY disruptive by design designboom
‘valour’ smartphone and bluetooth connected bike by vanhawks




and with comfort and practicality, comes safety. many gadgets, devices and software apps are assisting us in this area already, and vanhawks has pushed this further by conceiving ‘valour’, a lightweight carbon fiber smart bike that connects to iOS through bluetooth. the two-wheeler employs already existing technology into its design that allows riders to monitor their route through a smartphone GPS navigation, and be warned of any objects in their blind spots through haptic feedback integrated into its handlebars, providing safer, more intuitive urban commuting.



the technology behind ‘valour’ – enhancing urban commuting
video courtesy of vanhawks




‘disruptive by design’ is about shaking up the norms and challenging yourself to be a game changer – on a large or small scale. whether it’s through material innovation, form, social or economic impact – it is all about being a revolutionary thinker. Oakley, in collaboration with designboom is looking for design #disruptors who will challenge expectations and amaze the world with their approach to design.


do you disregard the usual creative parameters, think unconventionally and want to change the world? then you are a design disruptor. create an innovative design that will disrupt elite sports performance in a way that hasn’t been seen before. there are no limits to where your inspiration comes from, and there are no restrictions on the format of your concept. it could be a digital design, garment, new way to use technology, product, even a piece of architecture. the only rule is that it needs to fit the parameters of ‘disruptive by design’.


for more information, visit the Oakley ‘disruptive by design’ call-for-entries and official competition rules.
submissions deadline is july 28th, 2014 23:59 (GMT).

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