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Friday, October 28, 2016

The ultimate tuque

John Brownlee at FastCompany describes the "ultimate tuque",  a version of the hat most associated with Canada.  Designed by Toronto design firm Frontier, the tuque aims to get this iconic piece of headgear right.

In terms of function, the Frontier tuque is designed to address many common complaints about tuques, such as scratchy material, lack of warmth, retention of sweat, and being too tight. It may be the most technotonic tuque of all time!

Friday, October 7, 2016

Speak French without embarassment

Sean Captain at FastCompany reports that Duolingo—perhaps the world's best-known second-language learning app—is trying to remove the embarrassment of being a newbee in a second language.

The service has unveiled a set of chatbots that users can interact with in order to practice their French, German, or Spanish—with more languages to come.  "Practice real Spanish conversations without blushing," is the assurance given to curious users.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Bugaboo luggage

Bugaboo is a Dutch company known mainly for its lines of up-market strollers.  I use the Bugaboo Frog in class to illustrate the concept of technotonicity: How designs appeal to potential users. 

In physical terms, the Frog is praised for its handling, so much so that some people reported that they took it out for a push just to enjoy the feeling of steering it!