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Solving everyday problems with design

Design one thing that solves an issue – sounds easy sufficient, proper? For 24-year-old product design scholar Sarah Moi Shi Li, the temporary couldn’t have been any extra suited to her line of research.

“For my ultimate 12 months challenge on the Faculty of the Arts in Universiti Sains Malaysia, I used to be impressed by certainly one of my very own experiences,” she shared in an e mail interview with LifestyleTech.

“I had eczema on my finger, and it grew to become onerous for me to work, as a result of the pores and skin on my finger stored cracking and was actually itchy too. It made me marvel how some individuals, who’re pressured to attain sure duties with only one hand, are in a position to cope and what challenges they encounter.”

Moi determined to analysis how amputees tackled their each day duties, and from this analysis got here the inspiration to hone in on one explicit, constant exercise and discover a method to enhance it.

The 24-year-old selected consuming with one hand and ended up bagging the James Dyson Award in Malaysia for “Eat. Simple”.

Her successful product helps bodily challenged customers corresponding to amputees, individuals born with a single arm, stroke victims, or these with short-term hand accidents to eat independently and effortlessly.

The James Dyson Award, now in its 15th 12 months, is run by the James Dyson Basis, a registered charity arrange in 2002 which exists to encourage and assist the subsequent technology of engineers.

It runs in 27 nations and is open to university-level college students (and up to date graduates) finding out product design, industrial design and engineering.

The award encourages concepts that problem conference and “lean” engineering – that’s, much less is extra, and designing with the atmosphere in thoughts.

A nationwide winner is chosen for each nation the award runs in, earlier than going via to the ultimate part the place one worldwide winner is chosen by James Dyson, who strongly believes that younger designers have the power to alter lives with their designs.

Moi mentioned: “I obtained to know concerning the James Dyson Award at uni. What made me participate in it was that I felt that my design match the temporary and had numerous potential. I wished to share my concept with others, so I submitted my design on the JDA web site.”

Whereas in faculty, Moi had additionally designed minimalist furnishings, storage and recycling ideas for small residing areas, a multifunction chopping board for amputees, in addition to jewelry.Moi mentioned it took her about 4 months to good “Eat. Simple”, from the start of the analysis till the ultimate prototype.

“Probably the most difficult half was remaining passionate concerning the challenge, as a result of it took numerous trial and error by way of the form and materials used,” she mentioned.“The main focus of my analysis was extra on individuals who had been single-handed due to trauma fairly than a congenital purpose. Which means that numerous them already had a dominant hand, and had been typically pressured to make use of their non-dominant hand as an alternative.

“I wanted numerous assist from my buddies to check out the assorted mock-up variations earlier than I settled on the ultimate consequence.”

“Eat. Simple” is comprised of meals grade silicon. It’s secure, transportable, non-slippery on the plate and simply washable. It features as a wall, so customers can switch meals effortlessly from their plates onto their spoon, with only a single hand.

“Other than taking aesthetics into consideration, it was essential that my creation supplied an answer to an actual drawback. I’ve at all times been motivated to design issues that might truly make individuals’s life simpler, thus it’s such an honour to obtain this award,” mentioned the Penangite, who took dwelling prize cash price RM10,000 for her effort.

Yvonne Tan, the DDM engineering supervisor at Dyson, and a member of the JDA judging panel, mentioned: “I used to be notably impressed with ‘Eat. Simple’ due to its simplicity and that it brings actual profit to these in want. I want Sarah all one of the best in taking her invention to the subsequent stage, and hope to see it available on retailer cabinets someday.”

Previous winners have sought to handle meals waste, water conservation, air pollution, medical remedy in growing nations and sustainability throughout all industries.

The 2018 Worldwide Winner, O-Wind Turbine, addressed sustainable vitality technology in city environments with a brand new kind of wind turbine that captures wind flowing in each path.

The JDA has additionally given younger inventors worldwide media publicity which has opened up additional funding and alternatives for them to develop their concepts.

Try the opposite nationwide winners at and maintain your eyes peeled for the announcement of the worldwide winner quickly.

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