Blog 4

The outdoor activity at the botanical gardens was an influential experience. We were challenged to think critical and find solutions from the nature surrounding us. Physically be outdoors and forcing ourselves to adapt our thinking allowed us to break down a certain invisible barrier one might say. By brainstorming how we could us the influences from nature and apply them to our fields we opened our minds to a world of designing sustainable. And although this was just an outdoor activity, we now know that we are capable of doing such things.

We again, were forced to find sustainable solutions during the Design Slam I. This pushed opened our barriers even more. We learned to adapt our thoughts and truly think of the how and the why. My Learning Community, #6, created a concept/store called “Functional Furnishings.” The idea behind this concept is that household waste is one of the top contributors to waste, and furniture is a big part of that number. Millions of people, especially college students, get rid of their furniture annually, only to return next term to purchase new furniture. Our solution would be to create a place where people could donate their furniture verses throwing it away. We would then “Reuse & Repurpose” the furniture into “Functional Furnishings.” By functional furnishings we mean we would take the individual furniture pieces and create new ones that would act as 2 in 1 pieces; such as a bed that was also a sofa, or desk that was also a chair. The incentives for the consumers would be that we would offer free pickup and delivery and also a sort of credit or point system for them to shop with us later. Consumers would want to buy our “Functional Furnishings” because it would be a better price then buying new, and would also save them money because they would have to buy less pieces to furnish their space. By creating a place like this in communities there would be no excess furniture waste, therefore creating a more sustainable product life for furnishings. Although, I of course thought that our idea/concept was unique, another that really caught my attention was that of Learning Community #4, Conserge.

Conserge is an at home built in energy saver. It would be designed to detect if there is someone in the room and if anything that is using excess energy. Conserge will control these forms by automatically turning them off or down, a system that would help save energy and money. There is a product that exist already called Nest. However, the difference being that Nest is controlled manually, whereas Conserge is automatic. Now of course in this new age we all love things that can control itself so that reduces the amount of time, effort, and forgetfulness on our parts as humans, however one can’t help but think if we are setting ourselves up for another fiasco like the one in Disney Channel Origninal Movie “Smart House.”

I was very pleased with both of the activities this week, and thought that they tied in well together. I believe that they both challenged us to use critical thinking and problem solving through sustainability. I personally learned a lot from both exercises and enjoyed this week and steps we made as a unit toward leading a better more sustainable life.

About Saydi Hunter

Being a native of Texas, I have a passion for both design and people. I try to live my life to the fullest and walk by faith. Although often, I fall short of both of these task God's grace never fails me. I am blessed beyond belief with life and my beautiful little family.
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