Returning to the FUSE stage this year is Tess Wicksteed, Strategy Director at Pearlfisher. This time she will be sharing the podium with Tom Barr, VP Coffee Design at Starbucks. Tess's series of blog posts will outline the key brand building principles that can evolve brands from exciting challengers to globally loved icons.

It’s easy to forget that in the beginning Starbucks was a challenger brand, paving the way for brands like Blue bottle and Stumptown. Starbucks started life on Pike Place in 1971 as the original coffee pioneer and over time has become the most iconic coffee company in the world. We love working with Starbucks for lots of reasons, but one of them is that they are such a textbook example of the philosophy at the heart of Pearlfisher. We believe that the brands that really matter are either Challengers or Icons, and that our job as brand builders is to create Challenger brands that later become Icons and to nurture Icons to ensure that they stay relevant.

Why do they matter more? Because they are not just selling you something you probably don't need, they stand for something - they engage in culture and strive to make it better. When Starbucks was founded, they were determined to change the American food industry: they were on a mission. There was a reason for them to exist - they embodied the emerging spirit of the age in a way no-one else did. They took the characteristics of their product and created a deeply motivating brand idea around it. Starbucks is about nurturing and inspiring the human spirit, which makes sense as coffee is both comforting (nurturing) and stimulating (inspiring).

So what are the principles that evolve brands from challengers to icons and give icons their enduring power? I will discuss these over my next blog posts. I hope you enjoy them!


Get out of the house and "shut the front door" on your comfort zone.

FUSE Inspiration : Pinterest
Somehow we have been lulled to sleep and our economic engines aren't turning properly. And, it is likely YOUR fault. In actuality, we're all to blame. Innovation is the only sustainable competitive advantage and we're not contributing. We're not getting outside our comfort zones. Here, we have some therapies to help you break free and find a way out of apathy town.

Consider this the start of a therapy session for creativity and innovation. There are only five steps, but you must complete them alland if you attend FUSE or follow the updates, that will be the breakthrough week.

The therapies are as follows: Relocate, Mingle, Touch, Pause and Recruit.

One // Relocate :
Everyone draws inspiration from somewhere and most can't draw it from a place they are currently occupying. If you sit at a desk in front of a screen most of your day, or find yourself staring at the same people in meetings, get out. Set up somewhere else. Meet somewhere unexpected [NOT your local coffee shop]. Get out of your typical physical space. Museum. Grocery Store. Somewhere quiet or loud, but more important, somewhere you don't frequent. New physical surroundings have an impact on what we see and what we see has an impact on how we thinkso relocate to think different.

Do it once, then do it once a week.

Two // Mingle :
Meet people you wouldn't expect to meet. Call it networking, call it making friends, call it socializing, just get to it. Meet people doing what you could never do or people doing what you have never heard people do. Meet with a bias toward diversity, not in the color of skin, but in the color of the grey matter (assume divergent thinking causes our brain matter to shade different colorsjust go with it). If you're in engineering, meet with marketing. If you're a "creative" meet with operations. You will be uncomfortable, but you will appreciate it later.

It isn't a new idea, its called "liberal arts"education.

Now, just so no one gets overwhelmed and decides apathy is more comfortable, we have shared two steps as a start. The other three (Touch, Pause and Recruit) will be posted next week. Try these for now and report back.


akeller@capsule.us

Note: Want to save money on your FUSE registration? Use discount code FUSE12AK for 15% off!

This post was inspired by an image posted to the NextBigDesign, FUSE Inspiration Board on Pinterest, originating with the blog, "Where does the magic happen."


This year at Fuse 2012 we're adding new dimensions to the Fuse line-up. Fuse 3D: Industrial & Structural Design will feature industrial & structural designers discussing how brands come to life through form and structure.

Today we're looking at Fuse 3D session "Designing emotion into toys: the future of empathetic machines" with Caleb Chung, Creator, inventor, Pleo and Furby

Caleb Chung knows how to create emotional connections to products. Starting his career as a mime in Hollywood, he learned early on that motion creates emotion, and later honed his R&D skills at Mattel. He started with Furby- which sold over 50m units worldwide and generated over 1.2 billion in sales. Next came Pleo, an even further developed “life form” with over 200 movements for various body parts (it was named the 2007 PopSci coolest invention of the year).

So much of branding is finding that emotional connection with consumers; with his design of Furby and Pleo, Chung takes that to a literal level, designing the mechanics of emotion. In this episode of Radiolab the team explores the ways that Furby convinces users that it is experiencing emotions (for example learning and changing over time) and speaks with Chung about his process in designing the toy.


This video from Nightline! dips into the emotional connections users had with Pleo, the robotic dinosaur, thanks to its realistic movements and reactions.


Hear more Chung’s vision for the role of structure in play by joining us for Fuse 3D. To learn more, download the brochure.

We're pleased to offer readers of the Next Big Design blog 15% off of registration for this year's conference. Register with code FUSE12BLOG here.

Plus, stay in touch for more conference news and industry updates by joining our communities on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.
Context in design is always a good topic. There are so many details within context to miss and just when you think you understand the context of where your design lives, it changes. 


First perspective : Happiness is a good waxing.


It can be so very deceptive and dangerous if we don't consistently dig into the contextual situation.
This is an image from a wonderful work of public art in Chicago. The caption is a joke, which has some mild amusement -- as you may agree or not -- you may also find it something Monroe would have said herself if she had the opportunity. 

Now, moving down the image we have a context that provides nothing more than the original focal point of this iconic image. The outcome of a breeze at the right (Seven Year Itch) moment is apparent. 

Second perspective : The breeze is nice.


And then further down we see what all the fuss is about. She's getting her legs waxed by small hard working men on the streets of Chicago (never mind the shot was taken originally on Lexington Ave in Manhattan). 

What we get is three different stories from three distinct photographs, all of one famous woman experiencing a breeze.

Simple method to get a complex point across to anyone. 

Just because the example is amusing and simple, don't underestimate the lesson. There are plenty of innovators before us who have not fully considered the context for their design, innovation, or concept and when it was eventually immersed into context; it failed. 

Third perspective : Vanity, 50 years after.


If you don't do any research before starting a design project or if you like to quote Apple and say, research doesn't matter, I just do what I know people will like, you will eventually hit the brick wall of context -- and it will hurt more than your nose.


Thoughts?


Aaron Keller
Capsule Blog
akeller@capsule.us






Here at the Next Big Design blog, we're already looking forward to April when we will once again be heading to the FUSE conference. From now until April 18th, we're bringing back our popular feature from 2011: #FUSEFactFriday.

FUSE Fact Friday will highlight some of the key takeaways from the 2011 conference, including inspirational quotes, main themes and more. Each week, we'll dive in to our 2011 executive summary and remember some of our favorite presentations and moments from last year.

Today's FFF Fact is:

"use the box thumbtacks for the box itself…and not just for the thumbtacks"

Day 2 keynote Andrew Pek revved up a sleepy audience at Fuse 2011 with quotes like the above, stimulating exercises and encouragment to look for the spaces between thoughts for true creativity. Our guest blogger Prescott Perez-Fox wrote:

"The day started with Andrew Pek analyzing our brains. Getting us to strive for enlightenment in our innovation. Shouting exercises and the throwing of crumpled paper can be just as stimulating as any math problem, if only because it’s new."

Kristina Loring of Frogdesign caught up with Andrew for a quick interview outside the event, check it out below:



To find out more about this year's FUSE, coming up in Chicago on April 18-20, visit the webpage. Plus, join us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn to begin networking with the FUSE community now. 
Someone once compared the anticipation of attending FUSE to the anticipation of attending sleep away camp as a child. It’s that yearning for what’s new, the comfort of old friends and the allure of the unknown that crescendo every year at FUSE. This year, expect something magical.

Every year we work to build FUSE around a particular theme – this year – in the spirit of cross collaboration and more integrated brand and design strategies, we’re excited to bring you New Dimensions of Magical. We’ll delve into every aspect of design – from graphic, to structural to interactive - FUSE 2012 has it all. 

Featured FUSE 2d: Graphic Design Session: Purpose Inspired Design, Amy Brusselback, Beauty Design Director, Procter & Gamble In the new world order, there’s a shift in power away from institutions to people. People want to know what’s behind a company and a brand–what they stand for and what they value. This session will focus on how developing crystal clarity on your purpose unleashes design that’s irresistible:
 • Build loyalty beyond reason
• Demonstrate how purpose inspired design can build the business
• Define the essentials elements of meaningful, actionable purpose
• Share examples that can be reapplied in your business.

Featured FUSE 3d: Industrial & Structural Design Session: Translating Brand Connection Through Form, Justin Coble, Industrial Design Manager, Mars Chocolate North America Brands create strong emotional connections, but this is heightened during holidays and times of togetherness. Because of this, it is very important to not only have great 2D branding, but also to bring the item full circle through form. Mars has driven brand connection in its seasonal business through form.
• How form brings the same emotional connection as 2D branding
• How brand look and feel can be translated through many different touch points
• Materials play a major role

Featured FUSE 4d: Digital & Interactive Design Session: Maintaining Brand Look & Feel Across Digital Media, Steve Mummolo, Creative executive, NFL Digital Media 
In this session we will discuss the importance of consistent cross-screen experiences in today’s market as well as the challenges, benefits and opportunities that are inherent to today’s mobile/web/tablet relationship.
• The importance of maintaining consistent user experience / brand identity across all screens
• Defining your brands' visual voice
• Creating a creative culture that supports the execution of these design principles
• Staffing & Process Tips

Featured Brand Strategy Session: Cleaning up with Common Sense: Simple and engaging ways to bring your brand to life, Kim Chisholm, VP Marketing, Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day
Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day was founded under the philosophy–uncomplicated products for a clean and happy home. This simple and no-nonsense approach is reflected in the design and marketing of the brand today. From product to community, we’ll look at how to build authenticity and engagement into your brand experience in a holistic and uncomplicated way.

Download the FUSE Brochure for the full program and speaker list.

Readers of the Next Big Design Blog can save 15% on Fuse, register with code FUSE12BLOG here.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me, Michelle LeBlanc at mleblanc@iirusa.com 

Stay in touch for more conference news and industry updates by joining our communities on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.
It appears someone has redesigned our government originally designed "for the people, by the people."


Did we miss the RFP for this one?


Here is how we heard about this redesign. Maggie Macnab will be speaking at FUSE about design built on the "power of nature" and how this increases understanding of visual communications, globally. The speech is going to be fantastic, judging from the short Skype encounter we had this week. It started with all the typical nuances and could have stayed on such a path. But, Maggie Macnab, adjunct professor, author and mom, has become rather impatient with situations representing bad design. This combined with a passion for critical thinking – the dynamite was lit.


Here's the premise.


Everything is designed, some things are designed with the wrong balance of form, function and intention. Yes, the three legged stool, while it isn't hard to balance three legs, it can get out of whack if we're not paying proper attention. Think Tropicana. Yes, we may be facing a government redesign happening right before our eyes, and you have to wonder is it a Tropicana design or taking a better form?


Is our government still "for the people?" 


So, let's think about the design of our current government situation and look at one specific behavior which has been designed by someone. Buyouts of large corporations like auto manufacturers, insurance providers, credit card services, banks, etc. It does keep a large number of people employed, but small businesses employ the largest percentage of our population. It does keep large organizations producing whatever economic benefit they create in our economy. But, some may wonder what economic benefit exists with an organization is clearly under water and unable to pay its debts.


Is it "by the people?"


Well, one quarter of our population (do the math) did elect each of the parties in power at any moment in time. But, some might say if only half the country votes, how can a government be "by the people." We, the people, are given more freedoms and rights than any known government known. But, we seem to be taking these for granted and not showing up to vote, participate, discuss, or get involved in the future of our country.


My conclusion? Someone has redesigned our government while we've been sleeping on a hill beneath the apathetic tree.


If you've made it this far into the post, you may wonder, what this has to do with a conference on design? Well, we believe in the power of good design. We have seen it work for the betterment of organizations of all sizes. We have seen what design thinking can do and the same principles apply to the design of these organizations we call government. We just need to see them from atop the trees instead of napping below.


As you might expect, this wasn't all covered in my conversation with Professor Macnab,  but we touched on the topic, and the passion was there. If we had a few beers in front of us and enough time, I am certain the discussion would have reached great depth.


Our current government has some examples of "bad design" no matter what political party you put yourself in, it really doesn't matter. It is what it is. Let's call for a redesign.


Now, this is beyond the conversation with Maggie, but I know she would agree, we need to participate. We need better design. Maggie, are you with us? Do you know anyone who could write a redesign of the government RFP?


Book: Design by Nature


Here are some of the things you'll likely hear in Maggie's speech.


Design with the power of nature // Understand the universal qualities of pattern and shape // Develop more appreciation of nature // Integrate the power of intuition for more effective globally understood visual communications // Create and experience more meaningful work


Here's what you should be listening for in Maggie's speech.


Design thinkers using natural systems to design a better life // How influential design is and can be in our society // Redesign bad systems into good systems // Swearing when you just can't take it anymore.





As you may know, our 2012 organizing theme for Fuse is "New Dimensions of Magical." As we look across increasingly blurry industry lines we're inviting new roles into the Fuse family. However, this doesn't mean that we'll be lacking in content when it comes to the topics you know and love at Fuse.

One of those Fuse Favorites is our focus on Graphic Design and Creative. This year in the Graphic Design and Creative Track, you can look forward to some of the following sessions:

Purpose Inspired Design
Amy Brusselback, Beauty Design Director, Procter & Gamble

How Valspar Challenged Convention and Fulfilled Its Brand Promise Through Design
Michael Watson, Global Managing Director, Valspar Corporation
Ronald de Vlam, Global Managing, Partner, Webb deVlam

Developing a New Global Design System for a 100 Year Old Brand
Teresa Lindsey-Houston, Global Marketing, Kellogg's
Eric Zeitoun, President & Marcus Hewitt, Chief Creative Officer, Dragon Rouge

Rebranding a Classic
Arem Duplessis, Design Director,The New York Times Magazines

Changing the Diaper: The Case of the Little Snugglers
Julie Paveletzke, Scientist, Kimberly Clark and Nicki Gondell, Principal, Trend House

Hot Wheels: Thrilling Vehicle Experience Felix Holst, VP Wheels, MATTEL
Neil Stevenson, Design Director, HIDEO

3 Pillars of Successful Product Launch: A Sally Hansen Salon Effects Case Study
Soo Hyun Kang, Senior Designer, Coty Beauty US

Back to the Future
David Turner, Designer & Co-founder, Turner Duckworth

Last year we caught up with David Turner after his session at Fuse for a quick interview, check out the video below to hear his thoughts on the Fuse experience, and the future of design:

Learn more about Fuse, the Graphic Design and Creative Track and Turner's 2012 session by downloading the brochure. We're pleased to offer readers of the Next Big Design blog 15% off of registration for this year's conference. Register with code FUSE12BLOG here.

Plus, stay in touch for more conference news and industry updates by joining our communities on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.
Here at the Next Big Design blog, we're already looking forward to April when we will once again be heading to the FUSE conference. From now until April 18th, we're bringing back our popular feature from 2011: #FUSEFactFriday.

FUSE Fact Friday will highlight some of the key takeaways from the 2011 conference, including inspirational quotes, main themes and more. Each week, we'll dive in to our 2011 executive summary and remember some of our favorite presentations and moments from last year.

Today's FFF Fact is:
"Research the entire history [of something]…and then forget it!"

Renée Whitworth of Flood Creative wrote in our 2011 executive summary:

"Karim Rashid shared how he cheekily instructed his students to research the entire history of bent plywood…and then to forget it! He challenged us to “get rid of the shoe shine stand” if no one is using it."

You may be inspired by, say, a certain chair, and knowing the history of the form gives you an important base, but when you can put that knowledge aside and work from a blank slate, you can then come up with something more innovative.

To find out more about this year's FUSE, coming up in Chicago on April 18-20, visit the webpage. Plus, join us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn to begin networking with the FUSE community now.
INDUSTRY ALERT: OFFICIAL CALL FOR PRESENTERS
The Institute for International Research (IIR) is currently seeking presenters for:
The Market Research Event …for Non-Research Leaders
November 12-14, 2012
Boca Raton Resort & Spa • Boca Raton, FL
We invite you to submit a proposal for a speaking opportunity directly to Amanda Powers, Conference Director (apowers@iirusa.com) by Thursday, February 23, 2012 (see details below).  

About the Event The Market Research Event …for Non Research Leaders prepares the “non-market research” leader to understand market research as a business driver. The goal of the event is to bring together USERS of research for a “meeting of the minds” to discuss and debate the current and future value proposition of research and learn how to recognize debate, argue and discuss the opportunities, challenges, benefits, risks and real world applications of customer driven insights in making business decisions. This is the first event to be designed around real-world issues leaders are facing today when using insights as a basis for decision making and the ALTERNERNATIVES to research as well. Our goal is to bring together a diversity of speakers across function, industry with unique points of view– those who are for and those who disregard research because they subscribe to the philosophy that the customer doesn’t know what it wants. We are seeking both researchers and non-research leaders. Only corporate/client-side speakers will be considered.

If you are a consultant or a solution/technology provider, please see contact details below for sponsorship/exhibit opportunities. Speakers receive FREE admission to the conference. The Format This is not your typical conference format. The format will feature big name keynotes including former Apple chief evangelist Guy Kawasaki, Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahnem and Jonah Sachs, Author of Winning the Story Wars, followed by two interactive formats – Fishbowls and Conversation Panels. We are looking for the following types of submissions:
  • Fishbowl Speakers: We are looking for fishbowl contributors to participate on a fishbowl panel.
  • Conversation Leaders: We are looking for you to share a 20 minute case study and lead a 20 minute interactive discussion amongst the group.
Fishbowl Topics:
  • • The Current and Future Value Proposition of Market Research
  • • Intuition vs. Data: The Debate to be Consumer-Driven or Not
  • • Methodology Assessment: Traditional vs. Emerging Methodologies
  • • Knowing when and how to Challenge Research
  • • Redesigning your relationship with vendors, suppliers and internal teams
  • • Leveraging Research…You have a finding now what?
Conversation Leader Topics: You will be expected to spend 20 minutes sharing your story, followed by 20 minute interactive discussion. Topics include but aren’t limited to:
  • • Traditional Research Methodologies: Benefits & Limitations
  • • Incorporating New Research Methods into the Mix
  • • Do It Yourself Research
  • • Creating New Data vs. Data Integration and Mining
  • • Does the data already exist?
  • • Examples of using specific research methods. Choose one: Ethnography, Online Research, User Experience Testing, Neuroscience, Gamification, Social Media Listening, Mobile Research, Tracking Studies
  • • Measurement & ROI
  • • Evaluating Vendors & Proposals
  • • Writing an RFP
Sponsorship & Exhibit Opportunities: If you are interested in sponsorship or exhibit opportunities please contact Jon Saxe, Senior Business Development Manager at jsaxe@iirusa.com or 646.895.7467. Call for Presenters: For consideration, please e-mail apowers@iirusa.com with the following information by Thursday, February 23, 2012:
  • • Proposed speaker name(s), job title(s), and company name(s)
  • • Which format you'd like to present
  • • The main theme/topic you plan to address
  • • A brief description about your point of view on the topic (3-4 sentences)
  • • What the audience will gain or learn from your presentation (please list 3-5 deliverables)
All the best, Amanda Powers Program Director Institute for International Research
Steve Mummolo, the Creative Exec of NFL Digital Media, and I had a moment to talk. 


Three interesting words came up: 
– truth, 
– performance, 
– laziness. 

Let's talk about how the three words come together and what you may hear from Steve if you spend time in his session -- which I strongly suggest.

Truth. Sometimes we get enamored with the irrelevant, thinking it will be relevant someday and then as time passes we forget and the relevance never shows. Design can be that way sometimes. What we believe is good may be more of the same, but often we never hear. The piece we are missing is "truth", the final answer to a design effort. Was it true to the brand, was it true to the client's needs, and was it true to the audience? Truth is an outcome, not an unfulfilled promise. We need more truth in design, brand and marketing.

Performance. The outcome can be beautiful, aesthetically and financially. Apple has certainly taught us, you don't have to sell crap at a discount to make gargantuan amounts of revenue. Performance is a beautiful word and relates nicely to results, outcomes and measurement. It corresponds to the efforts of NFL teams but also to how much we can measure creative efforts in the digital realm. We can see digital design and watch the resulting performance. And, if design doesn't perform as intended it certainly doesn't fall into our definition of "good design."

Laziness. To quote Steve, "the true mother of invention is laziness." As I am on a lifelong ancestral quest to find the grandmother of invention, this is of interest to me. How many times have you had an experience with a product, digital interaction, or physical service and thought, "this sucks." Rhetorical. Now what if you could call someone, not to complain, yet to state "can you improve upon this idea and sell me a new experience that doesn't suck?" When people or organizations get lazy with their offering, the mother of invention swoops in (yes, similar to your mother-in-law), taking away what they value most. Just ask QuarkExpress about what happened when Adobe sensed laziness. Whether you've heard of QuarkExpress or not, it proves my point.


Seek truth. Believe in performance. And, laziness sucks.


I believe, if you hear these three words from Steve at FUSE, you'll already be immersed in something to make you think. I am certain you'll walk away having seen a pinhole view of our digitally designed future. 


Enjoy.




To most, what makes FUSE so meaningful and memorable is the people - attendees, speakers, and supporters. Their passion, dedication and curiosity bring contagious energy and excitement to the experience every year. With each of them experts in their own right, they appreciate that there is always so much more to learn. And that the best, most productive way to do it, is by learning from each other.

Recruiting speakers this year was particularly thrilling as each speaker's story seemed to build off the next, resulting in one of the most prolific curated line-ups FUSE has ever seen. 

• Vince Voron, Head of Design at Coca-Cola shares why collaboration among all design disciplines is the way of the future
• Sheena Iyengar, Best Selling Author, on The Art of Choosing
• Jonah Lehrer, Best Selling Author on How We Decide
• World renowned digital storyteller, Joe Sabia on Telling Stories that Don't Suck
• Nike's Global Design Director, Tom DeBlasis on how products can change the world
• Herman Miller's Steve Frykholm on Design as a Core Brand Value
• Steve Mummolo, Creative Executive, NFL Digital Media at the NFL on representing your brand across digital media

See the FUSE speaker line up here. 

FUSE attendees are equally as provocative as our speakers. Take a look at who has ALREADY registered to attend:
 121 Corporation \\ 3M \\ Acorda Therapeutics \\ Bayer Healthcare \\ Blue Marlin \\ Bulletproof \\ Burger King Corporation \\ Caldrea Company \\ CBA Brand Engine \\ Ceradini Design Inc \\ Chevron \\ Citrix Systems \\ Citrix Systems \\ Comp 24 \\ CooperVision \\ Coty \\ Deutsch Design Works \\ Disney Consumer Products \\ Dragon Rouge \\ Elmwood \\ Food Network \\ Fred Meyer Inc \\ Frito Lay \\ F-Secure \\ Furby \\ GE \\ Glenn A Davis & Associates \\ GOJO Industries \\ Groupe Catalpa Inc \\ Haugaard Creative Group \\ Helen of Troy \\ Henkel \\ Herman Miller Inc \\ Hershey Company \\ HMSDesign \\ IDEO \\ Kao Brands \\ Kaos Pilots \\ Kelloggs \\ Kelton \\ Kimberly Clark \\ Kimberly Packard-Scheib \\ Kraft Foods \\ Landor Associates \\ Lehanneur Design \\ LifeLock \\ Lifetime Bransd \\ LPK Inc \\ Macnab Design \\ Mars Chocolates \\ Mars Inc \\ Mattel \\ Melaleuca \\ Merck & Co \\ Michael Osborne Design \\ Microsoft \\ Mrs.. Meyer's \\ My Replenish \\ Nestle USA \\ New York Times Magazine \\ NFL \\ Nike Inc \\ Ologie \\ P&G \\ Pearlfisher Inc \\ PepsiCo \\ Puma Retail \\ Radius Global Market Research \\ RGA \\ Robert Bosch Tool Corporation \\ Rodale Inc \\ Sherwin Williams \\ Siegal & Gale \\ Smith Design \\ Sonoco Products Company \\ Starbucks \\ Sterling Brands \\ Sun Chemical \\ The Coca Cola Company \\ The Culinary Edge \\ Trend House Inc \\ Turner Duckworth \\ Valspar Corporation \\ Wallace Church Inc \\ Weatherchem Corporation \\ Webb deVlam

Readers of the Next Big Design Blog can save 15% on Fuse, register with code FUSE12BLOG here.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me, Michelle LeBlanc at mleblanc@iirusa.com 

Cheers, The Fuse: Design & Culture, Brand Identity & Packaging Team
Fan Us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FUSEBrandingDesignCulture 
Follow us on Twitter: http://twitter.com/nextbigdesign Join us on LinkedIn:
As we look forward to Fuse 2012 we'll be featuring some of our exciting speakers here on the blog.
VP & Creative Director at Herman Miller, Steve Frykholm will be presenting "Years of Original Design: Design as a Core value" on Friday, April 20th, 2012.

Frykholm is an AIGA Medal winner and widely recognized for shaping the visual identity of Herman Miller. Having worked at Herman Miller for more than four decades, Frykholm will use his session at Fuse to demonstrate points in time where design has been improved, tested, or institutionalized at the modernist furniture manufacturer. He will also cover how Herman Miller has built and maintained its design reputation and the reasons why he’s worked there for 42 years.

Fuse Chair Debbie Millman interviewed Frykholm for her Design Matters podcast in April of 2011, listen to the interview here to hear more about his lifetime in design as well as the history of his iconic beard.

My favorite take away from the interview? Fryholm saying "If you're going to be promoting something, it might as well be something you like."

Learn more about Fuse and Frykholm's keynote talk by downloading the brochure. We're pleased to offer readers of the Next Big Design blog 15% off of registration for this year's conference. Register with code FUSE12BLOG here.

Plus, stay in touch for more conference news and industry updates by joining our communities on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.
Here at the Next Big Design blog, we're already looking forward to April when we will once again be heading to the FUSE conference. From now until April 18th, we're bringing back our popular feature from 2011: #FUSEFactFriday.

FUSE Fact Friday will highlight some of the key takeaways from the 2011 conference, including inspirational quotes, main themes and more. Each week, we'll dive in to our 2011 executive summary and remember some of our favorite presentations and moments from last year.

Today's FFF Fact is: 
The mass produced can now have one-of-a-kind human touches even while on the production line. 

Keynote Karim Rashid spoke to the Fuse 2011 audience about the fact that 92% of the world's products are made by machines, but that those machines are now offering ever more customized and personalized products. The future as Rashid sees it is one of humanization and personalization in an increasingly industrial age.

This holds true more than ever today. Since the 2011 event, 3D Printing has become a huge trend. Recently a transplant jaw bone was produced via 3D printer, and "Physibles," are allowing torrent users to download design plans. Check out this video about the Makerbot Replicator:


To find out more about this year's FUSE, coming up in Chicago on April 18-20, visit the webpage. Plus, join us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn to begin networking with the FUSE community now.
As we look forward to Fuse 2012 we'll be featuring some of our exciting speakers here on the blog. Peter Clarke, founder and C.E.O. of Product Ventures with be joining our Design Leadership Symposium on Wednesday, April 18, 2012.


You might be familiar with Peter due to this recent feature in the New York Times "From Drumrolls to Designs" where he discusses his journey from drummer in the Fleet Marine Force Pacific Band to C.E.O. of his own design firm Product Ventures.

Clarke is no stranger to leadership, growing a single person operation to one with close to 50 employees. On first starting out with his own firm, Clarke says:
"I couldn’t obtain a bank loan anywhere, so I applied for 13 credit cards. If I needed supplies, I’d pull out each card, one by one, until I could find a card that hadn’t reached its limit. I was working six days a week, often until 3 a.m., and rarely got out of my pajamas. On days I had to deliver my designs to clients, I’d hire a friend’s brother to drive me so I could sleep for a couple of hours in the car."
Learn more about the Product Ventures story at this year's full day Design Leadership Symposium, which will feature sessions on creative collaboration, inspiring and igniting a team, and leading for innovative and disruptive thinking. To learn more about the symposium, download the brochure.

We're pleased to offer readers of the Next Big Design blog 15% off of registration for this year's Fuse conference. Register with code FUSE12BLOG here.

Plus, stay in touch for more conference news and industry updates by joining our communities on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.
No one actually sees the future, right? Let's be honest.

Some are able to design the future. Thank you, S. Jobs, we appreciate the future you've designed for us.

Other people have designed a place on the planet where people gather and design a future -- something beyond most expectations. These places may not occupy a specific place on the planet, but location does matter. You know this if you've ever worked at home, it is way too easy to "work" at home but never get much done. The location below would seem to be designed for such a purpose, to have a place where new dimensions are considered. A place where the future is designed.

Rending for new Apple headquarters
The idea is to design a culture of innovation. Not just an innovative product, brand, campaign, building or group of people. Something greater.

From another perspective, the visionary is demented, but right at a moment in time. The visionary can set a broad direction and can prove to be right over many years. S. Jobs is an example of a visionary who is demented, referred to as his "reality distortion field." Which, if considered from that perspective, Apple was the innovator, not S. Jobs. Considering what we've read from the recent biography, S. Jobs would prefer it.

So, was he both a demented visionary and capable of designing a culture of innovation?

This is an interesting perspective, while camps form after his death, some saying, the visionary is no longer and Apple was built on one visionary person. Others saying, no, he was able to design a culture of innovation. What if both camps are right?

What if S. Jobs changed how we consider innovation, by doing both? The visionary and the designer of a culture of innovation. S. Jobs.

Thoughts?

Aaron Keller
Capsule
akeller@capsule.us


Wake up call.

You have been sleeping all year long.

Time to wake up to a new perspective. To face a new dimension. With a smile.

FUSE is here again with all the excitement of past years, times two. Two more dimensions (Industrial Design and Digital Design) in the form of new tracks.

Capsule has found this conference does one thing really well. It shakes your brain enough to break free some of the thought-plaque build-up. This plaque is often caused by only seeing the world through your particular discipline (marketing, design, engineering, law, etc). This conference, above many others, has been a big thought-plaque fighter for many.

How FUSE does it is a bit magical and a bit scientific, like most everything. To start, it isn't JUST, it's FUSE. It isn't just about graphic design. It isn't just about packaging design. It isn't just about brand strategy. It isn't just about advertising creative. It isn't just about research. It isn't just about industrial design. It isn't just about digital design. It isn't JUST, it's the FUSE of many disciplines.

Next, it brings together diverging thoughts and viewpoints, not just disciplines. It brings together strange bedfellows, without the beds and not a large number of fellows. But, you get the point. So much so, the audiences can sometimes out think the speaker – which makes for some interesting sessions. Last, the caliber of speakers.

FUSE is a place to wake up and exercise your brain.

Capsule will be blogging on Perspectives and Memes over the next months preceding the event. Our goal will be to start shaking the plaque loose in advance, because you know how much your dentist and heart doctor appreciates pre-work. Consider us trainers, giving you exercises to do in advance so you don't look like this is your first time at FUSE.

Think. Enjoy. Move forward.

Aaron Keller
Capsule
akeller@capsule.us
As we look forward to Fuse 2012 we'll be featuring some of our exciting speakers here on the blog. Keynote Mathieu Lehanneur, Industrial Designer, Interior Architect & Global Design Rising Star will be speaking at Fuse at 9:15am on Friday, April 20th, 2012. In this recent feature in The New York Times, "Blending Fields, Connecting Ideas," Paola Antonelli, senior curator of design and architecture at the Museum of Modern Art in New York is quoted as saying:
“He represents what is most compelling about contemporary designers, a deep curiosity for other fields of studies mixed with an equally deep pragmatism and great technical and formal flair.”
In that piece, Lehanneur discusses his decision to switch from art to industrial design as a focus, as well as the theme of human frailty in his work. Discussing inspiration he says:
"If you put me in front of a blank sheet of paper I don’t know what to do. I always need a question."
In only a short period of time, Lehanneur has established himself as a rising star of the global design community. He creates breakthrough work at the nexus of design with the human body, biological structures, mathematical forms, and both the rational and irrational sides of science. Lehanneur shapes aesthetic objects that provide astounding insight into the complexity of organic systems and cleverly address tomorrow’s social issues by focusing on industrial design and interior architecture.

In 2006, he got the Carte Blanche from the VIA and he was awarded the Grand Prix de la Création from the city of Paris. In 2008, he received the Best Invention Award (USA) for Andrea, its air-cleaning system using plants. With the same pleasure, he passes from an object for the Carpenters Workshop Gallery or for Schneider Electric, to packaging for Issey Miyake, and in particular to interior architecture by designing for example “JWT agency” for the Paris subsidiary of the international marketing communications brand.

To learn more about Lehanneur's talk this April at Fuse, download the brochure here.

Plus, stay in touch for more conference news and industry updates by joining our communities on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.
Here at the Next Big Design blog, we're already looking forward to April when we will once again be heading to the FUSE conference. From now until April 18th, we're bringing back our popular feature from 2011: #FUSEFactFriday. P1010719

FUSE Fact Friday will highlight some of the key takeaways from the 2011 conference, including inspirational quotes, main themes and more. Each week, we'll dive in to our 2011 executive summary and remember some of our favorite presentations and moments from last year. Today's FFF Fact is:

We intuitively bounce from analog (sketchbooks) to digital (i-pads) without forsaking one for the other."

Even as presenters such as Michio Kaku discussed the physics of the future and attendees shared information via mingle sticks, much of Fuse was the story of humanity and relationships. Marco Beghin used his own Moleskine notebook and a projector (pictured above) to tell a story of the way the things we carry with us in the world become shorthand for who we are. Marco explored the way technology and tradition interact and showed that Moleskine designs for "the modern nomad."

Marco had an interview posted on the Smart Planet blog this week where he discusses some of this philosophy, you can check it out here.
To find out more about this year's FUSE, coming up in Chicago on April 18-20, visit the webpage. Plus, join us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn to begin networking with the FUSE community now.
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