03 | Medal Winner
I’ve always found the Industrial Design medal winner to be a bit of an arbitrary title, if only because the metrics used to evaluate who the medal winner should be are quite opaque. The medal winner for ID is picked by a panel that tours the floor a few days before the grad show starts to take a look at all the projects. The panel is made up of some faculty from OCAD, but also judges from other universities are invited. On the day they tour the projects, no one is allowed on the floor. Since a lot of students are still setting up their displays all the way up until the opening night (and in some unfortunate cases, past it), medal award candidates are rewarded for finishing punctually ahead before the grad show.
All that said though, I absolutely love the medal winner project from this year.
Her thesis project is a critical design project that critiques rampant consumerism. She created the fictional banking service Mimo, which disincentives spending and provides a family of products that live within said service to help customers with their spending habits.
Upon signing up with the bank, you’d receive a start kit with the basic Mimo uniform and your card.
Additional tools are recommended to customers if they start showing a history of poor spending habits.
One of these tools are red filter glasses that come with a bucket hat to block out sale signs. These would be recommended for people who buy a lot of things just because they’re on sale. On the underside of the hat is a blue light that calms the users mood to further decrease spending (seen in the very first image of this post). The awesome before/after slider is courtesy of this guide.
This face mask can have scented sheets inserted into it to calm people who are frequent shoppers in mall environments. Like the blue light, the scents (yokukansan, yuzu, eucalyptus) have also been chosen to dampen impulsive behaviour.
Fun fact: the paper sheets Sony prepared were recycled from her class readings.
As a last resort, a wallet lock can be worn, with access through an app controlled by an accountable friend who can keep your spending in check.
It really impressed me that Sony got a full working prototype together, with a Bluetooth connected Arduino in the wallet lock and an accompanying app that could control it remotely.
The lock uses a simple servo motor to prevent it from being opened.
Unfortunate that it had to be micro USB though, the USB-C dream is still far away.
Finally, she also stamped out custom credit cards for people at her thesis booth. A great takeaway for anyone who dropped by.