The plot thickens as the competition thins for the 2009 James Dyson Award, which challenges industrial design students (and recent graduates) from around the world to “design something that solves a problem.” A panel of Dyson design engineers has narrowed the field of 200 projects to 20 semi-finalists. Representing the United States is Nicholas Riddle‘s Prio Paper Cast, a woven paper splint for use in disaster response. The lightweight cast packs flat for easy shipping and storage, and can be installed in minutes with no prior experience. “The inspiration behind the Prio Paper Cast project comes from our current issue with packaging, both in over-use and over-abundance,” noted Riddle in his entry, which included this video. “Instead of looking at this issue in a derisive way, I identified the ubiquity of packaging materials around the globe which opens up the possibility that certain products could be created anywhere in the world, inexpensively and quickly.” Now it’s up to the international judging panel (Axel Enthoven, Frank Tyneski, Stephanie Watson, and Yoshiyuki Wada) and, ultimately, James Dyson himself to decide how Riddle’s cast stacks up against the other semi-finalists, which include an ergonomic wheelchair brake from Ireland, a folding electrical plug from the United Kingdom, and “Khumbu,” a backpack for carrying skis—from Switzerland, of course.
Previously on UnBeige: