John Maeda Names All-Time Greatest Design Object; You Probably Have One!

Omnidisciplinary design legend and Rhode Island School of Design president John Maeda seems to be everywhere these days—and that’s a good thing. Our latest Maeda sighting? In Samsung’s “special advertising feature” tucked inside the year-end issue of Time magazine. Samsung devotes a page each to Q&A with Maeda and industrial designer Robert Brunner, and things really get interesting when Maeda is asked, in the name of “simple, effective design,” if there is an everyday object he admires. Indeed, there is.

To me, the all-time greatest design object is the grid that divides the utensils in your silverware drawer. It’s so humble I’m not even sure there is a name for it. But the minute you see it, you know exactly which job it is meant to do. Bravo!

And speaking of simple pleasures, we highly recommend signing up to follow Maeda’s Twitter feed, which bubbles with such thought-provoking musings as “If Rome wasn’t built in a day, then what can be built in a day?” Earlier this month, Maeda Twittered that he was “wondering whether the Web will ultimately look like one big, gigantic graphic novel.”