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8: Gershenfeld & Kahn

Prompt: Read both articles by Gershenfeld and Kahn and speculate on the relationships between the two and what they are trying to say.

screambody2.jpg screambody1.jpg
The "Screambody", an invention by Kelly Dobson, a student at MIT.

After reading these two articles, I realized the connection between the two: expression.

Gershenfeld's article talks about his course at Massachussetts Institute of Technology entitled "How to Make (Almost) Anything". It is a program that allows students to make machines that can make anything in their wildest imaginations: things like the "Screambody" that allows someone to scream whenever they want to in a public place, or like the "Alarming Clock" that requires a wrestling match to turn it off. These two inventions are examples of things that people felt they needed in their lives, so they used their creative abilities to design it and fabricate it into reality.

Kahn's article was much more complex of a reading. He talked about the natural desire of a person to design something they need or feel is useful or beautiful. He also talks about silence and that sometimes something new is needed to fight that silence in design.

I found that these two were related because we all have the desire to invent because of our personal thoughts about what we do and do not need. We are all able to express ourselves, as many people like to do that creatively and artistically. Kahn argues that as designers, this is one of our strengths because we will be able to use this desire to funnel our energy into something we believe is important or necessary in the world. I found these articles very interesting because they inspired me to follow my thoughts and feelings and strive to think creatively about the way everyday things are incorporated into my everyday life.