This is the second of a 2-part series that evolved from a series of conversations between Almighty Research & Strategy Director Ian Fitzpatrick and Senior Graphic Designer Aaron Scott. The first part can be found here.
A prototype of Berg's Olinda radio.
First I should state that I'm a fan of Berg. They do enviably great work and I appreciate the thought that has gone into the objects in question.
Despite the attempt to marry social networking and music sharing, which I think is better achieved online than with a new object, I have to take issue with the "shelf appeal" in that call to action. I don't find much appealing about Olinda's design. It's reminiscent of a medical device from the 80's, and I certainly wouldn't want it on my shelf.
In a world where companies like Nest are designing beautiful thermostats — which have been so neglected that they too have an unfortunate 80's medical device aesthetic — there is no excuse for designing dated and unattractive objects.
- The aesthetic design of Spotify Box stands in stark contrast to that of Olinda in that its actually well done, even Dieter-esque. However, the device's interaction design is a step backwards in that it doesn't make it easier to access the content. Again, in the world of the 64GB iPod Touch and beautiful Bang & Olufsen speaker docks, having a collection of little round disc's with music on them (sound familiar?) isn't just old news, its a non-starter.
I completely agree with you that Context and Content are inextricably linked, but the same is true of Form and Content. And unfortunately for me, these two objects have neglected the other half of that important equation.