Democratic sneaker design and ultrasonic car communications at UID19 — design talks and degree show

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Get a sneak peek of the future when design students from all over the world show off their graduation projects in the shape of products, services and systems. Umeå Institute of Design at Umeå University is ranked number one in the world among design educations. This year’s degree show offers a series of innovations ranging from sea rescue, footwear, apps, robots in hospitals to flying cars.

What if cars could warn their surroundings through pulsating pressure waves? Could the modern supermarket become environmentally sustainable through interactive customer profiles? Imagine a future where hearing-impaired and the hearing could communicate through a simple app. Can the sneaker culture be a gateway to creative professions in socially disadvantaged areas? On 4-5 June, graduating students at the Umeå Institute of Design will present their degree projects at the annual Design Talks & Degree Show, UID19.

Thomas Olofsson is head of department at the Umeå Institute of Design. According to him, this year’s students have chosen a strong user perspective, innovative methods and an complete experience for the target audience and user.

“These students are displaying an interesting breadth encompassing many of the contemporary challenges when it comes to design. This year, we can display things like a starter pack for the design of sneakers, equipment for extensive rescue missions at sea, apps for education, robots in hospitals and naturally also transportation and vehicle solutions.”

At UID19, the students will perform an oral presentation of their degree projects using 3D models and digital visualisations. Many of the 44 projects use a digital starting point, often with the objective of making technology more human. Other projects have bearing on healthcare or sustainability.

“It’s amazing to see the incredible development that our students make from the day they join Umeå Institute of Design until the day they graduate. Design processes are complex and students have worked intensely and with determination on their projects. The secret behind the success of the school is in strong connection with how closely and intensely students collaborate, not only within, but also between programmes. The school has a proud tradition of delivering fully fledged designers onto the job market, and I’m confident that these students are now ready to take on new challenges,” says Thomas Olofsson.

The global attraction to the Umeå Institute of Design has led to a highly international group of students, the graduating students alone represent 13 nationalities, and also to close collaborations with multinational corporations such as Microsoft, Google, Samsung, BMW and Volvo. Every year, these companies send representatives to the graduation event to follow up student collaborations, to view demonstrations and portfolios, and to recruit the next generation of industrial designers.

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Members of the press are welcome. For more information, please contact:

Jens Persson, Communications Officer

Phone: +46 73-626 35 51

Email: [email protected]

UID19 projects

Empowering patients through their medical records

In her degree project, Nicole Waniowska presents a solution to strengthen patient influence over their own medical care. This is a new way of looking at, using and interacting with the medical data that is gathered in a medical record. Beside the system providing access to patients learning more about their own health, it also gives information about the importance of various medical data, for instance test results, and also about the healthcare provider as an institution.

For more information, please contact:

Nicole Waniowska, student

Email: [email protected]

A package solution for integration

Frida Stenlund presents a series of solutions to make it easier for people to adapt to a new country. Through a digital platform, new citizens are matched with potential employers with the purpose of making better use of the special competence that the migrant
possesses. The package solution also contains coaches who assist with cultural and linguistic adaptation, in particular at the new workplace.

For more information, please contact:

Frida Stenlund, student

Email: [email protected]

Screen free navigation through big cities

Borut Kerzic has developed a product to help you seize the moment, a way of navigating without constantly staring into a phone screen when navigating your own city or a new one. Through the use of artificial intelligence, buildings, places and monuments come to life and tell stories about city history in an interactive way.

For more information, please contact:

Borut Kerzic, student

Email: [email protected]

Who takes care of your digital legacy?

Few of us have ever wondered what will happen to all photos, films and updates we post on social media platforms when we pass. Who should see what? What should be automatically erased? Klio Rapakoulia has developed a service to give social media users power over their digital legacy. The platform, developed in collaboration with Futurice, helps you to customize how you want to take care of your digital trace.

For more information, please contact:

Klio Rapakoulia, student

Email: [email protected]

A sense of home for global citizens

In modern society, the whole world is the potential labour market for many young people. With this increasing mobility, a large number of people will gain a new home country. Mehek Sharma, in collaboration with IKEA, has developed an app and a digital platform to help global citizens feel at home in their new environs. This is accomplished through connecting them to people in similar situations, but also to locals with similar interests.

For more information, please contact:

Mehek Sharma, student

Email: [email protected]

A starter-kit for footwear design

Ruben Eriksson has developed a design system for developing footwear that inspires creativity and shows that a job as a shoe designer can be an option. The idea with this system is to make the business more equal and inclusive by showing people from less advantaged areas and cultures where sneakers are important that you can actually develop these products yourself. The project, developed in collaboration with Adidas, is intended to make it easier to choose a design profession, not least in marginalised areas.

For more information, please contact:

Ruben Eriksson, student

Email: [email protected]

A bracelet helping people with a hearing-impairment

Kristian Juks has used the reality and needs of deaf people as a starting point in his project to design a new method of communication – a bracelet. Through a pulsating function, communicating parties are able to send signals between each other in crowded spaces even without visual contact. The product has been designed in close collaboration with end-users and functions as a complement to the often invasive hearing devices on the market.

For more information, please contact:

Kristian Juks, student

Email: [email protected]

The next generation of surgical power tools

Few are aware that the surgical power tools in use today are relatively ungainly, heavy and unergonomic, not least to female surgeons. Alexander Abele saw room for improvement and designed, in collaboration with active surgeons, a product-kit of new lightweight, ergonomic tools with improved precision. In the long run, the expectation is for these instruments to contribute to saving lives during critical surgical procedures.

For more information, please contact:

Alexander Abele, student

Email: [email protected]

New product counteracts lack of oxygen for mountain climbers and rescue personnel

The human body needs to acclimatise to adapt to the oxygen-deficient conditions on high altitudes. An inexperienced climber can succumb to strong headaches, lack of sleep and difficulties to eat. Worst case, these consequences can be life-threatening. Patrick Krassnitzer, in collaboration with mountain climbers and rescue personnel, has developed a lightweight and portable product that can be used in extreme environments and weathers without prior training. Lightweight materials and an innovative pump make the product easy to carry and use, also in tough conditions.

For more information, please contact:

Patrick Krassnitzer, student

Email: [email protected]

Futuristic BMW communicating through soundwaves

Max Troicher, in collaboration with BMW, has developed a car that interacts with its surroundings through visual, tactile and sound elements. The car is intended to be a part of a future car market in which cars are rented and shared between users through various forms of subscriptions. Using an ultrasonic belt around the car that transmits inaudible noises, the car communicates through soundwaves. In that way, you can feel when the car is close by. The function can be used to communicate with users outside of the car and to warn people in the vicinity of the car during travel. The car also uses other technical features such as buttons in the air developed with the use of AI technology. The aesthetic inspiration has been taken from the 1980s and is designed to stand out from other brands.

For more information, please contact:

Max Troichier, student

Email: [email protected]

What will be the future in commuting in megacities?

How will car ownership develop? Lingxi Yuan has developed the vehicle of the future, that is rented and shared between various users. Thanks to the autonomous nature of the vehicle, focus lies on interior of the car. Lingxi’s idea is to remove divides between the home and the car. In collaboration with Volvo, she has developed a vehicle that can rapidly be decorated according to personal taste, making the car into an extension of the own home. The items you plug into the rental car can simply be plugged back into the house and vice versa. The model of transport is aimed at the long-distance commuters of the future who live outside of cities.

For more information, please contact:

Lingxi Yuan, student

Email: [email protected]

Using your car for physical exercise

Can future autonomous cars be a place to exchange sedentary transport with exercise while travelling? Andreas Van Nielsen, in collaboration with Volkswagen, has designed a car in which you can position yourself in different ways for various types of physical activity. First and foremost, the concept is low-intense core exercises. The car has an unusually futuristic design incorporating the natural g-force as an experience during the exercises whilst travelling. The car is based on a future scenario where autonomous, shared mobility systems enable new business models. The fact that the vehicles can be shared and booked when needed means that new ideas of transport solutions can be developed. One such solution are cars that enable training while travelling, such as this Volkswagen Active Mobility.

For more information, please contact:

Andreas Vang Nielsen, student

Email: [email protected]

Flying cars in five years?

For decades, we have hears people complain that flying cars never seem to see the light of day. Maybe this is when it happens. Tejas Purohit, in collaboration with NIO, has developed the interior and exterior of an autonomous drone car. In growing megacities, transportation will need to be developed in multiple ways, and thanks to drone technology, several companies are now relatively close to developing commercial versions of these vehicles. Experts think drone taxis will be available to consumers within five years. In Tejas Purohit’s autonomous drone car, four passengers are placed opposite each other and the dashboard has several integrated AI elements.

For more information, please contact:

Tejas Purohit, student

Email: [email protected]

Amphibious vehicles in the footprints of climate change

In the acceleration of climate change, our cities and coastal regions will be covered in water to a greater extent. Even today, there are many cities when water constitutes a big part of the city. To simplify transports in these environments, Oliver Walderhaug has developed a form of amphibious vehicle that can travel both on land and in water. The vehicle, developed in collaboration with Scania, folds out pontoons and uses jet technology when in contact with water. The functionality allows for both manual and autonomous control.

For more information, please contact:

Oliver Walderhaug, student

Email: [email protected]

The mini Land Rover of the future

Edwin Senger has developed a model of a futuristic vehicle, a “minimal travel vehicle” for vehicle producer Land Rover. The product consists of a car in mini format built by extremely lightweight and sustainable materials, that you can also stay the night in. The idea is to rent the car out in vicinity to the area the visitor wants to explore and a minimal impact on the environment allows access to inaccessible places.

For more information, please contact:

Edwin Senger, student

Email: [email protected]

No drivers in future rally cars?

Will rally motor sports cars be operated by AI? At least that is what Markus Anderer believes. He has developed a rally experience where a mainly autonomous rally car is supported by a human co-pilot. In collaboration with Hyundai, he has developed a rally concept – Paris to Beijing – where AI takes the role of first pilot and the human driver as co-pilot. The idea is to create an eminent digital visual experience that people can follow live from inside the car. Travelling in front of the car is a drone that maps the surrounding terrain and plans the optimal route in real time through AI technology.

For more information, please contact:

Markus Anderer, student

Email: [email protected]

Enlightenment tourism together with Rolls Royce

Victor Andrean has produced an exclusive vehicle in collaboration with Rolls Royce to offer a unique tourist experience over long distances. The car cannot be bought, instead it can be booked for a full, pre-destined experience “A travel for enlightenment”, so to speak. The idea is for the journey to be customised for an optimal experience of local culture, food and nature along the way.

For more information, please contact:

Victor Andrean, student

Email: [email protected]

A take on the new life vest

Safety at sea among hobby sailors has not changed much for the last fifty years. And the life vest remains practically unchanged since the 1970s. As a result, sea rescue teams are struggling with huge challenges in their rescue work. To create better conditions for safety at sea, Christian Svärd has developed a whole new type of life vest. The equipment has a built-in transmitter that should facilitate the coordination of rescue activities. The life west also has an airbag-like function which means that it takes less space when it has not been activated, and it activates automatically when it is turned on.

For more information, please contact:

Christian Svärd, student

Email: [email protected]

A new way of communicating between the hearing and the deaf

In various everyday situations, the communication between people with a hearing-impairment and people with full hearing can encounter difficulties, for instance at the checkout counter in a supermarket. Jonathan Svahn has developed an interactive two-sided screen that can be placed at the checkout counter of a shop or at a reception desk at a public authority. From one way, sign language is translated into a computerised voice and from the other way, the speaker’s voice is transformed into sign language on the screen. The product has the potential of changing deaf people’s chances of making themselves understood in public situations.

For more information, please contact:

Jonathan Svahn, student

Email: [email protected]

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