IDSA: 5 things we learned about the DIY movement

IDSA DIY Conference

Recently, our Director of Industrial Design, George Campbell, attended the IDSA International Conference, “DIY: Threat or Opportunity” in Portland, Oregon. You’ll find our photos here.

I asked George to share five things that he learned about the DIY (Do It Yourself) movement, here’s what he said:

  1. Co-creation allows the consumer to relate to the product on a much deeper emotional level, as they feel a sense of ownership in the design and a greater sense of control and self expression in and through the products that surround them.
  2. Democratization and availability of low cost design tools like Autodesk Sketchbook for iPad allow more people to participate in creative expression and design.
  3. Rapid prototyping will become rapid manufacturing, allowing designers to bring their custom creations to market in small volumes, creating a wider array of design choices for the end consumer.
  4. DIY is not a return to craft, necessarily, but a hybrid of old and new, fueled by low cost technology and access to a global market via websites like Etsy and Ponoko.
  5. Times and customers are changing – fast! The generational gap in China is now 2 years: the 23 year olds say, “I don’t understand what those 21 year olds are into.”

Do It Yourself

Griffin Technology was founded on the very principle of doing it yourself. In 1992, the company took form when Mac lover and expert Paul Griffin realized that, for many Macintosh users, the range of monitor options was both limited and expensive. Paul designed a number of adapters that would allow Mac users to connect less expensive PC monitors to their Mac computers.

Griffin’s first employee, who remains with the company today, helped Paul build these adapters by hand  – a range of products that grew to 26 models and was soon selling worldwide through the Griffin website.

It’s amazing to see what can come from a DYI attitude.

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