Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Light fantastic

Here’s the toughest question to deal with in any relationship, whether it’s with your partner, your kids or your friends: How do you keep the love alive? If you’re not prepared to give constant care and attention, every relationship will drift. To me that doesn’t require dramatic gestures like tickets to Paris or diamonds, but the intimate thoughtfulness of everyday life. Empathy is central and so is reciprocity. Reciprocity is a fantastic emotional connector. It’s based on empathy but you don’t simply feel for someone else, you do something for them. What’s so wonderful about human beings is that when we are given something, it seems to spark some kind of deep response and we want to return the gesture. This is my idea of a true virtuous cycle.

The principle of reciprocity meets design in this inspired coin lamp. What a great idea. Feed in a coin and you get light. For some of you who are old enough to remember feeding coins into hungry gas metres in the UK, this might not strike such a welcome chord, but for anyone under forty I think this lamp will be a total charmer. It doesn’t simply remind you of the reality of the cost of resources with a touch of humor, it introduces a whole social dimension. After a meal at a friend’s home, who will be the one to show appreciation by putting a coin in the slot? At a birthday party without a gift? There you go. To me this coin lamp is True Blue through emotional design.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Mr. Roberts,

What a great idea. Of course, I remember the gas metres in my London house when I was a little girl in the late sixties-early seventies but and it's a part of my childhood memories together with Dr. Who, my brother and I burning our Guy Fawkes in our back garden, Lucozade when we were at home with flu and wouldn't drink anything else and everything that came with being a child in London in those years. I would just like to cite an idea a couple of friends of mine had that was wuite similar and consisted in having a piggy bank with "OUR NEXT HOLIDAY" handwritten on it and, instead of bringing presents on their birthdays or flowers or gifts whenever we were invited, we put something in there. A simple idea but homorous and with a precise objective: to know our hosts happy somewhere on holiday as much as they made their guests happy each time we over for dinner. Great!

Rita, Parma

Anonymous said...

Fantastic isn't it?

Piotr Jakubowski said...

In a world where practically everything is taken for granted, it's a great idea on showing the importance of care and nurturing in any kind of relationship - where it be human-human or our relationship with the inanimate things around us.