Prompt #2

“Industry pander[s] to the public’s ready acceptance of anything new, anything different.” –Victor Papanek

In the second chapter of Design for the Real World, Victor Papanek defines three types of obsolescence: technological, material, and artificial.


Part I

Identify at least one product or design in your environment for each type of obsolescence. Or, better yet, select one product / design which feeds into all three.

Example: A combination of technological, material, and artificial obsolescence — masked by seemingly-innocent marketing — incentivizes people to purchase the latest iPhone model.

For your consideration: What contributes to the obsolescence of these products / designs?


Part II

Conversely, identify at least one product / design which is sustainable in each of the three ways.

Example: Waxed canvas items become softer & more personalized with age & use; the user is incentivized to keep and maintain these items.

For your consideration: What contributes to the sustainability of these products / designs?


Looking forward to your responses!
(Including photos in your responses is encouraged.)