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Laser Technology

Take a seat

By Lisa Rummler

January 2010 - When most people decide they want a new chair for their living room, they head to a furniture store and spend an afternoon plopping down on myriad love seats, recliners and sofas.

But for those do-it-yourself types, this trip and the corresponding shopping experience add up to nothing more than wasted time--they would rather build their own chair.

To accomplish this task, however, does not mean they must whittle furniture parts from a piece of wood or even stuff a cushion full of beans.

Rather, they can visit the Web site of German designer Ronen Kadushin, who is represented by Appel Design Gallery, Berlin.

There, they will find production instructions and CAD files for the Hack chair, which are available for download to the general public. Accordingly, anyone can copy, alter and produce the chair.

The Hack chair is among several items, including tables and shelving units, that make up Kadushin's Open Design collection.

Technological inspiration
"The Open Design method is based on the principles of the already successful open-source method that revolutionized the software industry and gave birth to a social movement that is cooperative, community-minded and seeks legitimate ways of sharing creativity," according to Kadushin's Web site. "In Open Design, the design is a two-dimensional "cutout" represented as digital information. It relies on the Internet's communication resources to publish, distribute and copy the designs under a Creative Commons license. Coupled with the flexibility of CNC production methods, all technically conforming designs are continuously available for production, in any number, with no tooling investment, anywhere and by anyone."

For the Hack chair in particular, Kadushin said he drew even more inspiration from the Internet than he had for previous open-design projects.

"There are many possible aesthetic and structural variations to this bending method, but I got such a warm response from the hacker community because of my Open Design work, I chose a literally 'hacked' look for it," he said in a statement.

Material matters
Kadushin's prototype Hack chair is made of a single piece of 6-mm aluminum that was laser-cut and hand-bent.

In the spirt of Open Design, Kadushin emphasizes on his Web site that the way he assembled the chair is not the only way it can be done and that he welcomes suggestions.

"You can use this design as many times as you like, change it, send it to others and express it through any personal point of view and creativity, as long as you follow the Creative Commons license," he said. "Open Design suggests a way any designer can design and industrially produce objects on a global scale in an unbiased, creative environment." FFJ

Sources

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