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Publication unveils design incubation process

06 May 2013

Mr Chia (left) and Prof Heng launching the new book

Guests getting to see how Roly Poly works up close

Egg-shaped devices that enhance communication, a fresh spin on day-to-day houseware and avant-garde eco-car designs were some of the innovative designs captured in a new book titled Design Incubator: A Prototype for New Design Practice. This is the first time the NUS Design Incubation Centre (DIC) has detailed its research, process and philosophy on design and the future of design practices in print.

The sleekly produced publication was launched by Professor Heng Chye Kiang, Dean of the School of Design and Environment at NUS and Mr Patrick Chia, Founder of DIC, on 30 April.

Mr Chia, author of the 253-page work, expressed his pride in the student projects featured. It reveals how students transfer what they have learnt as research entities, bring it back to the studio environment, and eventually "capture something even more surprising than what we could have done", said Mr Chia.

Published by Laurence King Publishing, the hardcover copy showcases the journey DIC has taken in practising design over the years. It includes an archive of projects and workshops in product and research development, coupled with insights and reflections from current and former team members.

Designers, educators, innovators and business managers can also use it as a handbook as the various projects are explained with photographs, illustrated sketches, renderings, diagrams, articles and text.

The book is easy to read for designers and non-designers alike, shared Mr Chia. This is relevant for both professionals and lay audience because "everything that we have here relates to human nature, to the sensibility of a human person", he said.

He cited the egg-shaped "Roly Poly" which was conceptualised with the idea of "presence" in mind. "Roly Poly" was designed so as to emulate the presence of people who are not in the same place, yet want to feel connected. The unique invention was exhibited at the SIGGRAPH Art gallery in Vancouver, Canada during the SIGGRAPH conference in 2011.