Sunday, 31 October 2010

Breakdown of a car.

and not the bad kind that leaves you urinating in a hedge in full view of the m25.

This is the worlds most normal average car. Voted by top gear to be the best 'everyman's automobile' the ford mondeo is the best example i could look at for the functional breakdown of a car.

Functional Features
4 wheels
3 mirrors
front and side and rear windows
headlights, hazzard lights and indicators
vents for engine cooling
handles for opporating doors
locking mechanism
4 doors, 1 boot door
boot space for storage/cargo transport
5 seats (including driver's)
steering device (wheel)
breaking and gear change
ariel for receiving transmission
theft alarm
input for key
arm rests/handles
window controls
aircon + controls for.
licence plate
glove compartment storage
cigerete lighter

But i do not want to stop here. As this is an Apple car, who have a firm standing in the internet technologies, i would also like to include items such as:
Bluetooth connectablility
all inputs for audio/video
onboard computer
surround sound system
tinted back lit winscreen with display
food and beverage storage/stands
touch and gesture based driving
inovative steering control
onscreen stats
biometric scanner
cellular transmiter
internet capabillities

Also for the sake of it being Apple, i may investigate having this as an electric car. Electric cars are essentially rubbish at the moment, needing 8 hours charging time for every 80 miles they do, however apple has always been ahead of competitor devices with their batteries lasting double or even triple in some cases of those of the competitor's.

The next thing i plan to do is to use this break down to find the most functional ways of achieving all of these aspects in my car.

Concept Cars

after trying and failing to draw anything that looks remotly like a car, i searched online for images of concept cars to give me inspiration. Most of these are so extremely wacky that i don't think we will be seeing them doing the school run for a good few years. However they do prove the fact that a car can break the 'traditional ford mondeo' rectangle with wheels. however in my next post i will be looking at the Mondeo and the Astra to help break down the essentials of the 'car'.

So here are some examples of how different a car's body can be!:

Apple Products

I have been looking into some of the most recent apple products, starting with the old (now) emacs, and looking right up to the present day MacBook Air which is just in the process of being released.

Its all very well to just post up a load of pictures and say thats research but i would like to go further. Here i am trying to 'distill' what makes an apple product what it is, and why they make their products as they do.

The Software Side of Things:
Macs are often looked down upon by pc users as a 'computer for people who dont know how to use computers.' In reality this is not true, however that observation my hold some truth. I recently bought an iPad. Yes i know i'm a king amoung men and buying it made me a better person. Not. But no the point is that when i looked in the box for instructions...there were none.

Apple had made a product with the expressed intent that anyone can pic it up and use it, and by using it learn it. This follow suit for all apple software. the idea of an 'App' is that it installs itself, updates itself, and basically the only input you have with the app is that you use it. This is VERY different to a Windows PC. Often i find Windows PC fanatics very snobbish and they will try and withhold basic information. But lets not get into that here. so what have i distilled here from my research?

Apple create software for the end user. its all about ease of access and intuitiveness. They create something so it will be as simple and as basic as possible, yet functionality is at the heart of every design.

Hardware and the aesthetic side of things: 
One word. Fuctional. Wake any apple product and study it. Dosnt matter which one. Find somthing on it which dosnt directly serve a purpose. go on, i dare you. You wont. Theres no frills, millenium domes, or go faster stripes on apple products. to some they may look boring, to others they might look like a 'designer' computer put out by GQ. The reality of this though is that they are again DESIGNED FOR FUNCTIONALITY. no button is bigger than it needs to be. no button is duplicated elsewhere. theres not an 'ergonomic design' to help sell it. An appe laptop is a KEYBOARD, SCREEN, TRACKPAD, INPUT PANNEL. and that is it. I guess the only removable thing to any apple product is the apple logo, but what company woudnt want to sign off this product with a flurish.

So what have I gained about my research into apple products?
-A theme to work with: FUNCTIONALITY
-A constraint for my work: FUNCTIONALITY
-An aesthetic theme: FUNCTIONALITY

i could go on...

Here are some pictures to help back up my words.