Today there are about 7 million patents, which is an astronomical number when you really think of all the intellectual property this encompasses. But today knowledge only grows more knowledge and the need to create more and more things is a constant battle for supremacy of product and design. When we consider how the world is running into a wall when it comes to our efforts to ensure clean water, clean air, clean food, and generally good space for the world population we see that this is a time when more than ever we need good and affect appliance to meet the needs of tomorrow, today.
Thus we see the rise of the hybrid appliance which has many beginning to come to market, and many many more on the design board ready to leap off the pages or screens and make a difference in their eventual real world application. Now you may be asking yourself “what the heck is a hybrid appliance anyways?” To understand it broadly a hybrid appliance can be understood as a device that have several purposes such as a combination toaster and egg cooker, or a cloths hamper that can also wash and dries your clothes. Some of them may not be the most practical, but what they lack in usefulness they more than make up in cool points, take for instance the refrigerator that is equipped with a keg.
The appeal of hybrid appliances is that they aim to re-imagine the way we navigate our space in the world and make up reconsider both the use of things, as well as the materials necessary to provide acquitted realization of a service or task. So much of our consumer goods end up in a landfill so if we can begin to make products with 2 or even 3 functions with a similar amount of material used that may not seem like a lot on an individual scale but over time and over the population of nations this can really being to add up.
For instance one company out of Denmark called Electrolux Desing Labs has created a ground breaking appliance that gets to the heart of the problem. Americans use an insane amount of time and energy washing their clothes. For some reason we do not like the notion of just hanging them out to dry and insist that we use a tumble dryer. But what if there were a product that could serve as a hamper, a washer and a low energy drying service. Well now there is. When you think about the amount of material that is used for your washer as well as your dryer and the fact that they are usually never being used at the same time the problem comes to light and we see that there is a lot of places to make comparable savings across the board. This is only one example but what it represents is a trend, a movement we see across the board in America that is saying loud and clear that less is more.