Green gadgets contest

The Core77 Green gadgets Contest, a design competition aimed at showcasing innovations for greener electronics, is in full swing. The top 50 entries are now being displayed for voting and commenting, and from the results judges will pick ten to be judged at the Greener Gadgets Conference in New York City on February 27th.

There’s some pretty interesting innovations in this years lineup; such as a solar cooler and a smart water meter; but one that’s grabbed my attention is an electronic device that has no electronics! How much more energy efficient can a gadget get than that!

Presenting the stylish, space and electricity saving indoor drying rack:

Created by Rob Podell, the V.P. IDSA of the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design, his indoor clothes rack entry is a culmination of user research for an actual need, a market landscape of existing products to justify a void, sourcing renewable and recyclable materials that were appropriate to the environment, shipped flat for minimum fuel and shipping costs, and took into consideration installation and target demographics.   

The problem his creation addresses is related to an electric/electronic device – a clothes dryer; which I’ve written about in the past.  Clothes dryers are one of the largest energy consuming appliance in the home and many clothes can’t even be dried in them, such as delicate items – what we fondly call “smalls” in our household.

Whereas some of the other entries in the competition seem to gloss over production, shipping, recycling, use oil-based plastics, are overly complex, or are solutions to needs that really don’t exist, Rob’s clothes rack is functional, has applications for just about everyone and is earth friendly – utilizing bamboo laminate and recycled aluminum in its construction.

Clothes racks aren’t really used extensively in the USA as far as I know, but I’m sure that Europeans will “get it” as they are widely used in that part of the world. Even here in Australia, they are quite common and after having used many types myself, I can appreciate the elegance, flexibility and space saving advantages of Rob’s design.

By the way, if you like the concept, please support Rob by clicking the vote button on this page – it only takes a second to do!

Harking back to coolers mentioned at the beginning of this post, did you know you can make one yourself cheaply and easily? Learn more about Zeer pots in this article.