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April 12, 2010

Connecting people – Design by Community

1. IntroGLOBAL – We’re already over half way through the Design by Community project and, having polished off the outside, we’re now onto the concept device’s innards. Connectivity is the topic of the week and before you rush off and get voting, pause for a minute to go through the options on offer.

Wireless connectivity is essential today but the various flavours are worth considering. Is it enough, still, to have just 802.11b/g or do we need n too? N networks run much faster and offer extended range over the their b and g brethren, but does that matter enough for our concept device? You decide.

Connecting some devices using USB means you can transfer data and get a power boost for your battery at the same time. Useful? Or is it time to cut the USB cord and transfer everything, including the stuff we want to dump on our PCs at home, wirelessly? We might be some way off seeing a wireless version of USB 3, but we can hope, can’t we? Or does it matter?

The Nokia N95 came with a host of new features and functions. One of the lesser mentioned though was its ability to pump footage out to your TV. Since then we’ve all (mostly) upgraded to hi-def at home, so how about the same treatment for our mobile devices? Once again, what about making that a wireless affair. More, or less important than wireless USB? Of course, this is a concept device we’re working on, and one for the future at that. Will all our tellies be wireless in the future?

We should probably have named this week’s efforts ‘cutting the cord’ as the wireless options continue when we hit the charging category. Still the most effective comes the cable option, specially when it comes to efficiency of getting power from one place (the wall) to another (your mobile device). If all of the above moved to wireless in the future though, surely the charging cord would be the last one to be cut. Or should it be the first? Your call.

Our final slider this week is a bit of an odd-one-out, given that it fits only loosely into the connectivity category. Still, how we get audio from our devices and the quality it appears in, is a pretty strong topic. The options come in three flavours, starting with the basic mono before offering up stereo in the middle and full on surround sound at the top. I know what one I’m voting for, do you?

So there you have this week’s offering. Head on over to the Design by Community page and get stuck in. Check back later in the week for a round up of results from last week.