Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in NYC is currently housing the Design for the other 90% exhibit which displays clever designs that solve basic needs for the world’s poor. Today, entrepreneurs of all kinds tend to cater to the wealthiest portion of the world’s population, encouraging them to buy stuff they could have never imagined they “needed,” aiming at changing this trend this exhibit displays items that facilitate daily life around the world.
Some of the designs include a donut shaped jug of water that can be pulled by a child, helping women and girls in the arduous chore of gathering water. There is also the Lifestraw which kills bacteria as water is sucked through it. Another one of the projects highlighted is the One Laptop per Child initiative, which aims at narrowing the digital divide between the rich and the poor.
Amy Smith, from MIT has also been working on creating simple solutions for everyday problems. Along with students from MIT, she has created an incubator that can stay warm without electricity, a simple grain mill, and tools that convert farm waste into clean-burning charcoal. To learn more about her projects, you can view this interview on the TED: Ideas Worth Spreading website.
The NYT has a short article, including pictures, about the exhibit today, you can read it here.