Welcome to Brian Ling .com

Portfolio Website and Musings of a Strategic Design Leader

[ Portfolio Work ]

Business Design Thinking – Design Sojourn


Our Design Led Innovation client consulting or facilitation sessions often involves a business diagnostic activity, that is split into something I fondly call: hard and soft diagnostics.

A hard diagnostic, aptly called as it covers hard financial numbers, covers things like market share, revenue, profit, margins etc. This is a pretty meaty and tangible discussion, with a lot of great tools such as the Business Model Canvas by Alex Osterwalder or the Lean Canvas by Ash Maurya to support the discussion.

On the other hand, our soft diagnostic activity tends to cover the softer more human elements of a business. This includes things such as values, culture, meaning, customer needs and motivation. Much of this actually falls within the realm of Design Thinking, and as far as I know, there is no tool for this.

So I created one.

[ NewsPortfolio Work ]

Good Design Award!

Nakamichi Dragon Electrostatic Speaker

My team and I received a “Good Design Award” from the prestigious Chicago Athenaeum, Museum of Architecture and Design for our Nakamichi Phoenix Electrostatic Speaker. The product has since been renamed and repositioned as part of the Dragon audiophile product range. This product was also featured in Wired Magazine issue 15.03

This win was particularly sweet, as it was a product that we recommended, pushed, and developed as part of our ongoing research into trends, consumer markets and technology. This speaker is also a cumulative milestone example of our evolving design language strategy that I had mapped out for the brand and product category about 3 years ago.

Finally we are 1 of the 6 Good Design Awards that was given out to designers and manufacturers from Singapore. Still along way to go compared to the 270 haul from the US, still, this is a great boost for the budding Industrial Design Industry in Singapore.

[ Portfolio Work ]

Nakamichi Lumos in T3 Magazine

The Lumos portable DVD, designed together with Tithima S. and E Chin, for Nakamichi, has been featured in the latest UK version of the T3 Gadget Magazine. (August 2007, Page 18). A wonderful review and do stay tuned for some scanned images when I get the chance to upload it.

Edit: Here are the scanned images and the detailed review after. The design was inspired by premium leather ladies handbags and the tactile textures found on it.



[ Portfolio Work ]

Phoenix ESL Reviewed in Amazing Editions Magazine

Very kind words from the review. This is the English translation of the Swedish text found in the magazine:

“Phoenix radiates class and is a revolutionary electrostatic speaker with HD-A technology from Nakamichi. It combines a unique design with high end sound. The light, ultra-thin membrane is capable of delivering a transparent, clear and well defined sound with exceptional control. Special components provide a detailed and distortion free deep bass even when the speaker is pressed hard. Phoenix convinces as it is hardly affected by room acoustics and sounds as good as it is beautiful to look at.”

Click to download the PDF version of the scanned pages from the Magazine.

[ Portfolio Work ]

Ace of Bass: Article on Wired Mag

The Phoenix Electrostatic Speaker, designed and developed by my team and I, has been featured on Wired Magazine. Sniff…

Edit: Added gratuitous shot from the magazine. Ahhh so tasty.

Get a Wired [1-year subscription] from Amazon.

Here’s the write up, which I’m saving for eternity:

Electrostatic speakers, which make music by vibrating diaphragms between oppositely charged plates, have been around since the ’50s. But unlike poodle skirts, they never caught on, because the distortion-free sound was projected in a fairly narrow sonic field. Nakamichi has widened the optimal listening area by shaping the plates in its Phoenix speakers like teardrops. And to bump up the bass, notoriously lacking in electrostatics, each speaker has an integrated dual-cone subwoofer. The two drivers move opposite to each other, canceling out errant vibrations that would color the sound.
Phoenix: $8,600 per pair, www.nakamichi.com

This article is located in the latest Wired Magazine 15.03, grab it while you can! I know I will.

Design Sojourn Blog

My latest thoughts on Strategic Industrial Design

Objects of Desire

Links to samples of my favorite design work. Don't miss my Portfolio page for more images, of if you like networking, hook up with me at Behance.net.

Elsewhere on the Web

Other websites I own and manage.