2006.10.01
DT DESIGN AWARDS 2006
The bulletin has announced.

 
 



 
gIndividuality through Universalityh/ A Commentary@@by@Masayuki Kurokawa

1. The individual and physical character of toolsEEESeeking universality by rejecting standardization of the physical character of tools

Baseball players Ichiro and Hideki Matsui both order their own custom-made bats for their own personal use. So even today professional athletes special order their own tools, be it bats, shoes, or bicycles. It was a time-honored practice for chefs to custom order their own kitchen knives, and carpenters always carried their own personal carpenterfs tool kit. People did not seek universal tools. The concept of gtools anyone can useh was born following the advent of standardized mass production.
The first thing which I must make clear is that from the first, it is best for tools to be made for the individual. With the reason being that tools first appeared in order to strengthen and develop the abilities of human beings.
It is said that the use of tools is what made human beings human. Killing an animal with a stone, using a stick to dig a hole to get a potato or knock down a piece of fruit from the branch of a tree. At such times, the stone and stick served to strengthen and expand the capabilities of the hand. After such early efforts, tool use prospered. Glasses were born to increase the capabilities of the eyes, firearms to strengthen the throwing ability of the arm, automobiles to extend the capabilities of the legs, clothes to enhance the capabilities of the skin, bowls to expand the capacity of the palms of the hands, and, finally, computers to strengthen and expand the capabilities of the brain.
Existing in this way, it is only natural that tools functioning as the hands and feet of each individual person be created as an integral extension of the brain. The purpose of an artificial leg is to compensate for a missing capability while the purpose of a tool is to further strengthen an existing capability, but in the same way that an artificial leg is custom made for the individual, tools should also be made to order.
A tool can be considered a kind of gplush artificial limb that enhances capabilities of the body rather than compensating for missing capabilities. The invention of tools sprung from a desire to further strengthen capabilities already inherent in people of normal, unimpaired ability. The purpose of all tools\from radios, televisions, cameras, electric rice-cookers, and washing machines to roads, guardrails, and even buildings and cities\is to strengthen the capabilities of human beings.
This brings to mind nothing so much as the cyborg: a gmechanizedh human being who is still human but who has been strengthened though the addition of machine components. The only reason for the absence of cyborgs today is that the tools have not yet developed to the point where they can be implanted in the body. It is only by borrowing the strength of tools that modern human beings are able to lead modern lives.
An enhancing gplush artificial limb should, in fact, be only for the individual who is to use it. It is certainly not something that anyone can use. People really aught to be aware of this principle. Using it as our premise, we can think about what would be the correct way to make and supply such tools using modern industry.