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Daily tous les jours, creators of many large scale public art installations such as The Swings: An Exercise in Musical Cooperation, recently launched a new project in the heart of New York City, The littleBits Store.
littleBits is a New York-based startup on a mission to democratize hardware by empowering everyone to create their own electronic objects with a platform of easy-to-use electronic building blocks. Daily tous les jours created a custom retail experience driven by imagination, innovation and play, translating the intimate experience of creating and learning with littleBits into a large-scale collective experience.
Reinventing Retail: Inventions To Stay & To Go.
The littleBits store is a pioneering a new concept in tech retail: Inventions To Stay and Inventions To Go. Visitors who engage by making projects on-site can leave their inventions for others to remix, or buy what they invented on the spot, breaking down the boundaries between the technology we consume and the technology we invent.
“littleBits is one of the most inspiring electronics products: it is changing the way we live with technology, demystifying it and befriending it,” say Melissa Mongiat and Mouna Andraos, co-founders of Daily tous les jours. “It is an honour to design their first store and contribute to the revolution that littleBits is enabling. It’s a place for experimentation and collective invention, where anyone can feel empowered by technology and compelled to tell their own stories with it."
That’s a great idea, but how does it work?
The intention behind the design of the store is to welcome anyone, right off the street, with no prior knowledge of electronics, and help them make something rewarding. The store includes an area with interactive installations for people to get inspired by existing inventions made with Bits, a workshop to make the inventions yourself, and a place to share them with the world.
For the store window, Daily tous les jours created a machine that displays a never-ending sequence of invention challenges, prompting passers-by to come in and unleash their creativity with littleBits. Once inside, visitors warm-up with a giant musical Twister demystifying the basics of electronics, asking them to use the contact of their skin to close circuits and collectively create ever-changing soundtrack to the store. A new take on New York’s most iconic interactive retail experience: the FAO Schwartz giant piano now sadly gone.
In the front-of-store, interactive displays showcase ready-made inventions with step-by-step instructions to invent your own version in store or at home, including a book on wheels, a remote pet-feeder, a Keytar (synth guitar) and a self-powered drawing machine, all custom designed for the store.
Visitors are invited to grab an instruction card and make their way to a workshop table where they can create, play, remix and invent using carefully curated and custom-built props and Bits. For this space, Daily tous les jours played with the established codes of a workshop, including pegboards, stools, workbenches and tools, transforming this everyday place into a creatively unique making space.
Designing a lab for retail: our partnership with SSSVLL
For the interior design of the store, Daily tous les jours partnered with Montreal’s own SSVLL studio who conceived everything in the shop as modular, giving the littleBits Store team the flexibility to constantly reinvent their retail experience by curating workshop sessions, talks, play days or any other special events to animate and transform the space for a few hours at a time. The store becomes not only a platform for people to discover the product but also for the littleBits team to further understand their own product and how it creates meaningful interactions with the world.
littleBits store is Located at 355 West Broadway, New York, and open until the end of the year.
About Daily tous les jours
Daily tous les jours is an interaction design studio with a focus on participation in public spaces.
The studio researches new ways to interact and tell stories and designs everything from large-scale projects that impact cities to tiny ones that fit in a pocket. The team’s projects bring magic to everyday places, behaviours and objects, inviting the public to become active contributors in the process and the outcome. These experiences take on many different shapes: urban interventions and planning, exhibitions, products, spatial design, events, software applications, and film.
Daily tous les jours is very active in the new media and design communities, giving lectures and workshops worldwide, notably at EYEO, INST-INT, SXSW, New Cities Summit, Ars Electronica, KIKK, Culture and Sustainable Development Paris, Walker Art Center and Saint-Étienne’s Biennale. Their work has also won numerous international honours including Best in Show at the 2013 Interaction Awards and the Grand Prize at the 2014 UNESCO Shenzhen Design Awards.
Daily tous les jours was co-founded in 2010 by Mouna Andraos and Melissa Mongiat.
littleBits is the New York-based hardware startup that is on a mission to Democratize Hardware by empowering everyone to Create Inventions, large and small, with a platform of easy-to-use Electronic Building Blocks. The company’s innovative building blocks snap together with magnets to allow anyone to build, invent, and prototype with electronics independent of age, gender and technical background – no soldering, wiring, or programming required. littleBits breaks down powerful technology – from music with the littleBits Synth Kit, to space exploration with the littleBits Space Kit, and the Internet of Things with the Smart Home Kit – and makes the technology accessible and easy to understand.
The company was founded in 2011 by MIT graduate, TED Senior Fellow and cofounder of the Open Hardware Summit, Ayah Bdeir, and has grown to be a global leader in hardware. Bdeir was named one of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business, one of Popular Mechanics’ 25 Makers Who Are Reinventing the American Dream, and one of MIT Technology Review’s 35 Innovators Under 35. The littleBits platform includes more than seven kits and 67 interoperable modules with millions of products sold in more than 100 countries around the world. littleBits also recently launched the Global Chapters Program and has expanded its network into more than 100 countries, as well as with 8,000+ educators and in 2,100+ schools and universities. The company was named to CNN’s “Top 10 Startups to Watch,” the CNBC Next List, and has been profiled by the BBC, Bloomberg, CNBC, Wired and Popular Mechanics. To learn more, visit littleBits.cc.
Studio SSSVLL - Guillaume Sasseville
Since 2008, Guillaume Sasseville has been engaged in a search for the common: that point of resonance where materials, objects, spaces, and uses strike a chord. His work, imbued with a profound respect for the artisan’s craft, harnesses the sensuous potential of industrial processes. The resulting designs have extremely refined archetypal forms, tinged with subtle humour, where the complexity of processes fades into the background to disclose a precious experience.
Guillaume Sasseville’s designs have been published in Azure, Cent, Icon and Interiors, and presented in Montreal, New York, Paris, and Milan. He holds a Master of Science in Design and Luxury Management from ÉCAL (École cantonale d’art de Lausanne, 2011) and a BA in Environmental Design from UQAM (Université du Québec à Montréal, 2007). Before founding Studio SSSVLL, Sasseville worked for almost a decade in architecture, notably with Saucier+Perrotte. In 2011, the City of Montreal awarded him the Phyllis Lambert Design Grant for his project, Common glass. He is currently teaching at UQAM’s École de Design.