The explosion of affordable, open–source tools is transforming science. Ordinary people can now purchase and maintain equipment that allows them to experiment and make discoveries. Simultaneously, the data that these devices yield is providing scientists with new streams of information that are invaluable to research. Accessible tools constitute a win–win for science; the field only stands to benefit from wider adoption and usage.
The Wilson Center is a non–partisan policy institute that tackles global issues through its support of independent research and open dialogue. Their Science and Technology Program's THINGTank operates at the intersection of design and technology. With the goal of raising awareness of the variety of devices on the market and educating potential users, representatives contacted Accurat in collaboration with Giorgia Lupi's team at Pentagram to design and develop an interactive resource for learning.
Tasked with creating an experience that resonated with the target audience by virtue of ease—and enjoyment—of use, we brainstormed a number of ideas before landing on a concept inspired by the analog, DIY look and feel of objects themselves. The deployed design is inspired by cards (library catalog cards, computer punch cards, trading cards, etc.): a tactile, pre–digital means of information–keeping and sharing.
We worked collaboratively with the Wilson Center to develop content, conducting research to identify data and formulate sets applicable to the range of tools.