In my first year got a brief to design a shed. The brief asked you to use the petite form of a basic garden shed, set within a fictional domestic garden in an everyday suburban setting. It asked you to take the basic form of a shed and transform it from an ordinary building into something maybe extra-ordinary. It also asks for you to look at the structure of the shed and to change it into dynamic new architectural structure..

The shed is for one person and possibly one guest. How are they going to move from the home to the detached shed within the garden? What the interior function could be?

This brief filled my head with mean different ideas on how I could change the functions of something so simple and everyday into a dynamic new architectural structure. In this day and age there is always something popping up in the news about peoples homes being broken into while people are asleep in their beds, there is also this continuing fear of a terrorist using dirty bombs to cause fear and terror in our country.

I wanted to carte a place of safety where you can escape when you feel in danger, for example if a robbery, kidnap or even if there was a terrorist attack where they used biological or nuclear weapons takes place you can escape from the thereat.

I looked at World War II bomb shelters in my local area of central Fife. Fifes coastal beaches were consider as a landing place for the Nazi Germany invasion fleets, because of this the Mod constructed 20 pill boxes in a line across central fife. This created a line of fire to stall the invasion fleet while back up troops arrived to defend our country. These bill boxes gave me iinspirations to carte a sunken safe house. This structure would protect the inhabitancies from threats while being in a comfortable living environment where inhabitants could survive for up to 2 weeks without leaving the Shed.

The Shed can become air tight in the case of a biological attack. If this was to occur air would be filtered thorough pumps into the shed. The bad air would be extracted to give the inhabitancies air they are able to breath. The shed has glass roof, to allow light in to make its more useable as an everyday space. The glass roof can be covered by a reinforced steal plate that would protect the inhabitants. This steal cover would slid across when the panic button is activated, also on the activation this would cause the access door to bolts shut to make the sheds interior inaccessible from the exterior. This would also make the air filter activate causing the clean air to circulating within the shed. There is also storage to cater for emergency goods such as a radio's, torches, battery's and food. The space also supports a bathroom, kitchen area and a living area with entertainment centre and sofa.

I produced these board to show my thought process and final designs.

I had a large interest in this project and found the research into the second world war stop lines very interesting. I feel I have designed a place that people can find security whether your life is in danger or you just need somewhere to feel safe.

Task 4 On Market Mavens and Consumer Self-Confidence: A Cross-Cultural Study

In On Market Mavens and Consumer Self Interest 2007, Chelminski And Coulter look at the effect of market mavens on Consumer self-confidence in the US market compared with South Korea.

The question raised in this passage are how market mavens effect The United States markets compared to South Korea’s, these two totally different cultures that both have consumers that shape the economics of these countries. These market mavens look at media and market information to influence them and how they pass information on to others.

The most important information in the article shows how market mavens help the market places by boosting consumer confidence and helping brands and products by spreading positive information about these brands. This could also turn the other way if a market maven does not like or receive a good product and they can spread the news about the product or service causing it to flunk.

The author uses secondary sources from the press,

“Demonstrate that market mavenism is positively related to consumer’s self-esteem, tendency to conform, need for uniqueness, and susceptibility to normative influence.” – Further, Goldsmith et al. p.71

“With a backdrop of increasing globalization of the marketplaces, this work offers an important contribution to the study of the market maven from the international and cross-cultural perspective” (e.g., Albaum & Peterson, 1984;C. Lee & Green,1991) p.71

These quotes show how the writers use the press to build up their knowledge about market mavens and how they open up the marketplaces.

The use of a questionnaire that was given to people in both the U.S.A and South Korean, the U.S. questionnaire included 165 females and 115 males but in South Korea the questionnaire was given to 269 females and 215 males.

The conclusions that the authors results indicate that cultural individualism is related to consumer self-confidences in both the U.S. and South Korea. The market mavens also boost market knowledge and spread the information about the changing markets.

“Given the nature of the data, the intercountry analyses, were not performed, because the unit of analysis in this approach is the country, not the individual. Such analysis requires that individuals sampled for the study are representative of the country, and it favors studies that include a large number of countries.” Craig & Douglas, 2000 p.76

Most important concepts are that they were trying to find out whether market mavens were a cross-cultural thing. Whether market maven existed in every cultural across the world, but due to only having samples from 2 countries it was felt that was not enough evidence.

The author assumes that South Korea and the U.S. is enough people to get a diverse out come, but it is unfortunately deemed unsuitable.

The line of reason that the author takes is that he has managed to show that consumer self-confidences is boosted by the market mavens across the different cultures.

By failing to take the authors finding seriously the implications are that in this international market place. If corporations do not aim at the market mavens they will struggle to find a target market.

The author’s main points of view within the article are looking at market mavens and how they respond to media and changes of information in the market place. It also looks at consumer self confidence and cultural individualism.

I feel that if more questionnaires had been done in more countries there would have had more information to base the results on. It would have found more of a diverse and internationally accurate conclusion whether market mavens boost cross-cultural consumer self-confidence.


Further, Goldsmith et al, On Market Mavens and Consumer Self Interest (2007), p.71, Psychology and Marketing 2007

Lee & Green, (1991), On Market Mavens and Consumer Self Interest (2007), p.71, Psychology and Marketing 2007

Craig & Douglas, (2000), On Market Mavens and Consumer Self Interest (2007), p.76, Psychology and Marketing 2007

Task 4 Networking Survival Guide

Networking Survival Guide (2003) explores the world of networking offering advice on the building connections for self-improvement. The author Diane Darling, shows examples of the benefits good networking can bring to people operating in business

In this book the author is trying to teach and educate the reader in the world of net working. By showing examples of how networking can benefit you in the business world. How it can create pathways to new opportunities of further knowledge and business deals that can lead to success. The book also touches on how people can perceive you and business through impressions.

“If you work for a company, remember that your behavior reflects on it as well as on you.” p.13

Also how experiences with brands, even friend’s experiences can influence your point of view over something.

If you’re already a net worker the book will help you successfully expand your networks. Its not all just about using the internet to network with people its also to do with face to face meeting people and being able to give and receive. We need to continue’ to learn and develop our skills, and as we live in an age where with a click of a button we can access the world via the Internet, we have the whole worlds knowledge at our finger tips and we should take advantage of it.

The author tells us that it is the most essential skill to take control of your own lives and its directions. Networking is you taking control of your professional career, and deciding how you want it to be directed. How you want to source work and build up your own personal reputation.

‘When you network, you are asking others to vouch for you. Your behavior reflects on them. If you are recommend you for a job and you do well, they look great! If the project is doesn’t come in on time or on budget its signals that maybe your standards are different from theirs and they wont consider one of your suggestions in the future.”p.12

This book is a training guide in how to network successfully. The writer has used experiences from her own life, and the work shops she hosts for companies. She wants people to know they are not on their own and there is a world you can access via networking to help you get on and to develop and to learn new skills and you can access it your self.

No man is an island, entire of itself: every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main.” – John Donne (1572-1631)p.4

The main assumptions that the author makes within this book, is that you only use networking as a business tool, when many people use networking as a social tool to meet people and to keep in contact with old friends. The age we live in and especially myself as a student I use social networking daily, well maybe even hourly. So why could they not tell you how to use that successfully?

If everyone in the world read this interesting and educational book we would live in a society where everyone networked not just in personal lives but in business also. This would maybe make business relationship better and you would find a much wider variety of knowledge and understanding of others and hopefully make the business world a much easier place to work.

If on the other hand this book was to be locked away and never to been seen again and the ideas that it promotes are lost with the book. The worlds business relationships will not widen and grow as affectively. People will find it harder to advance their knowledge out with there geographical location.

The author has a vision on helping people discovering new ways to connect to people through networking. The book is her tool to access more people than she already can via her workshops. This book means she can go global with her ideas of networking and how it can be done successfully.

I feel that more research into networking on a global scale would benefit peoples understanding on the importance of this skill. This would possibly help people want to develop their networking skills and further their careers and social networks.


Darling, Diane (2003) Networking Survival Guide (2003), p.12 – p.13, Ebrary, Inc.

Donne, John, (1572-1631) Networking Survival Guide (2003), p.4, Ebrary, Inc.

Journey Box

In my first year I done a project called Journey Box. This projects basic brief was that I had to first read a book or base it on a book I had already read, then crate a space within a 10x10 meter cube using stairs, bridges and walk ways to make a space for your self to read your book of your choice. I have not read allot of books I do not really find it enjoyable reading or have time for it, but I dug a book I had read at high school called Junk by.................. This book is set in the 80's, it tell the story of two young high school sweet harts that run away from everything to start a new life together in the city where they experiment with drugs, sex and alcohol. They become friends with a group of heroin addicted squatters. The couple soon fallow in the bath of there new found friends and leeds them to some strange experiences and tares them apart. They need up on a downward spiral in life and it takes a grate deal for them to get them self back on their feet.

I was greatly influenced by the book and the journey they took. I started to look at loads of 80's punk signers their music and fashion. Also at this time in UK there was unrest with the miners strikes and mass unemployment. Margaret Thatcher was in power and she was changing the way the country had operated for 100's of years by crushing unions and closing down the heavy industry that many people relied on for their income. I had allot to try and get over in my space but I tried to simplify the space for a dramatic effects. I looks at the spiral of life and how they lived in a bubble where they thought know one could get to them and also the effects of the life style they lived.

These are my boards that shows my process.

Juteopolis final boards

I have spoken about the A project perviously called Juteopolis, I have now completed this project and I wish to share my groups finial out come. This project made me as a design student tackle some new challenges, such as working with others in group. This made me view things differently as people have different tastes, strengths and weaknesses. This project change the way I look at design and how I feel I work with others. I did allot of self discovery and had to deal with allot of new challenges that helped me and my group reach our final out come.

We took a radical view on the task of designing an exhibition using sustainable materials based on Dundee's Jute industry that lasted in the city for over a century and employed over 50,000 workers at its peek. We look mainly into the social aspected of the city during this period. Look at the difference between the jute barons that made millions from exploiting there works in some of the worst working and living c
onditions in the UK at the time. We also incorporated the sustainable factor by using grass to constructed panels where facts and images were displayed using chloroform to project pictures on to the grass. The panels are also portable as they dismantle into sections so the hole exhibition can be transported from venue to venue giving it a much wider audience.

Here are the board we carted to display our ideas.

Task 3

Chelminski, P, On market mavens and consumer self-confidence: A cross-cultural study. Coulter, RA, 2007

Market mavens are attentive to media and important diffusers of marketplace information. This study examines the relationships between cultural individualism, general and consumer self-confidence, and market mavenism in the context of two distinct cultural systems, the United States and South Korea.

CondeNast, Style.com the online home of Vogue.

This comprehensive fashion magazine, this shows all the major new styles and catwalk fashions for each season.

Darling, Diane Networking Survival Guide : Get the Success You Want by Tapping into the People You Know, Publisher:McGraw-Hill Companies, Released 2003.

The book is a step by step guide to networking, and how to use them successfully to benefit your self and to post your self confidence in the process.

Funk, S, The spread of awareness and its impact on epidemic outbreaks, PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, April 21st 2009

When disease brakes within the human population, it changes the behavior of people and they response to the out brake of the disease. Even if no centralized information is provided about the presence of a disease, such awareness can arise through first-hand observation and word of mouth.

Kahle, Dave, Preventing The Price Objection, American Salesman Jun2009, Vol. 54 Issue 6, p24-27.

The article discusses how salesmen can prevent customers' price objection. Salesmen are advised to project an image that is worth the price of their products. It is believed that appearance impacts the subconscious view on value of customers. Other tips include avoiding price comparison, dismissing willingness to discount, and displaying an affirmative behavior.

Rosenberg, Scott, Say everything : how blogging began, what it's becoming, and why it matters, New York, Crown, 2009,

Explores the complex network of blogging and provides insights into the new medium with discussions on privacy, self-expression, authority, and community, and includes close-ups of blogging innovators, including Evan Williams of Blogger.

Woods, Margaret, Shape of fashion and its underpinnings, 1870-1960, Museum of the Rockies.

This is a website about ‘The shape of fashion and its underpinnings’ an exhibit online from the Rockies Museum from Montana. Its looks in-depth of the history of women’s underwear.

Postal Strikes

My blog comes from a crazy place from my brain where I ponder about random everyday issues through my view of the world. Today I was not sure what to write about, the only thing I feel passionate about is the postal strike! Why are our postmen on strike and does this mean the service design of the Royal Mail does not work? Or is it just a brake down in communication between management and the unions? The CWU union may be fighting for the rights of the for the Royal Mails work force but they are causing the whole country problems with a back log of between 50 and 60 million letters. Will this change the way we use the postal service forever? Will it be the end of the Royal Mail? These are all questions I plan on answering in my blog today.

The postal strikes started on the 7th of august this year when 25 thousand Royal Mail workers walked out from their post. The strikes have continued and now with the lead up to Christmas there are more plans for strikes to disturb the festive period. They are striking about pay, but how much does the average postman get paid? And how much more do they want? They are paid "As a guide, new employees aged 18 and over will receive basic pay of around £256 a week for full-time hours rising to £285 - £311 after 1 year. This rate will be on a pro-rata basis for part-time hours. Higher rates are paid in Inner and Outer London and in some parts of the South East." This is from Royal Mails own website that would mean that they make on average £13,312 and they are looking to jump to a crazy £17,500. Do the postmen not realize that we are going through the deepest recession since World War Two; there are around 2.5 million people unemployed in the UK. Other companies are cutting wages freezing pension pots and employees are being asked to work for free or even told to take unpaid leave. Why should taxpayers fork out more money to pay for their pay rises? Just because the Royal Mail is still a public sector company does not mean that they should have to cave into the CWU's to get the company up and running again. The tax payer is already forking out billions to bail out the banks that got us into recession in the first place, so why should we give more money to Royal Mail so postmen can have a £4000 pay rise when we are suffering our self’s.

What are they going to do extra for the their £4000? Well, not much they plan on doing the same jobs as they used to do. The CWU's are also stopping the Royal Mail from trying to change and modernize the postal services. In this age of emails and internet banking and ever improving communication the Royal Mail needs to move with the times and look at there new target markets. Currently the Royal Mail loose around 10 million letters a day to competitors and electronic communication. Surely this extra £4000 per employee would be better being invested back into the company to radically change this iconic public service. Reviewing its whole service design, are post offices still relevant to today’s general living? Who actually uses the post office, the pensioners get there pensions paid into their bank account these days, you can apply for passports online, and most other things you pick up at the Post Office can be downloaded from the internet. The only function that cannot be done online is sending packages. Another big question is, are Post Offices in the right loctation?

For example in my local town of Glenrothes they have moved my main Post Office from its own store that was located just outside the Kingdom Shopping Centre and it’s know located within WHSmiths on the second floor. This store is not the largest on the ground floor so after shuffling between newspaper stands and the queuing public you are faced with a very steep staircase that everyone has to clime before reaching the Post Office. The hand full of times I have ever been in this new post office I have stood in a queue for about 15minutes just to either get a form for something that I don't feel is worth giving up 15 minutes of my time in my ever busier life style. While waiting for such a period you observe things like old ladies complaining about the move of the post office. Then you catch the manager giving everyone a smug look as he thinks he is important but really has no influence in anything of importance within the company. He is one of these people that just by looking at him I can tell I don't like him and he makes me feel uncomfortable ever time I see him.

Why cant we change these old fashioned Office style cattle markets that makes everyone wait so long and make you feel so uncomfortable. I think people want something fast easy and simple to use in a relaxed environment with staff that seem to care and can approach all walks of life. They could offer services like their new banking scheme's and their existing services such as sending packages and supplying forms. Why cant they extend there service into maybe providing internet so people can fill out forms online in store, or access there Post Office account online.

They also have to makes sure that every community can have these services including the remote parts of the UK that are forever under fear that their Post Office is going to be closed, Everyone pays their tax so why cant everyone receive the same services.

There is a whole range of different opportunities that the Post Office can explore to change its service design and target market.

The only thing is trying to make CWU realize that the world is a changed place and there is no room for strikes when there is mass unemployment and a changing market place. These postmen cannot forget that they are replaceable as Royal Mail takes on 30,000 part time staff and 85,000 people applied. This alone shows how replaceable they are. I hope that these strikes have not done too much damage to this service that Britain has relied on for centuries to deliver our mail. Can Royal Mail crush the CWU union and carry on and change for the future. This is one question only time will be able to tell.

The Law of the Few

I have been reading a book called The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell, the book looks at people and there behaviour. I found it very interesting and enjoyed reading the book. I found the mind mapping process very helpful for getting my ideas down on paper.


I have been researching the jute industry of Dundee, in the 18th century Dundee had a new industry that made line into flax and it also had an important thread making industry. This industry changed when the flax mills started to experiment with jute, they learned that if u mixed it with whales oil you could weave it. Dundee's population jumped from 26,000 in 1801 to of over 90,000 in 1861. This was due to Irish immigration, as they were fleeing the potato faming. This gave the jute mills cheep labour, in the mills where working conditions were the some of the worst in the UK. Mills employed Woman over men as they could pay them less and also used children that worked 13 hour days, But once the boys turned 16 they were paid off. The men of Dundee became know as "kelt boilers" as they stayed at home and looked after the children as the woman worked in the mills.

As the jute industry grow 19th centre in Dundee, so did the whaling industry. The Dundee whaling fleet was the largest in Briton for the most part of the 19th centre. Ship Building prospered in Dundee, as the jute was imported from India so the mills needed ships. The Jute Barons that owned the mills normally also owned the ship building firms and the shipping company. The Jute barons made allot of money from there industries and gifted things back to the city like the Lochee park and Cox's park. At the hight of the jute industry it employed over 50,000 people in Dundee.
The largest mill was the Camperdown Works. This was the largest textile Mill in Europe . This mill was ran by the Cox's brothers. Cox's park was donated to the city by James Coxs. Sir James Caird Gave donated around 25 million pounds in todays money. Given money to things like Carid Hall and Dundee's first specialist cancer wing to the royal infirmary. This money started cancer research in Dundee where it still counties today. Even after his death in 1918 his family kept donating money to the city for other projects.

Even though these barons gave things like parks and city hall to the people. I think the people would have proffered better housing or pay. Or even allowing the men to work. As most families lived in 1 or 2 rooms with 1 toilet to 7 or 8 families. So why did they not invest in a better sanitation for the working population. Or new housing as this would have improved there works heath and they would have been able to work longer and harder.

Dundee suffered in the depression in the 1930's, the jute and ship building industry took a hard hit. The Jute mills slowly closed after the second world war, jute production ceased
in the 70's. The production of jute is now in India where its also grown. The jute barons of Dundee invested in the Indian jute mills and found it far cheaper to produce the jute in India. The Jute mills today in India operate in the same condensations as the jute will operated in 1800 in Dundee.

The greed of the jute barns of Dundee brought the down fall to an industry that had consumed the city for the best part of 2 centuries. Dundee is now a centre of learning and research. Housing and living conductions have improved dramatically. The city council carted vast housing estates in the 60's and 70's, but I will let you make up your own mind weather they have been a success or not. I think that Dundee has came a long way from the days of slums and 7 families to one toilet. The city continues to improve and change for the better and for the worst. The cities newest project is the redevelopment of the water front. After some bad decisions made in the 70's. The water front is going under a rejuvenation opening up the city centre to carte an easier link to the water front.

26th of sep

Well this week I went to the DCA for the first time, very interesting space with a warehouse sheek feel about it, but was full of people that seemed a bit toff like, aseptically when 20 student had to walk through the middle of the bar/restaurant area, I felt very jugged. By being there we were able to see what space for our Jueopolis Exhibition was like. Our design is to be for the main space which is a very interesting space with its high ceilings and viewing areas from the second floor, its just a grate space, with so much scope for so many different ideas. While we were at the DCA there was an exhibition on, but it was photos peoples heads being shot off and only having half a body left, using very graphic pictures of war. Thats just to much for me to handle so we gave that a miss.
I have also started reading the Tipping point. Its interesting we are reading it for our design studies.