(Running notes from LiftAsia08, in Jeju, Korea)
Raphael Grignani of Nokia Design in San Francisco says: We live in the contrast between infinite human potential and finite Earth resources. There are almost 3 billion mobile phone subscribers in the world, 5 time more than computer.
If there are 3 billion mobile phones out there, there are 3 billion chargers. Energy is lost when the phone is fully recharged but the phone is still plugged into the charger (recharging a phone generally requires less than 2 hours, but many people plug them in overnight for example, or keep them plugged all day at the office). Nokia is testing new designs to automatically switch off the charger after the phone is charged.
Once we have digged all the resources from the underground, we will have to learn to produce with what's already above ground -- recycling, re-making. Is it possible to create a cell phone using nothing new? (He shows the "Remade" prototype).
How do we encourage people to keep things longer? Another project explores how you can update devices digitally, rather than physically; made to last; encouraging a "culture of caring".
On a side note, Grignani announces a new project: Fivedollarcomparison.com, a site asking people to submit example of objects or else that cost the equivalent of 5 dollars. Such as these: