Good ideas with bad execution, or good execution of what should be bad ideas - an analysis of inferior, off-beat or malfunctioning products, and how other people's failures can help us design better stuff.

Made by Monkeys: Outsourcing

On the Job Safety -- India Style

In case you’ve ever wondered how India makes stuff cheaper than we do, apparently they skimp on safety equipment as evidenced by this Sponge-Bob-like hard hat…

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What's Wrong With Lithium-Ion Batteries?

The announcement last month that 46 million Nokia-branded lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries made by Matsushita Battery Industrial could potentially short circuit and overheat was just the latest in a spate of product advisories and recalls of the technology over the past two years. But it’s not as…

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Outsourcing: Trading off Cost for Quality?

You get what you pay for at the Chinese “fake” markets — these Paul Frank monkey watches and Rolex may approximate the real thing from afar, but they are in fact stunningly cheap knock-offs. But the real trouble begins when critical performance attributes are traded off for low cost, as…

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Toy Recall Exposes Challenges of Outsourcing

Outsourcing can be fraught with challenges as the maker of the recalled Thomas the Train recently found out. — As More Toys Are Recalled, the Trail Ends in China. From the NYT article: “Many companies have gone to China lured there by low-cost labor and in many ways what happens…

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