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Design Critique: Products for People

Encouraging usable designs for a better customer experience.

Aug 26, 2007

Tim and Tom are joined by returning guest Serena Rosenhan for a critique of Panasonic's NI-553R clothes iron. What did people in olden times use for ironing and how does the design of the modern-day NI-553R support the task? The gang discusses the merits of the design as well as problems found during its use, and reflects on the classic trade-off of convenience versus safety.

Also, email messages from Jorg and from house band Peter Grey, plus a startling revelation from Tom. We close with an absurd Bea Arthur song (Good Night, But Not Goodbye) from the infamous 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special, wherein she sang it to the cantina patrons (Peter Grey, please send us some more music so we aren't tempted to do this again). Listeners will understand the relevance, such as it is.

Photos of the iron's user interface can be viewed at The album art for the actual MP3 file of this episode has a different photo we hope you will enjoy. You may want to extract the photo file from the MP3 to see it clearly, print it, put it on your refrigerator, etc.