Designed by Nature

by Luke Wroblewski June 8, 2005

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach.” –Henry David Thoreau

I’ve talked about this before, but I’m really interested in seeing interface design solutions based on how naturally occurring systems work. Core77 recently pointed to an interesting case study of this process in the automotive industry. It seems DaimlerChrysler has designed a new concept vehicle with outstanding fuel consumption and emissions. To do this they studied a fish.

“To realize the Mercedes-Benz bionic car, the engineers at the Mercedes-Benz Technology Centre and the DaimlerChrysler Research department have for the first time looked for a specific example in nature which not only approximates to the idea of an aerodynamic, safe, comfortable and environmentally compatible car in terms of details, but as a formal and structural whole. The example arrived at was the boxfish.” -Mercedes-Benz Bionic Concept Vehicle (photo gallery)

Further Reading

Janine Benyus on Biomimicry Biomimicry “studies nature's models and then imitates or takes inspiration from these designs and processes to solve human problems.”

Ideas Stolen Right From Nature Now, as technological capability catches up with intellectual inspiration, biomimetics is starting to fulfill its potential.