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Design for the future
Tuesday 11 Jun 2013
HP MIMIC is a modular, fully functional single office unit that transforms to fit different work styles, technology preferences, and user requirements while adapting to a company’s office culture and business needs. Made of lightweight aluminum and fully wired so it is ready to “plug and play,” the design features a collapsible system of rotating electrochromatic glass panels that are controlled with a tablet interface. It is designed to literally mimic the way people work today. For example, since the panels turn and modulate, the space can seamlessly convert from a closed, private space to an open, collaborative one within moments. Further, the exterior walls can be used to share work or display a presentation, a feature that takes advantage of the natural interaction that occurs in workspaces and which is critical to fostering creative environments. This design furthers the workplace evolution from cubicles to mountable wall systems by offering a system that is scalable and flexible enough to meet future needs. At 8’ x 8’ x 8’, it is small and mobile enough to be easily moved yet substantial enough to provide all an individual worker needs: power, Internet access, and a flat surface. A prototype, built by HP, was originally presented at the Alt Design Summit in January 2013. This allowed attendees to test the concept while proving the idea’s commercial viability. HP MIMIC’s adapts to a variety of workplace situations, lessening the need to upgrade or replace office equipment regularly. This decreases consumption of resources as well as real estate costs. The design helps with sustainable space planning by allowing companies to grow organically and adjust their space as needed without having to make costly changes. Too much of the wrong space drains resources. HP MIMIC addresses the balance between how much space is required at a given time with the need for future adaptability. Ultimately, work is about the exchange of ideas, so workspaces should encourage and enhance creativity and collaboration. HP MIMIC does this while acknowledging that what happens in the negative space surrounding workspaces can be as important as what happens at the desk itself.