Birdē ( pronounced "birdie" /ˈbərdē/ ) is a conceptual idea. The culmination of exploration and research to come up with a kid-friendly object that would interest kids and parents to participate in the lives of wild birds. Based on the progression of technology in the last decade, and its adoption into our homes and families, I thought an ideal solution to this was to have a physical object and mobile application combination. Having been exposed to IKEA for many years, being an admirer of its products and philosophy and having spoken to IKEA employees, my general understanding was that were IKEA to invest in the creation of an application, it would want to do so on a larger scale. Something that could be applicable to a whole line of products and thus become more cost effective. And so, the ultimate solution was a branch of IKEA called Ikea Education, and Birdē would be the first product to launch under this branch, with more to follow. Birdē consists of a bird feeder to attract feeder birds, and a mobile application which would allow parents and kids to photograph, identify and catalog birds at the bird feeder, but also anywhere they go. The aspect of competition between parents and kids would make it a more game-like experience, but the rich information based identification systems would make for a family-friendly educational experience. With all that in mind, I'd like to present Birdē, the first in the IKEA Education family of products.
The creation of the actual bird feeder was informed by a culmination of a proficient knowledge of IKEA's design history, coupled with its vision, mission and an exploration of intriguing form.
This research and form information led to a discovery in form, function and systems
A render of the final Birdē bird feeder
The Birdē bird feeder would be easy to assemble without any tools necessary.
The IKEA Education app works in an informative and simple way. Each function is accessible and informs the user about how it works.
The Birdē bird feeder was designed primarily to be hung from a branch in the suburban backyard, but mounting holes at the bottom of the 'L' shaped pieces of acrylic means that city based families don't have to miss out on the fun.
The actual Birdē bird feeder was built out of heat bent acrylic, MDF (particle board, in typical IKEA fashion), cork, and wooden dowels.