A Wired areticle this month really got my heckles raised talking about Engineered Obsolescence in America’s Technology. A book they mention in the article is a must read, Made to Break: Technology and Obsolescence in America by Giles Slade.
This is one of my biggest pet peeves.
Design Products Woot Style
An idea I’ve had for a very long time would be a business that specifically designs products Woot.com style. Start with just one product, say a blender and engineer it to last forever, then sell just that product until it takes off and makes the company financially stable enough to continue.
Simple Tech that Lasts Forever
Yes, you read that right, use modern technology and the art of simplicity to design a device that will literally run forever. Sure, dropping it, or running gravel through the machine would tear it up, maybe, but under normal wear and tear it should not stop in our lifetime.
Break it, and Buy it. Buy it, and it will Break!
Businesses figured out that by engineering products to break, they guaranteed themselves repeat business and product turnover. This new company, lets call it Forever Inc. would have no such compulsions. Before the Forever Blender sales started to decline they would begin engineering their next Forever product, like a Forever Toaster, Forever Lawnmower, or Forever Coffee Pot.
Forever Inc. is working for you.
The idea behind Forever Inc. is that they plan to kill each market they enter. Sales of the Forever Blender, and proceeding products, would spike as people realized they would last forever, then after “every household” had a Forever Blender, sales would decrease. But who cares? At this point the founders of the company, their employees and shareholders would all be very wealthy, America would have a phenomenal product, Forever.
Keep the Forever products coming… Forever!
As Forever Blender sales tapered off, Forever Inc. would release their next Forever product. The Blender sales would continue for some time afterward, even if not at the same level.
Companies around the would would hate this company and strive to see them destroyed, but with the power of crowd sourcing and the grass roots power of the internet behind Forever Inc. the people would prop them up, defending this benevolent company that finally gave them what they wanted, a product Engineered to Last Forever!
Use My Idea and start Forever Inc.
ForeverInc.com and ForeverProducts.com is already taken, but that should not stop you from starting this company. As I explained in this is an Idea Blog and I would love to see people use my ideas.
Let me know what you think in the comments.