When technology fails, your backup plan better be robust

Just like what happened in the middle of my presentation, when the first choice didn’t work, your backup plan better not fail you again. In modern days, cellphone obviously are the first choice when we need to call someone. But when cellphone fails us for whatever reasons, those phone booth on the street are there for you. During hurricane Sandy, when there was no power, no subway, no water or too much water, no cellphone sign, people were surprise yet happy to find those payphones were still working. They run on their own separate low power grid. They have metal casing, and all the parts are designed with being as robust as possible in mind (partly because people abuse these street furniture a lot). They survive in disasters.

New York City is trying to reinvent the payphones to make our city more accessible, safer, healthier, greener and better informed. I saw a lot of awesome designs over the weekend.

For sure, adding touch screens and cellphone charging ports and advertisement display panels to the booths are great. But I really still would like the phone function remains as part of the booth, because it is live depending in some situation.

That’s my two cents for this competition.


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