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Designing the Laptop Lounge Chair: A Product for the Workplace of Tomorrow

Wendel, Arvid LU and Andreescu, Cristian LU (2021) MMKM10 20202
Product Development
Abstract
This master thesis maps and discusses the current and future needs, wishes
and challenges of office workers. The resultant contextual knowledge is utilized
to develop a concept of an office chair.

The work followed an exploratory design process. Initially, literature and data
on various topics were researched to form an understanding of the current
and future working conditions of office workers. The studied topics include
ergonomics of sitting, office types and their effects on office workers, trends in
work culture, remote work and the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic on
the office.

The comprehension of the topics was expanded by surveying remote workers,
conducting observational studies of various types of office... (More)
This master thesis maps and discusses the current and future needs, wishes
and challenges of office workers. The resultant contextual knowledge is utilized
to develop a concept of an office chair.

The work followed an exploratory design process. Initially, literature and data
on various topics were researched to form an understanding of the current
and future working conditions of office workers. The studied topics include
ergonomics of sitting, office types and their effects on office workers, trends in
work culture, remote work and the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic on
the office.

The comprehension of the topics was expanded by surveying remote workers,
conducting observational studies of various types of office environments and
interviewing remote workers, office hosts and representatives of companies in
the furniture industry. New types of office environments and forms of work are
emerging, which open up the possibility of introducing new types of products.

The material was analyzed and translated into a design brief, defining direction, purpose and objective for the development of the next generation office
chair. The essence of the design brief is that current and future office work is
mobile and conducted with the laptop as the main tool.

Following the design brief, development of the chair was initiated through
exploratory sketching and subsequent construction of prototypes. Through
iterative improvements of the prototypes, guided by user tests and anthropometric data from literature, a profile was defined, outlining the contact surfaces
between the chair concept and the user. The profile was subsequently used as
a basis for exploring aesthetics through sketching and construction of models
to scale. Finally, the product concept, namely, the Laptop Lounge Chair, was
modeled digitally and images of it were rendered. (Less)
Popular Abstract
The Covid-19 pandemic has forced
unprecedented numbers of office workers
on all continents to transform their homes
into their offices. What lessons can be
learned from this grand experiment, in the
name of office furniture design?

The office is in a volatile phase where many
forms of work and office types fight for market
shares. Communication technology has matured
to a level where we are no longer bound to the
physical space of the office and is currently put
to the test by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Although the digitization process has progressed
for many years, it has been argued that the
physical office still is a necessity for the vast
majority of office workers to conduct office work.
Office furniture suffers... (More)
The Covid-19 pandemic has forced
unprecedented numbers of office workers
on all continents to transform their homes
into their offices. What lessons can be
learned from this grand experiment, in the
name of office furniture design?

The office is in a volatile phase where many
forms of work and office types fight for market
shares. Communication technology has matured
to a level where we are no longer bound to the
physical space of the office and is currently put
to the test by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Although the digitization process has progressed
for many years, it has been argued that the
physical office still is a necessity for the vast
majority of office workers to conduct office work.
Office furniture suffers from the same lack of
momentum, as the legacy of the desktop
computer is still standard in contemporary
furniture design, although essentially all modern
office tasks are conducted on laptops.
Meanwhile, the situation of the pandemic has
forced office workers to get creative and make
use of the possibilities that their homes provide
for conducting office work. Can the virus act as a
catalyst for changes long overdue?

Imagine a workplace where your productivity is
not measured by the hours endured sitting at
your desk in your open plan office, with the
prying eyes of your boss hovering over your
shoulder. A workplace where you are in control
over where you choose to conduct your work,
taking you from being a washed out office rat to
being a successful and valuable employee. A
workplace where the days spent at the physical
office are efficiently planned, with serial
meetings that actually increase productivity and
improve the communication between your
coworkers and yourself.

Gathered data reads that this could be the reality
of the modern office worker. The future office
ecosystem introduces new needs, wants and
wishes on the furniture in which we are
productive. In this case they are met by the
product concept developed in this project,
namely, the Laptop Lounge Chair.

The Laptop Lounge Chair was designed based on
user tests and research on the ergonomics of
sitting. It caters to the needs of the office worker
who uses the laptop as it was first intended: in
the lap. It allows the user to follow bodily
instincts and impulses instead of remaining
static. The Laptop Lounge Chair should not be
seen as an ergonomic chair, but a chair designed
with ergonomics in mind and as a part of the
office ecosystem of tomorrow.

by Arvid Wendel & Cristian Andreescu (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Wendel, Arvid LU and Andreescu, Cristian LU
supervisor
organization
course
MMKM10 20202
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
Chair design, ergonomics of sitting, user-centered design, remote work, office work
language
English
id
9040895
date added to LUP
2021-02-23 07:52:45
date last changed
2021-02-23 07:52:45
@misc{9040895,
  abstract     = {{This master thesis maps and discusses the current and future needs, wishes
and challenges of office workers. The resultant contextual knowledge is utilized
to develop a concept of an office chair.

The work followed an exploratory design process. Initially, literature and data
on various topics were researched to form an understanding of the current
and future working conditions of office workers. The studied topics include
ergonomics of sitting, office types and their effects on office workers, trends in
work culture, remote work and the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic on
the office.

The comprehension of the topics was expanded by surveying remote workers,
conducting observational studies of various types of office environments and
interviewing remote workers, office hosts and representatives of companies in
the furniture industry. New types of office environments and forms of work are
emerging, which open up the possibility of introducing new types of products.

The material was analyzed and translated into a design brief, defining direction, purpose and objective for the development of the next generation office
chair. The essence of the design brief is that current and future office work is
mobile and conducted with the laptop as the main tool.

Following the design brief, development of the chair was initiated through
exploratory sketching and subsequent construction of prototypes. Through
iterative improvements of the prototypes, guided by user tests and anthropometric data from literature, a profile was defined, outlining the contact surfaces
between the chair concept and the user. The profile was subsequently used as
a basis for exploring aesthetics through sketching and construction of models
to scale. Finally, the product concept, namely, the Laptop Lounge Chair, was
modeled digitally and images of it were rendered.}},
  author       = {{Wendel, Arvid and Andreescu, Cristian}},
  language     = {{eng}},
  note         = {{Student Paper}},
  title        = {{Designing the Laptop Lounge Chair: A Product for the Workplace of Tomorrow}},
  year         = {{2021}},
}