Release – messages from the deceased

Van Mensvoort
November 13th 2006

release

'Release' is a product that terminal patients can use to leave audio messages for their relatives, for after their death. People living with the notion that they will soon die anticipate what they will miss and what they expect their relatives to do in the future. They thus create life after death, and continue to be part of the lives of their relatives in a more extensive way than would normally be the case. The design consists of a transparent box with three cans on it that function as speakers. Once a message has arrived from the deceased relative the speakercan is pushed up by the device. The living relative can pick up the speaker and hold it against his ear to listen to the message in an intimate setting.

Release is developed by Bas Groenendaal, student at TU/e Industrial Design, who during the design of the product bumped into ethical questions like: When does someone want to speak to his relatives after death? What are the moments the deceased wants to speak? And, how long after death does one want to be heard?

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Should men be able to give birth to children?


Koert van Mensvoort: Is the artificial womb frankenstein-like symbol of (male) engineers trying to steal the magical womb from women? Or… is it a feminist project and needed to reach through equality between the sexes? I personally lean towards the latter. To me it feels like progress if a girl can tell a guy to carry the womb for a change.

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