I always think that my enthusiasm for Apple products is because Jonathon Ive (Apple’s heads of design) and me are exact contemporaries. We’re the same age and studied industrial design at the same time in colleges just 30 miles apart.
I reckon I can see the same influences I had when I was a child. Like, for example, the production design from Gerry Anderson’s Space 1999. (Tell me the Comlock communicator was not the inspiration for the iPhone…).
So when I see something new from Apple, I almost always think ‘yeah, that’s how I would have done it’. Apart from the positioning of the USB slots on my iMac, of course.
Another common influence was Californian outfit Frog Design, one of the hippest design consultancies. Back in the late 1980s Frog was leading the trend for post-modern product design. The idea was to make hi-tech goods more ‘friendly’ and ‘accessible’.
At the time, some of you might remember, we were in the middle of trend that saw hi-fi, for example, festooned with superfluous lights and dials. In the 1980s Amstrad used to sell loads of super-cheap ‘tower’ hi-fi systems loaded with useless graphic equalizers.