Design — As driven by Inertia.
Inertia is the property of the massive bodies to resist changes in their state of motion. Isaac Newton’s First Law of Motion states —
A body at rest will remain at rest, and a body in motion will remain in motion unless it is acted upon by an external force.
It is something that we can see and feel in our daily lives.
This was the concept clarity on the same;
But how is inertia applied in the making of a product?
Some products use the principle of inertia as a core concept while in other application scenarios it is used to complement an “already existing product”:
Many User Interface animations in various operating systems use the concept of inertia to complement the overall simulation of the user experience.
Such as the animation when you scroll down or up to the end of a list, a gradient semi circle appears or more often than not, the contents of the screen get stretched in vertical orientation showing resistivity to change.
Communicates to the user “You can’t scroll further”
Inertia Operated Shotguns
Inertia operation involves a bolt carrier and inertia spring that are not rigidly fixed to the rest of the gun. When the gun is fired, the recoil pushes the gun backwards against the inertia spring and bolt carrier that are effectively floating in space inside the receiver.
Inertia in this shotgun works as a core principle.
Toys and Games
Many games are built using the concept of inertia, such as Jenga — where players take turns to remove a block from a tower and balance it on top, creating a taller and increasingly unstable structure as the game progresses.
Classic Rocking Chairs and other Innovative Furniture
The design is developed along two lines:
1. A rocking stool for kids that had medical uses for children with Autism — since the rocking motion stimulates the release of endorphins in the brain. This made the Jolly Rocker a socially inclusive product that can be used by all without it looking like a medical device.
2. A rocking stool for adults that helps in promoting “active seating” — the gentle rocking will not tire you out, but the constant engagement of the core muscles will lead to a gradual buildup of core strength, leading to improved posture over time.
We can observe some common drivers in these products; apart from the principle of inertia that is. These applications have a therapeutic fidgeting element or a way to release endorphins and enforce an exploratory behavior. It adds dynamism as opposed to a static feeling. We can apply these drivers while developing products or micro human interactions within the products.