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Every New Thing 2.0

We've been rewriting 'EVERY new product' based upon the feedback we have been receiving and this page represents the start of Version 2.0.

Version 2.0 includes two major changes:
• reworking the title from 'EVERY new product' to 'EVERY new THING' as the principles apply to products, services and situations. We'll be reworking this website to reflect these changes over the next month.
• renaming the principles as verbs to make it easier to use the distinctions actively ie. to speak the distinctions as if you were going to invent a new product. For example, instead of 'information' we are using the term 'inform: tell me something'. In other words, if you want to design a product the question to ask yourself is 'how are you going to inform me?' This also has the effect of sharpening our definitions and broadening and strengthening the examples and issues that each principles encompasses - more on this later.

In this edition we have also added some well known branded examples of the principles in action. Let us know what you think about our upgrade by emailing me at Thanks!
Download 'Every New Thing 2.0' (pdf 38kb)
Read 'Every New Product' (Version 1.2)


The seven new distinctions are:

inform: tell me something (formerly 'information')
electronify: make me electronic and let me do new things (no change)
discern: work it out for me (formerly 'intelligence')
relate: work with me (formerly 'interactive')
displace: free me from my location (formerly 'location')
personalize: make it just for me (no change)
virtualize: give me the effect without the effort (formerly 'virtual')

inform: tell me something

New Interpretation
inform = to give form to, to animate or give life to, to impart
Definition: Things that inform us, educate us, we can learn from
Alternatively, things that support us being informed. For example, information technology does not inform us in itself and through its use information is generated

Key Challenges and Issues
Privacy, Ownership and Overload

Product Examples
Yahoo! = search engine website that helps you find things
Big Brother = reality television show whereby a context is created for collecting information that is edited into a television show
House and Garden = television show that is a mix of both entertainment and information
Omo Referral Line = call centre for enquiries in how to make your clothes cleaner, (similar to the RACV roadside service without the cars!)

electronify: make me electronic and let me do new things

New Interpretation
Definition: Things that are based upon electronics.

Product Examples
Amazon = online (e-commerce) sales of books, CDs, etc
Swatch Watch = a digital watch with an analogue face that turned the watch into a fashion accessory
LG refrigerators = the world’s first refrigerator to connect to the internet

discern: work it out for me

New Interpretation
discern = to distinguish clearly by the eye or understanding, to detect, to discriminate
discerning = discriminating, acute, having insight and understanding
discernment = power of faculty of discriminating, acuteness, insight
New Definition: take some action on my behalf
Definition: Things that can make decisions at some level.

Product Examples
Fisher and Paykel = washing machines that use ‘fuzzy logic’ to determine the best way to wash your clothes
Mozilla = internet robot that collects data from websites to form search engine directories
Intelligent Toilet = enables faeces to be examined and provide a health report for the user

relate: work with me

New Interpretation
relate = to recount, to narrate, tell, to ally by connexion or kindred; to have reference or relation
New Definition: work with me, change to make it easier /better for me
Definition: Things that change in form in response to their use.

Product Examples
Gillette, Schick – shavers designed to place the cutting blade with the best possible contact on the changing contours of the face
Reach = toothbrushes designed to bend and flex to reach all areas of your mouth and teeth without added pressure on your gums
Nike Air, Adidas Dunlop KT26 = running shoes designed to absorb road shock – check their websites

displace: free me from my location

New Interpretation
displace = to put out of place, disarrange, to remove from a state, office or dignity, to take the place of, or put something else in the place of
New Definition: free me from my location, ‘Anytime, Anywhere’
Definition: Things that operate independently of their location or allow the user to

Product Examples
CNN global television news
Sony Walkman = portable CD and tape player that allows the user to listen to music anywhere, anytime
Duracell = batteries that allow the user to operate independently of electrical connections
Nokia = mobile phones enable you to be in communication no matter your location
IBM’s Viavoice = voice recognition software that enables you to dictate to your personal computer and be free of your desk

personalize: make it just for me

New Interpretation
to make personal, for an individual human being
New Definition: make it just for me!
Definition: Things that are tailored to an individual

Product Examples
Palm Pilot = personal digital assistant that enables the user to track and schedule their appointments in a pocket size electronic diary
Black and Decker = power tools enable everyone to become a home handyman making their own projects
Dell Computers = design your own specifications for your new computer and track its individual progress as it is assembled and delivered

virtualize: give me the effect without the effort

New Interpretation
to make virtual, virtual = to give the effect of
New Definition: give me the effect without the effort
Definition: Things that produce the effect of other things in new and easier ways

Product Examples
Liquid Paper = a virtual eraser, doesn’t get rid of the error underneath, merely covers over it
Sony Playstation Games = be absorbed into a virtual reality through video games played at home
Sony’s Cebu = a toy that responds to limited commands and becomes a virtual pet

Download 'Every New Thing 2.0' (pdf 38kb)
Read 'Every New Product' (Version 1.2)


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