Last year when we released the video "Value Matters: Innovation Has Direction" a writer at Core 77 introduced it with this design school mantra: "People don't want toasters. What they want is toast." In other words, people want the benefit of toasters (toast). Yet how we make toast hasn’t changed much for nearly a century. Is there a better way?

At least two designers think so. Kim Been created the porcelain portable toaster. It’s a small, handheld device that you glide over bread like a knife. Burcu Bag, Amalia Monica, and Vinay Raj Somashekar designed the flexible Halo Toaster, which rolls up between uses. Both designs take up less space than today’s standard toasters, reflecting the trend toward smaller, urban living spaces. Neither looks like what we’ve come to expect a toaster to look like. What other products could be reimagined to deliver the same benefit in a different way?

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