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The CoolBoy - a hand-held, portable drinks cooler

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March 29, 2006

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March 30, 2006 Ian Thompson believes that cooling drinks and keeping them cold for hours days or weeks before they are needed is downright wasteful. So the Northumbria University MA Design student came up with‘The Coolboy’ - and says this is how we will be chilling our drinks in 2020. The ‘Coolboy’ concept is a lightweight device, about the size of a cocktail shaker that plugs into the mains and is fitted inside with cooling cells. The tepid drink is poured through the top, and passes across the cells, which then chill the liquid to a perfectly cool temperature.

The ‘Coolboy’ design is still in its early stages, but Ian is confident it holds the key to how we will be drinking in the future.

Ian, who is 29 and lives in Jesmond, said: “The ‘Coolboy’ concept blends a number of themes that have always interested me, to create a new product. I think the beauty of the ‘Coolboy’ is it flexibility, when some drinks lend them selves to being chilled by ice cubes others don’t, e.g. a beer with some ice cubes?! For the ‘Coolboy’ that’s no problem; just pour your beer through and it’s cold. Give it a rinse under the tap and you’re onto wine or even vodka, just make sure you don’t use the ‘Coolboy’ too much! And have some Alka-Seltzer around for the next morning.

“I would also like to think of the ‘Coolboy’ as a cocktail shaker for the hip urban spy of today, a kind of up to date version of James Bond and his shaken not stirred cocktails. “I’ve always fancied being a spy but never quite got around to it. A spook today is more likely to be seen in a pair of Diesel jeans, carrying an ipod, so why not update his drinking equipment too? I can see him chilling a Hoegaarden or a Mojito through a ‘Coolboy’ after some crazy mission, involving secret documents, snowboards and pretty girls.”

Originally from a hands-on manufacturing and maintenance engineering background, Ian achieved a 1st Class Hons Degree in Industrial Design from Napier University, Edinburgh, and is now studying for an MA in Design at Northumbria University. He currently works as an Industrial Designer within Northumbria University’s Centre for Design Research. Ian has worked as an independent designer on his own projects and also coordinated collaborative conceptual product design projects working with architects and other designers. He says his most memorable experience to date is working with Marks and Spencer on the Home Store concept. He has also worked with Buko and ASDA on a disabled shopping trolley design.

He added: “My degree and post-graduate studies have given me ample knowledge to prove a success in the industrial design field, providing me with the basics in applying design processes and methods to live briefs and furthering my own interests with personal speculative projects.”

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About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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