[Event] Recap: IxDA Pittsburgh January Event

25 Jan 2009 - 8:44pm
681 reads
Jack L. Moffett
2005

The evening of Thursday, January 22nd found the Pittsburgh local group
participating in "Back of the Envelope: A Sustainable Restaurant
Crawl". The event was organized by the Eco-Design Guild (eDG), an
organization that got its start at an IxDA event last Spring. The
local chapters of AIGA and IDSA also participated.

Things kicked off at 6:30 when around 40 attendees crowded into Oh
Yeah! Ice Cream & Coffee Co. ( http://www.customswirl.com/ ) This
particular venue, while small, contains an eclectic mix of recycled
materials as both construction and decor, and serves local dairy
products. Introductions were made while sampling the coffee. The
evening's program was passed out—printed on the backs of used
envelopes. Art Groll, a long-established paper representative in
Pittsburgh spoke about the top 10 things designers can do to be
environmentally friendly. This portion of the program had a Graphic
Design bent to it and was sponsored by the AIGA.

At 7:15, we moved across the street to Casbah ( http://www.bigburrito.com/casbah/
), a mediterranean kitchen and wine bar that uses local ingredients.
The head chef spoke briefly about their philosophy in buying locally
while we sampled hors d'oeuvres and wine. Then Ryan Walsh, principal
of Restorative Events ( http://www.restorativeevents.com/ ), a
production and consulting firm that produces environmentally friendly
events, spoke about sustainability more from an Industrial Design
point of view. As you may have guessed, this portion of the program
was sponsored by IDSA.

When 8:00 rolled around, everyone made their way down the street to
Abay ( http://www.abayrestaurant.com/ ), an Ethiopian restaurant that
was opened with the goal of bringing more cultural diversity to the
city. We took our seats around the communal table and shared large
trays that must have held samples from about every dish on the menu,
and of course, more wine. This final stop was hosted by our own IxDA
local group. Onny Chatterjee and Bill Bernstein had a large map of
Pittsburgh on the wall (labeled using Ecofont - http://www.ecofont.eu/ecofont_en.html
), and we had 30% recycled post-consumer waste Post-it Notes on the
tables. As we ate, we wrote down all of the sustainable businesses and
other relevant organizations in the Pittsburgh area and placed them on
the map in their relative locations. The eDG is planning on making
this information available on the web.

It was great to see designers from four different organizations coming
together not only to network and socialize, but to share and learn
ways we can improve our community and the world. The party was
starting to break up around 10:00. My photos from the event can be
seen at: http://gallery.me.com/jackmoffett#100096

Jack L. Moffett
Interaction Designer
inmedius
412.459.0310 x219
http://www.inmedius.com

There is no good design that is not
based on the understanding of people.

- Stefano Marzano
CEO of Philips Design

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