A visit to HP’s Design Studio, where the team takes creative leaps and deliberate steps in the quest for good-looking and eco-positive products.
Northampton, MA --News Direct-- HP Inc.
In a conference room at HP’s Silicon Valley campus, a cornucopia of materials is placed all around. On the table and walls are swatches in fashion-forward colors (teal green, scarlet, rose gold) and novel textures (mycelium foam, crushed seashells, recycled rubber from running tracks, fabric from recycled jeans). Even more unexpected: pairs of high-end athletic shoes, and lots of them; luggage and backpacks, teapots and totes; stacks of gorgeous coffee-table books on syllabus ranging from furniture to architecture — all to inspire the look and feel of devices that HP has yet to imagine.
Being able to touch, test, and debate about these items in person is part of the process, a creative collaboration Global Head of Design & Sustainability Stacy Wolff and his talented team of designers are grateful to be able to do side by side again inside their light-filled studio in Palo Alto. With each iteration of an HP laptop, desktop, or gaming rig, they endeavor to push the bounds of sustainable design while offering consumers a device that they’re proud to use each day.
For the last few years, HP’s design work has gained recognition, evidenced by the studio’s gleaming rows of awards. But there’s not a single name listed on any of them. “Everything we do is by collective effort. We win as a group, and we lose as a group,” says Wolff. “If you won an award, someone else had to do maybe a less glamorous job to deliver you the freedom to do that.”
The team of 73 creatives in California, Houston, and Taipei are from backgrounds as varied as design, engineering, graphics, anthropology, poetry, ergonomics, and sports journalism. There’s one thing they have in common, though. Disagreements are dealt with by amping up their communication and doubling down on what they know to be their source of truth. “If we let the customer be the North Star, it tends to resolve almost all conflict,” Wolff says.
HP’s head of design has led a massive shift in how HP approaches design since its split from HPE in 2015, steering the company toward a more unified, yet distinct, visual identity, and a willingness to experiment with both luxury and mass-market trends. Wolff’s team is responsible for delivering the award-winning HP Spectre and ENVY lines, including the HP Spectre 13 (at the time of launch, hailed as the world’s thinnest laptop); the HP Spectre Folio (the first laptop with a leather chassis); the HP ENVY Wood series (made with sustainably-sourced, genuine wood inlays); and the HP Elite Dragonfly (the world’s first notebook to use ocean-bound plastic). Among the honors: In 2021, HP received seven Green Good Design Awards from the European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and the Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design.
Today, Wolff and his team are in their recently outfitted studio, which opened late last year in HP’s Palo Alto headquarters. In the common areas, there is an inviting atmosphere of warm wood and soft, textured surfaces. Designers are tapping away at their keyboards, breaking off to share quick sketches and notes in an informal huddle around a digital whiteboard. In the gallery — an airy space that looks a lot like an upscale retail store — foam models, proof-of concept designs, and an array of laptop parts, keycaps, speakers, and circuit boards are splayed out on stark white countertops. Light from the courtyard pours in from the floor-to-ceiling windows.
“The studio has become a home,” says Wolff, who’s been with the company for 27 years. “When you think about a house, where does everybody go? Where is the love, and creation, and the stories being told? All that is shared in the kitchen.”
Granted this kitchen also has a really, really nice espresso maker.
The new space, like the kitchen, bubbles with energy and fuels the collaborative process, which was somewhat stifled when everyone was working remotely. “Creativity is a magical thing,” Wolff says. “That’s why it’s so important to design in a common space. We took for granted the process of organic product development. When you work from home, it becomes almost serial development. There’s no serendipity.”
After months of improvising the tools they needed to work together, the team finds that being back in the office is where they can be most creative and efficient. “Designers are very hands-on,” says Kevin Massaro, vice president of consumer design. “Everything in the studio is tactile.”
Yet, the time spent working remotely produced valuable insights that are informing future products, such as a PC camera disaggregated from the monitor so it can be manipulated to capture something on a person’s desk (like a sketch); super-wide-screen displays with integrated light bars that offer a soft backlight for people working late at night; and monitors that adjust to taller heights, to better accommodate a standing desk.
In accurate years, the team has also turned its sights toward defining — and redefining — what sustainable design means for HP. In 2021 HP announced some of the most aggressive and comprehensive climate goals in the technology industry, bringing new complexity — and new gravitas — to what Wolff and his team are aiming to accomplish.
“You’re no longer just a company that’s manufacturing technology, you’re a company that’s helping to better people’s lives,” Wolff says. Working toward HP’s goal to become the most sustainable and just technology company is less about integrating greater percentages of recycled materials into new products, and more about an accounting of the entire life cycle of a device, from the electricity used over its lifetime and the minerals mined for its batteries, to the chemicals used in its painted powder coating and what exactly happens to a product when returned for recycling.
When a customer opens a box made of 100% recycled molded fiber packaging to reveal the premium Elite Dragonfly PC, which made waves for being the first notebook with ocean-bound plastic, that’s where this team’s efforts become tangible.
The Dragonfly isn’t only a triumph of design, it proved that circularity can be an integral part of mass-manufacturing for personal electronics. The third generation of that same device, released in March (see “How the HP Elite Dragonfly Took Flight,” page 36), raised the bar for battery life and weight with a new process that fuses aluminum and magnesium in the chassis, the latter of which is both lightweight and 100% recyclable.
This was a feat of engineering alchemy, says Chad Paris, Global Senior Design Manager. “Not only do you have different properties of how these metals work together, it was a challenge to make sure that it’s seamless,” he says. The team innovated and came up with a thermofusion process that lends a premium feel to the Dragonfly while keeping its weight at just a kilogram.
This inventiveness dovetails with Wolff’s pragmatic approach to sustainability. Not only does each change have to scale for a manufacturer the size of HP, it has to strike the right balance between brand integrity and forward-leaning design. “We can take waste and make great things,” Wolff says, gesturing at a pile of uniform plastic pellets that used to be a discarded bottle. “But ultimately, we want our products to live longer, so we’re designing them to have second lives.”
A sustainable HP notebook, no matter what materials it’s made from, needs to look and feel like HP made it, says Sandie Cheng, Global CMF Director. The CMF (colors, materials, finishes) library holds thousands of fabric swatches, colored tiles, and paint chips and samples, which Cheng uses as inspiration for the look and feel of fine details such as the touch pad on a laptop, the smooth glide of a hinge, or the sparkle of the HP logo peeking through a laser-etched cutout.
Cheng and her team head out on scouting trips to gather objects from a variety of places and bring them back to the studio, composing their own ever-changing mood board. In the CMF library, there are Zen-like ceramic-and-bamboo vessels picked up from an upscale housewares boutique in San Francisco alongside scores of upholstery samples in chic color palettes, hunks of charred wood, and Nike’s Space Hippie trainers.
Most of these materials will never make it to production, but they offer up a rich playground for the team’s collective imagination. Foam made from mycelium (i.e., fungi threads) is an organic material that can be grown in just two weeks. Perhaps one day it could be used as material to cover the Dragonfly chassis, even if right now it couldn’t survive the daily wear and tear we put on our PCs. Or its spongy, earthy texture might inspire a new textile that lends a softer feel to an otherwise hard-edged device on your desk.
“We as designers have to think outside the box to stay creative and inspired, but we also have to develop materials that can be used for production,” Cheng says. “It’s a balance of staying creative and also being realistic.”
The same holds true for how the materials are made. Manufacturing with fabric is notorious for producing massive amounts of waste because of the way patterns are cut, but HP wants to change that with its own soft goods, such as the HP Renew Sleeve. It’s made with 96% recycled plastic bottle material, and importantly, the 3D knitting process used to make the laptop sleeve leaves virtually zero waste, generating only a few stray threads.
Earlier this month, Cheng and her team went to Milan, Italy, for fresh inspiration. They attended Salone del Mobile 2022, one of the industry’s largest textile, furniture, and home design trade shows, to get a sense of the big design trends of the next few years, including what Cheng calls “the centered home,” which evokes feelings of comfort, coziness, and calm.
She explains that the blurring of work and life means that what consumers want in their next device, whether it’s one issued by their company or selected from a store shelf, is something that looks and feels like it fits into their personal spaces. “Your PC should be really versatile and adapt to whichever environment you’re in and how you want to use it,” she says.
Consumers also want to feel good about their purchase, which increasingly means choosing brands that care for the finite resources on our shared planet. A 2021 report by research firm IDC found that 43% of 1,000 decision-makers said sustainability was a critical factor in their tech-buying choices.
As the Personal Systems designers charge ahead into a sustainable future — whatever it brings — they’ll surely do it in their iterative, measured, and collaborative way.
“When it comes to sustainability, it’s all about forward progress, and everyone’s job is a sustainability job,” Wolff says. “As founder Dave Packard said, ‘The betterment of our society is not a job to be left to the few. It’s a responsibility to be shared by all.’”
View additional multimedia and more ESG storytelling from HP Inc. on 3blmedia.com
View source version on newsdirect.com: https://newsdirect.com/news/how-hp-designers-think-about-sustainable-pcs-440842278
The winner of the DesignCon 2020 award was Istvan Novak, Principal Signal and Power Integrity Engineer at Samtec. Aside from his impressive career as an engineer, Novak has been a long time participant at DesignCon. In the following interview, Design News talks with Novak about past and future trends in Signal Integrity (SI) and Power Integrity (PI), as well as what the award means to him.
Design News: How has the signal integrity (SI) industry and technology changed in the last 20 years?
Istvan Novak: One change is the tremendous increase in data transfers, which has meant faster CPU clock speeds, data rates and cable signals. The bandwidth requirement is also exploding. Perhaps more importantly, the semiconductor industry has continued to change. Twenty years ago, Moore’s Law was in full force. Now it is significantly slowing down. I won’t call it dead yet. We still see improvement. However, the demand for bandwidth did not slow down. Instead, it actually continued to go up in terms of percentage rate. People have found other ways of satisfying increasing bandwidth. One example is by using different modulation techniques for to Excellerate signal integrity such as pulse amplitude modulation (PAM) for stage 4. This technique is now excepted at the very high end of the data speed range. PAM-4 is a modulation technique whereby 4 distinct pulse amplitudes are used to convey the information.
Image Source: Keysight / PAM-4
Design News: Have power integrity (PI) challenges been addressed at the same pace as ones for signal integrity (SI)?
Istvan Novak: There have been major differences between SI and PI over the last 20 years. SI issues evolved from the electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) discipline sometime in late 80s to early 90s. In contrast, PI didn’t become an issue until 10 to 15 years later. What this tells us is that SI has had more time to mature. Today, there are a lot of SI standards and guidance available for high-speed signal designers. This is in very stark contrast to PI designs. Today, PI is probably in the same state or maturity level as SI was in the mid- to late-90s.
I have second thoughts as to whether PI will ever be as developed, as mature, as SI. The reason is that PI is definitely more complex than SI, which has come a long way. Back in the early 90s, high-speed signal integrity design was considered black magic. The problem was that people didn’t approach things systematically to understand what happens and why. Once the underlying physics were understood, the subject was no longer considered black magic. Technical works like Howard Johnson's very popular book on Signal Integrity helped a great deal.
The reason why we may not expect our understanding of PI to even catch up to where SI is today is that the PI problem definition is far more convoluted. In other words, it cannot be isolated in such a nice way as it was for SI.
Design News: Why is that the case? Why is PI more complex, more convoluted than SI?
Istvan Novak: For high-speed data signal integrity, we don’t typically worry about what happens to the signal when it goes into the silicon (chip). Most of the signal measurement and other checking for SI happens in the passive interconnects like cables, sockets and interfaces. And the passive interconnects can be treated in isolation from the rest of the system. They can be treated in segments.
It’s not that easy to break PI into smaller, easier to handle pieces in order to understand it. Consider a high-power and high-speed CPU. If you turn over a chip or the board, you’ll see a number of high-speed I/O pins with one dedicated return pin. You’ll also have power pins that are not very isolated or as numerous. Further, the ground plane is not separated between the high current and the high-speed sections. We like to keep the power planes intact. With high frequencies and high-speed signals, we don’t necessarily need to consider how the return signals spread over a large distance or plane because they will not.
This again is in stark contrast to power integrity (PI), where power related noise has a way bigger range of interaction from high frequencies all the way down to DC. This noise may interfere with the high-speed signal. My point is that we cannot easily, physically separate blocks of power. That is probably one of the reasons why standards or any general guidance are harder to come by for PI design.
Design News: Will improvements in models and simulation tools help us to better model and simulate more complex PI issues?
Istvan Novak: I believe it absolutely will help. But I’m not sure if underlying limitations will change because designs are driven by competitiveness. Would it be possible to design a system were the power can be compartmentalized and segmented very nicely? Yes, it is technically doable. It would be just much more complex. While it might be easier to design systems with segmented power elements, it would also require bigger, probably heavier and more numerous components. This is why is wouldn’t be competitive in the marketplace today.
This is why people try to push the limit on PI design, to allow all of these interactions I mentioned earlier to take place. Using detailed simulation and measurements, these detailed interactions can be taken into account. But it takes a lot of time to simulate and measure these interactions.
Design News: What activities are critical to ensure designs meet both SI and PI requirements?
Istvan Novak: Simulation and measurement validation are critical design activities. But equally important is understanding. These three activities are needed to ensure a good design and engineered approach. However, very often we may see people trusting tools blindly. They assume that the tools will deliver the correct answer to what they thought they asked from the tool. Such a believe can be extremely misleading. Even developers with experience and lots of support from the tool developers can be misled. It takes a lot of time to get a decent correlation to the measurement. But even if the correlations are good we must ask ourselves: “Do we understand why all that is happening? Can we explain to ourselves?”
It is true that, when I start my car and drive it, I don’t necessarily need to understand how the car is working on the inside. That is because the details have been worked out by the automotive designers. But the people who designed the car still need a very good understanding of what is happening and why.
Design News: In this age of reference designs and intellectual property, some would argue that designers don’t need to understand things like SI and PI for their designs to work.
Istvan Novak: The world is going toward simplifying the process in which, for instance, a big vendor marketing a new chip may say; “You don’t need to do SI. Here is a reference design - just copy it and you will be happy.” And that is a working solution, if the reference design is done correctly. If so, it saves a lot of time as people don’t have to recreate all of the groundwork to understand the SI and PI details. However, anyone who relies on this solution for multiple generations of system design should agree that it carries a big risk.
First of all, the users who rely too heavily on reference designs may become depended or at the mercy of the silicon vendor. If anything goes wrong such as a slight change in design or requirements or even an honest mistake, then not understanding SI and PI design might cause big problems. Companies that lack or don’t want to invest in design resources and rely heavily on reference designs are creating a very strong dependence on others.
Again, I’m not against it, I’m just pointing it out that we need to understand that a dependency can be hard to break.
Design News: You’ve been an active participant at DesignCon for many years. How has DesignCon changed in the last 20 years? Where might it or should it go in the future?
Istvan Novak: I remember that the very first predecessor to DesignCon was a marketing roadshow from HP. In the early 90s, HP trade show busses with their equipment would travel around. As you probably remember, HP broke up at the end of the millennium into a computer part (HP) and an instrumentation part (Agilent). Later still, the instrumentation part became known as Keysight.
I still remember one such roadshow which was turning into a conference when they began to invited consultants and people who used their equipment to make speeches, deliver lectures and present technical papers. And that is how we started.
Back then, the main high-speed data transmission syllabus were cross-talk, simultaneous switching noise, reflections, matching. Today, SI syllabus are focused on glass weaves and challenges between passive interconnect and the silicon.
Design News: What do you mean by glass weaves?
Istvan Novak: A printed circuit board (PCB) laminate has a glass fabric embedded in it. The glass fabric is a woven structure like the fabric in our clothes. A PCB is a 3D structure which is emerged in epoxy resin and different epoxy materials will behave differently electrically. This problem first started to become notices in the early 2000s. It is still one of the major syllabu still ongoing it these days.
Design News: So, what does the future hold?
Istvan Novak: In SI, people would still like faster and faster interconnects and more and more bandwidth. Both can definitely be done in a number of different ways. But each solution has its own limits.
Another trend is the replacement of copper (Cu) PCB connections and board traces with optical elements. But the question of when optics will replace Cu connections has been going on since the mid-90s. The question seems to be asked every three year and the answer has been that the Cu signaling connects have continued to Excellerate – pushing out the need for optical. The improvements have gone hand in hand with the improvement of the silicon. Better silicon can handle more degradation on the passive channel, so we don’t need to switch over to the optics yet.
There is another reason why the switchover to optics is not happening. If I just look at the transmission medium, then maybe optical connections might be a better choice. The problem is that making the translation from the electrical domain to the optical domain takes a lot of power. Today’s big data communication servers dissipate kilowatts of power. Switching over to an optical interconnect would require a significant amount of power per channel on hundreds or maybe thousands of connections. We cannot cool the servers any further and that is why the search for a better interconnect will continue.
Another trend that will continue is the replacement of portions of the printed circuit boards with cables, whether it is Cu or optical cables. And in parallel to this trend will be the gradual introduction to Cu cables and optical interconnects inside of our system boxes.
Design News: What do you mean by Cu interconnects in the chassis?
Istvan Novak: In the traditional set up, the Cu cables are outside of the box, e.g., a PC or server. Inside the box is the PCB which is used among other things to carry the signals. But the PCB are getting to the end of their capabilities unless some significant technological changes happen. This may result in more cables inside the chasses be it Cu or optical cables.
Design News: Let return to any future trends in SI and PI.
Istvan Novak: Additionally, the sophistication of silicon signal processing will be increased. Twenty-five years ago, there were the telephone modems for Internet dial up that ran at 56 Kbs. The digital signal processors at the time had to run at a much higher clock rate compared to the modems, which wasn’t a problem as the CPU clock speeds were already very high.
Now I see the need for more and more processing capabilities, probably inside the silicon.
One the PI challenge, I want to be optimistic that progress will be made but I’m not sure. I hope at least some baby steps will happen with PI.
Finally, AI seems to be coming. It would definitely change the we are getting to the point where the human brain may not be able to handle the big data designs that are being created. AI might be able to help.
Design News: You have been selected as the Engineer-of-the- Year for DesignCon 2020. Why is that an important award?
Istvan Novak:. What I’ve noticed from my many years participating in DesignCon and its predecessor it that, even though this is a worldwide conference, DesignCon has become like a family. It’s a place were very good experts mostly from the industries but also from academia have come together. I am very much pleased that this community chose me as engineer of the year. But it’s more than that. As my friend Albert-Laszlo Barabasi shows in his book (“The Formula”), once you have excellence in any given space, the selection of a winner is almost arbitrary. So, I offer my congratulations to all of the finalist. They are all excellent and great and, in this regard, any one of them could have easily won the title. This is how I feel.
Learn about all of the 2020 award finalists.
John Blyler is a Design News senior editor, covering the electronics and advanced manufacturing spaces. With a BS in Engineering Physics and an MS in Electrical Engineering, he has years of hardware-software-network systems experience as an editor and engineer within the advanced manufacturing, IoT and semiconductor industries. John has co-authored books related to system engineering and electronics for IEEE, Wiley, and Elsevier.
Siemens PLM and HP Inc. have created a partnership to advance their 3D printing tools for industrial design and production. Siemens has created an HP-certified additive manufacturing (AM) software module. The module, Siemens NX AM for HP Multi Jet Fusion, is now an extension to Siemens’ solution for additive manufacturing.
Earlier this year, Siemens announced a partnership with Stratasys on 3D print technology. Clearly Siemens wants a major role as 3D printing moves into manufacturing. “To industrialize additive manufacturing technology, we have to become a major vendor in design and manufacturing. We have to manage and distribute 3D print technology in a secure way,” Andreas Saar, VP of manufacturing engineering solutions at Siemens PLM, told Design News. “That’s why we’re intensively investing in it, and that’s why we partner with 3D printing companies. It was clear from the beginning we have to partner with strategic vendors who have the know-how from the technology side.”
The NX AM module will let users develop and manage parts in a single software environment for their HP 3D printing projects. The goal is to avoid costly and time-consuming data conversions and third-party tools while improving design-to-finished-part workflow efficiency. Siemens and HP are also aligning for future technology in order to escape the limitations of traditional manufacturing to produce new products at faster speeds.
Siemens views additive manufacturing as a technology that will alter the world of design and manufacturing. “This technology will change how products are imagined and designed, and it will change how we tool our factories,” said Saar. “It is having a major impact on how products are designed and manufactured. It’s important that Siemens PLM is heavily involved.”
Saar noted that additive manufacturing has traversed the hurdles that have previously held back 3D printing as a production technology. “In order to bring AM into production, you have to be capable of replacing a previous technology in both time and cost. You have to produce parts in amounts at better or lessor costs, and at greater speed. That’s the advantage of HP’s technology,” he said. “On the plastics side, you can print 30,000 or 40,000 parts cheaper than producing a mold. Also, you can print the same quality. You didn’t have that before. The quality has improved.”
Until recently, 3D printed parts were consider sub-standard in strength. Advances in materials have dramatically changed that equation. “Developments in the materials side is the main difference in part strength,” said Saar. “We’re working with major material vendors to really stabilize the digital package – a combination of material process and printing.”
So far, individual industries are turning to additive manufacturing to solve very different and specific needs. “Each industry has a different focus for additive manufacturing. The goal for aerospace is performance and light-weighting. You can build 3D parts you could not produce before,” said Saar. “This is a major breakthrough in aerospace. You can develop powder combinations to build material recipes that you couldn’t before. On the medical side, the goal is individualization; for consumer products, it’s mass customization.”
Partnership Brings Ease of Use
The Siemens AM software module was designed to let NX users combine design, optimization, simulation, and preparation of print jobs while bringing in the inspection processes for HP Multi Jet Fusion 3D printed parts in a managed environment. Users can load multiple 3D part models into NX, and auto-nest and submit them to an HP 3D printer in a single environment and with a minimum of steps.
Rob Spiegel has covered automation and control for 17 years, 15 of them for Design News. Other syllabus he has covered include supply chain technology, alternative energy, and cyber security. For 10 years, he was owner and publisher of the food magazine Chile Pepper.
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The HP Pavilion 14 is the biggest Chromebook yet, but does the larger screen estate make it the best Google-powered laptop to buy?
Google's affordable, web-based Chromebook has yet to venture out of 12-inch screen territory until now as HP enters the Google-running laptop fray for the first time with the HP Pavilion 14 Chromebook.
The new model is priced slightly higher than the Acer C7, the nifty Samsung Series 3 and the Google Chromebook Pixel, but are the extra couple of inches enough to make this stand out from the Chromebook crowd and make it a more desirable investment?
If the Google Chromebook Pixel is the notebook that other Chromebooks should be measured by in the design stakes, the Pavilion would feature quite low in comparison.
It lacks the svelte aluminium aesthetics of the Pixel, opting for a more serious look with its lightly glossed black plastic chassis, which isn't in danger of being nominated for a T3 Design of the Year award any time soon.
When you lift the lid you'll find a chiclet-style keyboard, which looks not too dissimilar to the kind of typing domain we've seen on previous Chromebook offerings, which means it delivers similar levels of comfort and travel for long periods of key tapping.
The trackpad has a dimpled design that does offer nice traction but can feel a little rough under the finger.
There are plenty of onboard connections located on either side of the body with three USB 2.0 ports in total, a HDMI port, Ethernet, SD card reader and a headphone/mic jack.
On the storage front there's a 16GB solid-state drive, which HP claims helps the faster loading times and is backed up by 100GB of free storage via Google Drive for two years.
At just 20mm thick and weighing in at 1,800g, the extra couple of display inches does make the Pavilion 14 feel like a much heavier prospect to carry around in a rucksack, despite maintaining a relatively slender form factor.
So what do you get for the extra inches? Well, the 14-inch BrightView LED Backlit HD display musters up the same 1366x768 screen resolution as the Samsung Series 3 Chromebook, which falls some way behind the £1,000 Pixel.
Clarity levels are far from jaw-dropping, but it does offer a suitable viewing environment for everyday tasks. Viewing angles are decent for watching video, which can be affected by some glare and in terms of vibrancy there are tablets that can do a much better job.
Nothing has drastically changed on the Chrome Web Store front with more apps making the transition from Google Play and now Google+ integration means you can now see recommendations from people in your circles.
There are still only a select few Google apps that have any use in offline mode and despite having an HD webcam that does deliver great viewing in low lighting just as HP claims, there is still no sign of a Skype app on the Store.
Booting up in a matter of seconds, the Pavilion 14 is also a quick worker establishing a Wi-Fi connection and turns on instantly when in sleep mode. Powered by a dualcore Intel Celeron 847 processor with Intel HD Graphics it's more than suitable to handle general web browsing, running apps like Google Drive and playing browser-based games.
The 2GB of RAM means it can handle multitasking similarly to the Acer C7 and the Samsung Series 3 resulting in some signs of strain when you have several demanding services running at once, but generally it does a good job if you've gone a bit tab happy.
The Pavilion offers a not so impressive 4 hours 15 minutes, which is less than the Pixel and significantly less than the Samsung Series 3 Chromebook.
For general use browsing the web, using the Google Drive word processor and watching YouTube videos it more than meets that battery life claim but does mean keeping hold of that power adaptor if you plan to use it through the day.
When we streamed HD film content from Netflix on full charge, within an hour the power was down to just a single hour of battery, so if you are planning to use it for that, you might be disappointed.
The HP Pavilion 14 Chromebook - which has a slightly higher price tag than most of its Google OS-running compatriots - manages to carry out the everyday computing tasks, but simply doesn't have anything in the specs and performance department that makes it a better option.
Yes, the screen is bigger which might appeal to some who are intrigued by the prospect of cloud-based computing and want something more multimedia-friendly, but the extra screen estate does not mask the poor battery life, the uninspiring design and the fact that it is less portable than other Chromebooks.
Quite simply, there's not enough that stands out with the HP Pavilion 14 to warrant the investment.
HP Pavilion 14 Chromebook release date: Out now
HP Pavilion 14 Chromebook Price: £250
The internet is practically infinite. With that size comes the ability to learn just about anything, from how to change a tire to how trade tariffs will impact long-term economic growth. For business owners, there are endless resources to further business education. No matter what role you’re in now or what stage your business is in, there are several ways to learn new skills and business concepts for the future.
A lot of these online resources are free, and you can learn at your own pace. This means you can focus your necessary attention on growing your business or improving in your current role while studying on the side. Regardless of what you want to learn, it’s easy to get access to university and college courses for no charge.
Courses on Coursera are taught by leading experts and instructors from the world’s best universities. Business owners have access to video lectures, community discussion forums and auto-graded and peer-reviewed assignments. There’s a wide-range of content, from free to paid online, university-recognized degrees. There are several tracks and hundreds of courses to choose from. syllabus range from programs like Excel to business practices like financial accounting. Coursera offers both paid and free courses, depending on what you’re looking to learn.
Learn more at Coursera.org.
Business owners can enroll in various free online courses from top institutions around the globe with edX. You don’t have to apply for individual applications, courses are open 24/7 to join, and you can take courses on your own schedule. These courses are taught by university experts but are non-credit courses. You can get a Verified certificate to prove you’ve mastered the class and concepts, however. Business courses range from critical thinking to data modeling. There are also courses in Spanish.
Learn more at edX.org.
Hello Fearless is an online school for female entrepreneurs. It provides courses and networking opportunities for women entrepreneurs looking to advance their careers. The website’s educational component, Boss School, has educated more than 175,000 entrepreneurs. It’s a 90-day course that provides real-world education, mentors for future growth and community support. There are limited spots, so you’ll have to apply and tell Hello Fearless a bit about your business. If you’re looking for more online-based learning, there are inspirational articles plus other content on Hello Fearless’s website about entrepreneurship.
Tech giant Hewitt-Packard provides a free training program called HP LIFE (Learning Initiative for Entrepreneurs) to educate business owners on common business challenges and technology solutions. Its courses span communications, finance, marketing and operations. There are even designated courses for startups. HP has partnered with various companies to bring users unique education opportunities. These courses are ideal for new business owners or workers looking to build out knowledge on their current role.
Learn more at life-global.org.
Lynda.com is an online video education website that provides hundreds of courses on a variety of topics. Lynda isn’t free, but they provide a free trial period so you can determine if the service is ideal for your needs. Lynda provides great resources for using software programs, such as Adobe Creative Cloud. It also provides designated learning paths, so you can take courses along a learning path until you’re an expert in that area.
Learn more at lynda.com.
The Open University is a free online learning platform that touches on a variety of topics, such as IT, Design and Law. You can browse OpenLearn’s offering by courses, qualification or subject. It features several business-specific courses, such as business management, economics and marketing. For defined degrees, The Open University may require tuition.
Learn more at open.edu.
The Small Business Administration has been supporting U.S. businesses for generations. In addition to providing loans and other services, the government agency also has an extensive learning center on its website. The courses on SBA are free and are great for young entrepreneurs and small business owners looking to learn business basics. Courses on writing a business plan, learning about financing options and understanding legal requirements are all provided by the Small Business Administration. There are courses on savings plans, social media marketing and sales. The SBA offers a lot of hands-on, real-world business education resources.
Learn more at SBA.gov.
This online platform provides various resources for small businesses. In addition to conference information, business coaching and a business podcast, Thrive Time Show also has a business school. It’s a massive library of 15-minute training courses taught by successful entrepreneurs. The company supports various syllabus ranging from copywriting to financing. While Thrive Time Show’s business school is a good resource, it’s a paid service. The company advertises a $1 per month fee, but you’ll have to talk with a sales representative about cost depending on what you’re looking to learn.
Learn more at ThriveTimeShow.com.
Udacity provides online courses and learning resources for individuals interested in entering the tech industry. This platform focuses on data, artificial intelligence and other trending syllabus in technology. It breaks down learning paths into nanodegrees. Depending on which courses you sign up for, Udacity may charge a fee.
Learn more at Udacity.com.
It’s easy to access all the components of the Latitude 5420 if you ever need to repair or upgrade the machine. The back cover is held on with standard Phillips-head screws and internal plastic clips, which are easy to unscrew and unsnap. You can easily replace the laptop’s memory, storage, battery, fan, wireless card, speakers, and display. If you’re more experienced with repairs or if you work in IT, you can repair or replace nearly any component of the machine. For instance, even the power button is its own module that you can swap out if you remove nearly all the internal components, including the battery, motherboard, and inner frame. This level of repairability is unrivaled in comparison against ultrabooks or MacBooks and not seen on most other laptops available. Dell publishes a nice service manual to make repairs easier.
Turner Labels, a US label converter based in Kentucky, recently announced an innovative label collaboration with Mirror Twin Brewing (MTB). With the help of an HP Indigo 6900 digital press, the companies have developed a craft beer can label utilizing blacklight UV ink.
“Experiencing an ordinary product in a new way enriches the senses and memory,” explains Turner Labels art director, Paige Tiller. He worked in collaboration with the brewery’s artist to design a blacklight label that not only revealed hidden images, but an added benefit of humorous secret messages to create action for customer entertainment. A small blacklight was included with every brewery pack purchase for the consumer to explore the label and share.
The converter first received samples of the HP Indigo UV Inks in Q2 of 2022. The art team quickly went into action to promote to upcoming product release partners. After testing, the exclusive UV ink was confirmed in the label design of a new craft beer named Turnin’ Heads for MTB to elevate the user experience during Lexington Craft Brew Week for their business.
“The goal reached the hands of the community to experience a unique collaboration crafted for a one-of-a-kind label for a one-of-a-kind brewery,” says Tiller.
Mirror Twin Brewery was founded in 2016 and serves customers from both sides of life it says: the tried-and-true beer purists but also the anything-goes experimental adventure seekers. This variety allowed MTB to take an innovative approach to both the brewing, through utilizing various hop agents and variants as well as the packaging, resulting in a product unlike any other in the Lexington area.
This article was created in collaboration with AIPIA (the Active and Intelligent Packaging Industry Association). Packaging Europe and AIPIA are joining forces to bring news and commentary about the active and intelligent packaging landscape to a larger audience. To learn more about this partnership, click here.
Mid-size trucks have typically played second fiddle to their larger and more capable counterparts, but that’s no longer the case as automakers are getting serious about the once neglected segment.
That’s readily apparent after taking a look at the 2023 Chevrolet Colorado, which is built around the idea of more. More power, more capability, more innovation, and more technology.
A Bolder, Silverado-esque Design
Nearly a decade has passed since Chevrolet introduced the second-generation Colorado at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show. Since then, trucks have embraced a rugged aesthetic and the model follows suit as soft curves have been replaced by sharp lines and a more muscular design.
The 2023 Colorado incorporates some Silverado DNA, but it’s not overwhelming and this allows both trucks to have their own unique identity. Speaking of which, Chevy’s mid-sizer has slender headlights and a distinctive grille with a single bar that flows into the front fascia.
Moving further back, designers gave the truck a bulging hood and Silverado-esque fenders. They’re joined by a more traditional beltline as well as a modern rear end with a corner step bumper.
Also Read: 2023 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Packs 310 HP, A 3-Inch Lift And 33-Inch Tires
The Colorado is outfitted with a 5’ 2” bed that features eight cargo tie-downs, two motorcycle/bicycle tire grooves, and an assortment of pockets for holding 2x6s and 2x8s to allow for multi-level storage. Other highlights include an available 110-volt outlet and a tailgate that stops midway down to aid in transporting longer items such as sheets of plywood or OSB.
The tailgate also houses one of the Colorado’s more interesting features. We’re talking about an integrated storage compartment, which resides on the inside of the tailgate’s lower half. To access it, owners simply put the tailgate down and push some releases to reveal a secure, watertight compartment that measures 45 inches (1,143 mm) wide and 4 inches (101 mm) deep. Besides holding tools and equipment like tow straps, it can also function as a cooler.
While the Colorado looks good, variety is no longer the spice of life as the 2023 model will be offered exclusively in a crew cab configuration with a short bed. That’s disappointing as the outgoing model offered an extended cab long box as well as crew cab variants with short and long beds.
A Modern And Relatively High-Tech Interior
Chevrolet interiors have come a long way in the past decade and the 2023 Colorado is a beneficiary of the company’s focus on “elevated” design. While fans should keep their expectations in check, the model is decidedly tech-forward as it comes standard with an 8-inch digital instrument cluster and an 11.3-inch infotainment system with available Google integration.
Buyers will also find a new off-road performance display, which is essentially an infotainment app that provides real-time vehicle information. There are an assortment of settings including a Terrain readout that provides pitch, roll, and tire pressure information. Drivers can also opt for a Baja display, which shows g-force, transfer case status, and a wheel slip indicator.
Putting the screens aside, buyers will find a modern dashboard with circular air vents that recall those found on the Camaro and Blazer EV. They’re joined by a new center console, which features a friction hinge that enables the lid to stay open at any angle.
In terms of equipment, the entry-level WT is pretty basic but it features remote keyless entry, a six-speaker audio system, and rear under-seat storage. Higher-end variants go from there and the Z71 features cloth/leatherette seats with red contrast stitching. The ZR2 goes the extra mile with heated front seats and eight-way power adjustment on the driver’s side.
An assortment of options will be available including a wireless smartphone charger and a dual-zone climate control system. Buyers can also get a sunroof for the first time in a Colorado.
A New 2.7-Liter Turbo With Up To 310 HP
Under the hood, there’s a new turbocharged 2.7-liter four-cylinder that is shared with the larger Silverado.
Three different versions of the engine will be available, and the entry-level unit produces 237 hp (177 kW / 240 PS) and 259 lb-ft (351 Nm) of torque. Both numbers are a sizable improvement over the old 2.5-liter four-cylinder, which cranked out 200 hp (149 kW / 203 PS) and 191 lb-ft (258 Nm).
The mid-level engine comes standard on the Trail Boss and Z71, while also being available on the WT and LT as an option. It packs 310 hp (231 kW / 314 PS) and 390 lb-ft (528 Nm) of torque, which doesn’t sound like a huge improvement as it only has 2 hp (1 kW / 2 PS) more than the old 3.6-liter V6. However, the torque figure has grown a substantial 115 lb-ft (156 Nm) and it puts competitors to shame.
Lastly, the Colorado ZR2 comes with a high-output version of the turbocharged 2.7-liter four-cylinder. It develops 310 hp (231 kW / 314 PS) and 430 lb-ft (582 Nm) of torque, which is remarkable when you consider the 5.0-liter V8 in the Ford F-150 only has 410 lb-ft (555 Nm).
Regardless of which version is selected, all three engines are paired to a second-generation eight-speed automatic transmission. It promises smoother shifting and quicker downshifts.
Chevrolet was tight-lipped about fuel economy during a media briefing yesterday, but the engine runs on regular gasoline and enables the larger Silverado to return 19 mpg city, 22 mpg highway, and 20 mpg combined. Sadly, the company seemed to cast doubt on the return of the diesel engine as officials described the turbocharged four-cylinder as the “perfect blend” of all three previous engines.
New Platform And Improved Capability
The 2023 Chevrolet Colorado rides on a new platform that features a wheelbase spanning 131.4 inches (3,338 mm) for an increase of 3.1 inches (79 mm). Unfortunately, this doesn’t translate into a more spacious cabin as front seat legroom only climbs 0.2 inches (5 mm) while rear seat legroom surprisingly falls 1.1 inches (28 mm).
Chevy didn’t say much about the architecture, but it shares some of the best items with the outgoing pickup including part of the frame. However, officials contend it’s all-new and is made with different tooling.
Chevrolet focused on increasing off-road capability for this generation and the new Trail Boss variant features a 2 inch (51 mm) lift kit, four-wheel drive, and a wider track than the WT, LT, and Z71. They’re joined by a limited-slip differential and 18-inch aluminum wheels wrapped in 32-inch all-terrain tires. This gives the truck 9.5 inches (241 mm) of ground clearance as well as approach, departure, and breakover angles of 30.5, 22.4, and 21 degrees.
Buyers looking for something more extreme can upgrade to the Colorado ZR2. It features a 3 inch (76 mm) lift, Multimatic DSSV dampers, 33-inch tires, and 10.7 inches (272 mm) of ground clearance. The off-roader also has unique bumpers, which help to deliver the model approach, departure, and breakover angles of 38.3, 25.1, and 24.6 degrees. Those numbers largely trail the Jeep Gladiator Rubicon, but they’re pretty impressive for a mid-size pickup.
Speaking of off-roading, the Colorado offers up to 10 different camera views including the segment’s first underbody camera. It enables drivers to see obstacles underneath them, so they can easily avoid them or line their tires up on them.
Depending on the trim, buyers will find up to five different drive modes known as Normal, Tow/Haul, Off-Road, Terrain, and Baja. The first three are self-explanatory, but Terrain mode is designed for low-speed rock crawling. Baja mode is effectively the opposite as it’s for “high-speed desert running.”
When it comes to capability, it’s impossible to ignore towing. Models equipped with the entry-level engine can tow up to 3,500 lbs (1,588 kg), while mid- and high-output variants can tow up to 7,700 lbs (3,493 kg). The latter number is 700 lbs (318 kg) more than the outgoing Colorado V6 and bests the Nissan Frontier by a wide margin.
On the syllabu of towing, Hitch Guidance now comes standard and it provides a camera view with a guideline to help drivers connect to a trailer, boat, or camper. Furthermore, Hitch View and a Trailering app are new additions for 2023.
Driver Assistance Tech Comes Standard, Arrives Early Next Year
While customers won’t find Super Cruise on the Colorado, even the entry-level WT comes equipped with Automatic Emergency Braking, Forward Collision Alert, and Front Pedestrian Braking. They’re joined by IntelliBeam headlights, Lane Keep Assist, and Lane Departure Warning.
Shoppers can order more advanced safety and convenience features including Adaptive Cruise Control, Blind Zone Steering Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Braking, and Rear Pedestrian Alert.
The Chevrolet Colorado will be built in Wentzville, Missouri and arrive at dealerships in the first half of 2023. Additional details will be announced closer to launch, but it’s clear the redesigned truck is a big leap forward.
While some teachers take the summer off, Matthew Duff is working for real engineering companies.
“You’re teaching this thing you’ve never really done. I’m not an engineer. But I’m day in and day out explaining what it’s like to be one,” the Averill Park teacher said. “And unless I find a way to get into that environment, I’m kind of a fraud.”