Ian Reid (In-Class Competition)
Re-envision MacEwan University's 2020/21 Book of the Year — Foe by Iain Reid in the design medium of your choice
The novel Foe by Ian Reid touches on topics such as gender norms, human nature, futuristic technology and the concept of challenging reality. In my typography class, we analyzed this book and were then challenged to create a print design that would push the book's essence to be used as a form of merchandise, advertising or a product paired with the book. I was inspired by the idea of human nature and the limitations of artificial intelligence; I admired the way Reid seamlessly portrayed Junior as a human throughout the book, which made the reader question how we perceive the reality given to us and what can be created. With that being said, I started to think of how artificial intelligence could be comparable to a human and what aspects were so crucial to the creation of Junior, which led me to my product design of an External Memory Chip. This memory chip would be used in Replacement Models to add childhood memories, create storage for further information, have backup storage and improve the functionality of the Replacement Model. When Hen disappears and is replaced with her model, we see the disconnect between her arguments or discomfort with Junior, which are selectively removed from her memory. Unlike humans, these factors can be controlled; our memories make us human. Meanwhile, these Replacement Models can be perfect depending on their given information.
The packaging for the memory chip is based on the Outermore Company from Foe. The colours chosen embody the idea of space, as they are dark, ominous, and mechanical. A quote inspires the abstract line graphics in the book where Junior says, “Specific memories have been returning to me in waves.” This organic design balances the overall clean and ultramodern aesthetic throughout the packaging. The computerized icons and graphics pair accordingly with the robotic typeface. This is needed to differentiate the design from something we could see today instead of something in the future. The naming system abbreviates many of the terms to have a concise branding identity, RepModel refers to the replacement models users would be purchasing the memory chip for. InitationPhase references the headlight scene where Junior is first turned on as a replacement model and the beginning of his consciousness. The quote on the inside package, “We only get a limited amount of mental space in which to store our memories,” is symbolic of human limitations and the beginning of Junior’s consciousness. This product contradicts this, though, as the memory chip expands the possibilities of an abundance of memory space and intelligence,