Designer Spotlight: Ron Rosenman

A Q&A with Frog Design's Senior Design Technologist

June 11, 2013

Screen Shot 2013-06-11 at 9.51.08 AMRon Rosenman is a good friend of littleBits. He lives in New York and works at frog design. We have worked with Ron to beta test littleBits and recently, Ron took a set of littleBits to the frog studio for their Friday Coffee Time, where he introduced littleBits as a collaborative project. Although it took the team a few iterations to perfect the project, it instantly became one of our favorites.

Tell us about your position at frog.

I am a Senior Design Technologist. I focus on interaction prototyping and building UX simulations as part of the design process. Frog has been around [for] over 40 years, designing products and services across many industries. A nice sampling of work can be found here.

In the New York studio we have an informal group called Build-It, who are interested in sensing and physical computing. We created a Kinect Hack for SXSW a few years ago that was pretty popular. 

frog SXSW party – Kinect Human Tetris from frog on Vimeo.

When were you introduced to littleBits?

I think my first encounter with littleBits was at the Eyebeam exhibit when Ayah was a resident there. It was definitely a prototype, but I was really drawn to their modularity, and the idea of making electronics so accessible. I’ve been following the project ever since, and very impressed with how far you’ve come.

What have you created with them?

The Noise Band is the most finished work. We did several studies in preparation for that piece. Mostly just playing around informally seeing what they can do.

Build-It Noise Band from ThisThatLab on Vimeo.

How did the littleBits team building exercise go?

Really well! We have a weekly Friday Coffee Time at frog, which was the perfect setting to introduce the bits to the studio. The premise was that there would be judges who would vote on the best creation, but it turned into free form play. People from all the different disciplines came down and had a great time. And some of the more interesting creations definitely inspired, or were directly integrated into the final project.

What advice can you give people who are interested in creating with littleBits?

Start simply and grow from there. Some of the more nuanced and surprising moments came about from a basic circuit that we gradually expanded. Complexity can emerge from the interaction of several simple elements.

If you’re interested in submitting a team project of your own, visit our project page!