This posture-perfect chair is crowdsourced from several hundred butts

Kram Weissharr R18 Ultra Chair

You know those awkwardly warm seats on the train or bus that creep you out seconds after you sit down but you don’t really have the will to change seats? As it turns out, that kind of heat from your behind can be crowdsourced to create a chair that comfortably fits the average person while helping them maintain a balanced posture.

As part of a design project at the 2012 Milan Furniture Fair, German designers Clemens Weisshaar and Reed Kram connected a chair with stress analysis monitors and asked various patrons to have a seat for some detailed information. Coordinating with carmaker Audi, the prototype of the carbon fiber and aluminum R18 Ultra Chair recorded in heat map the and weight applied to the back, seat, and legs of the chair to determine the areas of stress most received. The data was later used to construct a chair that will be materially and structurally efficient and comfortable enough to provide the most accommodating chair to date.

Kram Weissharr R18 Ultra Chair during crowdsourcingThe idea is similar to custom sports car seats where drivers sit on the foam mold of the chair several times so the topographic data of body is observed. The mold is curved to perfectly support the shape of the driver’s back and behind for an individualized seating before manufacturers complete the chair with leather outfittings. With this chair crowdsourcing, Audi and Kram/Weisshaar took this method to a more consumer level by introducing the concept on a furniture standpoint.

From what we can see in the heat map of stress on the chair, some people certainly need posture improvement while others barely touched the back of the chair. Heavier sitters also are likely to cause more stress on the legs of the chair, which will prompt the designers to build a stand that makes good use of material while sturdy enough to support various weights.

Staying true to the Audi Ultra name, the designers promise the chair will be lightweight and streamlined across the board. The prototype arrived in a flatpack and assembled on-site, so perhaps the same model will be applied after the modified version is revealed. The unveiling of crowdsourced R18 Ultra Chair will be available at Design Miami in December of this year, we where also hope pricing information will be available for the most over-engineered chair to date.

Watch the video below and see how the movements of one subject affects the chair’s stress points. More videos can be found at the official project page.

Cars

How VR, 3D modeling, and craftsmanship help Ducati design alluring motorcycles

Passion fuels Ducati's team of designers as its members create some of the most alluring bikes on the planet. Digital Trends went behind the scenes in Ducati's design studio to learn how the company balances craftsmanship and tech.
Home Theater

Reasons not to mount a TV over your fireplace (and other helpful tips)

Mounting a TV above your fireplace may be popular and it might even seem appealing, but we have some concerns. We've got a list of reasons why placing your digital picture machine over a fire should be avoided, if at all possible.
Outdoors

High-tech but low-key, these are the amazing materials inside your outdoor gear

We take a look at some of the materials that are used in the creation of our favorite outdoor gear, making our jackets, sleeping bags, tents, and other items warmer, drier, and more comfortable even in harsh weather conditions.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Grow veggies indoors and shower more efficiently

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Movies & TV

Hilarious new Kickstarter aims to fix Scorcese’s last scene in The Departed

A fan of The Departed and apparent hater of rat-as-symbolism imagery has launched a Kickstarter campaign to digitally erase the rodent from the end of Martin Scorsese’s 2006 movie.
Emerging Tech

Baristas beware, Bbox cafe uses robots to brew your morning coffee

Want your morning coffee and pastry prepared by robot? Bbox, a new coffee shop in downtown Berkeley, California, lets customers place their order by app and then uses automation to take care of the rest.
Emerging Tech

This ridiculous new flamethrower makes Elon Musk’s look like a cigarette lighter

The XL18 Flamethrower is a flame-shooting beast on steroids, capable of firing off bursts of flame more than 110 feet in length. The best part? You can order it over the internet today.
Emerging Tech

SpaceX just nailed its most challenging Falcon 9 rocket landing to date

If you've been following the SpaceX launch calendar, you know this week marks the first launch from Cape Canaveral in two months. We have the details on where you can watch the launch live.
Emerging Tech

Touchdown! Japan successfully lands its Hayabusa2 spacecraft on asteroid Ryugu

Japan's space agency has just completed the latest stage of its extraordinarily complex mission, successfully landing its Hayabusa2 spacecraft on an asteroid millions of miles from Earth.
Emerging Tech

Delivery drones: NASA to test advanced traffic control system for cities

Delivery drone services are edging closer as NASA prepares to demonstrate its advanced drone traffic management system, which it claims offers safe and effective control of autonomous aircraft in urban areas.
Emerging Tech

Kickstarter campaign aims to help make 3D-printed space habitats for Mars

Mars X-House is an ambitious project that's intended to create a prototype future Mars habitat using 3D printing. And, thanks to a new Kickstarter campaign, you can be a part of it.
Emerging Tech

Engineer turns his old Apple lle into an wheeled robot, and even gives it a sword

How do you give new life to a 30-year-old computer? Software engineer Mike Kohn found a way by transforming his old Apple IIe into a wheeled robot. Check it out in all its 1980s glory.
Emerging Tech

Virgin Galactic completes another test flight, this time with a passenger

Virgin Galactic chief astronaut instructor Beth Moses rode the company's spacecraft as a passenger on Friday, a key milestone toward commercial availability of the flights later this year. Moses rode along to test "cabin design elements."
Emerging Tech

Controversial CRISPR baby experiment may have resulted in brain enhancements

China’s CRISPR baby saga continues to rage on. Scientists have now expressed concerns that the procedure may have also resulted in changes in the babies’ brains affecting cognition.