I'm dutiful about recycling cans and plastic and paper, but I wouldn't have a clue where to start with my computer. But the Bloom laptop, developed by Stanford students, is made to be recycled—it comes apart without tools.

The Bloom laptop, developed as a class project by a team of Stanford students, was designed to come apart in just minutes without the use of any tools, facilitating headache-free recycling of its various parts. Most laptop components are in fact recyclable, team member Aaron Engel-Hall explains, it's just that they're all stuck together in ways that no regular user could ever disentangle. The Bloom's electronic components separate easily from its frame so both can be properly recycled.

Beyond being easily recyclable, there are other benefits to Bloom's modular design:


The team used the easy-to-disassemble modularity of Bloom to develop a keyboard and track pad that detach and allow for improved ergonomics. The ease of disassembly also makes it easier to repair and upgrade components over the lifetime of the product, so that buying a computer is no longer a singular investment, but a longer-term relationship between the consumer and the service provider.

The team members were named Autodesk's Inventors of the Month for October for their Bloom prototype, and deservedly so: it's a reminder that sustainable design doesn't handicap a product but can engender new features and functionality. [Core77]