Student invents “time pod” to help stressed mums


EXASPERATED mums could soon get away from it all – thanks to a cunning creation by a university student.

‘Time Machine’ – a black, sound-insulated booth complete with revolving door – is the invention of mum-of-twins Emmi Hartikainen (29).

Emmi, who is studying BDes (hons) Design and Digital Arts at Edinburgh Napier University, came up with the structure to provide a complete escape from the demands of her young family, her studies and the digital overload of everyday life.

Emmi created the booth as a sanctuary

“I look after my three year old boys, I run my own company and at the same time I’m in my final year of university. Sometimes I need to stop. I had to have somewhere I could go and completely switch off.”

Padded with thick acoustic foam, the two meter tall escape-pod provides the perfect sanctuary for busy mums.

Emmi, mum to three year olds Valo and Okko, said:  “Our ‘always on’ digital culture is affecting our health and well-being. I wanted to make a really visual and tactile reminder of the importance of having time for yourself, away from life’s gadgets.

“Time Machine brings you much closer to your thoughts. There are no distractions and the little things, like the shadows and the tiny strips of light which creep through, become significant.

“Inside, I’ve set-up a disconnected audio cable which creates static sound or white noise. Normally it’s lost in the background of everything else going on but here it grabs your attention, acting as a reminder of how much un-wanted

sound we’re bombarded with every day.

“We all have busy lives, so this installation is really for us all, regardless of what we do and how many children we have.”

Time Machine is just one of the innovative products to feature in the University showcase which runs until Friday 1st June. The annual event, held at the University’s Merchiston campus, highlights the creative talent of over 150 new and emerging designers, photographers, film makers and advertising directors.

Euan Winton, Programme leader for BDes (hons) Design and Digital Art said: “I’ve been hugely impressed with the quality of work set to go on show this week. The students have created some really thought-provoking pieces. There are a huge range of designs and a number of the pieces, like Emmi’s Time Machine, focus on our confused relationships with technology which is really interesting.”