I, for one, think that the Periodic Table of Elements is one of the best pieces of design ever to permeate our society. And it seems that, finally, I am not alone in this belief.

Back in the winter of 04-05, I noted the campaign from Audi to with their Vorsprung durch Technik campaign for whatever car they were slinging. This would, of course, make much more sense if I had a photo, but take my word for it – they had a whole series of posters in the London Underground which were set up to look like Elements from the Periodic Table. I think they had three, and together they made up Vorsprung durch Technik. So, Vr, Du, and Tk, or something of that sort. I thought it was clever, mainly because I am a science geek.

Cut to two years later, and a few ago from this post, when Adobe launched their Photoshop CS 3 beta, and gave a sneak preview to the new icon system. I wrote a pretty lengthy post about this, which if you read this blog regularly, you know.

And just the other day, when I wondered in the AIGA headquarters here in New York to see their 365: Annual Design Exhibition, when what did I discover but more Periodic Table stuff. In fact, they straight admitted it.

strange days indeed

strange days indeed

strange days indeed

strange days indeed

I don’t really have a comment at this point. I could mention something about the irony of how science-inspired design is big in an era where science itself is being snuffed out by politics. Or I could question why AIGA would use a ‘periodic table’ with only a handful of ‘elements’ and just repeat them by colour code. (which, by the way, is NOT how the table works). I’ll leave the commentary to you, but just wanted to point out a trend I have been observing.

I am going to do some research on the design blogs and see if anyone else has commented on this trend or these specific instances.