Acme Systems is the result of a project based on the American animated cartoon Wile E. Coyote & The Road Runner and linked with the Master Thesis Le Coyotisme: Wile E. Coyote, personnage de cartoon, genius et designer de l'echec. 
This cartoon, started in 1949, the coyote try to catch a bird by using a lot of gizmos provided by a company named Acme Corporation.

The result of all of his attempts is always the same, fail!

The statement here is: If the coyote still wants to catch the bird in 2018, what kind of technologies could he uses in the era of Amazon, Internet, Social Media and Donald Trump?

Failure is a central point of this project, The coyote use tons of Acme’s gizmos and never success, but he keeps going because of the show of course and because he believes in technologies. He’s persuaded that the next new gizmo will be the right one to finally get the bird and Acme Corporation will always be here to provide him. He gonna use it for 30 seconds, fail, throws it away and then order a new one. It’s not very different from what people do everyday and our Acme, Amazon and some other will be here to provide us.

As we live in an era of entertainment, using the cartoon and its aesthetics as a filter to design objects questioning current themes such as the notion of truth and social media, seems to be a relevant approach.

This distancing by fiction makes it possible to highlight some present-day problematics through short and entertaining storytelling, where the search for a balance between the references of the cartoon and those of our time is permanent.

Three different gizmos have been developed, each based on a typical cartoon situation like falling off the cliff and connecting with a technological or salient point of our time.

The choice of real references had to be carefully done to match the cartoon spirit, which is always about overstatement. Then, these references were passed through the Coyote Cartoon filter to keep the link with the very recognizable cartoon identity.
In addition, this Pop aesthetic applied to today’s objects or references creates a distance to emphasize the excess and absurdity of these technologies or situations from the real world.

Published on :

Master Design Space & Communication
Diploma Project 2018

Tutor Project : Malak Mebkhout

Specifications of each gizmo:

Acme Wall-Builder Genius Kit (The yellow helmet)

Initial Cartoon situation: Mr. Coyote likes to use the gadgets inspired by Superheroes because he believes that using them will give him magical power. 

The today’s technologies or references: An American antihero that wears the right clothes to have power but even does more, he calls himself a genius! Just like our dear Mr. Coyote! 

The solution: As make an Acme Trump outfit for Wile E. Coyote is no useful to help him to catch the bird. Create a kit based on one of the most iconic Trump whim, the wall between the American and Mexican border is a more suitable idea. So, with this gizmo you can build big walls in the desert to trying to stop the bird. But security first! That’s why Acme Systems provide a great safety helmet to do this job!

Failure: Actually, walls never stopped anyone, even a bird that does not fly.
Material: fiberglass, epoxy resin, acrylic paint
Overall dimension: 480 x 210 x 170 mm
Weight: 1.7kg

Acme iGotit Selfie Stick (The blue wing)

Initial Cartoon situation: Each time the Coyote run after the bird. 

The technologies or references of today: The Selfie Stick and in a larger perspective social media like Facebook or Instagram. Then the notion of truth about these media. 

The solution: Design a selfie stick in the shape of a Road Runner bird wing to give the illusion that you have finally caught it. With this gadget, just put your smartphone on it, choose the right angle and the right background, take the right attitude and take a selfie! Then share it on your favorite social media with a catchy hashtag like #igotit or whatever you want. That’s not the truth? Well, who cares about the facts about these media? Everyone will share Coyote’s selfie just to say «look, he finally caught it!» 

Failure: As the purpose of this gadget is not really to catch the bird, there is no physical failure, the only one may be ethical, but it depends on you. 

Material: polystyrene, epoxy resin, acrylic paint, steel 
Overall dimension: 650 x 100 x 120 mm
 Weight: 1.5kg

Acme Deus Ex Machina Button (The red button) 

Initial Cartoon situation: Every time the Coyote falls off the cliff, and its way of ordering new gadgets through the Acme catalog. Today’s technologies or references: Amazon creates the Acme Dash button, a button designed to quickly order a specific regular product like shampoo or toothpaste. In the same idea to get something faster, delivery of the drone. 

The solution: Keep the idea of the Amazon command button and transfer it to a recurring Wile E. Coyote need, even better if it’s urgently needed. So, with Acme Deus Ex Machina Button, you just have to press it while you fall from the cliff to get a parachute thanks to a lightning drone delivery; just before hitting the ground! 

Failure: Actually, when you fall off cliffs you normally panic, more than when you miss shampoo at least. And when you panic you are likely to press the button too many times… And it will not be useful to have 10 parachutes falling over your head.
Sometimes perfect is the enemy of good! 

Material: Amazon Dash Button body, Vinyl 
Overall dimension: 59 x 24 x 15 mm 
Weight: 0,1 kg

Typeface : abcdinamo
Pictures : Michel Giesbrecht / HEAD-Genève, Jean-Marc Cnockaert