Design Vegetarians Versus the Meatball


I prefer the worm to the meatball. Its one of those preferential lines in the sand like Coke versus Pepsi or Fruit of the Loom versus BVD. To these sore eyes, NASA’s meatball “insignia” is doofus (a term out of ancient Greek), while the sleek worm is elegantus. But I needn’t say more. Why? Because Greg D’Onofrio and Patricia Belen, the folks at Kind Company, purveyors of websites on Alvin Lustig and the New York City Subway System, and proprietors of This Display, have posted an excellent chronicle of “The NASA Design Program” – which they call “a modernist vision for an optimistic future” – when space was the future.  The article, in the words of Richard Danne of  Danne & Blackburn, the designers of the system, is well worth reading. The images come from the design manual and it is wow.

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One thought on “Design Vegetarians Versus the Meatball

  1. Gunnar Swanson

    I think the worm functions better, looks better, and is a more appropriate image but we designers yammer about strategy and the view from people in NASA is that the meatball was the symbol of the glory days and the worm was the symbol for some disastrous years. Returning to the meatball was part of a strategy meant to regain the NASA heritage. Unlike most designers, NASA took design seriously and dealt with it strategically.