There’s no doubt we’ve had some incredible designers, engineers, and inventors in recent history. Things like the sleek, functional design of the iPhone come to mind, as well as beautifully constructed buildings like the Sydney Opera House. However, for every masterpiece, there are thousands of failures. Sure, not every design is going to be a winner, but some of these are so flawed from the beginning, it’s hard to imagine why the plans were carried through in the first place! Let’s take a look at some of the most ridiculous fails in modern times.
Death Ray Skyscraper
Now, you might think it’s impossible to accidentally design a building with a death ray, but you would be wrong. In 2013, a team of architects designed and built a building in London with a unique concave design. While the building itself looks a bit wonky and like it might fall over, that’s not nearly the extent of the design flaws. The strange concave design reflected the intense heat and light of the sun and shot a concentrated beam onto the bustling streets of London.
How intense was this beam of light? During the peak of summer, temperatures in the impact zone soared to nearly 250° Fahrenheit. Not only that, but the death ray even melted cars that were parked too close. Talk about a huge embarrassment. An awning was installed to fix the laser beam issue, but it was too late. The aptly nicknamed “Death Ray Skyscraper” became known as one of the worst design fails in history.
On the street level, this city planning faux pas may seem like a crooked road or two, but seeing the aerial view of this coastal town shows a much bigger issue. The entire housing block is severely misaligned! How did this happen? The truth is buried with the original city planners, who have since passed away, but most people believe the town was originally set up along a pure east/west grid. Somewhere along the way, however, the town expanded and began constructing roads and blocks to better match the coastline. I don’t know about you, but I still have a lot of questions about this design flaw!
Jelly Belly Catastrophe
How do you eat jelly beans? By the mouthful, right? At the very least, you probably don’t eat just one tiny jelly bean and then call it quits. Who even does that? Apparently, Jelly Belly thought enough people ate their candy this way that they decided to offer an individually wrapped version of the little beans.
Not only does this product use a bunch of plastic, but it adds an extra step in the packaging process, which drives up the cost even more. The company stands by their individually wrapped candies, however. According to their website, “Every single precious little bean has its own plastic twist wrapper, keeping it safe from germs and contamination.” It sort of seems like a bag of jelly beans would accomplish the same task, but what do I know?
If you saw this cute wolf mug at Walmart or Target, you might be tempted to buy it. I know I certainly would! It even has little ears that stick up and everything. It only takes one use to discover the major design flaw. Those cute little ears quickly turn into a weapon against your eyes every time you take a sip!
From the looks of it, there aren’t a whole lot of options for how to drink from this mug. You can’t drink from the other side where the ears are, though maybe there’s an awkward side angle that might work. Is it really worth it at that point? You might as well recycle this mug into a cute planter.
I would bet good money that a team of men designed this pool floatation device. They might not have the immediate recognition of the resemblance to a certain feminine hygiene product, though honestly, that’s no excuse. Even if no one on the design team thought of this astounding flaw, surely there was a woman along the way in the approval and development process who had second thoughts about this, right? Right?! Apparently not.