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WorkPlace 99 round-up

WorkPlace 99 is almost upon us. 150 exhibitors of the best office furniture and products come together in The Grand Hall at Olympia for four days from 16-18 November. The show will feature the latest developments in ergonomic seating, technology and innovations for the workplace.

The Royal College of Art together with the Helen Hamlyn Research Centre will explore working for 'our future selves', with innovations such as a networked objects that communicate social activities between homeworkers, and a clothing system that protects the body from accidents (see right).

Glimpses of BDG McColl's stand look intriguing - it will be examining the concept of trust within the workplace and will look at how technology has been responsible for alienating staff.

A series of lectures and debates in The Hub, designed by Lorenzo Apicella of Pentagram, includes contributions from Stephen Hitchins, chairman of BDG McCol l; James Woudhuyson, social and political forecaster and Paul Finch, editorial director of The Architects' Journal.

The AJ will be holding a drinks party for AJ readers in the bar on the opening night of 16 November from 6.We look forward to seeing you there. Continued on page 58 Once more the Royal College of Art is at the cutting-edge of fashion, but Dan Plant's polymerbased clothing system is practical too.

Designed 'to protect the human body from accident and abrasion by hardening on impact', it brings the catwalk to the construction site.

Humanscale is to launch the Freedom chair at the show. Designed by Niels Diffrient, this ergonomic task chair is set to make new ways of working possible.

Back2 will show the Pallone chair which encourages movement as you sit. As much fun as a spacehopper.

In the form of a modular curtain, this device on the Royal College of Art's stand can reduce noise levels by 6-9 decibels. It uses microphones, digital processing unit and loudspeakers to transform noise signals into harmonious sounds.

Fritz Hansen is to launch its third Magistretti-designed chair, VicoSolo, at The Hub. The chair is stackable with wooden seat and synthetic backrest.

This light, also on the RCA stand, combats Seasonal Affective Disorder by providing the extra daylight we often need in the winter months.

It also functions as an alarm clock by simulating the increasing light of dawn.

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