It's a sad fact of life that, while we give plenty of thought to our gadgets when they're shiny and new, we don't tend to consider what happens at the other end of their life-cycle. An engineering class at Stanford and Finland's Aalto University think they've come up with a solution, for laptops at least, with their Bloom notebook: it can be disassembled in just two minutes, without tools and in just 10 steps.
Video demo after the cut
That's in contrast to a regular laptop, which can require up to 45 minutes to disassemble, requires three separate tools and involves as many as 120 steps. The ease of construction doesn't just help when the laptop is worn out, either; it also makes upgrading components like RAM and HDDs more straightforward.
The group used Autodesk software and a 3D printer to make different prototypes, all of which slot together but keep plastics, metals and circuitry easy to separate out. Now we just need a forward-thinking manufacturer to adopt the ideas for a commercial product.