Avoiding digital damage

Does the doorstop need a rethink? And if so, what form might it take in the future?

None of us has probably ever given much thought to the humble doorstop. It's usually just a simple wedge that holds the door open. Alternatively, we might just use a heavy object or ornament to hold the door in place. However, there are pressing reasons why we should take this issue seriously. It is a frightening fact that a closing door creates 40 tonnes of pressure – 20 times more than a Crocodile's jaw! This is clearly a worry for anyone, but in particular it represents a threat to children, who are less circumspect about where they put their digits. A normal, wedge-shaped doorstop may hold a door in place from one direction, but it can easily be knocked out of place by a child or even a pet, meaning the door is free to swing towards at least one edge. And, of course, if it's not a wedge-style doorstop, this possibility exists anyway. Equally, if the floor surface is shiny, certain types of doorstop may just slide on it rather than do their job. A door guard or finger guard can be used, of course, but that protects one edge of the door only. And, if anything, protecting fingers from the hinge side of a door is even more important than the handle side because of the huge pressure generated there when a door closes. What is required, then, is a door stopper that will prevent finger injury from the hinge side and the handle side of a door – and that is this month's challenge. Of course, there are possible answers. One could use two wedge-shaped doorstops either side of the door, for instance, thus preventing its movement. However, this is a slightly inelegant solution, as it can look rather unprepossessing and is awkward and irritating to undo when one wants to close a door. As always, we have a solution in mind. It is simple, low-tech, but nonetheless elegant. It has also been the recipient of a number of plaudits, awards and is patented. The solution will, as ever, will appear below and in the next issue of Eureka. But none of that is to say that you can't do better. We look forward to finding out. -Solution- Solution to the May 2014 Month's Coffee Time Challenge The solution to the May 2014 Coffee Time Challenge of how to improve on the humble doorstop comes from a UK company called Jamm, whose founders Marc and Coralie Ward designed it in 2011 after their 3-year-old son, Oscar, jammed his fingers in a door at home. Traditional doorstops did not give them peace of mind, so Marc set about improving the design that is found in most homes. After a prototypes and a lot of head scratching, the Jamm Doorstop was born. It was so good, Marc decided to take it to market to protect as many little fingers as possible. The unique and patented design of the Jamm Doorstop holds doors tight from both sides at the same time, and works on all floor surfaces with all sizes of hinged doors. They slide under the end of the door, and once in place with a grown-up push, their curved profile holds the door fast. The design has won amd been shortlisted for a number of awards, including the Pre-School Gold Awards for 2012 and 2013. As well as being made from 85% recycled plastics, the packaging is as Eco friendly as possible, with no glue, staples or plastic. And the instructions for safe use are printed on the inside of the packaging, so it's designed to be kept, not dumped. Jamm Managing Director and Doorstop inventor Marc Ward said "Protecting little fingers is close to our hearts at Jamm, so we're extremely excited to be showing our Jamm Doorstop at Kind + Jugend 2012. We've had a fantastic response from everyone who's seen our Door Stop, so we hope visitors to the show feel the same way too." www.jammproducts.com