The FUTURE is going the 4M way

From a wierd concept in 1998 to become disruptive in 2017?

The ‘Deskless Chair’ derived from the ergonomic importance of a reclined work position, is morphing into the ‘Workstation’. This should reduce the incidence of LBP and other health issues.

In 1903 Ford’s ‘Horseless Carriage’ had morphed into the Model T, capable of 20 horsepower In 1908.  This, at least, solved the “great horse manure crisis of 1894” when it was suggested that London’s streets would be clogged in 9 feet of horse manure in 50 years. It’s descendants are, in turn, being disrupted by ‘the driverless car’.

Screen Shot 2017-05-23 at 07.28.24Disruptive technologies have to prove themselves first. They do so by working on the same infrastructure as the incumbent leaders. Cars had to run on the same streets as horses. Dial-up internet connections in the late 1990s used the copper in the phone networks.  (Dan Denning
Publisher, Southbank Investment Research ).   So, work-stations have to use existing office spaces before becoming universal.

We are seeing a number of ‘work-station’ type models which include a reclined work mode and so are superior to the present (2016) upright conventional  models.  The models shown here are a step in the right direction but are not 2T compliant and appear to ignore the science and are based on engineering.    They do not invite a great uptake, in spite of extensive PR.

the Altmark

AltmarkNow, in 2015, a chair is proposed,  that has at least an upright and reclined work position.  Did they see my web-page for the 2T concept which has been in the public domain since 1998, later upgrade to the 3M (2T = 3M) & 4M the optimised default  against which the ergonomics of any chair can be assessed?  Or did they arrive at this independently?    It was probably the latter and the chance of a simpler, more ergonomically optimised and more elegant model was missed       I have not seen this model but however deficient in biomechanics (ergonomic) optimisation, with reservations, it is  potentially the best work-chair in the market. (

For a fuller account see in → WORK-CHAIRS, a new breed with a reclined mode.


Screen Shot 2016-06-24 at 12.34.17A good idea in that it achieves the 2 modes that I have been advocating since 1998, but what a terrible design!   Electrically operated.  With all possible bells and whistles It represents an almost opposite view to the 2T principle and it’s 4M workstation derivative.   This  with an emphasis on anatomy and spinal biomechanics leads to lack of adjustments and simplicity.  Obviously a huge misplaced engineering enterprise without awareness of what was possible and desirable.  Another example of what emerges when the the optimised default solution of the 2T concept is ignored.           Price: $5995

The CHOTTOScreen Shot 2017-05-20 at 11.14.27

This highly innovative chair was introduced to me by it’s designer,Thomas Stroman, the Founder of Stroman Design.   He wrote to me “I am an architect by training, but having experienced back surgery, my focus has been on ergonomic seating design for human-computer interaction.

At first glance I might be excused for thinking that it looked as if it were self mobile with caterpillar tracks.  Perhaps an exciting concept for the future. What fun to go charging around the workspace and bumping one’s colleagues!

Screen Shot 2017-05-20 at 11.11.16The importance of a reclined work position has been recognised.  It could be modified to become virtually 2t (4M) ergonomic compliant.  A foot rest has been incorporated,



IfM 2013Now have a look at the 2013 Cambridge student project on the 2T CONCEPT.    The Cambridge trials showed the elegance, simplicity, cost effectiveness  and greatly enhanced ergonomics of th 2T concept showing a 4M version.

It excited much comment along the lines “Gee!  That’s cool.  I want it”.  The lack of ‘familiarity bias’ is typical with the millennial generation.  Go consider.

(Yes!   That’s John Gorman glowering in the background.  He was an engineering graduate and took the opportunity to visit his ‘Alma mater’).

And a sketch for a 2T model done for me by Aaron Chetwynd in about 2000, which deliberately resembles existing chairs so as to avoid familiarity bias.

For further reading, see ☛