It’s a sad fact of aging. You grow less cute as you grow older. And so it’s necessary—imperative even—to surround yourself with as many charming renditions of yourself as possible. Kid photos. Caricatures. Stuffed animals based on some pretend nickname. Whatever.
Foldable.me is a Kickstarter-backed project by Mint Digital and Chris Beaumont. It’s a papercraft avatar service that, for $12, allows you to ship a cubified cardboard version of yourself anywhere in the world. Think of it as an avatar that sits on your desk.
Taking the product out for a test drive, I found that, while my Nintendo Mii is my spitting image, and even my Xbox avatar looks a bit like me, there was no combination of eyes, facial hair, and apparel in the platform that could recreate the one and only Mark Wilson. That said, the interface itself is a small triumph of coded design implementation. Self-labeled a rare "legitimate" use for 3-D CSS, its modeling system is extremely fluid—featuring a crisp feel (take a look at that anti-aliasing!) that makes what could be a ho-hum experience feel absolutely premium. It’s really hard to believe that all of this rendering is happening right within your browser.
That said, I’m really hoping the service adds a few more customization options soon. My unbridled masculinity isn’t going to adorably render, print, and fold itself.