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Design Observer, and its related channels, Observatory, Change Observer, Places, Observer Media and Observers Room, are owned and operated by Observer Omnimedia LLC, and are collectively referred to here as The Design Observer Group Sites. Places: Forum of Design for the Public Realm is published by the Design History Foundation.

Design Observer was founded in October 2003 by Michael Bierut, William Drenttel, Jessica Helfand and Rick Poynor with design and technology by Ruby Studio.

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