On those rare occasions when something logistics-related appears in the popular press, it usually has to do with serious matters like carbon emissions or anti-terrorism initiatives. But occasionally, it's about something a little lighter or even humorous.
A new ad from electronics giant HP falls into the latter category. Headlined "Monumental Savings," the ad features a row of Egyptian sphinxes covered in white, oblong pieces of paper bearing mysterious black markings. Hieroglyphics, perhaps? Something more modern, it turns out: traditional and 2-D bar codes printed on thousands of UPS shipping labels.
The sculpture, called "Six Sphinxes," was created by Christo, the artist best known for wrapping bridges, buildings, and even whole islands in fabric. HP had the artist create the sculpture to publicize a networked package handling system the company developed for UPS. Along with streamlining the package loading process, the new system eliminated the need for shipping labels. That saves more than 2 million pounds of paper annually—six times the weight of the Great Sphinx, according to HP. (HP says it will recycle all of the labels used in the sculpture.)