Sometimes travel can show us how our life is… Or can give us a glimpse of how it can be. Being untethered, I could float away, lifted to a great height where everything is new, and I could look back on my life with new perspective and go, ‘Oh!’
Lucy Knisley – “An Age of License”. Via Ruk.
In today’s global cities, public urban space is constituted in my different ways. Residents in the same neighborhood may have very diverse types of knowledge about their shared public space: The children know the neighborhood at ground level, the tech designer knows the Wi-Fi coverage at the cafes, the homeless know about the night fauna.
How do these understandings of urban space affect our view, use, and design of technology?
Dangerous Popsicles are a collection of weird shaped popsicles inspired by cacti and life-threatening viruses. What will happen when we put these dangerous things on one of our most sensitive organs, our tougues? Does pain really bring pleasure? Is there beauty in user-unfriedly things?
Dangerous Popsicles create a unique sensory experience. Before tasting with your tongue, you first taste with your eyes and mind. The popsicles are nothing but water and sugar, but ideas of deadly viruses and the spikiness of cacti are enough to stimulate your senses, even before your first taste.
I love projects like this. From an adults perspective their might be hesitation to eat something with a form like this but I see kids, who are far more open, loving it.
The history of Human Computer Interaction has had a few notable eras and we are at the dawn of the next era. In this talk I will describe those previous eras and how various factors shaped our interactions with computing as well as lead into how the forces at play in today’s world are calling for a new era with new design solutions.
Do you feel it’s possible for an American to call China home?
I think it’s possible for an American to think of China as home. Whether or not Chinese people accept that is probably another story. It’s part of the expat arrested development thing – everything about your existence is contingent, from visa runs to rentals to whatever. The baseline assumption is that you will be going home after a few years. That includes the assumption that you don’t really “get” China.
Whenever I’m asked “but do you really understand China?”, I just say “yes”, because fuck you. Ask a stupid question, get a flippant answer. People don’t really have a rebuttal to that. Try it sometime. I mean, I grew up in the US, but I don’t know that I “understand” the US – I don’t even know what that would mean.
Why I’m Not Going to Be Living in China Anymore But Might Be Back
You could substitute China for Taiwan and you would have something close to how I think about being a long term resident here. You are a welcome guest, treated well as such, but eventually long for a title with a bit more permanence or at least something other than your special status.
Sometimes amongst the noise of Facebook a signal appears; some great advice from a high school classmate.
I’ve always taken risks in my life, sometimes they didn’t work out and I was embarrassed. I learned from every one, because I looked for the learning. And I didn’t stop taking risks. Over time, they stopped feeling so much like risks and it’s gotten harder to embarrass me. I’ve learned a lot.
What are you afraid to do? Be bold today. Do something you’ve always wanted to do, something you’ve been scared to try. Look for the learning and do it again next week.
Fear of embarrassment has long been a motivator for me but also an inhibitor to stepping outside my bubble and trying something new. I think I’ll take her advice.
A video detailing how Omni designs its own apps, “starting with a quick iPad sketch and ending up at a pixel-perfect, interactive design”. I may revisit using OmniGraffle but for the short term at least I’m invested in using Sketch.
This is not seat-of-your-pants level of exciting but I always enjoy listening to how another teams approach interface design.
Business and industry have learned that their products ought to be aesthetically pleasing. A large community of designers exists to help improve appearances. But appearances are only part of the story: usability and understandability are more important, for if a product can’t be used easily and safely, how valuable is its attractiveness? Usable design and aesthetics should go hand in hand: aesthetics need not be sacrificed for usability, which can be designed in from the first conceptualisation of the product.
Donald Norman, The Design of Everyday Things, Doubleday, 1988