Luca Mondini

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Digital Ethereal, a work by Luis Hernan which combines art and science, taking pictures of the WiFi spectrum.

Via Esquire

[...] We know that we have to be careful about paying attention to the details, we have to be cognizant about how we use data in our design process, and we have to introduce change very, very carefully. Now, these things are all really useful. They’re good best practices for designing at scale. But they don’t mean anything if you don’t understand something much more fundamental. You have to understand who you are designing for.

Margaret Gould Stewart, Facebook’s director of product design, explaining three rules for design at such a massive scale.

Service Design Toolkit

This toolkit, developed in 2010-2012 at the JAMK University of Applied Sciences, aims at familiarizing with the philosophy of Service Design.

Since it’s a new and evolving field, there isn’t a single definition for Service Design. Quoting This is Service Design Thinking, one of the most known books on the subject:

If you would ask ten people what service design is, you would end up with eleven different answers – at least.

For the moment, we can just use the definition published by Wikipedia:

Service design is the activity of planning and organizing people, infrastructure, communication and material components of a service in order to improve its quality and the interaction between service provider and customers.

The toolkit provides a pragmatic approach to Service Design in four simple steps:

  1. Define the development challenge
  2. Learn the customer’s point of view
  3. Solve the challenge, forming solutions
  4. Prototype and test your solution

Every step includes a set of tools we can use to gather all the required information. All material is presented under the Creative Commons license so it’s possible to transform or adapt it for any purpose, even commercially.

Have fun!

Basic typography resources

The History of Typography – Animated Short from Ben Barrett-Forrest on Vimeo.

The more I read about design, the more I love every single detail. Last weekend I dug into the basic principles of typography.

Here are some introductory resources I found particularly useful:

I’ve also added a book (Just My Type: A Book About Fonts by Simon Garfield) to my Kindle wishlist: part history textbook, part design manual, it’s considered as one of the best texts about this fascinating topic.

Elements of Design

Found on Co.Design:

Animated by Toronto-based art director and motion designer Matt Greenwood, this video walks you through 24 of the most important visual design principles, ranging from rhythm to texture to color. It won’t teach you everything you need to know to be a designer, but it’s a good start.

The next phase of smartphones

Benedict Evans, after last Google I/O conferenceabout the next phase of smartphones:

Unlike the previous differences in philosophy between the platforms, which were mostly (to generalise massively) about method rather than outcome, these, especially as they evolve further over time, point to basic differences in how you do things on the two platforms, and in what it would even mean to do specific tasks on each. The user flows become different. The interaction models become different. I’ve said before that Apple’s approach is about a dumb cloud enabling rich apps while Google’s is about devices as dumb glass that are endpoints of cloud services. That’s going to lead to rather different experiences, and to ever more complex discussions within companies as to what sort of features they create across the two platforms and where they place their priorities.

 

VintageMapOnline

A vintage map of the online universe, created by Slovakian artist Martin Vargic.

Via Slate

 

A brief introduction to 4D printing

Skylar Tibbits, director of the Self-Assembly Lab at MIT,explains his idea of 4D printing in this short video:

We wanted to add time to 3D printing.

This emerging technology, having extraordinary implications on many fields, will allow us to print objects that then reshape themselves or self-assemble over time.

If you are curious about Skylar’s researches, watch his talk at TED.

Earth

Earth, a visualization project by Cameron Beccario displaying global wind map. It’s really cool! Take a look at the source code on github for the geeky details.

So putting all those effects together, you end up with soundwaves being absorbed by snowy surfaces, being curved up and out into space, and scattered (a tiny bit) along the way by falling snowflakes.

Duncan Gere explaining how sound is dampened in a blizzard. This post belongs to Looking Up, a collection on Medium that offers a home for those obsessed with the world above our heads.

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