You might like to read it - What’s the design process at GDS?
A few days ago Mike wrote a post about the prison visit booking system we're working on with MoJ Digital. He visited HMP Rochester, "This visit opened my eyes to just how hard people will work to cope with inadequate and unsuitable IT systems."
Leisa wrote a blog post yesterday about Joy and the huge notebook she has made to enable her to use the computer system she needs to do her job. Leisa writes "She told me that each time they upgrade the system it seems to get harder, not easier, to use."
And last night Cyd tweeted this.
As we say in design principle number 4 "With great power comes great responsibility — very often people have no choice but to use our services. If we don’t work hard to make them simple and usable we’re abusing that power, and wasting people’s time."
This is true for more things than government. Making things easy to use isn't easy. But it's worth it.
Remember One Second Everyday? You take one second of video everyday and it stitches them together to make a little video. I started doing it a year ago today. I haven't done it everyday but I have managed 252 days out of 365. Not bad.
Here's a year of One Second Everyday.
I posted each month seperatley to Flickr, you can see those here.
I'm glad it's over to be honest. The app is a bit crashey and seems to take up loads of memory on my phone. It's interesting to watch a year but I wish someone else had videoed my life. Inevitably the most memorable bits of the day aren't videoed. It works well when you're doing A Thing, like going to a football match, but it's not that great for everyday life.
Anyway. Looks cool as a screen grab of the UI.
You have probably seen but in case you haven't, Newspaper Club have launched a new thing. PaperLater lets you save the good bits of the web to print — so you can enjoy them away from a screen. It’s similar to ‘read it later’ services like Instapaper, Pocket or Readability, but delivered to your home in a beautiful newspaper.
It's a public beta and UK only at the moment, but go take a look.
I didn't know what to expect but it was pretty amazing. Beautiful in parts. You can really see how it would have been used as a 'shopping arcade'.
Worth a visit if you get the chance.
I hate all those The Future Is Rubbish people because they are wrong, but after the tour I went back upstairs and saw this.
I actually think the extensions to the East London line and the nearby Jubilee Line are a huge success design + engineering wise.
More pics on Yahoo!Photos!
Massimo Vignelli is very ill and would like people to send him letters. Michael Bierut, whose other job was at Vignelli Associates, says,
"Luca said that Massimo would be thrilled to get notes of good wishes from people whom he's touched or influenced - whether personally or remotely - over the years. Luca has visions of huge mail bags full of letters. I know that one of Massimo's biggest fantasies has been to attend his own funeral. This will be the next best thing. Pass the word."
Creative Review has the full story here.
You should write to Massimo. I just have.
130 East 67 Street
New York, New York 10021
"After Google, I find myself impatient with the way the world works. Why is it so hard to schedule a recording on my DVR? Why aren't all the signal lights synched to keep traffic flowing at optimum speed? Why, if I punch in my account number when I call customer service, do I have to give it to them again when I get a live person? These are all solvable problems. Smart people, motivated to make things better, can do almost anything. I feel lucky to have seen first hand just how true that is."
Douglas Edwards Google's first "brand manager," and employee No. 59.
As has been said before, "it's not complicated, it's just hard".
Related, Tony Fadel on what Nest Labs may tackle next, "Right now I can tell you 10 things, minimally, that can get changed in the house. They are all great markets with large incumbents who haven’t innovated in years."
I have never made a telly or a remote control of any kind. I have no idea of the kind of challenges those people face. But it seems odd to me that an extra button labelled OFF is needed on a remote control for a telly when the other ON/OFF button is such a well established convention and seems to work so well.
We went to the Matisse exhibition at the Tate the other day. It's good, not as good as the press seem to think it is. I wouldn't say "Nothing can prepare you for the joyous brilliance". It's worth a visit though.
A friend I went with remarked that while the pictures were nice, you can see them all in Ikea. Which is sort of true.
Also, taking pictures. Come on museums, come on.
"We start from the presumption that our people are talented and want to contribute. We accept that, without meaning to, our company is stifling that talent in myriad unseen ways. Finally, we try to identify those impediments and fix them."
I've just started reading Creativity Inc. It's already brilliant.
On Saturday I toured the Neon Museum in Las Vegas. Sometimes called the Neon Boneyard or Graveyard it's a collection of old signs, not all neon, from the casinos and hotels of Las Vegas. Some have been fully restored, some still work and some are just lying around.
A volunteer guide gave us an hour long tour which explained the history of the signs and with it a fascinating history of Las Vegas. The museum is well worth a visit even if you're not a designer. I went with 5 non-designers and they all enjoyed it. But if you're a type geek it's pretty close to heaven. You're allowed to take as many pictures as you like for personal use. I've put all mine on Flickr.
All the signs in Vegas are now LED of course. Essentially massive TVs playing massive banner ads. A bit like the animated screens on the tube but much, much bigger. I always think neon will make a comeback and someone will make a casino covered in neon. But I doubt it.
Anyway. Enjoy the pics and visit if you're ever near.
I went to see Thomas Heatherwick talk at the Design Museum the other night. It's been a busy week for talks.
Heatherwick is, of course, a genius. Lovely bloke, very down to earth humble way of presenting.
He even had a picture of the Tellytubbes outside of the Seed Pavillion.
One small concern. At the end there was lots of future work which was a bit Starchitect. I hope he doesn't turn into one of those. I always loved his ability to take pretty mundane things and design them as wonderful, interesting, beautifully functional, clever objects. I hope he doesn't end up all wavy line buildings in Dubai. He's better than that.