Interesting video on containerization and how it can explain what an API is. I loved the graphic approach to describing it and it’s definitely a helpful analogy to break down what is really happening when companies share APIs.
With all of the Olympic craze going around lately, I thought I’d highlight some of the design that goes into the games. Let’s just start out by agreeing that the logo for the 2012 London Olympics is not exactly gorgeous. In fact, it’s far from something that really represents London or athletics or the Olympics.
But then again, look out these designs below from the 1968 Olympics or the even the 1924 Olympics. Definitely aren’t going to be winning any design awards. To see the logo evolution over the years, check out [88 Olympic Logos]. Pretty crazy to see how bad some of the design really is – there aren’t a ton of logos on there that I would particularly like to enlarge and display somewhere. Typography never seems to be very strong in any of the logos and the colors or shapes that are decided on to express the home country sometimes seem haphazard.
The ones that stand out the most to me out of that line up are 1976 Montreal, 2002 Salt Lake City and Vancouver 2010.
There are, however, lots of designers who have chosen to tackle their own design for the Olympic Games. Check back tomorrow for some highlights of those logos!
In other Olympic related design, have you seen GoSquared’s live infographic of some of the numbers important to the Olympic games? Really interesting way to display the information and utilize scrolling. Not to mention they included how much was spent on the Olympic logo design – 400,000 pounds! Yikes!
There are an enormous number of blogs, newspapers, journal articles, post-it notes, etc out there. At times it becomes hard to sift through and keep up with everything.
Here are a few that have stood out recently:
An article by A List Apart about the need to step away from your work every once in a while and look at it from a new perspective. It reminds me of a drawing class that I took freshman year at RIT (where we got our charcoal drawings erased after 4+ hours of working on them). We learned quickly to step away and become unattached from our work. That is not to say that a designer or artist should not be fully invested in their work, but they need to recognize when there are mistakes or when they need to rework parts.
Information is Beautiful. If you haven’t heard of this book before, you should definitely go check it out. It’s an entire book of interesting information graphics. This article goes into detail about how the cover was chosen and shows all of the various iterations along the way. In total, there were over 90 covers that were considered at one point or another. As someone who picks almost all books by their cover, it’s interesting to think about what it could have been.
And last but not least, Real Chat Over Socialed.
It’s an interesting read that bring up the question of whether or not we’re too connected. When was the last time you had a real conversation face to face without the distraction of tweeting/texting/checking in? There are definitely situations where we need to be reminded to focus on the present and not have distractions coming in from all sides.
Of course, these three articles far from cover what is out there right now but they’re just ones that have stood out.
What have you been reading lately?
Makes you wish you had some Froyo right now, doesn’t it?!
Definitely give their website a look to see more shots of the shop itself.
This next quarter is my LAST one at RIT. Kind of crazy to think about, considering in my head I’m still a sophomore.. or applying for college. I’m definitely going to be taking advantage of these next 11 weeks to make some sweet work & really get all that I can out of the rest of my time here.
Today I had Career Search class which deals with personal branding, our website, promotional pieces, etc. It’s always fun to redesign my own collateral because it’s the one time you’re the boss & get to decide everything without asking! Plus it’s like having a client around all of the time (I believe I’m on redesign numero 4?). Also had my Advanced Design Networking class this morning which is in New Media design + will be focused on iPhone/website interactivity. Super pumped for that class.
I did get a chance to work on my own personal website over break but I’m still not 100% happy with it (I’m starting to think that’s a reoccurring theme..). But I’ve noticed the more I redo it, the more comfortable I am getting with coding. Win-win?
Met with the lovely Carolyn from Composing Nows yesterday to help with some blogging & wordpress tips (which was hopefully helpful?!). I consider myself far from an expert on the matter considering half the time I want to do something I just end up Googling it & hacking something together until it works (as long as it meets the goal, right?).
I decided that I’m going to start sharing some more of my tips & tricks for building websites, figuring out WordPress + other fun things. After all, there are so many out there it’s easy for things to fall through the cracks.
The first being Subtle Patterns. Seriously, if you haven’t found it yet.. go check it out. Now.
You’re able to access & download hundreds of different patterns for any use. Easy to use, best thing ever.. You get the idea.
Next up is Coda. It’s basically a stripped down version of Dreamweaver. I’ve become quite accustom to working in Dreamweaver, however I LOVE the interface for Coda. I’m actually considering buying a year subscription to it (It’s only $99). It’s way less clunky than Dreamweaver which means you can actually open multiple applications while working on websites & not have to worry about crashing your (somewhat old) computer.
It does take some getting used to because it’s all code view (there is a preview button) but I’m a huge fan of the split code/design view in Dreamweaver. The whole instant gratification thing in coding makes me happy. There is a 16 day trial period or something like that so definitely check it out & see what you think.
Finally there is Google Web Fonts. Chances are you’ve probably run across this one before but just in case…
A wonderful library of 466 (+ growing) font families free to use! They make it super easy to embed any typeface you want on your website and they even provide the amount of load time it takes so your website isn’t slow. Easy to use + makes typography on the web so much better!
Those are only 3 of many things that I find myself using on a daily basis. Will post again soon with more helpful hints!
What typography/design/development web tools do you find helpful? Have you used any of these before?
As I talked about earlier, I’ve been working on an editorial spread for a while now. The topic I decided on early this quarter was “How to Survive 16 Hours in the car” as that is the length of our typical road trip to Wisconsin each year for Thanksgiving.
For Interactive Design we were required to animate an app in After Effects. Being unfamiliar with the software, I wanted to choose something I already had assets for rather than worrying about both the design AND the new software. Turn out I completely changed my mind on the overall design of the piece in the process so I ended up redoing everything anyway – but it was worth a try!
The app features various games that can be played on the car ride. Ideally it would be a more in depth app but this was a pretty quick deadline. I featured the “Are We There Yet?” part of it where a user can insert their intended destination and then anytime the “Are We There Yet” button is pushed the app updates you with a “Nope, not yet. Still have ____ miles to go” or some other similar saying. There is also a “States & Plates” part that acts as a digital checklist for finding license plates.
Unfortunately the final movie clip is a little large to embed on here right now. After Effects is definitely going to take longer than the 2 weeks I spent on it to get used to! I’m pretty happy with the progress that I made on it so far and definitely a lot happier with this direction compared to where I was going with it earlier in the quarter. Everything always seems to smooth itself out in the end!
As a creator of massive to do lists (usually multiple ones per day) I’m in love with this new iPhone idea.
I’ve used Reminders on the iPhone for a while but the UI is not completely there. I’d like to be able to easily create multiple lists and drag items between lists rather than having to click on 3 different steps to change anything as is currently the case.
Clear has awesome UI design & looks like it will be simple and easy to use. You can read about it more at Good.
I ran into Luke Shuman’s design work a while back while looking at the SPD Editorial competition (seen in the 4th image below). Totally impressed by all of his work – editorial, infographics and iPad layouts. A lot of the work shown on his website is for Wired or other big name magazines. Loving the interactivity of the magazine spread above.
iPad design is still up and coming. It’s able to be used by a wide majority of people, yet it’s still so new that not everyone seems to know what to do with it. There are a few options when it comes to designing something that’s interactive: traditional HTML/CSS website viewed on a tablet, Quark Express & the new Apple Textbooks (have yet to explore that one). In my editorial class this quarter there are 4 of us exploring all of these different options and actually turning our print magazine into an interactive one (hopefully!). [More on that soon.]
I’m really excited to see where iPad (and other tablets) design goes in the coming years. There are a lot of interesting interactive magazines out there already – my favorite is Wired. It’s really interesting to see how you take a traditional spread & turn it into something that people can interact with and actually experience.
There is, of course, still beauty in traditional print though. Love the bright colors and ways that he simplifies the graphic to really what the essence is. Infographics might be the “cliche” thing right now but there is something to say about the really well done ones – for a visual person such as myself, I’d much rather see information drawn out in a clear way.
In honor of the project I’ve been working on most frequently – a responsive blog reader – I’ve complied a few of my favorite resources.
Responsive web design is relatively new. If you’re unfamiliar with it, in short, it is coding a website using media queries that target specific screen sizes. For example, with the rise of iphone and ipad usage, targeting a phone screen size would make the website recognize that it’s a smaller dimension & would adjust the elements accordingly. It does take a fair amount of extra effort on the part of designers/coders to figure out how exactly a page is going to look at each size. Most often getting to a size around 320 pixels requires elements to be smaller & some to even be eliminated.
One great resource for looking at websites that are responsive is Media Queries.
A book I read a while back was Responsive Web Design by Ethan Marcotte. It’s a part of the A Book Apart series that details different web design techniques. Everything from CSS to media queries and designing for emotion. Pretty quick read but lots of information! I found it really helpful before diving into doing the coding for a responsive site in order to understand more of the logic behind it.
The best resource of all, however, is Google! I find it enormously helpful to just google exactly what I’m trying to do and there always seems to be some kind of forum, documentation, or tutorial walking you through the steps. I’m far from learning everything that a responsive site can do but I’m having fun with the trial and error method for now!