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Why we say no to speculative design


We found a great letter thanks to @martuishere on the subject. We abide religiously by number 3 and thus feel the need to post it here:

Unlike advertising agencies, we are not in the business of selling. We love our work and we love showing off the diversity of work we’ve done (please ask to see our portfolio!) but that’s because every project is crafted with thought and research, and with respect for our clients. We put all our resources into every client that engages us because we don’t need to save our best ideas to sell ourselves to potential new clients.

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virtuallythere, virtually impossible

26/12/2010 is a service by Sabre, one of the big GDS’s to track your flights. If you want to sign up you have to chose a password that complies with this policy:

Something unique that you’ll remember, but hard for others to guess.

Should contain a minimum of 7 characters and maximum of 12 characters.
Should contain at least one numeric character.
The same character cannot appear more than twice in the password.
The same character should not repeat more than twice in a row.
There should be no spaces in the password.
The password cannot contain the characters Q,q,Z,z.

There’s gotta be some kind of reward to those who make it. Yeah, that’s probably it.


"Organic design"? Bullshit


Belive it or not, this is snow under the microscope:

Some designers like to say they create “organic designs” when their stuff is curvy, flowy and transparent lie flowing water or maybe rugged and imperfect like wood bark. But then you see these pictures of snow flakes under the microscope and think these designers are just bullshitting you to sell their stuff under a good looking label.


A redundant future of journalism


Truth is: I would like to work for The New York Times

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Web-designers Vs Web-developers


True or false?





What's wrong with flickr


This is what’s wrong with flickr and why we made BlackVostok (among other reasons).


Designing a newspaper from scratch


Los Angeles Times reports that Rupert Murdoch plans on launching a newspaper for the iPad and the like only. Freshly designed. Both content and form from scratch.

I’d sell my soul to Lucifer to be on that team.

In some of my recent talks I’ve mentioned the story behind USA Today. I think it’s one of the best examples to learn about information consumption and adaptation.

USA Today launched almost 30 years ago built on a premise: that most Americans didn’t read, that they mostly got news from television (color television) and that they spent a lot of time in front of the tube.

Al Neuharth, USA Today’s founder, understood the new context and decided to design a newspaper from scratch, one based on these premises where:

  • there was color all over (for pictures, for sections) just like on TV
  • photos drove the stories and not the opposite
  • articles were short
  • news didn’t need a follow-up, there was no incremental coverage

This was the result, the fresh design of the USA Today in 1982:

And here is what the New York Times looked like in the early 80’s (see how big the change was?):

In short, USA Today wasn’t targeted to newspaper readers but to TV watchers. The critics called it the McPaper, the junk news, the fast food of information. But despite that they ended up being the most read paper in the USA. They understood their new readers and the new context. They won.

And that is why most old newspapers redesign for the internet or for the ipad and they fail miserably. Why? They don’t pay attention to new users and their new contexts of use.


Eames furniture, lime green carpets and post-its


If you do the rounds of cities in the UK who struggle to compete with London as a magnet for “creatives”, they’ll all have a creative hub, space or whatever. I remain unconvinced that the Eames furniture, lime green carpets and post-it friendly walls with clever graphics achieve that. To me, it’s like suggesting creative people like living in an IKEA catalogue.

Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino on innovation hubs (and coffee)

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Shame on you iconpark


UPDATE: Michael Flarup has taken down the VV2 icons that were a ripoff and claims to have contacted in the hope of have the issue straightened out.

Some dude at is ripping off the excellent work of Maximilian Larsson on Helveticons. Check it out:

Click to see the whole comparison

This guy (who happens to be Michael Flarup @flarup) is on top of the Vostok’s Pyramid of Suckytude TM:

1. Appropiating the work of others (this totally sucks)
2. Just bitching (this sucks)
3. Just bullsitting (this kinda sucks)
4. Just theorizing (this doesn’t suck but doesn’t rock)
5. Doing, building (this doesn’t suck at all, it rocks)

Shame on you iconpark!!

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