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7 Design Principles, Inspired By Zen Wisdom

7 Design Principles, Inspired By Zen Wisdom
One of the best-known photographs of the late Steve Jobs pictures him sitting in the middle of the living room of his Los Altos house, circa 1982. There isn’t much in the room, save an audio system and a Tiffany lamp. Jobs is sipping tea, sitting yoga-style on a mat, with but a few books around him. The picture speaks volumes about the less-is-more motive behind every Apple product designed under his command. As Warren Berger wrote on Co.Design, Jobs’s love for elegantly simple, intuitive design is widely attributed to his appreciation of Zen philosophy (Jobs was a practicing Buddhist). But while many people might be familiar with Zen as a broad concept, far fewer are knowledgeable of the key aesthetic principles that collectively comprise the “Zen of design.” To understand the Zen principles, a good starting point is shibumi. James Michener referred to shibumi in his 1968 novel Iberia, writing that it can’t be translated and has no explanation. The Shibumi Seven 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Related:  GENERAL

How to Solve a Rubik's Cube for BEGINNERS - With Animations! Is Tim O’Reilly's Internet Evangelism Actually A Blight? Open source. Web 2.0. Government as a platform. These are the memes of Internet evangelist Tim O’Reilly. They’re words we’ve all heard but few people can specifically define, and that’s for good reason: They’re cultural Rorschach tests, bold headlines that await society to fill in their copy. It’s a long read, but a necessary one. And soon Web 2.0 became the preferred way to explain any changes that were happening in Silicon Valley and far beyond it. But what’s the real harm of meme-engineering, you might ask. So what are we to make of O’Reilly’s exhortation that “it’s a trap for outsiders to think that Government 2.0 is a way to use new technology to amplify the voices of citizens to influence those in power”? Read the full essay here. Slate also ran a back-and-forth on the topic, culminating here.

How we end up marrying the wrong people | Philosophers' Mail Anyone we could marry would, of course, be a little wrong for us. It is wise to be appropriately pessimistic here. Perfection is not on the cards. Unhappiness is a constant. Nevertheless, one encounters some couples of such primal, grinding mismatch, such deep-seated incompatibility, that one has to conclude that something else is at play beyond the normal disappointments and tensions of every long-term relationship: some people simply shouldn’t be together. How do the errors happen? It’s all the sadder because in truth, the reasons why people make the wrong choices are easy to lay out and unsurprising in their structure. One: We don’t understand ourselves When first looking out for a partner, the requirements we come up with are coloured by a beautiful non-specific sentimental vagueness: we’ll say we really want to find someone who is ‘kind’ or ‘fun to be with’, ‘attractive’ or ‘up for adventure…’ All of us are crazy in very particular ways. Two: We don’t understand other people

What's The Secret To Design Innovation? Extreme Immersion Editors’ note: The following is an excerpt from Hidden in Plain Sight: How to Create Extraordinary Products for Tomorrow’s Customers by Jan Chipchase with Simon Steinhardt (Harper Business). There’s a particular type of traveler that many of us know: the tourist who never strays from the well-worn path of landmarks and tourist traps, who only sees the side of another culture that has been handpicked for people like him, and returns home with a very predictable--and incomplete--experience. Then there are those who like to explore, to get lost on purpose and let the unexpected find them. Just as travelers can easily fall into tourist traps in the name of efficiency and expectations, even the most highly trained and skilled ethnographic researchers can get bogged down through rote practice. But there’s a better way to do it. It starts with the scouting process, looking for the neighborhoods where the team can get a sense of the denizens’ everyday lives. Jan Chipchase with Simon Steinhardt.

MIT Invents A Shapeshifting Display You Can Reach Through And Touch We live in an age of touch-screen interfaces, but what will the UIs of the future look like? Will they continue to be made up of ghostly pixels, or will they be made of atoms that you can reach out and touch? At the MIT Media Lab, the Tangible Media Group believes the future of computing is tactile. Unveiled today, the inFORM is MIT's new scrying pool for imagining the interfaces of tomorrow. Almost like a table of living clay, the inFORM is a surface that three-dimensionally changes shape, allowing users to not only interact with digital content in meatspace, but even hold hands with a person hundreds of miles away. Created by Daniel Leithinger and Sean Follmer and overseen by Professor Hiroshi Ishii, the technology behind the inFORM isn't that hard to understand. To put it in the simplest terms, the inFORM is a self-aware computer monitor that doesn't just display light, but shape as well. But what really interests the Tangible Media Group is the transformable UIs of the future.

4 Lessons From The Web’s Most Ruthlessly Addictive Site During the average workday, I allow myself to take a couple “Internet breaks,” little bursts of Tumblr and Gawker and other forms of web candy that tug at my attention span like a needy kid. There’s one web threshold I never step over on a weekday, though: the Mail Online. The online outlet of the British tabloid is a one-way ticket to an hours-long surfing spree of celebrity gossip and moral outrage. It’s not web candy--this is web crack. And it’s not just me. That question was partially answered this week, when the Mail Online was singled out for a Design Effectiveness Award by the British Design Business Association. More Is More, Ad Placement Be Damned! Brand42 started off by throwing out traditional ideas about above and below the fold, a model many news sites have maintained online. Like A Maze With No Deadends An average sidebar on a Mail Online story has nearly 70 stories, each with its own image. Okay, So This Rule Is Pretty Standard Win The Ladies, And You’ve Won The Web

Choosing the Right Metrics for User Experience By Pamela Pavliscak Published: June 2, 2014 “Metrics are the signals that show whether your UX strategy is working. Using metrics is key to tracking changes over time….” Metrics are the signals that show whether your UX strategy is working. Using metrics is key to tracking changes over time, benchmarking against iterations of your own site or application or those of competitors, and setting targets. Although most organizations are tracking metrics like conversion rate or engagement time, often they do not tie these metrics back to design decisions. UX strategists need to take charge of the metrics for online experiences. The Signal Problem “The data that is available from off-the-shelf analytics, A/B tests, and even follow-up surveys does not always result in insights that inform the user experience.” There is so much data available on sites and applications that it seems amazing insights would be sure to surface, yet that does not happen without smart decisions. The (U)X Factor Usability

A Case For Why Green Design Must Be Beautiful Editors’ note: The following is an excerpt from The Shape of Green: Aesthetics, Ecology, and Design (Island Press). Design is shape with purpose. In recent years, industry has begun to reconsider its purposes. Can products be better for people? Many designers show little interest in this question, and some dismiss it altogether. Conventional wisdom portrays green as not just occasionally but inevitably unattractive, as if beauty and sustainability were incompatible. The eco-design movement began with an implied mantra: If it’s not sustainable, it’s not beautiful. “Look at the architecture of the last 15 years,” architect James Wines complained in 2009. Yet the opposing view insists that focusing exclusively on environmental stewardship is just as irresponsible. In the apparent tug-of-war between sustainability and beauty, which should win? Recent surveys confirm how widespread this impression is. To test this theory, I conducted my own poll. No surprise there. But this will change.

Open Culture digs up a 1954 animated adaptation of... Coursekit is now Lore. What’s the Story? Culture & SocietyHistory & LiteratureMedia & Communication Open Culture digs up a 1954 animated adaptation of Orwell’s Animal Farm, funded by the CIA – the best thing since Ralph Steadman’s brilliant illustrations for it. Read the story here. #Animal Farm#George Orwell#lit#animation#film 69 notes

Adobe: 5 Reasons We Killed The Creative Suite Yesterday, news broke that Adobe wouldn’t be producing a Creative Suite 7 (CS7). Instead, the company planned to migrate their users to their Creative Cloud platform, which requires a monthly subscription to use. Adobe was eager to make their case, so we took a call with Adobe’s director of product marketing, Heidi Voltmer. 1. "In the last year, we’ve seen great adoption of the Creative Cloud since launching in May: 500,000 paid complete members. 2. "Through the last year, we’ve been maintaining the Creative Suite on top of the Creative Cloud. 3. "All the product teams [Illustrator, Photoshop, etc.] are going toward the model of what makes sense to them. 4. "We don’t believe in this idea that you want to own some software that’s stuck in a point and time that doesn’t get you the best benefits. 5. "Reducing piracy really isn’t one of the key things we looked at with the Cloud. Much of this makes sense, but I still don’t believe it’s the full story. [Clouds Image: Vjom via Shutterstock]

The 50 Coolest Book Covers Ever - Entertainment Title: American Psycho Author: Bret Easton Ellis Artist: Marshall Arisman Artist George Corsillo, who designed the cover art for Bret Easton Ellis' first two books turned down the chance to design the artwork for American Psycho, stating "I was disgusted with myself for reading it". How To Design For The Sharing Economy The definition of ownership is changing. We are becoming less interested in owning products and accumulating wealth through long-term purchases. Instead, we crave experiences, seeking out things without much of a financial or time investment, and have a newfound appreciation of bargains and second-hand possessions (a song about thrifting is leading the Billboard charts as I am writing this). We increasingly consume products and services through renting, sharing, and purchasing subscriptions. Last month, The Economist proclaimed that while “on-demand” consumption is still being defined, the fact that it is attracting the “big boys” like manufacturers, regulators, and insurance providers in search of a model that works for them means that it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. The new sharing economy presents unlimited opportunities for us as consumers to reinvent our spending habits. 1. 2. 3. We tend to look after products we own to prolong their life. 4. 5.

Kierkegaard on Anxiety & Creativity by Maria Popova “Because it is possible to create — creating one’s self, willing to be one’s self… — one has anxiety. One would have no anxiety if there were no possibility whatever.” “Anxiety is love’s greatest killer,” Anaïs Nin famously wrote. But what, exactly, is anxiety, that pervasive affliction the nature of which remains as drowning yet as elusive as the substance of a shadow? Anxiety is a qualification of dreaming spirit, and as such it has its place in psychology. He captures the invariable acuteness of anxiety’s varied expressions: Anxiety can just as well express itself by muteness as by a scream. Kierkegaard argues that, to paraphrase Henry Miller, on how we orient ourselves to anxiety depends the failure or fruitfulness of life: In actuality, no one ever sank so deep that he could not sink deeper, and there may be one or many who sank deeper. Donating = Loving Bringing you (ad-free) Brain Pickings takes hundreds of hours each month. Share on Tumblr

Consumismo y ética profesional | Mario Aleman «El consumismo puede referirse tanto a la acumulación, compra o consumo de bienes y servicios considerados no esenciales, como al sistema político y económico que promueve la adquisición competitiva de riqueza como signo de status y prestigio dentro de un grupo social. El consumo a gran escala en la sociedad contemporánea compromete seriamente los recursos naturales y el equilibrio ecológico.El consumismo, entendido como adquisición o compra desaforada, idealiza sus efectos y consecuencias asociando su práctica con la obtención de la satisfacción personal e incluso de la felicidad personal».1 Si partimos de la Revolución Industrial, tomándola como el gran inicio no sólo de la industrialización sino también de una nueva «sed de información», desde las publicaciones impresas hasta la producción masiva de productos, podremos notar una aceleración en el proceso de «compra-venta» o de adquisición de bienes materiales. Sí, la sociedad es su causante. Hagamos una pequeña pausa aquí. Author