Here’s to the curmudgeons

And the sticklers, those who swim tirelessly against the riptide of Reductio Ad Absurdum… Like Jeff Raskin.

“As a curmudgeon, I am delighted to point out that the popular term, Information Design, is a misnomer. Information cannot be designed; what can be designed are the modes of transfer and the representations of information. This is inherent in the nature of information, and it is important for designers to keep the concepts of information and meaning distinct.”

» | ViewPointz by Jef Raskin
[Via the IAslash]

3g tech boss interview

Hmm. He probably wasn’t the best guy to shed illuminating insights on what the most compelling 3g killer apps would be…

“We have single mode handsets with browsers and we are loading content. You can walk through the streets and call up the weather and download images,”

Seriously though, if they are as far ahead in terms of network roll-out as Candy states in the interview, 3g companies have to start setting expectations with the market of what it benefit it would actually bring to the populace, over and above talking and messenging, which they can already do perfectly well to their satisfaction.

The kinds of dumb commercials they run at the moment, where existing media paradigms are shoehorned into a mobile context dont cut it [watching a horror movie on a postage size screen on a bus? Dear me... Having said that, I’ve been known to watch DivX Buffy episodes on my vaio on a train…]

They have better, genuinely useful and valuable things to offer. They need to build understanding and demand. The competitior landscape is not what it was, so why not lose the paranoia and share some of the more seductive services they’ve all been working on in order to whet our appetite rather than trot out the same old tired cliches?

» | CREATIVE BUSINESS: Can Hutchison make pigs fly ?

Pullman on storytelling

An article looking at the return to critical success and popularity of epic narrative – Lord of the Rings, Phillip Pullman’s “His Dark Materials” trilogy and the Cannes film-festival-award-winning “Atanarjuat the Fast Runner”

“It’s a shift of emphasis from the telling to the subject of what’s being told; from the writing down part to the making up part,” he says. “It’s always more satisfying to use your imagination to explore the business of being alive than to explore language.”

The Electronic Telegraph : The glory of the story : Philip Pullman wins the Whitbread, a new film is released based on ancient myth: SF Said welcomes back narrative

Also – more Phillip Pullman links over at the awesome

Also-Also – another Pullman profile from this week’s Observer courtesy of the

The substance versus the simulation

“Style, too, will become increasingly important. Just as consumers now change screensavers and buy iMac computers in a range of colors, in the future they’ll have more options when it comes to the look, feel, and functionality of high-tech products. Boyle compares it to buying a car: “Some people want a car with good gas mileage. Some want a sports car to look cool. Products have to be configured to the person using them.”

Business Week | Dennis Boyle: The Power of Smart Design | by Jane Black


“What Steve Jobs did was decree that the Apple II was to have an aesthetic enclosure. He said we have to put this in a pretty box. We can’t sell a naked board. He was absolutely right. But what he has been doing ever since is repeat that formula. They keep the hardware up to or slightly above the standard set by PCs, but they can’t think outside the pretty box.

Q: What’s wrong with that strategy over the long haul?
A: When you sit down at the product and you start typing, you aren’t looking at the box. You’re looking at the screen. Computers are pretty much fungible at that level. If I sit at a PC or a Mac and use a familiar application, I can pretty much forget which computer I’m using. It all looks and feels the same.”

Business Week | Can Jobs “Think Outside the Pretty Box”?