Understand By Doing

This wonderful exposé in Kinfolk on fashion designers and artists Isabel & Reuben Toledo struck me in both its beauty, and a clear description for understanding a business or a craft. Do it yourself. The only way to truly understand how every piece of [a] business can be assembled…is to do it all yourself. — Isabel Toledo … Continue reading Understand By Doing

And Then Grace

The work you do when you are graceful is what we need, now more than ever. —Seth Godin, in Graceful This path is before me, whether chosen by the universe or because I've listened and cared deeply. Craft first, then connection, and then grace.

(Video) Interview with Jack Dykinga

An interview with a photography legend, Jack Dykinga, a Pulitzer-prize winner, who has become one of the best landscape photographers in the world. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1b1MAbXe3o My favorite note from his philosophy: "Sometimes your voice can be more of a whisper than a shout." Applies to writing and software just as much as photography and art. More … Continue reading (Video) Interview with Jack Dykinga

(Listen) You 2.0, Hidden Brain on NPR

Two weeks ago I mentioned the notion of think as a poet, work as a bookkeeper. Not surprisingly I heard an echo of this on a new summer series on the "Hidden Brain" NPR radio show. The first episode — You 2.0: The Value Of 'Deep Work' In An Age Of Distraction — features Deep Work author Cal Newton (I haven't … Continue reading (Listen) You 2.0, Hidden Brain on NPR

Think Like a Poet, Work Like a Bookkeeper

The most successful scientist thinks like a poet — wide-ranging, sometimes fantastical — and works like a bookkeeper. Motivation from E.O. Wilson in The Meaning of Human Existence. Could apply to any craft or vocation, don't you think? The most successful scientist or artist, musician, programmer, designer, tech lead, writer, product owner, or ...? Photo … Continue reading Think Like a Poet, Work Like a Bookkeeper

Abstract, High Resolution, Listen & Learn

Have you watched Abstract on Netflix yet? World-class designers share their life and work and philosophy, which I've found fascinating. A common thread in the episodes I've watched so far is that design doesn't happen in a vacuum. In order to produce something useful and beautiful that people will love and buy, you have to engage with … Continue reading Abstract, High Resolution, Listen & Learn

Be a Yardstick of Quality

Inspiration from Steve Jobs, in 1987. This is my milepost for 2017. People judge you by your performance, so focus on the outcome. Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren't used to an environment where excellence is expected. From I, Steve edited by George Beahm (2011).  

Video: Empathy and User-centered Design

Here's a short talk I gave at WordCamp London 2015 on the topic of empathy and user-centered design. Reblogging from the vault of yesteryear since I haven't published it previously. The big difference between good and bad designers (and developers, copywriters—all of us) is how they handle people struggling with their design. In this lightning session … Continue reading Video: Empathy and User-centered Design

Review: Superforecasting

This is a review of Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction by Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner. Although "Destined to become a modern classic" from the book jacket description might be a bit overstating the book's impact, I did enjoy the reading it and came away inspired and energized. The style is approachable and authentic. Beliefs … Continue reading Review: Superforecasting

SupConf

SupConf—a conference for folks who want to build a career in support—is coming in May 2016. It’s time we think about support as more than just an entry-level job. Support is a career, a craft, and something to be proud of. Pretty cool to see this type of focused conference come together around the craft … Continue reading SupConf