1. Little moments of delight

    I guess people will interpret delight in different ways, and I’ll admit that most people won’t find it in such an ignorable scenario as the one pictured above. But you can’t not appreciate how easily Microsoft could have made the update screen for Windows Phone just generic and plain, how easily they could have not said “…and it will be worth the wait”. After all, they had no obligation to say that, nor any expectation from the consumer to be told that. In the grand scheme of things it makes no difference - I still have to wait the same amount of time for the update, the update will still be as amazing or disappointing as what awaits on the other side of this loading screen when it’s done. 

    But in the small scheme of things, not the grand scheme of things but the minuscule scheme of things this little statement can mean so much. It’s hard to imagine a Windows Phone user who won’t be touched by this in some way or another. Even for those users who don’t care and are just updating as a routine obligation may find the wait bearable because of this message. For others it builds anticipation. For people like me who live and breathe the details this message is a little glimpse at a refreshed Microsoft, it turned the 19 steps from an arduous toil into an exciting building of suspense, but probably most important of all it made me smile. Just a little half smirk. 

    It’s a good sign, sometimes going the extra mile for a great user experience can be done in less than a sentence. 

  2. 10:39 27th Aug 2014

    Notes: 29

    Reblogged from parislemon

    The sick thing is that these companies are selling to those who are less fortunate. I really think that manufacturing a product that you know is killing people should be against the law and that you should prosecute those who do it. It’s murder like anything else.
    — Michael Bloomberg, talking to The New York Times about his crusade against the cigarette industry. (via parislemon)
  3. 09:09 14th Aug 2014

    Notes: 115

    Reblogged from digithoughts

    image: Download


Gartner’s 2014 Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies
  4. 08:56

    Notes: 521

    Reblogged from uchicagoadmissions



    Carbide and Carbon Building, Chicago

    Carbide and Carbon is also the name of a robot detective agency in the cyberpunk novel I’m working on. It’s called Hot Circuits, Cold Blooded.

  5. 23:32 2nd Jul 2014

    Notes: 166

    Reblogged from emergentfutures

    Confusion and clutter are the failure of design, not the attributes of information.
    — Edward Tufte (via maxistentialist)
  6. Sometimes I think I just need someone to punch me in the face and tell me to shut up

  7. 22:27 11th Jun 2014

    Notes: 144

    Reblogged from emergentfutures


It’s not a bug…it’s a feature.


    It’s not a bug…it’s a feature.

  8. 10:59 23rd May 2014

    Notes: 56

    Reblogged from allleft

    image: Download


By Alberto Reyes


    By Alberto Reyes

  9. 15:50 1st May 2014

    Notes: 201639

    Reblogged from parislemon

  10. 14:50 19th Feb 2014

    Notes: 245673

    Reblogged from daft-piink

    image: Download


My friend just made this status


    My friend just made this status

    (Source: simplefoetus)

  11. Goodbye 2013

    Every year is a stepping stone, and we always like to think that we’ve moved up. Sometimes the steps are steep, crooked or a little unstable. Sometimes we think we’re going to fall and slip through the cracks. Of course we never do, every year we grow and learn a little more - and the sad truth is that we don’t always come out of them better people, but we always come out of them a fraction wiser. Hopefully, we take those lessons we learn to make the next year better than the last. 

    It never really feels like we grow though. When the year’s a rough one, all the rough patches make it feel like we’ve taken a step back - a wasted year perhaps, like it would’ve been better if we hadn’t lived it at all. It feels like we did fall through the cracks. 

    2013 was a bit like that for me. It’s 11pm and I’m sitting in the heart of Chinatown penning these little thoughts because I don’t want to go home. Because home is too comforting - there’s no summer nights chill, no drunken Monday night nomads and no odd flickering street lanterns to distract me from the fact that I have nothing figured out and that I’ve hardly solved any of the problems from a year ago. Maybe I’ve even given myself some new ones. No matter what I do, nothing changes the fact that I’m sitting here, alone in the middle of everything, looking back 365 days and realising that I’m no better. That I’ve moved miles in a year but remain right where I started. 

    But it’s shockingly ungrateful of me to treat 2013 like a waste of time. It tried so hard sometimes and many times the world was kind enough to reward it for its efforts. I played in a band, I ran a mock business, got over a girl and met a new one. 2013 had its moments and these moments alone certainly make 2013 a worthwhile year. Sadly though, I’m not immensely proud of anything achieved this year, not because I didn’t achieve anything but because I had bigger things in mind at this exact time last year. 2013, a year relegated to deserved mediocrity.

    I guess that illustrates the power of the underlying economics of society, and how fairly it actually treats people. We get out what we are willing to put in. Society reward hard workers, sooner or later. Society rewards nice people, compassionate people. The year treats you well if you give it enough to work with, and demand it do something with it. Maybe the accolades don’t come immediately, but it’s a test of character as much as it is of merit. The world rewards noble pursuit as much as it rewards patience and perseverance.

    That’s the biggest lesson I’ll take out of 2013. It’s a powerful one, derived from a year of jubilation, disappointment and a constant, lingering anticlimax. Hopefully it will give me the strength to become person I want to be, or at least the security to be comfortable with not being what society seems to want to mould me into, a sculpture that will never fully resemble my shape. Hopefully it gives me the resolve to fight the animals within me shackling me to the constant, mundane disappointment of my mental state. They’re getting old. Hopefully it gives me the courage to never let go of the people who matter regardless of how much of a struggle it is to hold onto them, and to let go of those who don’t. Even if the people that matter only number 3, or 2, or 1. Or even none, it’s never too late to start again.

    So my New Year’s resolution isn’t really anything this year. Nothing specific, because I guess I’ve come to the realisation that the crushing ritual of New Years Eve evaluation is a poor but acceptable excuse to change and do things that we should be doing all the time.

    So I don’t have one, not really. If anybody asks maybe I’ll tell them that it’s just to be a better me. Not a version of me that is easy for other people to appreciate, but one that I can love. Because there are many important people in our lives, but none more so than ourselves. For years, I’ve neglected my most important love affair. It’s battered, bruised and broken in so many ways, but I thank my lucky stars that this is one that will never leave me. 

    Or maybe, the goal is to create a version of me that is essentially capable of loving itself in the first place, regardless of whatever that person is. Or maybe it’s a bit of both.

    But this is not a New Year’s resolution, because this journey never starts and it never ends. The perennial love story perhaps. Thank you 2013 for all that you’ve given me, all that you taught me and all that you kept from me. And 2014, I don’t know what you’re going to be like - whether you’ll be my friend or my enemy, let’s hope it’s the former - but thanks for the mad invitation anyway.  

  12. The Worst Kind of Sadness

    The worst kind of sadness is a remote kind - somewhere deep enough that it’s hard to acknowledge exactly what it is, yet present enough to have a very real and lasting impression. It’s there all the time, changing things, making you feel things - bad, sad and miserable things

    The worst kind of sadness is like a cloud blocking the sunlight, because it is not painful in the same way that a very forceful course of action like a papercut in the webbing between your fingers or a blow to the jaw is. It is painful in the way that a thunderstorm keeps you inside, when everything beautiful you know is outside.

    The worst kind of sadness isn’t an event, or a moment, it’s a state of being.

    I’ve always been good at hiding my feelings. At best, I’m a glossy veneer over a brittle piece of wood, at worst I’m inconspicuous enough for people not to wonder. And for the most part, my life has been like that too, my problems hidden beneath a layer of gloss, paint and high-shine spray - just enough for me to be able to ignore them, or keep them on the very edges of my periphery where they aren’t calling me, telling me to feel upset. But what do you do when that goes away? When time wears away that fake veneer, or circumstances change and you run out of things to keep you distracted and sane.

    It’s a jarring and terrible state of being, when the things you spent years relying on to distract you from everything that is wrong with you is taken away. To live in a world that hinges on distraction is dangerous, it’s unsustainable because we are bound inevitably to run out of things to keep us from feeling ourselves.

    Maybe we’ll be reminded of things in the evening, after a draining day that leaves us too exhausted to think about anything else. Then we’ll try to sleep it off, a part of us hoping that we never wake up so we can avoid the reality of the evening before. But we will wake up, earlier than we want to. We’ll get up at 6 in the morning when we wanted to sleep all day and our hearts will puncture at the sight of sunrise because it’s all real, and it’s happening all over again.

    I’m feeling like I’m about to go mad again, at a time when I least wanted to. Because things don’t seem so bad. Actually, for the first time in a long time things aren’t meant to be bad at all. But nothing mattres, because this is the worst kind of sadness. The kind of sad that makes the beautiful seem putrid and the putrid seem normal. Because whatever we do we can’t escape the shadow that is cast over us - too big a cloud and too small a sun. And we know there’s something wrong, when we would rather sleep, and sleep forever rather than wake up.

    But I just can’t run away from it. In a world where cars are fast and planes fly high, we can still never run away from ourselves. No. This is the worst kind of sadness, and the only thing to do is to find something to distract ourselves from everything. Inside and out.

  13. 19:20 18th Nov 2013

    Notes: 59

    Reblogged from parislemon

    image: Download


Young Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates from this WSJ post.
[via @jyarow]


    Young Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates from this WSJ post.

    [via @jyarow]

  14. The story of the next century is the transition from an industrial, resource-based economy, to a knowledge economy. An industrial economy is zero sum. If you own an oil field, I cannot go in that same oil field. But knowledge works differently. If you know something, then you can share that — and then the whole world gets richer. But until that happens, there’s a big disparity in wealth. The richest 500 million have way more money than the next 6 billion combined. You solve that by getting everyone online, and into the knowledge economy — by building out the global Internet.

    No doubt that the ultimate end game of the Internet.org initiative purely from Zuckerberg’s vantage is to increase the number of potential Facebook users. The social media market in the developed world is saturated, most people who want to be on Facebook are already on Facebook and most are aware of the methods with which the company is able to make money - through personalised advertising. As such, the potential to exploit this is becoming increasingly more limited.

    Compare this with the developing world, where a few billion people live without Facebook, but would really love it. Zuckerberg makes an implicit statement that Internet.org is a fundamentally altruistic initiative, aimed to alleviate economic disparity by levelling access to the ‘knowledge economy’ through equitable internet access, but it’s obvious that the initiative is just as much, if not entirely about Facebook’s long term prospects. Internet.org is a portal to an enormous untapped market with huge financial potential, where Facebook has milked the developed world for its worth, developing countries present the company with a girth of opportunities. 

    The company will be able to build a strong rapport with the citizens of the developing world who will not be cautious of the company’s sly strategies for monetization but are likely to embrace the platform along with all its offerings as the opening to an exciting and broader networked economy. With intelligent strategies such as Facebook Zero, Facebook can become the consumers’ first taste of the internet which culminates in the tremendous strategic opportunity to become synonymous with the internet. Zuckerberg never got this opportunity when launching in many developed countries where internet culture was already becoming deeply embedded. 

    Critics are quick to discount Zuckerberg’s plan of being self-interested, which is not false but are we really so cynical to deny that Internet.org - along with assisting Facebook’s business objectives - can really make a positive impact and make the world a better place?

    Why can’t Facebook do both? Much of Zuckerberg’s dialogue about the knowledge economy is airy fairy corporate speak, after all the causation which Zuckerberg emphasises between being able to share information through the internet and getting richer is somewhat vapid. However, when examining a much broader scope where the whole world is connected, equality is able to be achieved simply through a more level playing field. Where efficiency in communication can be more readily achieved leading to a much more proficient delivery of services. Where research can be conducted, and action undertaken to achieve a more sustainable economy that permanently locks itself out of a poverty cycle instead of simply relying on the cyclical supply of foreign and humanitarian aid to assist. 

    And it’s very possible that Facebook can play a part. Humans are inherently personal creatures, so Facebook is a very useful tool for getting people engaged with the internet, from which users will be able to discover further use cases. Zuckerberg is right, and I commend his vision, in fulfilling his own interests but also playing a part in making the world a better place. As a long term strategy, getting the world online will probably have a greater impact in mitigating economic disparity than sending clean water.

    Maybe if Zuckerberg didn’t try so hard to disguise it as a purely humanitarian play (Internet dot ORG), then people would be more receptive.

  15. 18:10 8th Nov 2013

    Notes: 186

    Reblogged from bijan

    A feeling I got from working at Google was that technology could solve any problem. Yes it’s fantastic, but what I realized later was there’s technology and there’s people. Google had its list ordered: Technology. People. And I think the right order is: People. Technology. You have to think about people first and technology second. Hopefully technology gets out of the way.
    — Biz (via bijan)