Friday, March 23, 2007

Video game design

Boing-Boing has an interesting post on video game design.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Five Key Principles to Great Communicating

Bert Decker says:

1. The Spoken Word is More Powerful than the Written Word.

2. Always Have a Point Of View. Always.
* What’s my point!
* What action do I want people to take!
* What’s the benefit in it for them!

3. Communication Rides Energy
* Eye Communication – the most important, at least five (5) seconds
* Posture and Movement – move, don’t stand behind lecterns
* Dress and Appearance – “thin slicing” or the first three seconds
* Gestures and the Smile – animation reflects our enthusiasm and passion
* Voice and Vocal Variety – beware the monotone voice
* Pausing – rid of non-words and the Power of the Pause

4. Visual Impact Dominates Personal Impact

5. Authenticity Is the Core of Communicating

Thanks to Guy Kawasaki for the cite.

What leads to success?

Richard St. John answers in this short video.

1. Passion (love not money)
2. Work
3. Good (practice, practice, practice)
4. Focus
5. Push
6. Serve (give others something of value)
7. Ideas
8. Persist

And to get new ideas, he says:
Be Curious
Ask Questions
Problem Solve
Make Connections

Monday, March 19, 2007

The 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint

Guy Kawasaki writes on The 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint based on his experience in venture capital.

"It’s quite simple: a PowerPoint presentation should have ten slides, last no more than twenty minutes, and contain no font smaller than thirty points.

Design Dinner Party

Creating Passionate Users outlines a Product Design Dinner Party as an alternative to meetings or brainstorming. The focus isn't on dinner but rather on presenting and selecting ideas through small groups that change membership with each round.

The method features:
1) Time constraints
2) Forced lack of attachment
3) Random, outside-your-domain inputs

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Designing sound

From metacool

"Why must things sound boring or terrible? Why not design them to sound the way they would sound if you stopped and thought about the right sound for the occasion? You know that ominous landing gear whine and clunk you hear right after take off in a jet liner? Why not make that sound confidence-inspiring? Everything can be designed, and to deliver a total experience, probably should be."

Friday, March 9, 2007


Seth Godin writes:

"But having a dialogue is different. It's about engaging in (sometimes) uncomfortable conversations that enable both sides to grow and change."

Monday, March 5, 2007

Design Economy

The StarTribune interviews Thomas Fisher, dean of the University of Minnesota's College of Design

Here are a few quotes:

"The idea of the design economy is that, for developed countries like ours, which cannot compete in a global marketplace on price or even quite often on the quality of a product, we have to compete on the basis of innovation, creativity and imagination, which takes you to design. By design, I don't mean just aesthetics but function and cultural adaptability."

"Look at the car industry. The American segment struggles because it still operates under the old assumption that price matters most. But people will pay a higher price for a Toyota Prius because it has a multiple meaning: It gets you places, but it uses less gas and carries this symbolism of doing something for the environment."

"The reality in this new era is that innovation comes from opportunities to have face-to-face conversations, to stimulate one another with new ideas. But by separating ourselves off from that experience so we can live in our suburban house, get in our car, go to the office, then go back again and never encounter anybody, what you prevent is the unexpected experience that might get you to think about something in a new way. We've designed cities that prevent us from being as innovative and as stimulated as we need to be in order to compete."

tip from Creativity Exchange

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Orwell on Writing

Guy Kawasaki points us to George Orwell's Politics and the English Language

"Apart from avoidable ugliness, two qualities are common... The first is staleness of imagery; the other is lack of precision. The writer either has a meaning and cannot express it, or he inadvertently says something else, or he is almost indifferent as to whether his words mean anything or not. This mixture of vagueness and sheer incompetence is the most marked characteristic of modern English prose..."

Orwell provides these rules:
1. Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.
2. Never use a long word where a short one will do.
3. If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.
4. Never use the passive where you can use the active.
5. Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.
6. Break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous.