To: Unskilled labor
Subject: Gleanings: the bad revolution
Put your mouse where your mouth is. Competition to redesign useit.com.
Also after reading this excellent article on v-2 http://www.v-2.org/bad.html I’ve been thinking about “bad” design again. I have been watching and listening to the debate rage on within the usability community about how Flash is “99% bad” and it reminds me of nothing as much as the arguments I heard when desktop publishing came out. people were up in arms over how much bad design was showing up– these people don’t kern! They use matisse for body text! or something like that…. and of course desktop publishing was blamed for putting the power to design into unskilled hands. Eventually the revolution evolved, and bad designs continued to show up on lost dog posters, and good designs (or at least a typical level of mediocrity) on most professionally produced materials.
Flash is an accessible tool, and a lot of people are messing with it that have no clue what they are doing, and they are producing junk. So what. HTML is an accessible tool, and lots of people are producing junk (take a stroll through any geocities “neighborhood”.) So what. The revolution will produce failures and successes, but in the end we’ll have a better, livelier medium for it.
IA & DESIGN MATTERS
Long Live Analog
“The increasingly digital world is obsessed with retro-tech sound and
design. Steven Johnson goes behind the music.”
A Few Tips on Designing URLs
“URLs should be viewed as an abstract interface to an information resource engine residing on a web-server … URLs have to be designed just like anything else in a website. They are an integral part of the user interface of a website. They play an indirect role in the overall user-experience. They can also affect the long-term value of a website.”
NEWS & COMMENTARY
I never tire of napster stories.
News.Com: Big Blue touts new Napster-proof music locks.
The advent of Napster and its peers has changed the rules and risks in the online music business. Now IBM and other companies are trying to keep just enough of the Napster model alive to satisfy consumers, while giving copyright holders near-absolute control over the way songs and other media are distributed.
Business Week: There’s No Fizz in Pepsi’s E-Promotion.
Maybe I missed a key point in the evolution of mass consumer society. Perhaps our consumerism is so over-the-top that people would find it amusing to take an active role in choosing the marketing messages designed to get them to buy sugar water. So, Pepsi is either very cleverly aware or stunningly naive.
Humbled Dot-Coms Still Major Presence at Sundance Festival
French Sue Yahoo, Again (Reuters)
Doctors Forced to Use Hotmail for Confidential Medical Records
from media grok, on http://www.thestandard.com
our European correspondent writes:
“Now in Spain a friend has opened a distribution list to comment things about IA, usability and more, he is www.terremoto.net, maybe you know him.”
(thanks, Juan– I didn’t)
APROPOS OF NOTHING