Lacking a bit of inspiration?

February 29, 2016

If you, like most people, ever find yourself lacking a bit of inspiration or drive to get up and do stuff, be it work-specific or in a wider sense, then I can’t recommend Gavin Strange’s ‘Graft, craft and being daft’ talk strongly enough.

I was lucky enough to see him present this talk in person at the 2015 Collaborate Bristol event. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Gavin, he’s a Senior Designer at Aardman Animations, the studio most famous for the Wallace & Gromit adventures. Funnily enough as I was writing this I saw an Instagram post about a 4 metre tall Gromit designed by Gavin that is now on display at the Bristol Cribbs Causeway Mall until April 2016… how cool is that!?

One of the key themes of Gavin’s talk related to autodidacticism (no, me neither) which is the act of self-education. Having the passion, drive and interest to keep learning, regardless of subject or whether it has a ‘useful’ application, can be one of life’s most satisfying pursuits.

So if you’ve got 30 mins to spare and need something light-hearted yet thought provoking to watch, this is the video for you. Let me know what you think about it in the comments below.

You can also read more about Gavin’s talk and the 2015 Collaborate Conference on the Nomensa blog.

What do doors have to do with UX?

February 28, 2016

Answer: lots.

A really nice (and short) video about the history of human-centred design as told by founding father Don Norman. As explained in the video, it was the bad door, light switch and faucet designs he encountered in England that led Norman to write his seminal book ‘The Design of Everyday Things’.

I guess I owe these rubbish doors/switches/taps quite a bit of thanks, because it was Norman’s book that first got me interested in the idea of user-centred design and opened up another way of thinking.