I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time lately watching reality shows lately. By inordinate, I mean more than the two hours of TV I watch a week at most. But you know the kind, those elimination round ones, where every week a person somehow fails and leaves the show in tears. The latest in question is called “Next in Fashion,” and as far as I can tell the first to be design-based. As someone who’s spent the majority of their lives in the clutches of design as a practice and having at least half of my waking moment’s thoughts around design and its implications, this is what grabbed me. But there could be so much more.
The design reality show I want to see…sorry, scratch that…that the world needs to see before it kills itself, is with typographers. Typographers to those who may not know are basically graphic designers, but graphic designers who specialise in just the letters and typefaces bit. In this show though, they would be vying for who would make the best typographical choices. "Oh christ, Giles went for this really questionable amount of leading AND About 2.3% of the viewing audience would get how shit Garamond is for the guest judge typographer to the stars and Cleveland’s very own, Michael Beirut.
Articles I Wrote You Will Read Now
Machiavelli had Laundry Issues: More about our place in history and technology. Sort of.
The Inevitable Technology Might Not Be: Thinking about how we as humans don’t always progress
The Death of Virtual Tours: Watching something that was supposed to be something interesting slowly die
Invasion Shopping List: More thoughts on messed up ways of living and thinking about living
I Designed a Thing
Right. So I actually designed a thing. It’s called Yleos, and it’s probably one of the first things I’ve designed that I would use to do my work. Which was really cool.
Let’s Do Design and Tech Together
Things I do pretty good that you may need my help on right about now or really soon, let’s say next week for instance
- Make complex digital products and services simple and understandable
- Solve problems and then scaling design solutions and teams
- Holistic, end to end design of how people use technology in their lives
So, let’s talk: email@example.com.
So here is the part where you’re supposed to get a couple of paragraphs in to your dutiful reading of this newsletter and at which point I do the big reveal…
And then you’re supposed to read how you’ve been reading words and sentences that ChatGPT made!
However this isn’t going to happen because I like you. Consider this newsletter/blog/whateverthehell a firm and fanciful riposte to all of that. All human content here. Nothing but the best. Or at least my version of it for that day.
The last thing I want to do is type a sentence at a machine which then turns it into three paragraphs for you to read, which you then send to a machine to turn into one sentence. Life is absurd enough as it is without this idiot’s version of the telephone game.
This shit has already invaded our internet lives a lot I would say, but I’m wondering about our physical lives. Apparently, a pigeon can be trained to spot cancer in x-rays with better results than humans. Would I rather have a pigeon or an AI look at an x-ray to see if I have cancer? Make no mistake. I hate pigeons. I don’t hate them as much as jellyfish which I wouldn’t mind being extinct. But I somehow feel better about leaving my unassuming life in their pea-size-brains hands (or claws?) rather than MegaCorp’s potentially evil clutches.
Kosem’s Codependent Relationship Image Theorem
The more pictures you post of your wife, partner, etc. is the inverse proportion of how well the relationship with that person is doing.
Apparently “my people” made an awesome 80’s DIY computer that let people build their own. Yugoslavia was (somehow) doing it ages before Raspberry Pi or Arduino.
The Galaksija: Socialism’s DIY Computer
An overnight sensation, this DJing practice quickly became a staple on Modli’s show. In the ensuing months, Ventilator 202 broadcast hundreds of computer programs. During the hour, Modli would announce when the segment was approaching, signaling to his listeners that it was time for them to fetch their equipment, cue up a tape, and get ready to hit record. In the case of games, users would “download” the programs off the radio and alter them—inserting their own levels, challenges, and characters—then send them back to Modli for retransmission. In effect, this was file transfer well before the advent of the World Wide Web, a pre-internet pirating protocol.
Notes from a cis-gender, middle-class, European origin male
The worst thing about being a parent in this day and age is besides and beyond the ceaseless onslaught of things you absolutely must do for your progeny which didn’t exist until the year before, is animation. It’s so damn good. If you had any training in any 3d software in your life you just see what you could have been doing instead of typing newsletters at people. This is my struggle.
Ponder this I
…the bad procrastinator finds himself paralysed precisely because he can’t bear the thought of confronting his limitations. For him. Procrastination is a strategy of emotional avoidance - a way of trying not to feel the psychological distress that comes with acknowledging that he’s a finite human being.
(“Four Thousand Weeks” by Oliver Burkeman)
One of humanity’s greatest fears is of the finite. Our imagination’s keep us alive because they keep annihilation at bay with endless scenarios and possibilities. Thus, procrastination is an exercise in trying to realise the infinite. There is always more time. There is in reality not though. So what then? Go and open another beer and do it tomorrow.
Ponder this II
Tony Robbins, if nothing else, achieved the amazing by managing to do group therapy at scale. This is a feat and a business that only organised religions have ever managed before. That leaves us with the question, what is Tony Robbins then?
Super Serious Forwards
Design thinking was supposed to fix the world. Where did it go wrong? Where did it all go wrong? This is the question. One thing the article leaves out is how much it was coopted by all the big consultancies. You don’t need IDEO’s thinking if McKinsey will do it for five times the price but have more MBAs in the room.
Ten Songs That Explain White North America is worth it for no other reason than the history of “Sweet Home Alabama” by Lynyrd Skynyrd.
I could not have said it better or more terribly heartfelt than AI, WTF Do You Know About Pain? Please read someone who read my mind.
What’s Wrong with an Empty Bus? is something I’ve thought about way too many damn times and finally someone has sorted it out for me.
I planned way more for this thing but somehow it’s way long anyhow. It’s been a long month I’m sure you’ll agree. Chocolate, just a bit, every damn day. Seriously. Somehow jeans are looser which makes about as much sense as anything. That’s it. I need a beer. Or whatever is open in the kitchen right now. Ride. Shoot straight. Speak the truth.
- Jim, new media guru