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  • Review: Managing Humans | O Danny Boy
    feet wet managing people but also for people who aren t managing anyone in order to understand what their boss and their boss boss does and thinks about all day If you ve ever wondered What do those managers do all day this is the book for you Lopp goes over the basics of running a team from hiring on resumes you have 30 seconds to make an impression on me to resigning Don t give too much notice to dealing with difficult employees Get the freaks to solve their own problems Lopp or his alter ego Rands has practical advice on how to deal with it And not crap like Get your team to be the best it can be but tactical suggestions on how to play common scenarios like bad meetings employee freakouts and dealing with burnt out staff And he does it in a readable funny way Highly Recommended for managers especially 4 August 2007 Dan Post navigation Over the Web But Not The Internet Revising Designing for Interaction Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published Required fields are marked Comment Name Email Website Wordpress Hashcash needs javascript to work but your

    Original URL path: http://www.odannyboy.com/2007/08/review-managing-humans/ (2016-04-26)
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  • Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows | O Danny Boy
    for years books It was devastating to me I had many of the same type of moments while reading the last Harry Potter book J K Rowling is no stylist like O Brien but she is just as good of a storyteller if not better It s the craft behind the books that is so good and it is particularly obvious in Deathly Hallows as the pieces of previous books some stretching back to the first books of the series fit together like some massive table sized puzzle made up of smaller puzzled Reading Deathly Hallows I found myself saying Oh that s why that happened or that s what was going on there more than once It s really a masterful bit of plotting and it is something the likes of which I have never seen before except perhaps in massive comic book arcs like the Dark Phoenix Saga of my youth One only needs to compare the heavy handed plotting of say the Star Wars movies or even blasphemy The Lord of the Rings to see the achievement here So goodbye Harry I can t wait to read you again some 20 or 30 years from now with my grandchildren Or perhaps even just by myself 22 July 2007 Dan Post navigation Design Lessons from Kathy Griffin Pushing the RSS Reset Button 2 thoughts on Review Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows udanium says 29 July 2007 at 11 07 pm I just finished Book 7 this afternoon whew I totally agree while I m several hours later still absorbing the fullness of the overall impact the craft of the storytelling in this installment of the Harry Potter saga is mesmerizing profound and well shaped can you imagine creating an object model diagram or concept map of all

    Original URL path: http://www.odannyboy.com/2007/07/review-harry-potter-and-the-deathly-hallows/ (2016-04-26)
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  • Review: Dreaming in Code | O Danny Boy
    itself is a visionary idea one that is similar to MayaViz s CoMotion software in that it treats all bits of data addresses calendar entries email etc as fluid objects that can change and be used in different forms Building that idea turns out to be a massive problem as is detailed sometimes in almost too much detail in DIC Readers who don t have any programming background will likely find themselves occasionally glossing over some of the technical discussions and details but as an introduction to what it takes to create a piece of software and as a primer on software history and methodologies DIC is really top notch Very readable and it untangles subjects like programming methodologies more clearly than anything else I ve ever read on the matter If you ve never done a project like Chandler this book is a window into what it can be like although as the book points out every project is different The Chandler team inadvertently makes a series of painfully bad errors in process starting with the two years they spend without a solid design to work from then their choice of a programming language none of the developers was an expert in and even as it turns out in the choice of medium desktop vs online application Then as the slog continues through its alpha releases you are left just shaking your head first in exasperation then sadness then resignation It s a wonder that any big software project gets done There s some great pieces of wisdom tucked into this book as well One in particular to explain the slow start of the project notes that it is always easier to make tools and tools for the tools than it is to make the product itself Something that

    Original URL path: http://www.odannyboy.com/2007/07/review-dreaming-in-code/ (2016-04-26)
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  • Review: Managing the Design Factory | O Danny Boy
    recipes also requires good information and the sooner the better As most designers know well making changes late in a product is far more costly than making them earlier on so we need good information as soon as possible in the process to make the correct decisions throughout Information is a key theme throughout One nugget of wisdom I found instructive was Reinertsen noting that events that are less probable contain more information and thus we should balance our risk success rate to obtain more information When success is likely the message of success contains little information whereas if success is unlikely the message of success contains a lot of information Likewise a message of failure contains more information if the failure is highly improbable We maximize the amount of information we can get by approaching a 50 percent failure rate We need failure and risk When a design fails because we try something new that does not work we generate useful information Reinertsen says In fact expert knowledge only comes from being exposed to and remembering low probability events What a great way to think about failure Risk isn t to be avoided but embraced Reinertsen says we can make risk more attractive by decreasing the magnitude of the downside reducing the probability of the downside increasing the magnitude of the upside Easier said than done of course He goes on to note that most product failures are caused by market risk which is a much tougher problem than technical risk Market risk is determiend by how well the product specification meets customer requirements Two factors that increase this risk are that customers often do not know what they want and that their requirements may change during the development process He then goes on to offer suggestions for managing this risk including using a substitute product simulating the risky attribute and making the design flexible enough to accommodate changes Another thing that rings true is about deadlines in the design process W e rarely stop when we achieve a satisfactory solution because this will simply result in a satisfactory product Instead we stop when we run out of time activities are completed on time or late They are never completed early Interfaces are another key point throughout but not interfaces how interaction designers typically think of them as UI say Instead these interfaces are the connections between different modules of a design where one component of a system connects and communicates with another An organization too is one such system and Reinertsen looks at the various types of organizational structures and the communications between the different parts of a company The key driver of good communication is the amount of usable information communicated compared to what is needed to make good decisions In other words you don t necessarily have to increase the information flow to solve communication problems When designing products Reinertsen says it s not enough to just find out what the customer wants You need to

    Original URL path: http://www.odannyboy.com/2007/03/review-managing-the-design-factory/ (2016-04-26)
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  • Review: Designing the Mobile User Experience | O Danny Boy
    in other parts of the book the technical jargon gets thick and becomes geared towards more developer types For designers of a certain ilk the meatiest part of the book will be Chapter 6 on Mobile UI Design Patterns I personally find patterns hard to put into practice but that s another story Missing from some patterns is an accompanying image of the pattern however which makes some patterns hard to understand Images of the patterns in actual use in addition to wireframe like figures would have been nice Designers who are into patterns might also checking out Ballard s Mobile UI Design Patterns Wiki I was personally more interested in Chapter 7 strangely titled Graphic and Media Design I d call it well Interface Design Using the brilliant metaphor of portrait miniatures Ballard offers some really interesting advice for designing UIs for the small screen such as that designers might want to replicate some of the characteristics of amateur art in their designs no attention paid to the background close cropping and to play with perspective Some color plates and examples of these practices on mobile devices would have helped this chapter Chapter 8 an overview of industry players is probably crucial to any understanding of mobile even though for anyone with experience this chapter contains very little insight It s also an industry that changes rapidly although not rapidly enough in some cases Likewise chapter 9 on Research and Design interaction designers will probably find puzzling and dated springing from a very HCI usability approach A complementary book and indeed almost the inverse of this book is Mobile Interaction Design which I would recommend to really dig into interaction design for mobile What s missing from Ballard s book is well covered there and visa versa I d

    Original URL path: http://www.odannyboy.com/2007/02/review-designing-the-mobile-user-experience/ (2016-04-26)
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  • Review: Catching the Big Fish | O Danny Boy
    little fish you can stay in the shallow water But if you want to catch the big fish you ve got to go deeper Down deep the fish are more powerful and more pure They are huge and abstract And they re very beautiful Lynch details how he got into TM and what it has done for his work and life and if you like Lynch s films he offers some interesting insights especially about the role of the accidental during filming Note I really think there are more parallels between the world of film and the world of interaction design that haven t been explored at all Some of the creative process is remarkably similar Towards the end of this small book Lynch offers this good advice Stay true to yourself Let your voice ring out and don t let anybody fiddle with it Never turn down a good idea but never take a bad idea May it be so 17 February 2007 Dan Post navigation Design Solutions to Puzzles and Mysteries Learning Interaction Design from Las Vegas One thought on Review Catching the Big Fish ines says 4 April 2007 at 3 00 am I m gona read

    Original URL path: http://www.odannyboy.com/2007/02/review-catching-the-big-fish/ (2016-04-26)
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  • Review: What Things Do (Part 7) | O Danny Boy
    products concerns the practical dealings with them and involves their bodily presence rather than just what they look like or signify or how they are interpreted or read And here is the crux of the argument where Verbeek s thoughts touch fully upon interaction design Mediation occurs on the basis of practical dealings with things When things are used people take up a relation to the world that these things thanks to their hanidness coshape In this coshaping not only does the human interaction with products have a sensory character so does the human world relation that is mediated by the products Human experience and existence can only acquire a specific shape on the basis of sensory perception and sensory dealings with with world By extending the domain of aesthetics to include the sensorial in the broadest sense therefore it becomes possible to give the notion of mediation an explicit place in the industrial design process The meaning of aesthetics in design then comes to include not just style and beauty but also the relations between people and products and the ways in which products coshape the relation between humans and the world This is what interaction design in the broadest and deepest sense already at least partially does This relation between people and products and between people and the world is at the heart of interaction design The aesthetics of interaction design are more far reaching than only the visual although of course the visual is still intensely important Naturally one cannot define design this way without touching upon ethics and this is what Verbeek addresses next Designers engage in ethics by other means that is their products codetermine the outcome of moral considerations which in turn determine human action and their definition of the good life Things help shape the answer of how to act in any given situation With a gun in my hand I may react differently when angered Gerard De Vries says Our existence is furnished with many different kinds of devices and technological systems These are what instruct people in contemporary societies how to live Thus for Verbeek Design ethics requires that artifacts be treated as members of the moral community conceived as the community in which morality assumes a shape Things carry morality because they shape the way people experience their world and organize their existence regardless of whether this is done consciously and intentionally or not The very fact that they do this shaping charges designers with the responsibility to make sure that things do this in a desirable way Verbeek offers some advice as to the type and character of the types of products designers should be designing The first is for designers not to try to aim for products that people are devoted to but rather to those people are attached to Products to which people develop an attachment are not generally as emotionally charged and irreplaceably present as heirlooms but neither are they as anonymous as a throw away

    Original URL path: http://www.odannyboy.com/2006/11/review-what-things-do-part-7/ (2016-04-26)
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  • Review: What Things Do (Part 1)
    huge organizations and extensive bureaucracies Everything must be planned and coordinated with everything else Verbeek writes The tightly organized society that results according to Jaspers itself has the character of a machine Jaspers calls this technological society that is the world we live in now The Apparatus and it increasingly determines how human beings carry out their daily lives Human beings stop becoming individuals but are instead interchangeable parts in The Apparatus With this bleak picture of technology it s hard to grasp that Jaspers although thinks of technology as essentially neutral Technology follows no particular direction only human beings can give it direction it is in itself neutral and requires guidance It is in no position to give itself ends and is only a means for realizing ends provided by human beings While Jaspers claims that technology is not an end unto itself he knows that people often view it as such allowing it to function as an independent and menacing power while not being so itself Human beings need to reassert control over technology and not make it the goal lest everything that can be done technologically is Another interesting note for designers is that Jaspers says that the only way to really control technology is not think about the problem in a purely intellectual way because that will only lead to solving technical problems and not the real problem The only way to solve human problems to turn general situations into personal situations to make the problem ours and to take on personal responsibility We need to recover a sense of responsibility for technology When we are responsible for technology failure to act becomes a choice we make Verbeek notes that the idea that technology is neutral is an unusual one in philosophy Most philosophies of technology claim the opposite that technology is decidedly not neutral and does much more than simply achieve the goals for which they were designed Indeed says Verbeek T echnologies reshape the very ends that we use them to reach a technology does much more than realize the goal towards which it has been put it always helps to shape the context in which it functions altering the actions of human beings and the relation between them and their environment Verbeek goes on to say that a serious flaw in Jaspers thinking is the separation of technology from culture As he gets into later in the book technology and culture are deeply entwined Human beings aren t sovereign with respect to technology but are rather inextricably interwoven with it In part two Heidegger answers the question What makes a thing useful Jump ahead to parts 2 3 4 5 6 and 7 Originally posted at Thursday November 16 2006 Comments 2 Trackback 0 Previous Entry To TO Back from New York City now off again on the Halloween red eye flight to Toronto for DesignThinkers 2006 and drinks with the UXIrregulars on the evening of November 1 At the conference I ll

    Original URL path: http://www.odannyboy.com/blog/new_archives/2006/11/review_what_thi.html (2016-04-26)
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