Apparently this week on Link Drop Today I had big brands in my sights, everyone from Apple, MTV, AOL, AIGA, and Facebook all made appearances. Interestingly Twitter wasn’t part of the listing though Social Media as a category was prominent. I like doing these mind maps at the end of the week to see what patterns of interest had my attention over the last week and make connections that I wouldn’t have been able to notice otherwise. One theme that I probably wouldn’t have noticed is all the location based ideas, and different ways of classification—how people sort and order information.
Matt Daniels brings up some question worth considering about in What if every company had an API? Aside from technology companies, what brick-and-mortar companies could benefit from releasing their companies dna. One example cited is Starbucks with what they’re doing with a concept tea house. He quotes Snarkmarket “What if Starbucks was offering up a Starbucks API—a set of hooks into a vast, efficient coffee shop support system with incredible economies of scale? You, the local coffee shop owner, simply plug in, and wham, your costs drop by thirty percent because you’re leveraging Starbucks’ insanely optimized supply chain.”
I’m really liking RE — C Type Family by Emil Olsson that I first saw on AisleOne. There’s a lot of refined quality that stencil “like” typefaces tend to ignore. While RE — C looks nice when big I think its true quality is shown when the type is reduced in size considerably. When small all the negative space inside each letter expands to make the typeface very readable. Now all I need to do is find a project to use such a face…
On the design mind blog from Frog they’ve posted about a topic that I’ve rarely read about on any design site—shyness. In their post they’ve pointed to an article from John Hagel where he states that the only way a shy person can thrive “where participation in many, diverse flows of knowledge and long-term, trust-based relationships determine success” is through passion. There’s a couple other points to consider too. Breaking out of complacency allows a person to “to grow and succeed in a constantly changing world”.
Stayathomia: This belt’s defining feature is how near most people are to their friends, implying they don’t move far.
Dixie: Like Stayathomia, Dixie towns tend to have links mostly to other nearby cities rather than spanning the country.
Greater Texas: Unlike Stayathomia, there’s a definite central city to this cluster, otherwise most towns just connect to their immediate neighbors.
Mormonia: The only region that’s completely surrounded by another cluster, Mormonia mostly consists of Utah towns that are highly connected to each other, with an offshoot in Eastern Idaho.
Nomadic West: The defining feature of this area is how likely even small towns are to be strongly connected to distant cities; it looks like the inhabitants have done a lot of moving around the county.
Socalistan: LA is definitely the center of gravity for this cluster. Almost everywhere in California and Nevada has links to both LA and SF, but LA is usually first.
Pacifica: Tightly connected to each other, it doesn’t look like Washingtonians are big travelers compared to the rest of the West, even though a lot of them claim to need a vacation.
In almost every state in the Southern U.S., God is number one most popular Fan page among Facebook users. Among people in the L.A., San Francisco and Nevada regions? “God hardly makes an appearance on the fan pages, but sports aren’t that popular either,” Warden writes. “Michael Jackson is a particular favorite, and San Francisco puts Barack Obama in the top spot.” In the Oregon and Idaho region? Starbucks is number one.
In the Mormon-influenced areas of Utah and Eastern Idaho, the most popular Fan pages are The Book of Mormon, Glen Beck and the vampire book Twilight, which was authored by a Mormon.
The bulk of Warden’s posted analysis yesterday was about location networks. People in the western U.S. tend to have Facebook friends all over the country; people in the southern U.S. tend to mostly be friends with people who have remained in the same area.
NASA’s photo of the day from Tuesday February 9th was the Satellite View of the East Coast after Snowmageddon.
While the post about how the decision was made to keep a certain scene in an ad is a bit disturbing Why Brands Should Strive for Imperfection—using science that no one could argue with as opposed to a clear direction, what this story shows is that people are drawn to human stuff as much as aspirational motivations.
What got my attention with the post about The Pool is that each of the 120 pads don’t have a master computer or router but react to the action of what’s being jumped on.
While it’s easy to take tagging for granted on the street one person has kept her eyes on what’s been going on inside a library of all places as the WSJ story A Statistical Stab at Graffiti talks about. She’s been capturing the images on flickr and has been entering them into a spread sheet. Predictable feelings of love at the beginning year tend to pop up early in the school year while near finals things turn a bit darker.
While it shouldn’t come as any surprise that MTV No Longer About ‘Music’, they’ve finally done something with the logo as has been mentioned all over the interwebs. They’re still a company that is envied for their system of growing people from within but like every media company has not really been effective living in a post tv world. Will a new logo do much to change that culture, probably not.
There’s a couple points to take note of in Tomorrow Museum’s post about why Facebook is Worse than AOL. I suppose context is everything. I came across a post somewhere this week that people use different features of myspace and facebook and think that is the only thing that a site like that can be. For metal heads they’re more likely to see just other metal head related stuff. For someone interested in events they might turn off all the other features and stay in tune that way. Me, I use Facebook to host all my blog posts. In any case being all things to all people with some level of customization isn’t bad, but the idea of public exclusivity is something that isn’t going to be coming back to FB anytime soon.
While it’s pretty hard not to read about a press release of a company doing something with social media, Ana in What are social media really good for? brings up some great questions about it—like is a brand extending themselves with pr stunts and using social media as a means to build the business/service (she uses the word marketing, I prefer to think it’s something more meaningful). She does note that those companies that are top of mind tend to be providing a service to their customers as opposed to just pushing product.
The AIGA recently updated their online Design Archives. The site’s architecture is a great example of being able to filter gallery’s into a number of helpful viewing sections. Probably one of the most difficult things in design today is the simple idea of classification. For those categories they’ve broken it up into Discipline and Format which allows a lot of ground to be covered. My only gripe in terms of gallery viewing is that I wish they had included a next button when the image is large. Currently I have to close the large image before proceeding. I’d also be curious to see a What’s Popular section that allowed me to see what people are clicking on or sharing. But as a start the site is an excellent resource that I’ll start looking at more now that the site has been redesigned.
While the iPad hasn’t been released just yet, there’s still a lot of speculation of what the actual experience will entail. This flickr set has tried to display all the different iPad UI Conventions that were on display when the iPad was announced.