Via Tech Nation comes a nice audio interview with engineer, professor and author Henry Petroski. On the heels of his latest book The Essential Engineer: Why Science Alone Will Not Solve Our Global Problems he discusses the differences between Science and Engineering with Dr. Moira Gunn, how they work together, are viewed differently by the media and the public and how they’re funded differently. The 40 minute conversation ends with a discussion about engineering’s role in our world’s infrastructure and in solving problems from energy to agriculture.
Mystery meat navigation is a term web designers know well. It represents the result of a designer getting too clever for their own good and burying site navigational elements under the surface — expecting users to spend the effort to discover them. With important links behind objects that have to be interacted with a site’s visitor loses context and that information a first glance of the page can provide and may leave or give up before finding what they were looking for even if its there.
Mystery Meat Pagination
As a whole, the industry has learned from the past and I don’t encounter many examples of cases of mystery meat navigation in the wild. But with new technology comes new opportunities to run aground. In the last year or two I’ve seen many new sites implementing an infinite scrolling or lazy loading technique with AJAX.
These “remove the need for pagination clicking” techniques really tend to irk me. I haven’t seen one yet that doesn’t hit me as either clunky and heavy handed or that immediately cause me to lose the context of where I’m searching. Spending some time poking around 37signals recently launched web studio directory Haystack prompted this post, and is a good example, but they shouldn’t be picked on as the only or worst offender.
A few weeks ago The Web Standards Project and WaSP Edu Task Force launched a new venture to help create a curriculum outline, guidelines and course samples for those teaching a variety of web related disciplines [it takes more then just good HTML coders to create a good web site]. While I may have had my hands in the code for the site, the real heavy lifting of designing the site and creating the foundation and content for the curriculum project was done by others.
Drew McLellan has for the 4th year running wrangled a bunch of great authors and launched the Web Development Advent Calendar 24ways.
It isn’t December yet [in this time zone anyways] but the first day’s article has been posted for your enjoyment — Easing The Path from Design to Development. This is a nice piece on interaction between different sides of the site building process, something I’m intimately familiar with. A few pointers from my experience that are worth adding to Drew’s comments…
They do. And I never do a good enough job of pointing their efforts out, so here are a few new products to check out.
Threadless Spring Broke Sale now until March 12th.
And I do need some new shirts.
[But GAH! Jakes, do you need the auto start sound on the homepage?]
Last Thursday I had attended the one day course on presenting information by Edward Tufte.
The full day lecture style talk consisted of jumping through 4 of his books (which are included in the cost of the day) as he takes you through his thesis about how to present data and information so that it is understandable, credible, and in context.
While I’ve never really liked any of the logos in Buffalo Sabres history the newly proposed (leaked?) logo for the 2006-07 season is just far too swooshy and generic—and far too close to identity of the Buffalo Bills.
I’m clearly not the only one who doesn’t think much of the work. Fix The Logo is a site set up by Sabres fans hoping to gather support and convince the powers that be not to go through with these particular graphics.
How does one make a chair out of cardboard that is strong and table enough to use?
designboom has a few interesting prototypes including diagrams and models.
Its not a new idea, or even a new idea to get passed around blogs. Earlier this year there was some chatter about an artist making FedEx Furniture and FedEx not being happy about it. (and unfortunately, the site seems to be down now). Bad lawyers, bad.
design a cart that can provide shelter and storage.
urban homeless use carts to carry their possessions and to collect goods (like bottles, cardboard, etc.) that they then return to various recyclers in exchange for cash. this provides a small and valuable income. it is essential that your cart design not only accommodates all these functions but that it is affordable (for production and for private parties or charity organisations who wish to donate them).
I’m looking forward to the results, should be interesting.