New Language Online

Nick Bilton on pictures for communication instead of documentation: Photos, once slices of a moment in the past — sunsets, meetings with friends, the family vacation — are fast becoming an entirely new type of dialogue. The cutting-edge crowd is … Continue reading

A $300 Axe

Unlike cars or wristwatches, an axe has the sole purpose of being pure utility and yet we’ve managed to add some designs to the handle and turn a product of a simple life into a commodity worth $300.00.

Alone Together

Sherry Turkle, Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other: Technology is seductive when what it offers meets our human vulnerabilities. And as it turns out, we are very vulnerable indeed. We are lonely but … Continue reading

Market Society

What Isn’t for Sale? …without quite realizing it—without ever deciding to do so—we drifted from having a market economy to being a market society. The difference is this: A market economy is a tool—a valuable and effective tool—for organizing productive … Continue reading

Everyone is a Critic

We now live under the hybrid tyranny of middlebrow. No serious person believes the Oscars are a list of the best films, or the Grammys the best music. Charitably one could say they represent a kind of averaging out, an … Continue reading

The Influencing Machine

Brooke Gladstone’s The Influencing Machine: I see our most hallowed journalistic institutions crumbling, I see the business model that relied on mass audiences being displaced, with stunning speed, by one that survives by aggregating millions of tiny, targeted audience fragments. … Continue reading

Occupy Design

Occupy Design is a grassroots project connecting designers with on-the-ground demonstrators in the Occupy Together movement. The project’s goal is to create freely available visual tools around a common graphic language to unite the 99%. The project places an emphasis … Continue reading

Banned from App Store

Phone Story is a game for smartphone devices that attempts to provoke a critical reflection on its own technological platform. Under the shiny surface of our electronic gadgets, behind its polished interface, hides the product of a troubling supply chain … Continue reading

The Beautiful People

The Economist: Physically attractive women and men earn more than average-looking ones, and very plain people earn less. In the labour market as a whole (though not, for example, in astrophysics), looks have a bigger impact on earnings than education, … Continue reading

Material World

Peter Menzel: Freelancing in Somalia during their civil war and in Kuwait right after the first Bush War, I had some rather intense experiences that made life in the U.S. seem rather shallow and superfluous. Sitting in my office early … Continue reading