Chaulk One Up for Blogs: The Satorialist

The Satorialist has suddenly made a big splash in both the blogging and fashion worlds with a very simple idea: take photos of wonderfully-dressed everyday people on the street and post them on a blog. The author’s eye and insightful commentary create little moments of education and beauty. We knew about the threats to classifieds and news and encyclopedias, and this peck at the high-media establishment further demonstrates that everything — even the insular fashion publishing world — is subject to the democratization of publishing.

Next time you’re at the bookstore have a look around and wonder what wouldn’t benefit from a simpler or more social approach or a whole new perspective.

This photo is titled, What Every American Boy Dreams Parisian Girls Look Like. Sigh.

Linking to the New York Times website

I just discovered two techniques for increasing your online enjoyment of the lovely New York Times:

  1. From blogs, links can lead behind the pay wall by creating a weblog-safe link (thanks Jason)
  2. If you live here and have a library card, you can access the newspaper’s archives back to 2000 — as well as the WSJ, Washington Post, company data, and a whole lot more through the public library’s Novel system

New: comments on this blog

Those of you reading this via RSS — 2 out of 3 of you — can now come to the site and post your comments. I became convinced that the emerging practice of applying design thinking to business should be a conversation to hasten progress, so I’ve opened up my blog to discussion. Hope to hear what you have to say.

metacool is itself cool

Diego Rodriguez — instructor at Stanford’s d.school — has a blog called metacool that’s the product of an engineering + MBA educated brain, definitely worth a look.

For example, he discusses Nike’s Considered line of shoes:

Considered shoes generate 63% less waste in manufacturing than a typical Nike design.  The use of solvents has been cut by 80%.  And a stunning 37% less energy is required to create a pair of shoes. Is Considered a perfect example of green design?  No, but when was the last time anyone did anything to perfection?  I’m just happy to see a big, public company like Nike — with everything to lose, and not so much to gain — take a leadership role in trying to forge a new market space for environmentally friendly, socially relevant products.  This is a wonderful first step.

I think green products will soon hit a tipping point, making Nike’s gamble pay off big. More on this in a future post.

CPH127: Design and Innovation are Boarding

CPH127 is a promising new blog from like-minds in Copenhagen:

This is a brand spanking new blog about the major influence of design as a motor for innovation, and like wise the other way around. We are neither 100% design-focused nor are we 100% business-focused. Our team consists designers, MBAs, dot-com entreprenours and all the other folks you would never expect to be on this kind of blog. Welcome aboard – we are about to take off!

Thanks to Gavin for the heads up.

Wikipedia

If you haven’t already discovered the Wikipedia then you should, if you at all like encyclopedias. And even if you dislike wikis it’s alright, there’s proper search and navigation elements, and enough content there already to be quite useful so that one need not feel guilty for not contributing.

Surfing it reminds me of when I was young and visiting a friend who had a set of encyclopedias, lying on the floor on rainy afternoons, paging through them.

Here’s a telling excerpt from the Creative destruction page:

Most economists agree that long-term economic growth is largely the product of technological innovation. Thus, some see it as a scandal that Schumpeter is absent from many 600 page elementary economic texts’ indexes. Schumpeter’s solution would be for a new generation of textbooks to emerge, which students would choose, in partial defiance of their lecturers. Wikipedia is now one of those texts!

Lemme just email you the wiki…

TiddlyWiki:

It’s written in HTML and JavaScript to run on any browser without needing any ServerSide logic. It allows anyone to create SelfContained hypertext documents that can be posted to any web server, or sent by email.

Whoa, wikis for the masses. It’s not as if they’re hard to setup (I’ve set up two personal wikis in about 10 minutes) but hosting is still a major hurder for many writers.

And it’s combined with a novel layout system:

A TiddlyWiki is like a blog because it’s divided up into neat little chunks, but it encourages you to read it by hyperlinking rather than sequentially…

Go and click a link, it’s fun!

Link courtesy Peter.

Build a CMS, go to heaven

Brian Alvey, speaking on a panel about CSS back at SXSW, asked, “Who’s building a CMS on these tools that spits out valid markup? Not many. A few. They’re going to heaven.”

Well, I don’t exactly believe in heaven, but to play it safe I wrote an article illustrating a few different ways you could integrate cascading style sheets with content management systems. The ideas came to me while I was working on a big Vignette-powered project, but the function is fairly easy to build in. The change is less about technology and more about organization and process: designers become empowered to improve the design through CSS as frequently and easily as authors change text.

It’s also just as useful on smaller systems, as demonstrated by Textpattern.