The Lotus blooms when you’re relaxed.
My son is named for (though spelled differently) Dashiell Hammett. I didn’t know this tour existed until today, it makes me quite happy. If you are interested in the best mystery writing around, check him out. If you’re interested in how American writers led the charge in post-war politics, read on. Brilliant man.
Ergaz is an artist based in Instanbul, and these dystoptian illustrations are simply wonderful. Most works depict the collision of human life with technological or supernatural elements.
Loving the digital-era self-help simplicity of Siemer’s Human Error series.
Love his work, a 19 year old from the UK. Go browse all of it. Shitty Watercolour.
Great quote from a great post by Hipper Element:
“That’s because UX is not art. It’s science. You’re trying to achieve control of your variables, and predictability of your results. You’re trying to eliminate the effects of randomness and chance. You’re being diagnostic, so when you fail, you have more information to use in your next try.
Eventually, your results will get more predictable, because your model and your hypotheses and your research will become more sophisticated. Your experiments will turn out the way you predicted more often than not, and when they don’t, you’ll know why.”
Important to think about this whenever a client says, “Do we really need a discovery phase?”
Sumana Harihareswara at 2014′s Code4Lib conference:
“Let’s look at what it takes to do user experience work. You have to look at your service from the point of view of someone who knows a lot less than you, and see where they’re coming from. You have to imagine the reasons why they want what they want. Seeing that causation, seeing the connection between what someone’s doing now and all the causation that went before it, is empathy. It’s a little like reverse engineering; you’re trying to unlock the DRM that’s stopping them from getting what they need. Which is a really cool hack, actually.
We need to to exercise a disciplined empathy. It’s an empathy that includes qualitative thinking, like interviews and watching people use stuff to see where the snags are, and quantitative thinking, like A/B testing and heatmaps.
But the tech industry is pretty crappy at empathy. And I’m speaking from my experience here – I know library tech is its own field – but in my experience of our industry, we just drop the ball on empathy and hospitality, a lot.”
Recall big data’s four articles of faith. Uncanny accuracy is easy to overrate if we simply ignore false positives, as with Target’s pregnancy predictor. The claim that causation has been “knocked off its pedestal” is fine if we are making predictions in a stable environment but not if the world is changing (as with Flu Trends) or if we ourselves hope to change it. The promise that “N = All”, and therefore that sampling bias does not matter, is simply not true in most cases that count. As for the idea that “with enough data, the numbers speak for themselves” – that seems hopelessly naive in data sets where spurious patterns vastly outnumber genuine discoveries.
“Big data” has arrived, but big insights have not. The challenge now is to solve new problems and gain new answers – without making the same old statistical mistakes on a grander scale than ever.