Wednesday 29 August 2012

Geeky August

This was the first Geeky event that I’ve attended (I think it was the second one so far…). I found it intriguing and inspiring — there were no massively new ideas, but just people celebrating the ideas that interested and excited them.

The venue helped too — Forward Technology have very impressive offices with a bar that almost rivalled the Brewdog round the corner.

detached heads and the practice of empathy

Evgenia Grinblo, @grinblo

  • how to design error messages…
  • don’t do it like this:
  • Talk human
  • Don’t blame the user — users already assume they messed up!
  • Tell the user what to do next

Little Printer

Alice Bartlett, @alicebartlett

  • Little Printer from BERG —
  • More personal than an email — a physical message arrives in your space
  • First units available to the public in October
  • Lots of publications available
    • BBC Worldwide: foods in season this week
    • Lanyrd, guardian, instagram, etc
  • Daily feeds / stories in parts / collections
  • API takes HTML and prints at 200.3 dpi
  • Also running “after school clubs” at BERG to test out the printers

when zeppelins ruled the earth

Simon Willison, @simonw

  • Norge: Italian zeppelin flew over the North pole
  • British Airship R100 had a smoking room… lined with asbestos to be safe!
  • USS Akron had a biplane inside it
    • They could launch — and be picked up later while the zeppelin was still flying
    • The “landing” was by matching speeds and being hoisted in from below
  • Hangar One “Hangar One (Mountain View, California) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia”) near San Francisco is a beautiful Art Deco building

crochet & pixels

Ruth Jones, @rumyra

  • comparing crocheting and pixel design
  • both done using squares of equal size but different colours
  • crochet can be done at different gauges, going down to really fine thread
  • crocheting starts with a 4” square swatch: allows you to measure before you start
  • crocheting has a limit of the smallest thread you can manipulate — do pixels have the same?

See how dense you are with Rumyra’s test page

Internet of Things Saves the Day

Jessi Baker, @jessibaker

  • Using internet of things (IoT) to help us make better choices
  • choosing to be selfish or selfless?
  • we’re becoming a society of quantified selves
  • Jessi worked with the people who made open source map of supply chains
  • She then went on to design Open Object: digital shadows of real things
  • when we get to out-sourcing part of your mind… (creating your digital daemon?)
  • …how would you calibrate it with your morals?

Jessi gave a similar presentation at mLove: see it here.

5 Lessons from the ZX Spectrum

Meri Williams, Geek_Manager,

  • learning is fun
  • creating is even more fun
  • creating it together is awesome
  • making stuff and sharing it with your friends is something we should all experience as children
  • break something apart, mess with it and make it cooler than it was

Meri’s notes give a lot more detail on her talk

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