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Hello ladies!

‘Digital Peacocking’ and how we all prefer the simulation

According to Wikipedia, Hyperreality is an inability of consciousness to distinguish reality from a simulation of reality, especially in technologically advanced postmodern societies.

When the first Matrix movie came out I wanted to find out a bit more about simulation theory and philosophy, I came across an article which listed Jean Baudrillards 1981 philosophical treatise ‘Simulacra and Simulation’ as one of the stimuli given to Keanu Reeves as preparation for his iconic role.

I bought it, and not understanding a damn thing, stuck it in the toilet, along with the other tragically ironic toilet tomes (Viz, Shit towns, The Bible…

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What the movie ‘Titanic’ teaches us about fantasy relationships…

All over the internets, the plot holes in the movie Titanic are a popular read. For me, one of them is an almost perfect analogy for the worst type of relationship, the ‘Fantasy relationship’.

Rose meets Jack whilst flirting with suicide (as one does), falls in love almost instantly. Fucks him in an old car, gets her own personalised ‘fallen Madonna with the big boobies’ painting and generally has an early 20th century upper class version of what most women get on holiday in Marbella, minus thrush and a questionable kebab.

At the end, after dodging bullets, freeing the grockles…

How to safely navigate the murky waters of e-commerce

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I feel genuinely sorry for people who actually want to buy snake oil

So this article came up on the BBC News:

Amazon ‘flooded by fake five-star reviews’ — Which? report

It seems that fake reviews are a massive issue for Amazon

This bit caught my eye:

‘Amazon said it was using automated technology to weed out false reviews’.

Using AI to try to combat fake reviews is nifty but can present a whole new set of issues. Fake news is already being fought using Artificial Intelligence, using software like the Fandango Project. So how does this work in the real world?

AI v Fake Reviews

The method works like this: deploy natural language processing to detect…

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Apples new credit card, designed to disrupt both banks and credit card companies, despite literally being the photogenic 3 parent IVF child of a bank (Goldman Sachs) a credit card company (MasterCard), and Tim Apple.

Apple recently launched Apple Card, an innovative, new kind of credit card created by Apple and designed to help customers lead a ‘healthier financial life’.

A healthier financial life (arguably acheived by NOT having a credit card, but I digress) is a very nice way of saying if you know exactly how much you are spending in Pret a Manger, you will have enough left…

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Eyes down for a full house!

I have been in quite a few interviews this year, and wanted to provide a light-hearted satirical recap to explain the real meaning of some of the most prevalent questions. Is just a bit of fun so don’t @ me etc

We need you to have a chemistry meeting with (insert job title here)

The (insert job title here) is difficult to work with.

What is your process?

We want you to come up with stuff that fits into our process, but at the same time see how you do things with no preparation

Do you have experience with design systems?

We have would expect you to use our design system (inflexible pattern library with no substantive design theory, principles or rationale)

Can you do a design challenge/whiteboard session?

We want…

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The good old days.

Robots

I came across this article on Ocados robotic picking facility

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-06/how-many-robots-does-it-take-to-fill-a-grocery-order

The tech is impressive but this was my takeaway:

“Replacing human packers will be much harder because that requires a robot that can duplicate the dexterity of the human hand, the ability to grab a bunch of kale, say, without damaging it.”

Those robots are $100,000 a piece. Thats 4 decent humans on above minimum wage + benefits for a whole year. And all those people need is the dexterity they were born with. …

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uxYour old Photoshop files, that dont really look real

Hiring people: If you are asking for designers with ‘pixel perfect’ skills, then you are doing it wrong. Pixels, and the concept of polished ‘final’ or ‘pixel perfect’ visuals, are as anachronistic as the word ‘digital’.

“Do you do wireframes?”

Ok I promise this is not a dig at recruiters (well, maybe a little) but I have always had an issue with the perception of freelancers in the creative industry. I have been a ‘freelance’ creative type (eurgh) my entire career.

But there are two distinct types of freelancer.

  1. Pro Freelancer. People that have run their own company, set their own pace, blaze their own path (eurgh) and are really great at what they do, and people pay top market rates to hire them as an expert consultant, but also a workhorse, design leader, knowledgebase and…

There is an image going round, another viral ‘meme’ on LinkedIn that is particularly annoying:

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The slide came from a presentation at an IBM for Entrepreneurs event by Sandy Carter (@sandy_carter), who is IBM’s leading executive for start-ups.

Whilst there is no doubt that there is some disruption in those industries, those examples are profoundly misleading

Lets unpack this balderdash as a simple consumer:

Worlds largest taxi company owns no taxis.

Who cares who owns the taxis? When you get into a ‘taxi’ (private hire vehicle, Hackney carriage, horse and cart, rickshaw, tuktuk etc) do you really care about who owns the vehicle?

No, because you have…

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“So tell me about your process”

As a creative designer one of the things that really grinds my (48x16 fixed) gears is when I get asked at interviews what my ‘process’ is, or to show examples of my design process.

I dont have a process, and nor should you, and this is why:

Process is for people with no imagination

Creative people don’t need a process, that is why they are creative. They create stuff with their creativity which is fuelled by them being creative (and coffee) I make stuff up and then post-rationalise the theory/mechanics/how the heck are we going to pay for this?.

Mat Venn

Design Director. Dad. Cyclist. Flâneur. Piano student. Fondue enthusiast. Not necessarily in that order

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