Mankind – overcomplicating products for 1.8 million years

In the radio series, A History of the World in 100 Objects, Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, described the oldest man-made object in the museum – the Olduvai stone chopping tool. This was made approximately 1.8 million years ago in Tanzania, where the first humans originated. MacGregor explained the tool has more than six chippings that sharpened… Read more »

Squares v circles on screenshots?

We were asked: “Do you know whether it is better to use squares or circles to indicate something on a screen shot? I use circles with thin border & compliment with an arrow. My colleague uses squares & the Subject Matter Expert prefers circles. I was  just wondering whether there is a best practice for this or… Read more »

The lost Steve Jobs interview – on successful products

Last night, we watched Steve Jobs: The Lost Interview on Netflix. It’s a lengthly (70 minute) interview from 1995, in which Steve Jobs discussed his recipe for a successful business. The interview was made 19 years ago when Steve Jobs was still running NeXT Computers, and just six months before he rejoined Apple. Here are some… Read more »

Why do Technical Authors only use two of the three qualities of good design?

Why do Technical Authors only use two of the three qualities of good design? Vitruvius, the Roman architect, claimed a structure must exhibit the three qualities of firmitas, utilitas and venustas: it must be solid, useful and beautiful. Paul Mijksenaar, a modern day Information Designer, turned these qualities into a practical three-point formula: Reliability, Utility and… Read more »