A Change To The Feed

For as long as I can remember I’ve been using Feedburner to publish the RSS feed for this site. It’s provided a few stats to satisfy my inner geek. Feedburner has been playing up a lot recently and Google who own it have shown little interest in moving the service forward, in fact, they even let the Japanese domain expire killing all the feeds which used the service without warning. Not wanting that to happen to you guys I’ve turned Feedburner off and am just serving the normal WordPress supplied RSS feed.

If you’re reading this in an RSS Reader or site like Google Reader, chances are you’re all ok, but please check the feed you’re subscribed to is http://philbowell.com/feed/

Thanks!

The Flat Design Era — LayerVault Blog ›

As a designer I’ve found myself often puzzled and confused at some of the decisions being made lately in the UI’s I use. I have a very sleek glass and aluminium iPhone in my pocket and yet a lot of the apps on it look like a note pad I used to find on my Dad’s desk as a school kid. It doesn’t make sense to me that a product that is so refined on the outside is full of bloated metaphors on the inside. Maybe that’s why this statement is so refreshing:

For many of us, it seems self-evident that you should approach product building with a certain kind of discipline. You cut your product features down to the bone, but you never approach your interface design the same way. Why create a small gem of a product and then weigh it down with design flourishes? The way you design your site should reflect your values — be consistent. Flat design is lean design.

The Web Aesthetic ›

To put it another way, we’re embracing “responsive” but neglecting the second part: “design.” We’re replacing fixed-width divs with fluid ones. As we undergo a period of reassessment, both of our practice and of our tools, now is the right time to seek out an aesthetic that is truer to the medium.

I, like many, love the notion behind responsive web design but one thing I’ve noticed is that more often than not sites start to look the same. With a little more, well maybe a lot more, consideration we can start to produce designs that are appropriate to their medium (aka screen/bandwidth available) rather than just shrinking or collapsing sections of a web page.

iOS 6 and Every-Day Life by Shawn Blanc ›

Today, right now, we’re using the same mobile operating system with the same apps as the guys in Cupertino who dream this stuff up and make it happen.

And it seems to me that there are several things in iOS 6 which reveal just that. This version of iOS is not full of any one amazing new jaw-dropping feature that will have our minds spinning. Instead it’s filled with dozens of little things that will get used by real people ever day. And it will make our lives a little bit nicer and a little bit easier.

This is exactly how iOS 6 feels to me, a steady refinement, sanding off the rough edges and the bits of friction. It’s smoother, a little bit snappier on my iPhone 4 (except for the app store) and just a nice incremental progression.

The iPhone 5 on Daring Fireball ›

iPhone 5 in my hand, this talk of micron-precision, fine watch craftsmanship, and the computerized selection of best-match inlays sounds not the least bit bullshitty or blustery. It simply sounds like an explanation of the level of obsession that it takes to create a mass-produced device that feels this, well, nice.

Of course it’s a disappointment the iPhone 5. Sure sounds like one.

The faces you never see: Apple flies Sir Jony Ive and entire design team to London for D&AD

Sir Jonathan, who for all the acclaim bestowed upon him rarely makes public appearances, collected Apple’s awards for best brand and best design studio at D&AD’s 50th anniversary celebration in Battersea Park.

But rather than let one man take the plaudits, Apple took the unusual step of flying its entire design team over from San Francisco to celebrate the achievement as a group – a notable event given that Apple has seemingly never attended an awards bash before.

A lovely touch from Apple to ensure everyone who played their part in Apple’s design success gets the recognition they deserve as part of the best design team in the world. Congratulations guys.

Things Cloud and Local Push

The cloud sync that is now finally in Cultured Code’s Things is fantastic. This little addition has made it even more awesome, best of all it works like the video shows it does.

That’s where Local Push comes in. Now, every time you make a change on one device, Things sends an encrypted notification of that change across your local network. All your other devices on the same local network pick this up and request the changes from Things Cloud.

In other words — you can have Things open on all your devices, make a change on one of them, and see that change applied on your other devices almost immediately.

One Year Later, the iPad Is Still My Favorite Computer ›

Up until a few weeks ago I’ve often found myself asking the question below:

Why won’t you admit that you can only use the iPad for real work because you’re a writer?

Perhaps one could be justified in asking it. A lot of the people demonstrating the iPad is good for working on tend to be writers, people who just require a text editor and a keyboard to produce something. Of course each time I come across answers similar to this:

I didn’t expect this self-interview to get so combative. But if you’re so sure that the iPad can’t be used for other creative expression, you might want to take it up with people like Cynthia Wick and Glen Mulcahy.

A couple of weeks ago I experienced this first hand. Each summer I do a beach mission in North Wales, every year we end up making things at the last minute to suit the needs which no amount of planning could foresee. This year what was the device I used to do the work? My iPad. My MacBook Pro sat upstairs in it’s case for pretty much the entire time. I wrote talks on my iPad, I made presentations and I planned sessions. My friend, he drew pictures to tell bible stories. Not once did we require a Mac or PC to do it. It was a real eye opener to the power of the iPad as a computer that can be used for work.

So will I leave my MacBook Pro at home next summer? As a freelance designer the only thing that stops me doing this, and perhaps my biggest disappointment with the iPad at the moment, is that there is no software akin to InDesign or Illustrator that would let me. Yet…