Sep 14, 2014
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The beauty of difference of opinion

The beauty of difference of opinion

Excellent! There is a social object (often a cultural work – a piece of art, an episode of a TV show, a song) that we have a shared experience/knowledge of.

Oh. Your opinion/reaction/interpretation to/of that thing is different from mine. It could be negative, whereas mine is positive, or maybe we agree overall, but have picked out different aspects of the thing to react to.

That’s OK though.…

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Jun 24, 2014
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A Song from a Band You Hate (30 Days of Music)

Took me a while, but here’s A Song from a Band You Hate -

AqualungJethro Tull

I’m not really sure about this one, to be honest, but it’s taken long enough for me to get around to writing anything for this category, so here goes. Can you really withstand six minutes plus of this?

There’s something traditional about rebelling against the culture of your parents. Whilst this isn’t true in every aspect of my experience, it certainly hits the spot here. I…

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Jun 11, 2014
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Day 10. Write with others



Can you help write this post?

I hope this counts, as I’m writing a day late - I am on a train, though (Jubilee line, heading south, currently between Canons Park & Queensbury). This morning, I’m listening to “…And I Will Kiss..” from the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony, reading a book about the Industrial Revolution, recovering from a hack day, and wondering when/where/who for a summer holiday. Snapshot done. Thanks writeitonatrain for the invite to contribute :-)
May 9, 2014
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30 Days of Music

30 Days of Music

Shamelessly cribbed from Matthew and Mark – let’s just call this attempt number 765 in the long, long series of me trying to establish a regular writing pattern. Oh yeah, the newsletter, I’ll pick that up again soon.

Thing is, whenever I’m writing something, I’m overcome by massive self-doubt – that what I’m doing is self indulgent, irritating and so on. Twitter is, for some reason, probably the…

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May 7, 2014
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Some quick thoughts on URLs

Some quick thoughts on URLs

This past week, there’s been a kerfuffle about an experiment within Google’s Chrome browser which hides URLs from the user. Lots of good folk have chipped in (three posts there, to give you an overview), which is good, but here’s a few thoughts before I forget to write this at all:

- As with any design decision, this has good and bad points. The discussion needs to be level-headed and focus in on…

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Mar 13, 2014
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On Design as a Service

On Design as a Service

Yesterday, Tom Maslen wrote this piece, on responsive design and how the BBC’s User Experience and Design (UX&D) teams are set up to work with the various BBC ‘product’ teams. It’s good, you should read it, and then come back and read the rest of this.

I agree with almost everything in there, but thought there were a few points that needed fleshing out, perhaps with a slightly different…

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Jan 9, 2014
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My Mission for 2014: Writing is Structure

It will come as no surprise to anyone that I’m interested in writing, and specifically the writing of narratives. I’ve always harboured a desire, if not the will or confidence, to write stories – scripts, sketches, that kind of thing. And, in the realm of…

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Dec 22, 2013
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History books tells us who we used to be, documentaries tell us who we are now, but heroes tell us who we want to be. And a lot of our heroes depress me.

"But, when they made this particular hero, they didn’t give him a gun, they gave him a screwdriver to fix things; they didn’t give him a tank, or a warship or an X-Wing fighter, they gave him a call box, from which you can call for help.

"And they didn’t give him a super power, or pointy ears, or a heat ray, they gave him an extra heart. They gave him two hearts. And that’s an extraordinary thing. There will never come a time when we don’t need a hero like the Doctor.

Steven Moffat, Doctor Who: A Celebration, 24th November 2013
Aug 14, 2013
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In defence of data

Data is only as dry and boring as you allow it to be. It can be powerful, in that it can represent anything you want it to. It can be used creatively, to represent anything in your imagination.

Indeed, it’s a two way process - data is a way of representing real-world, or conceptual, things, in a machine world - the real world, or the world of human ideas, pushing through to, leaving imprints upon, the machine world. But things can go the other way - APIs allow us to use machines to push through from the machine world to the real world - manipulating things from far away. That’s magical. That’s creative. That’s what data can, and should be.

Jun 12, 2013
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Whether a frame from an online video, or a screen capture of an online map (remember, digital maps are animations on pause), or fragments of code or spam; all of these are snippets, they are only momentary representations of ongoing processes – as indeed the New Aesthtic is intended to be.

Each image is a link, hardcoded or imaginative, to other aspects of a far greater system, just as every web page and every essay, and every line of text written or quoted therein, is a link to other words, thoughts and ideas. Again, in this the New Aesthetic reproduces the structure and disposition of the network itself, as a form of critique.

James Bridle, The New Aesthetic and its Politics, June 12th 2013
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Things that I've found across the Web, or have occurred to me.A scrapbook, of sorts. Subscribe via RSS.