Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Amazing Interactive Information Visualization: Lens Reviews

Digital Photography website dpreview.com just released long-awaited (by me at least) lens reviews section and besides being thorough and clear as I would expect from dpreview, I'm totally nerding out over the interactive information visualization widget that visualizes sharpness and chromatic aberration at all combos of focal length and apertures.

Wow. I'm blown away. If this is the result of Amazon.com buying dpreview, I'm glad it happened and I look forward to seeing this feature being developed and seeing what else they are cooking up.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

"Design by committee 2.0" or "Genius designer is an anachronism"

In the end, is all this process-oriented work satisfying for its designers? Some of them say yes. "What you lose is overt self expression, but I gain something much richer by doing it this way," says Alexandre Hennen, a senior designer. "I get into somebody else's life and make it better."

Nicely put. From Masters of Collaboration: The 21st century design environment trades individual stars for teamwork uniting designers, engineers, anthropologists, and others.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Dream: Collect Cars

Well, maybe just being able to regularly enjoy and marvel at them will be sufficient. If only there were more museums, galleries, or showrooms that would display and celebrate the cars as human achievements…

I was looking through a gallery of the upcoming BMW X6 and even though it may not be groundbreaking-beautiful (I'm not educated enough to have a meaningful say anyway), as I came to the first shot of the interior, I thought "I wish I could collect great cars." Asking myself why I thought that, the answer was "Because great cars are fascinating like art." (Yeah, it would be nice to collect fine art too, wouldn't it?)

But then I thought that cars may be somewhat different than what is traditionally considered as art - so what's the deal? It dawned on me: Great cars have held a special place for me as a designer because great cars are like highly interactive art with immense utility that are simultaneously demonstrations of mastery in technology and engineering. Truly amazing objects, aren't they?

How cool would it be to work in such an intersection as a designer?

Sure, BMW's Chief of Design Chris Bangle had a TEDTalk called Great cars are Art, but when I blogged about it, my main takeaways were the depictions of love and trust in design and more specifically the process of design and what it means to design. If I remember correctly, Chris Bangle was more interested in car design as art as a parallel for sculpture and artists seeking truth. Actually, I think I want to to watch it again.

For convenience, here it is again: