May 22, 2013 at 08:09PM
May 22, 2013 at 08:09PM
To celebrate 3 years of living in NYC, I’m working on new visualizations of my foursquare check-ins. In the past, I’ve done this as flat, 2D visualizations. This year, we’re getting physical. Thanks to the amazing ModelBuilder Processing library by Marius Watz
“The Internet needs more spaces like 750Words and the camera roll on my phone. Spaces where you don’t have to worry about constructing an identity, performing some version of that identity, and constantly checking for a red notification dot. I’m not suggesting that sharing and human connection aren’t immensely valuable; of course they are. But without places where we can be alone with our thoughts, unconcerned with feedback, the Internet starts to feel like a never-ending cocktail party. We need more space to recharge.”
I love the Tumblr long press to reblog. It’s almost impossible to discover unless someone shows it to you (thanks Alex), but now that I’ve found it, I use it almost exclusively. The obvious downside is the lack of social sharing and comments, but this seems like a worthwhile trade off to get people distributing more content throughout Tumblr.
“Skeuomorphism is traditionally attached to design decisions. We bring the mechanical camera shutter sound to digital cameras because it feels good. We render paper page flips in our digital reading applications because it’s familiar. But skeuomorphism also cuts into business models. Business skeuomorphism happens when we take business decisions explicitly tied to one medium, and bring them to another medium — no questions asked.”
Foursquare recently released an iteration of our check in flow. In addition to making checking in feel faster, we wanted to make the check-in feel more about location visually; the map is meant to make checking in appear as if you’re placing yourself on it.
“One enters a Matter Battle when there is an attempt to execute the desires of the mind in any medium of physical matter.”
“…That “project” was called Foursquare. It was about recording where you’ve been, sharing with friends and discovering new places. For someone like me who used to record all the bars I had been to in a word doc, it was perfect. I could tell there was something special about Foursquare from the very beginning. The energy and excitement that Dennis and Naveen exuded was infectious and the product was addictive. It didn’t matter that they couldn’t pay me, I just wanted to be a part of something I believed in….”
mari sheibley: Farewell Foursquare
A big part of my decision to join the Foursquare design team, besides all of the reasons outlined above, was to have a chance to work with some of the best designers in the game, including Mari. I’d admired Mari’s work for years and stayed up extra late in grad school the night before she came in to offer guest critiques on our thesis projects. I’m bummed that I only got to spend <6 months working beside her, but in that short time, she has made me a better designer every day. I’m so stoked to see what she does next.
My May 12th, 2012 presentation of my MFA thesis, Recess
“If we are going to ask people, in the form of our products, in the form of the things we make, to spend their heartbeats—if we are going to ask them to spend their heartbeats on us, on our ideas, how can we be sure, far more sure than we are now, that they spend those heartbeats wisely?”
– Paul Ford’s keynote speech at our thesis festival was one of the best talks I’ve ever heard. For anybody who considers themselves a maker, please give this a read.
The Recess experience video that was presented along side my thesis.
For the past decade, we’ve seen the majority of our communication channels and social interactions migrate to the digital world. And while this shift has been instrumental in reconnecting us with friends and family across distant geographies, its often at the expense of face-to-face contact with our neighbors.
These tools for social networking can also be incredibly powerful in getting us offline and back into our communities. Recently, a new form of offline social networks have emerged to bring us together around common hobbies, the desire to share new skills, or even to simply to borrow a ladder from our neighbor. What’s missing, however, is a means to go play.
Recess is a social platform to organize and discover participatory sports and fitness activities in your local community. Recess connects people around the sports that they love to play, and makes it easy to do so. Players can join their friends after work for a soccer game, discover weekend kickball games in the local park, or organize morning runs with their neighbors.
Let’s go play.”
Last night, I noticed my friend Lee check in on foursquare to a park in Denver with the comment “Rogue Volleyball, Week 1.” Asking her about it, it turns out that one of my best buddies, Andrew, recently decided to put together a rogue volleyball league (my “crew”), rather than join a conventional league. Not only is this fantastic zeitgeist for my thesis, but it now also serves as a tertiary prototype for me, as Andrew has been keeping rigorous documentation about attendance at his events. Awesome. I should call home more often.
Another one of those moments that reminds me that my thesis is on to something.