I am a failed industrial designer, who ended up completing an undergraduate degree in economics, political science and philosophy. I did my graduate studies in philosophy. I am currently working in the field of international education.
I also use technology in strange & interesting ways. I have a real interest in terms of how technology, gender, sexuality, education and studying abroad intersect. For me technology should be an enabling tool (maybe this is also why I sometimes use / approach tech in non-traditional manners). Also, I tweet too much!
I believe the world is complex and to better understand it we need to approach the world in an intersectional manner.
I was reading this post by Máirín Duffy about the Fedora logo redesign process, which I found really enlightening and super interesting. At the end of the post Máirín Duffy talks about what is constructive feedback, which they can relay back into the design process and push the process forward. I found the description about what is helpful feedback as really useful, it is probably applicable to many other “open” or “inclusive” design processes. Here are just some words that really stood out to me at the end of the post, firstly stating feedback as a problem:
The most useful feedback is stated as a problem, not a solution. E.g., if you suggest changing an element, to understand your perspective it’s helpful to know why you seek to change that element. Also note that while “I don’t like X” or “I like Y” is a perfectly valid reaction, it’s not particularly helpful unless you can dig in a little deeper and share with us why you feel that way, what specific technical details of the logo (shape, contrast, color, clarity, connotation, meaning, similarity to something else, etc.) you think triggered the feeling.
“I’m not an answer,” she said. “I’m a question.” She might also be a message incarnate, a signal in the flesh, even if she hadn’t yet figured out what story she was supposed to tell.” Ghost Bird to Control
Book 3, Southern Reach Trilogy
Since the first time I saw the Blade Runner (1982) movie, I was fascinated with the world that it replicated and built, with the characters and also with the questions it posed to the viewer. I have seen both the original Blade Runner movie and the various different versions of it. I’ve also seen the new Blade Runner 2049 (2017) film and the three short films (Blade Runner Black Out 2022, 2036: Nexus Dawn and 2048: Nowhere to Run ) that bridge the “gap” between the two films. This being said, Blade Runner has not been the focus of my attention the last week or two. Rather, the Southern Reach and Area X has occupied me. But, strangely enough, by reading the Southern Reach trilogy, I have also been thinking about Blade Runner.
One specific thing has triggered my thinking, while reading the Southern Reach trilogy written by Jeff Vandermeer, namely the so-called “copies” or “false doppelgangers” created by Area X. (See below for further explanation.) In turn I have been thinking about the replicants in the Blade Runner Films. (The Annihilation-film, although very good, does not follow the same trajectory as the books.) I have been wondering if the “copies” made by Area X and the “replicants” in Blade Runner does not lead us to ask similar type of questions?
Recently I watched the State of the Word 2018, delivered by Matt Mullenweg. I really think people who are interested in the future of WordPress, but also the future of internet publication in general should have a look at it. The roadmap for Gutenberg is very exciting. I am very positive about what lies ahead.
They are currently in phase 1 regarding the development and implementation of Gutenberg, the latter focusing specifically on writing and editing posts/pages. With phases 2, 3 & 4 they will be going beyond this.
While I was completing my undergraduate studies, I had a professor in Political Science that taught with stories. Yes, he would have slides and other visual media, but he would contextualize it by telling applicable stories. The approach fascinated me, not just because I could remember the things he taught during tests and exams, but also because it gave a “realness” to what I was studying. Over the last few years I have come to the realization that the tool of storytelling is also important within the field of international education. We need to use it during our pre-departure orientations; and we kind of sneak it in there. (*learningfrompastmistakes) I want to highlight two reasons why storytelling is important in the field of international education: firstly, it helps students to think about their upcoming experience (to imagine possibilities) and secondly, it induces certain emotions within students which helps to bring certain points across.
The last year or two we have been tweaking our orientation processes for our outgoing students, so that it becomes more practical and strengths-based focused. It has become important for us to move away from just the general pre-departure presentation where we talk about ‘dos and don’ts (*learningfrompastmistakes). It does not mean that the latter does not have a place within the general pre-departure process, but it cannot be the only thing that is done to prepare students going abroad. (It took me a some time to realize this.) Also, I am of the opinion that students have the skills and abilities to travel abroad, we just need to make them aware of it and nurture their confidence and latent skills.