A couple of days ago, my friend and colleague Gavin Logan wrote a short post which has got me thinking about criticism (or lack thereof) in the local web community:
“ A local web design agency that I used to admire has started to churn out insipid work. It’s made me think about this aversion we have for talking publicly about this kind of thing. I don’t want to name them, and I’d consider it rude if I did, but I don’t know where this politeness comes from. ”
While I don't know which agency he's referring to, I'm more than familiar with this situation, both from my time in the North East and previously. While criticism is a vital element of the design process it's a tricky area even under the best circumstances – for instance, between good friends or long-time associates. As Gavin says, giving polite yet firm feedback to local designers and agencies – and lets face it, we're often talking about competitors here – is next to impossible.
Earlier this weekend I decided to add a few bits of new functionality to the site. As is so often the case with these things, it quickly snowballed into an early spring-clean, and the first proper refit of the site's backend since I built it the first time. Here's a quick rewrite of what changed and why.
A quick remix of a vector illustration I did last year, for a blog post that I never finished.
On a related note: Dobkeratops is my favourite video game boss of all time. I think that was basically what I was trying to say in the blog post, although I had it padded out over about 1500 words. That, and that you should probably play an R-Type game in the next few days.
“ I held an iPad in my hands today and it was kind of like holding the future. The future is expensive and has a glass front. ”
As far as first impressions go, these (by Gavin Logan on Friday's Geekest Drink) are pretty much on the money. It might seem a little late in the day to be writing up thoughts on a new device — after a month here and several in the States, some would perhaps feel that the topic is a little stale. But as many initial observations of the device seem to be based on shininess or pricetag, I thought it would be a good idea to hold off until I'd seen how it works in the real world for a non-trivial period of time.