Design. Honestly.

Inspired this week by an encounter with A.M. García while at AccessAbility.

Antonio García is a Chicago-based strategist, writer and brand consultant for the industries of design + innovation. When he’s not shaping and sharing the stories and futures of authentic brands, he draws, designs and djs.

Here’s some of what he shared with me about design:

  • Authenticity is critical, especially communicating across cultures
  • Designers need to be observers, translators, communicators, ethnographers
  • It’s about “keeping it real”
  • It’s about more than “keeping it real”, it has to come from the heart
  • Understanding social mores helps align your work
  • Be flexible. Tell stories. Share insights. Be curious. Be worldly. Be inspired.

Pirate Juice! (& other principles of good information design)

Jenn & Ken Visocky O’Grady are Co-founders of Enspace and Co-authors of The Information Design Handbook.

Information Design Handbook

I could listen to these folks talk all day. Their book is filled with case studies and essential design principles, with graphics that are exemplars of communication and aesthetics.

My favourite sequence from their presentation at AccessAbility:


pirate flag = “pirate”


poison = “pirate juice”?

“In a digital world, the gift I give you almost always benefits me more than it costs.”

If you have yet to read Seth Godin’s new free ebook, What Matters Now, you probably should:

download free pdf

Broad thinking about “Things to think about (and do) this year” featuring:
Featured contributors

Community Is The Framework

Do you know about BarCamp? DemoCamp? You should. I attended the 5th installment of GuelphBarCamp. It was a great opportunity to see what folks are up to, to meet some people, and to have a pint or 2. Next time, check it out!

Innovation In Reading

From the New York Times, September 06, 2007 – “Envisioning the Next Chapter for Electronic Books“. Click on the name of the article to access it.

I’ve always had my doubts that the e-book will ever take off. The only thing that the concept has going for it is, as Ron Hawkins, vice president for portable reader systems at Sony is quoted in the article,

Digital readers are not a replacement for a print book; they are a replacement for a stack of print books…That is where we see people, on the go, in the subway and in airports, with our device.

The other thing that really gets me is the thought that there should be a separate device to read e-books. A separate device to carry around just to read books from? Not integrated into my PDA or laptop? It doesn’t make sense.